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Returned cat experiences

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by danieliza, May 6, 2017.


  1. danieliza

    danieliza PetForums Newbie

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    Hi, there!

    My precious baby went missing last Saturday and returned yesterday after 6 days (the relief!!!), and she seems mostly fine, but I was hoping for some advice about a few things for peace of mind until we head to the vet on Monday evening.

    She hasn't lost very much weight nor is she eating loads or begging for food (she's nibbling mostly), so I don't think she was starving out there (I live in a very cat-lover-heavy area, so everyone feeds everyone's many dozens of cats), but she hasn't touched any water in almost 30 hours now and she hasn't used her litter tray at all. She's also done nothing but sleep! She's falling asleep sat upright half the time! I think maybe she just hadn't slept much that entire 6 days, so she's just exhausted? And maybe the constant sleeping/tiredness is making her not particularly hungry or thirsty? But this is my first time dealing with a cat missing for so many days, so I'd love to hear about other's experiences.
     
  2. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    Best advice I can give you is to get her to the vet today.
    After being missing for so long I personally would have taken her to be checked yesterday as you have no idea what she may have eaten or what could have happened during the days she was missing.
    Hope she is okay,please keep us posted.
     
  3. Bertie'sMum

    Bertie'sMum Obedient Cat Slave

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    So glad you got her back safe and sound :)

    If she hasn't lost any weight and doesn't appear hungry then it would seem as though someone was feeding her for those 6 days ? She may be suffering from the stress of being lost and now being back home she's catching up on her sleep. But a visit to the vet would put your mind at ease.

    Many years ago one of mine went missing on the very day I was flying to Portugal on holiday ! I had already arranged for my neighbours to feed him whilst I was away and as I couldn't cancel the trip at such short notice they promised to search for him - even my Dad (not a great cat lover) came down every day and sat in my flat in case he came back home (didn't have a cat flap in those days). It was the worst holiday of my life; I spent my entire holiday phoning home, worrying and crying for my lost boy. He eventually reappeared 2 days before the end of my holiday (so missing for 12 days) none the worse for wear although a bit slimmer ! It turned out he had been 'living' in another neighbour's basement the entire time - they were having the floor dug out to make another room and found paw prints in the dirt ! Never did find out what/where he'd been eating, but there was water available as they had a garden pond.
     
  4. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    I would prefer a vet check today tbh

    Also if she gets to go out again I would put a paper collar on her explaining she u
    Is a much loved pet with your number on, please do not feed, contact owner if hanging around, etc.
     
    AmsMam and buffie like this.
  5. moggie14

    moggie14 PetForums VIP

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    Presumably she is spayed?
    I would second a vet visit today if possible.
     
    buffie likes this.
  6. Jaf

    Jaf PetForums VIP

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    How wonderful that you have her back. My outside cats (semi feral) sometimes disappear for a few days, when they come back they eat and eat and sleep. My guess is that your girl was very, very scared and awake the whole time so the poor thing is shattered. You can check for dehydration by pulling her scruff away from her neck, it should spring back instantly. She is on wet food? You can add some water to it.
     
  7. danieliza

    danieliza PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for the advice, everyone! You're right, I shouldn't wait to get her checked over. I'm working from 12:30 today, but I might track down an emergency vet and see if my mum will take her if I can't. I think I was just too excited/relieved/sleep deprived yesterday to even think beyond seeing she looked okay on the surface and cuddling her all day. I have an engraved tag coming in the post, too, with my address and phone number on (and a little message saying: if I seem lost, don't hesitate to call my home). I even started looking into GPS tracking collars and tags.

    Missysmum: I'm so glad you got your boy home, too! I'm also off on holiday soon, so I was looking at a similar prospect, and it was a nightmare thinking about it, let alone living it like you did! I would've been exactly the same, spending the whole holiday a wreck. What a relief when they're finally back. I want to wrap her in bubble wrap and lock the doors forever!
     
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  8. danieliza

    danieliza PetForums Newbie

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    Adding water to her wet food sounds like a great idea, thank you! I didn't even think of that. That's my thinking too, that she just didn't get any sleep and is catching up now. Kind of like us humans when we lose lots of sleep.
     
  9. buffie

    buffie Mentored by Meeko

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    @danieliza My main worry would be you say she hasn't used her litter tray since coming back 30 hours ago,that rings alarm bells to me.
     
    1CatOverTheLine and chillminx like this.
  10. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I agree with Buffie. If your cat has been shut in 24/7 since she came back and has not drunk water in 30 hours or used her tray at all, it is a concern. She could be very dehydrated.

    Perhaps a neighbour fed her dry food every day and did not supply her with water. And if it has not rained recently where you live there would be no puddles for her to drink from. If she was fed dry food without sufficient water then she will not be able to digest the food and it will just sit undigested in her stomach or intestine.

    Check your cats gums - are they moist and pink? or are they dry and pale? (the latter means she is dehydrated).

    Lift up the skin on her scruff gently between your forefinger and thumb - does it spring back like elastic when you let it go? If it does then it's a good sign.

    If she is not hungry I would be wanting to persuade her to drink - goats milk perhaps or make her some home made chicken broth on the hob using drumsticks.

    I would definitely be getting her examined by a vet today. There are various vets open 7 days a week in the UK. e.g. Companion Care

    https://www.companioncare.co.uk/

    Or phone your own vet to obtain details of their out of hours veterinary care service. If you have pet insurance it will not cost you much more for OOH vet care than taking her to one of the vets with 7 day opening hours.
     
  11. danieliza

    danieliza PetForums Newbie

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    Update: my regular vet put me in touch with their own out of hours office that's also quite nearby, and it went well: no scratches, bites, injures etc. some weight loss but nothing alarming, and gums were and continue to be moist. I brought home some cat milk last night which went down veeery well. There was food floating in her water this morning, too, which tells me she's had some (she's such a sloppy eater/drinker). I may have let my paranoia take over when I didn't see her drinking before with my own eyes, because she must've had some.

    Ironically, my mum said just before the vet, while trying to get her into the carrier, she wriggled off in a panic and ran straight to the tray to have a massive wee that went on forever (glaring at my mum the entire time, apparently). Is it possible she was too anxous to use her tray until she was spooked onto it? I tried the old leaving the litter tray outside to help her find her way home trick, and another cat peed (smelled very strong, like an un-neutered male) in it so I had to soak and scrub the whole thing out twice with bleach, and now I wonder if she could smell something I couldn't and didn't like it? She was anxious Friday and yesterday, and the littlest things were spooking her. But she's used the tray all ways a few times now and peace of mind has been acheieved! Anyway, I've rambled on enough--think I'm still excited about having her home. I keep seeking out and reading about other people's returned cat stories coz they make me so happy. So thanks again for your encouragement, guys. She's trying to find room to get in my lap right now despite the laptop, so life is finally back to normal :Happy
    [​IMG]
     
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  12. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Very pleased and relieved to hear she is none the worse for her adventures :) I hope she stays near home from now on. :)
     
  13. huckybuck

    huckybuck Feline Forum Fashionista

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    So pleased she came back and has been given the ok. There is always the worry that she could have been injured when gone for so long so you definitely did the right thing taking her to the vets.
     
  14. Bertie'sMum

    Bertie'sMum Obedient Cat Slave

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    glad to hear she's back and none the worse for her adventures !
     
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