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Cat not eating well

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by Sonia Kat, Nov 1, 2018.


  1. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    We have had a lovely tuxedo cat for a year now. She has always been the apple of my eye but in the last 8 weeks we have also had a baby boy. I spent a lot of time before he was born playing baby noises and she had taken to sitting on my bump, and when we got baby home we let her smell him. She has been amazing, we don't leave them alone but she will sleep next to us etc and didn't seem too bothered. In this time we have also had multiple constant visitors to see the baby or stay over. This seems to worry her a bit but again she seemed to be fine.

    The last couple of weeks however I've been getting worried. She's showing signs that she feels a bit ignored... Wanting to play all the time or just hiding away and sleeping (not massively unusual but she would usually come in and say hi through the evening). This week she will play when i prompt her but won't come to ask. She looks a bit wary when she's around and the baby is crying and prefers going out. More worrying for me is that she's stopped eating as well, she is usually a monster when it comes to food and treats and would walk me to her treat cupboard each day.

    This week she barely finishes her morning dry biscuits by the time her evening feed is due (she will still come over at set mealtimes but just won't eat much). With evening feed she just licks the gravy and maybe has a few pieces of meat but then doesn't eat that either. She's not bothered me for treats.

    I also have noticed her with one of my stuffed toy dogs, that she used to sleep on, but today she was grooming it. It has very fine fur on it.

    I'm just not sure whether she might be ill and so not eating? Do i take her to the vets? Stress from the baby and constant visitors (though she seemed great before)? Could the fur from the stuffed toy block her stomach or something - worried as it's not a cat toy, just one that sits on my bed? Would really appreciate some advice.
     
  2. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @Sonia Kat -

    You are right, such a noticeable change in behaviour in a cat should be a cause for concern. She may be unwell, or she may be suffering from stress. I would take her to the vet.

    Is she using the litter tray normally for pee and poo? I am wondering if she could have a urinary tract infection or cystitis, which can be stress related in some cases. She could be hiding stress she feels from all the major changes in the home since the arrival of your baby.

    Of particular concern is the fact she has lost her appetite and is hardly eating (unless she is getting food elsewhere from a neighbour?). Cats can become very ill with a disease called Liver Lipidosis if they don't eat. Also she could become dehydrated if she is not eating as much wet food as usual. You do need to get her eating properly again a.s.a.p.

    When a cat is unwell their usual foods can become unappetising to them. So it is worth buy in some new foods they have not eaten before. When one of my cats is unwell I buy foods such as Felix AGAIL or Gourmet Gold, neither of which I would ever feed my cats normally because they are not good quality foods. But they play a useful role as they always get my boy's appetite going again.

    I hope your cat feels better soon.
     
  3. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    So since we've let her go outside during the summer she has tended to pee and poo in the garden, great when she was well but now almost impossible to tell whether she is peeing and pooing fine. One thing to say is that she does pester us to go out and when you let her out she does seem to at least pee under her favourite bush. We did leave her overnight last weekend and she had only peed in her litter tray. No poo.

    I've seen her drink water so hopefully not dehydrated too much but yes definite drop in food. She's had stress induced cystitis before but she started weeing outside her litter tray then. Not done that this time but if she's only peeing outside would we know?

    And i don't think food from a neighbour as she's quite shy around strangers and if i had to guess i think she would be scared. I think you're right about trip to vet. My hubby thinks I'm being over sensitive because i feel guilty for spending less time with her but i really am worried. Thank you again for your advice.
     
  4. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Please let us know what the vet says. Good luck :)
     
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  5. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    So she had a bit of diarrhoea last night just once, though I'm not sure if that's because i was feeding her lots of treats to make sure she was eating something! No other significant changes in symptoms or behaviour.

    Went to the vet today and almost felt like a fraud as examination was normal but then found her temp was very high at 40 degrees! They've given us some stomach protection, a pain killing injection and some probiotic gel. Also some high calorie food. We have to take her again tomorrow to check her temp again and maybe needs blood tests if still high

    I'm really worried now
     
  6. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I'm sorry to hear the news Sonia. A high temp can make them lose their appetite. Did the vet not suspect an infection of some kind ?

    A very good idea to get blood tests done if her temp's still high tomorrow. I would also ask for a urinalysis to be done, to check for a UTI. It can be done in the surgery with a fine needle aspiration straight into the bladder, a process called a cystocentesis.

    Please update us. I hope she feels better soon.
     
  7. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    She didn't give antibiotics today as couldn't find a clear source of infection today. She did say if temp is high tomorrow might suggest antibiotics or blood tests. I guess she thought gastroenteritis because of the diarrhoea episode or maybe gastritis as gave a tablet for stomach protection. Really thought we'd got away with it just being stress or her being picky with her food! But i had a bad feeling! Poor little one! I'd be heartbroken if anything serious happened to her!
     
  8. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I sympathise with you, it is so worrying when our cats are unwell and we don't know what's wrong. I hope she is better soon, or you get some answers from the tests.
     
  9. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    We had a bad night... She had 4 lots of diarrhoea, still not eaten much, a few mouthfuls of her morning biscuits, and i kept finding her crouched down on the floor as if in pain. Tried playing with her but she seemed quite tired and did a bit of batting but then couldn't be bothered. It was heartbreaking and i cried all night

    Today the vet said temperature was fine and so no bloods or antibiotics needed. She thought the diarrhoea might have been due to the painkiller she had yesterday and felt this is a bowel infection and to carry on with medicines above. Said she should eat by tomorrow and just to try boiled food. If no better tomorrow then to come back for another check and possible blood tests. Didn't think any sign of urine test as bladder not tender (i did ask about taking sample) and she's asked for a stool sample over 3 days.

    Back home and she's still not eaten even though i boiled some fish and tried to hand feed her. She had around 10 dreamies and now turns away from anything. She's just slept all day. I think she's getting worse but the vet said she was reassured as temperature normal now. Not sure what else we can do except try again tomorrow. Keep worrying we're just heading to liver problems like you said and not helping quickly enough!
     
  10. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I am sorry to hear she is still poorly.

    Home cooked chicken drumsticks or poached white fish are gentle on the bowel, if she will eat either of them.

    If not, then she might lap some liquidised cat food. No need to add water, wet cat food turns to liquid when it is whizzed in the blender.

    I am glad you are getting stool samples tested. As she is an outdoor cat it is possible she could have eaten something outdoors that has made her ill.

    She does need to eat though, by tomorrow, so how do you feel about the idea of syringe feeding her some Hills ID Digestive Care, or some Hills AD (which is very high in nutrients so not much is needed) and specifically aimed at poorly cats? The vet would stock both of these.
     
  11. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    She seems a little more energetic today. Managed a handful of her usual cat biscuits and lapped at a couple of cat soup packets. Still much less than her usual but at least a start. She did sleep most of the morning but seems a bit happier and not in as much discomfort.

    Still had a couple of diarrhoea episodes but now found these on our wooden floor in the front room. So far she had religiously gone in the litter tray. Would that be expected as she is unwell? Her litter tray is just in the next room so seems strange. Hubby thinks just keep encouraging food today and maybe back to vets tomorrow if still no change!

    Collecting stool samples still. They said 3 days.
     
  12. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Cats may avoid the litter tray if they feel unwell from diarrhoea (or a urinary infection for example). It is because they associate the litter tray with pain or discomfort.

    Though it may also be a survival instinct when it is diarrhoea, as they want to avoid contaminating their normal toilet area.

    Does she have several litter trays provided? It is best to give her at least 2. Also if she deposits diarrhoea in a tray it is best to empty out all the litter, wash tray and refill. Cats will avoid trays that smell to them of diarrhoea. Even when it has been scooped out the smell of diarrhoea stays in the rest of the litter.

    I am glad she is eating something - the soups will help keep her hydrated too.
     
  13. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    What great advice thank you! We put another litter tray in the room she's been soiling and she did go in there instead! Bless her I'm sure you're right as when she did soil the floor, i saw her scratching around it as if trying to cover it. I just hope she will keep using it now, will keep changing the litter.

    She's still eating a few mouthfuls of her biscuits and the soups but really not interested in the bland food (did cod and rice) or in the special gastro food the vet gave. Need to drop in the stool sample. Phoned the vet again today to see if we need to see them and she said if brighter to keep up what we're doing for next 1-2 days and call back if diarrhoea not settling or still not eating. When do you think i can let her out? She's back to sitting by the door meowing.

    She's much brighter again today, running around the house thankfully. Realised how much i love her over the weekend when i cried every night seeing her feeling so unwell! Your advice has been invaluable thank you! Is it ok to keep updating you?
     
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  14. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Yes, please do continue to update us! :)

    I am glad she is feeling a bit brighter, bless her. I would just offer plain poached cod, leave out the rice, she doesn't need rice added to it if she has diarrhoea.

    Not all cats find the prescription Gastro food appealing, unfortunately. Mine wouldn't touch it.

    Have you tried her with foods such as Felix As Good As it Looks? When one of my cats is unwell it gets him eating again, when he's refusing his normal better quality foods. I was concerned that once he was well again he might refuse to eat his good foods, but he was fine. So I save the Felix for just when he is unwell.

    It is worth a bit of experimenting when they have lost their appetite. Canned tuna in spring water (intended for humans) is another food that has got previous cats of mine eating again when they were ill and off their food. Note, that it does contain salt, so best not to give too often.

    I think as she is showing she's well enough to go out I would let her, for a short while. I'd call her back after half an hour or so, just so you can keep an eye on her.

    I hope she continues to make good progress. :)
     
  15. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    Hi @chillminx , thankfully she seems much better again though not quite back to normal with the eating. She bothered me for treats and jumped around playing with her bouncy ball. It was so lovely.

    I've stuck to her usual biscuits, which she seems to be eating and yes as you say I've used a sheba soup with chicken and tuna, and she seems to have at least 40-80g with the broth and the meat. I am happy that she is eating, I've seen her drink water and just as you said, she is using the other litter tray still. We will wash out hers now and put new litter in. Wondering whether to try her usual food in the next day or so. What do your cats eat usually?

    I think maybe a small diarrhoea this morning only. We've dropped in the stool sample and it'll take a week to come back. I also took your advice and let her out today... She's loved it and then fell asleep when she got back haha!

    Will she eventually get back to her usual with eating and litter tray? Thanks again for advice!
     
  16. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    Hmm as an update to that not eaten anything this evening again, even turned her nose up at the soup! Oh dear!
     
  17. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I'm sorry to hear there has been a bit of a setback this evening. I think this might happen until you know what is causing it and it can be treated. I understand it's disappointing though when you felt progress was being made. If she's not eating I'd keep her indoors..

    If the results of her stool tests are normal, there is the chance it might be a food allergy causing the symptoms. Beef, Chicken and fish are the most likely, statistically speaking. But it would be better to do a proper elimination diet if it comes to it, rather than just cut out those 3 foods.
     
  18. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you @chillminx , contacted the vets again today and took her back in. Vet said the gums looked a bit red but nothing terrible and tummy felt a bit firm but thought it was because she was a little overweight. They've taken blood tests and I'm so sad seeing that shaved patch on her neck! I'm sure she must have been so scared. Trying the plain chicken and cod again and there was a bit more luck this time, she drank the water and ate about half the chicken. She seems a bit brighter again today so I'm just praying that the blood test is ok! Poor little girl. No more diarrhoea we don't think so hoping it's just a bug that's now gone!
     
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  19. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I am glad there is some more positive news. I hope she is on the mend, bless her. :)
     
  20. Sonia Kat

    Sonia Kat PetForums Newbie

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    The vet contacted me to say the stool sample was negative thankfully, though still not sure what caused her to be poorly. Her blood tests showed mild dehydration. I'm trying to keep encouraging her with water and she is eating a bit better and asking for food. She asked to go out and disappeared got about 3 hours today (i was very worried as hubby says i shouldn't let her out as she might not yet be on top form in case she gets in a fight or crossing the road).

    She's become more affectionate than usual, came and slept on my lap and sat curled on my lap yesterday (very unusual for her)... Can this be normal after an illness? I looked on Google and suggested sometimes they do that before they die! But it seems to suggest that for most symptoms... I really hope that's not the case!
     
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