or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Feral Cats and Rescue › Caring for Strays and Ferals › vet dewormed weak 4 week old kitten
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

vet dewormed weak 4 week old kitten

post #1 of 67
Thread Starter 
I found an orphaned kitten Sunday night. Was skinny, hungry and cold, but otherwise OK. I took him to the vet's today. The kitten is about 4 weeks old and malnourished and was very dehydrated when I found him. The vet gave him a dose of liquid wormer. About an hour later, he stopped eating. Took no intrest in food of any kind. Started crying, shaking, acting weird and his body temp dropped. I called up a frriend of mine whose Mom is a vet (they've raised many a little lost thing) She says it was the wormer. It can't be given to kittens that young, especially weak ones. She lost a kitten that way before she knew better. Now I'm sitting here with him wrapped up nice and warm, giving him Pedialyte, and the formula she recommened. She says if he makes it till morning, he'll make it. He looks better now than he did a couple hours ago.
post #2 of 67
Poor you and poor kitten. It is terrible when things like this happens and one feels so helpless. I had a kitten who had an allergic reaction on an antibiotica shot a few weeks ago and that was a long night. They are tough little creatures though. My kitten made it and I will keep my fingers crossed that yours do too.
post #3 of 67
Thread Starter 
He's going to be OK! I got him to eat a little on his own this morning, he's not crying (except for the normal amount), his temp is normal and he's acting playful. He's gonna be fine.
I talked to the vet....I don't think it was a case of an "Oh, it's feral, it doesn't matter" viewpoint of the vet, which was the case with my friend's kitten.
He said he'd used this kind of wormer on 2 week old kittens without problems. It's even safe for birds. I think maybe poor Jules had an allergic reaction and/or was just too weak for wormer and the vet might not have realized it. He seemed upset about what the kitten went through and agreed that that second round of worming should be put off and not use that kind of wormer again. He thinks we might do something called Panacure, which is a three day course, when Jules is older. He doesn't have worms that bad anyway, if he even does (which is quite likely). There was one thing that came out that might have been a worm, but I really couldn't tell.
But whether Jules is allergic and this was a freak occurence, I'm never letting a vet worm a kitten this young again unless the worms are killing it.
I still haven't decided whether to keep going to this vet. I don't know if he was careless or not.
post #4 of 67
Jules, give him a small taste of karo syrup. Just put a dollop in his mouth and then keep him warm. Try and push the pedialyte as well and dump that vet!
post #5 of 67
Thread Starter 
He's wandering around the study now, batting at things. He just ate some chicken wet kitten food and a bunch of formula all on his own! The "skin test" for dehydration is much better. His eyes don't have that pained look in them. I think he's out of the woods. I am still giving him Pedialyte and some formula through the dropper and I think I'll keep that up for a few days, just to be sure. That was a very long night. I did find out my genetics professor likes cats, though! (One of the three classes I missed...small price to pay though.) He became very understanding and offered me the lecture notes (which he never does for anyone) once he knew why I had missed class.
Jules the kitten (full name Lord Jules of Darrowby) is the most adorable thing. He has the most amazing silver, brown and black stripes and a white and black striped belly. And little tiny, soft black pads on his feet.
Anyway, I figure even if he had worms, even if the other cats get them, everyone can get wormed when Jules is about 8 weeks old (right age, right?) and can handle it. No one will die of worms until then. I just hope neither of us humans get them! Lots of handwashing!
This is the youngest kitten I've raised. At 4-5 weeks, should he be "going" on his own yet? I've been stimulating him to go after every meal, but I think he and I both would like that to end soon. How will I know when that is? I assume if he just starts going, right? Should I still then, for a while, just to be sure he's getting it all out OK?
Is it right to be introducing him to soft solid food? Before the worming incident, he was interested in soft food and is now getting some interest back. I think he's probably too little for dry food, even if some sources say it's OK. Tiny little teeth and throat.
So, you guys think it was the wormer itself or an allergic reaction to what would otherwise have been OK?
post #6 of 67
The wormers are rough, it is after all toxic. If he was already undernourished, sickly or anemic from fleas, his worming should have been postponed unless he was just sick from the worms themselves.

Glad he is doing better. You will know when stimulation needs to stop, you are pretty close, when he graduates to solid food and is drinking formula and water from a bowl he'll do the right thing.
post #7 of 67
Good that it went well and that it is over. You will have to post some pictures for us.
post #8 of 67
Thread Starter 
It was just malnourishment, that I know of. Amazingly, he does not have fleas or even ear mites. He has no symptoms of sickness. Clear eyes and nose, no coughing, sneezing or vomiting, no noises in the chest. When I found him, he was just skin and bones and very, very dehydrated. I think the effects of that were still an issue. The dehydration was better by then, but, you don't cure starvation that fast. He was still weak.
I don't know what to do about that vet. He's been the family vet for years and this is a small town. I don't think he meant to harm him. It still might qualify as incompetent though. But, then again, he's never damaged one of the family's animals before. I don't know.
Do you think it will harm the kitten to wait a while to get him wormed? He only passed one thing that might have been a worm, so I don't think he's badly infested. His belly is a little big, though, which usually means worms. It could mean another thing, but I don't want to think about that possibility. One kitten lost to FIP is enough. That kitten had other symptoms too that Jules does not have.
Oh, I have a neat invention that maybe is new, maybe not, but I really like it. It might not be practical for multiple kittens, but Jules loves it. I have one of those long, wide, very soft furry feeling scarves. I tied it off to where the loop is at chest level hanging around my neck and then safety pinned up the edges to make a pouch. He rides around in there happily. It's soft and keeps him nice and warm and I can go about my business without locking him up. Also, it's very helpful for feeding him from the dropper. Like an extra set of hands.
post #9 of 67
Just saw this thread & read the good news on Jules I really like the idea for a kitten-tote; years ago, I carried my first JC in the deep pockets of an over-sized robe. He socialized beautifully. Congrats on Jules
post #10 of 67
Thread Starter 
I would put up some pictures, but technologically I'm just about in the Stone Age. No digital camera.
Yeah, the constant contact seems to have a good effect on him. When I found him, he was having some thoughts about being a feral kitty for good. Claws out and hissing...which is actually rather endearing in something that tiny and cute. But after a day in the pouch, he got over it. Probably it helped that he is so young and hadn't really decided how to feel about people.
He ate more soft kitten food today, and out of a dish too!
So what do you guys think about the worming ( and waiting longer on it) and the somewhat big belly?
post #11 of 67
I just wanted to say that I'm curious to hear the answer to your question too!

Last week I found two(!) kittens that I think (are now) 5-6 weeks old. Luckily they were already going potty on their own, they ate the canned & dry food I gave them, and used the litterbox without any guidance! They both are very tiny but still have big bellies- but I can't tell if it's a kitten thing or something different... How do you know if they have worms? Or is going to the vet the only way to find out?

I like your kitty purse idea! I have some scarves like that so maybe I'll give it a try tonight- my babies are still really timid since I'm the first human they've seen and they've only known me for a little bit!

Good luck with your little baby!
post #12 of 67
Just wanted to comment on the "kitty tote".
When my Little Bit was first adapting to the house, I bought a baby sling to carry him in because he was a little bit clingy.

I thought that it would be nice if they actually had slings designed for small animals for bonding, It sounds like you came up with a better idea where they have a better fit.
post #13 of 67
I have lots of pouches and purses made out of fleece for our sugar gliders... I'm thinking I might try making a sling type contraption like what you guys are talking about.

Now if only I can get to it before all my cats are too big for it! All my arts & crafts projects are on hold but maybe I can squeeze one in!
post #14 of 67
Hi all, I just joined the board but have been helping a friend foster kittens for years and just started with my fiance on my own. As far as the wormer, there are certain brands that can be given to the kittens, but usually not earlier than 5 weeks. Yours probably had such a bad reaction b/c it was so malnourished, but other 5-6 week old kittens that have a decent amount of weight on them should get wormed, it's terrible what those worms can do to them.
For the person that was wondering how to tell, if your kittens have very distented (sp?) bellies, that's usually a good sign, however, good food and lots of it will do that to them too, so really the best way to tell is to look at their poop. If it's a tapeworm, you'll see little sections come out, but if it's roundworms, you'll actually see little worms in their poop (or vomit). Keep a close eye on them, and if/when you do get them wormed, expect diarrhea from them for a day or two, just make sure you are keep a close eye on them for dehydration. If you're really worried, you can ask your vet to teach you how to inject fluids into them, but in general, it will just be watching them and making sure they eat!

post #15 of 67
Thread Starter 
Hey, I'm back. School + kitten = no time.
I'm glad you like the kitty pouch idea.
He's doing well. Running around, eating soft food, lapping up formula, stealing an occasional kibble out of the "big cats'" bowls. I moved him to a big pet crate and put in a litter box, which he started using all on his own! I was very proud.
So, I don't know if I should have him wormed again. I wouldn't do it for another 2 to 3 weeks yet any way. I don't know if he even has worms, though. The worming incident produced one (only 1) thing that might have been a worm...might have been a thread...I don't know. He does have a distended belly, but he eats all the time. If he hasn't eaten in a while and has just done his business, his belly is smaller. Maybe he doesn't have worms. I don't know. I also don't know whether or not to go to that vet again. I don't see anything in his poop. Should I worry about the big belly? Should I worry about it being FIP?
Also, how do I interest him in drinking water? He laps up formula just fine, but he won't touch water.
He wants to eat kibble sometimes. Is that OK? He steals some which worries me because it seems like too big of pieces, but also I grind up kitten kibble with a mortar and pestle and he likes that fairly well. I want him on kibble eventually, so when he's a big boy he'll eat with the big cats.
post #16 of 67
I don't know anything about the distended tummy, but as for the crushing his food up, I did this with my foster kitten and mixed it in with her wet food to get her used to the crunching- she did just fine . And for the water vs. formula, as she got older, I just watered down the formula a little more, and a little more, until it was just water over the course of a couple of weeks. If he's only 4 weeks, though, I wouldn't switch him to pure water until you are absolutely sure he is eating all of his food well, and in an amount to sustain his growth- I didn't start really switching Gretta over until 7-8 weeks, though she was a little reluctant (and late! ) being weaned. Hope this helps!
post #17 of 67
i agree with the above poster...just start watering down the formula slowly, I'm sure if they had the choice between yummy formula and boring water, they'd pick formula every time. Also, while your kitty is eating all that wet food, he's getting a lot of water from it, so don't worry too much.

In addition to grinding up the dry food and mixing it with his wet food, you can also just mix some water in there so it gets soft...it gets them used to the taste and the bigger bites! But I wouldn't try that until he's a bit older.

As far as the wormer, technically they're supposed to get them 2 weeks apart (this is what we did for ours at least), but if he's not quite at the correct weight, then I would wait on it. But if he's gaining weight and doing well, I would consider calling that same vet and seeing what he would recommend, especially since he knows about the kitten's reaction to the last wormer.
post #18 of 67
ggod thing I read this post because my former vet told me to take my kittens to the vet when they are a month old to get them dewormed. Now I'll wait a little longer. Anybody know how long I should wait?
post #19 of 67
All I can tell you is what my vet did- wormed at 5 weeks (bottle baby abandoned by feral mom), and she was healthy and did fine.
post #20 of 67
I believe strongid is safe for 3 week old kittens. I foster, and very often have kittens with worms. I think by 4 weeks all kittens should have a stool sample checked by the vet. Then the vet will let you know if they should be wormed.

Tiny kittens are a specialty, and not everyone is prepared to treat them. But to give wormer to a dehydrated kitten without even checking the poo sample seems outrageous.

Originally Posted by hissy View Post
Jules, give him a small taste of karo syrup. Just put a dollop in his mouth and then keep him warm. Try and push the pedialyte as well and dump that vet!
When Hissy, who has over 31,000 posts, and is a cat expert, says dump the vet...it is time to dump the vet!
post #21 of 67
wow, didn't realize he was dehydrated when the vet wormed him, def. dump that vet, dehydration is the first thing our vet checks for, even with the adult cats, before giving any shots or wormers!
post #22 of 67
Thread Starter 
Yeah, if only I'd known then what I know now, I wouldn't have let the vet worm him. I figured a vet should know what was best.
It's been two weeks since Jules arrived, so he's about 6 weeks now. He actually wants kibble sometimes and will steal it out of the big cats' bowls unless I put some kitten kibble down for him. I mostly still feed him wet food though. He eats more of it.
I'll try watering the formula down. Good idea. That is true that formula probably tastes better than water. The big cats are always trying to get in on it.
So, official vote is dump the vet? 'Cause, no, he didn't check for dehydration or check the stool samples I brought. I was thinking maybe I'd just keep him for Gremlin who needs to have his anal glands expressed regularly and take everybody else (and Gremlin for other things) to a different vet. That might be about fair. Nothing smells quite like that procedure.....
He's doing really good now though. He's grown quite a bit and raises heck like a good kitten. The ferret and Jules do not play well though....The ferret thinks the kitten is a toy. I keep telling the ferret, "just wait until he gets big, then you'll see."
Anyway, I know some wormers are supposed to be safe for baby kitties, but I'd wait until they are 8 weeks just to be safe unless the worms are really bad and they are in good health otherwise. Even then, they should be in good health before being wormed. So I've learned.....
post #23 of 67
I can only tell you about my experience. I'm fostering a little girl who was found at about 2 weeks old with no mother. She was hand raised for 2 weeks by a kind lady, then brought into the shelter as she had to go out of town and couldn't look after her while she was away.

Little Smudge was dehydrated, very underweight, and looked unhealthy. In the first week she lost an ounce, and was playing a bit, and seemed happy, but was quite weak.

At this stage I was giving her the tinned food they gave me, which was only Friskies brand, and that's about all she was eating, and was having regular diarrhea. I took her back to the shelter for a check up and they dewormed her then by giving her half a tablet, and gave her fluids, but said given she was losing weight, and it could be some congenital defect and she may not make it.

I was really upset, but determined to do everything I could. I bought KMR (Stage 1), Pedialyte, Chicken Soup for the Kitten Lovers Soul brand tinned food, high calorie cat/kitten supplement, and Bene-Bac, and mixed all of this together (in fairly equal proportions, but more Pedialyte, and only a small amount of the high calorie supplement.

They'd also given me Royal Canin Babycat dry food for kittens 1-4 months old, so mixed that in as well. I fed her a fairly heaped dessert spoonful (kept i nthe fridge, then mixed a bit of water in and warmed up to room temperature) of that 3 times a day, and also gave mer KMR mixed with Pedialyte a few times a day as well.

Each day after that she has improved. More energy, looks healthier, filling out well, gaining weight, playful as playful can be, and generally like a regular kitten. Her stools also hardened up within a day or two, and she hasn't had diarrhea pretty much since I changed her food.

I don't know if it was the worming that helped her, my mush, or a combination, but she went from may not live, to happy, healthy kitten in about 4 or 5 days.

I'm now slowly in the process of getting her off the mush, and getting her to drink water and eat dry food throughout the day and tinned food 3 times a day.

Change vets, let them know what happened with the worming, and maybe try a combination of food like I did to try and get your little baby fat and happy. Is there a chance that the stress of all the changes coupled with the vet trip caused her problems rather than the worming tablet? My little girl was very weak when she went in, and thrived after that!

Note: I just noticed that the little guy is doing well now, so you probably don't need the advice I've just given, but it may be useful for others in the same situation who read this thread
post #24 of 67
Thread Starter 
Sure it will help. And if I end up with another little lost waif, I'll remember it.
post #25 of 67
But I'm hoping no one minds me dredging it up!

This is my first time here... I found you all as I was searching for some help with my wee little one. She's 4 weeks old and has been abandoned by her mama. She was found with some siblings at the farm of a friend. The woman fed them all milk (bad I know, but she meant well). My little girl was the only one alive by the next morning I knew she'd be a goner too if we left her, so home she came with us. That was last Tuesday. She had diarrhea, but not terribly. We started feeding her kitten formula, and scheduled a vet appointment for Thursday.

The vet said that she was very tiny, about 4 wks and a small thin 4 wks at that. She also said that she was wild... which I figured as she was hissing *lots!* She gave her some wormer, one dose there in the office with another dose to be given in 10 days, and another wormer which we were to start her on when we got home. So she is on two separate worming meds at this point. Her diarrhea has gotten steadily worse and foul smelling and her appetite has decreased steadily as well. She will eat tiny, tiny amounts of the formula or soft (Iams) kitten food if coaxed. I did call the vet back on Friday to tell her about the increased diarrhea and she recommended an 1/8 teaspoon of canned pumpkin one time per day and to call back on Monday if she wasn't better. At this point I don't know if she's gonna make it until Monday.....

I would love any advice... I am desperate for some advice actually. I have a houseful of kids who will be very sad indeed if we lose this little girlie. My son said to me today, "I'm still playing , but my inside parts are crying."

If you want to see some pictures of the kitten, I posted some on my blog. If you look past the first page there are more posts with more cute pictures
post #26 of 67
syringe her w/fluids & try meat baby food [no onions, no garlic] to try to tempt her appetite.
my Java had some issues when i got her, too... even tho she was about 3.5 months old. i put it down to poor diet - she was a stray - who knows WHAT she'd been eating?
post #27 of 67
If you have some of the kitten milk replacer, I would stick with that if she will take it. As I think you realize, it sounds like you are on the thin edge of saving her or losing her.

And for what it's worth, you just can't save them all. She may have some disease that took her siblings, too. All you can do is fight the good fight.
post #28 of 67
Well,thanks so much for the advice folks... I gave her some of the kitten formula in a syringe about 2cc's I think. I also gave her some of the canned pumpkin which she took pretty well. Of course as soon as she had those inside of her she started poo-ing, so I don't know if it actually helped her or not I am supposed to be giving her wormer every day, which I have been doing (I am such a compliant patient ), but I didn't give her any today... I figure it's not going to help her much if it kills her... sigh...

She does seem pretty cold so we've been holding her wrapped in scraps of fleece-y fabric. Scraps so that I can just toss them when they become soiled, which they seem to pretty quickly. I'll let you all know how she does through the night.
post #29 of 67
Warmth is critical as a cold kitten won't eat.
Try putting some rice in a sock, tie off the end and warm it in a microwave. Put it in a ziploc bag to keep it clean and put it outside the flannel - don't want to burn her.

Thank you for trying. Thoughts and prayers headed your way..
post #30 of 67
The kit is doing much better today.... at least she made it through the night, which I honestly had my doubts about. Thanks for the tip about keeping her warm, I've been holding her on my chest under my nightie and with a layer of fleece over the top. It does seem to have helped a lot. She took about 6 syringes of formula, YAY! Then she sat up on her own and tried to clean herself.. poor little sweetheart.

here's a copy of the update I put on my blog:
Monday morning update...
When I went to bed last night, I honestly wasn't quite sure what to expect this morning to bring. Anne had gotten progressively weaker and we had resorted to feeding her through a syringe, as it was the only way to get any fluids into the poor little waif. She spent the night on Amelia's bed in her basket (complete with a ticking clock and layers of soft fleece-y fabric.)

Well, when I looked in at her this morning she looked right up at me and surprised me with an almost silent meow. She took several syringes of formula mixed with a smidge of canned pumpkin- to help with the digestive difficulties or so says the vet. Each syringe is 1 ml, or is it 1 cc... I can never remember which of those is which, so if any of you metric-gals can help me out, I'd be ever so grateful.

And gratitude is what I am feeling right now, as I watch Anne sitting upright with a round full little tummy. She's actually trying to clean herself... now that's a kitten after my own heart.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Caring for Strays and Ferals
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Feral Cats and Rescue › Caring for Strays and Ferals › vet dewormed weak 4 week old kitten