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Sick Ragdoll (Not eating well)

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by hiwatt, Oct 18, 2020.


  1. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    Hi folks,
    I've not been on here for a while.

    We've (My mum) have a lovely Ragdol boy (8 months old) who a few months back got really sick and one of his eyes got so bad that I feared he would loose it..Luckily we got him better but he was eventually diagnosed with FHV (Feline Herpes Virus)
    He was very sick as a kitten and it appears he came to us ill..

    Fast forward to now..He's the sweetest boy but I can tell he's not 100%
    I'm having to clean his eyes constantly and he sleeps a lot...but does still play too.

    My main concern just now is trying to get him to eat more to help boost his immune system.

    He seems to have went off his wet at the moment (which is just Felix)and is preffering his Iams dry food but I want to try and get him to eat wet..but he turns his nose up at anything else I have tried except the odd tin of tuna fish.

    Could anyone please help recommend a decent quality wet food that they think a Ragdoll would like as he does seem a bit fussy..

    Any help/advice would be much appreciated.
    Thank you.
    Kind Regards.
     
    #1 hiwatt, Oct 18, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020
  2. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @hiwatt - I assume that as he got FHV (Feline Herpes Virus) he was not vaccinated when you got him? I hope you have had him vaccinated since, or he will be at risk of catching other nasty viruses such as Calici Virus (FCV), Feline Panleukopenia (FPLV) or Feline Leukaemia (FeLV)

    As he is sleeping a lot, has runny eyes and a poor appetite it suggests he may have a upper respiratory infection (URI) due to the FHV. FHV can continue to cause these kind of recurring flare-ups throughout the cat's life unfortunately. Has the kitten been seen by the vet recently to check if he has a URI?

    Felix is not a great food for a cat who is not in the best of health. It would be better to feed him a food that is higher in meat protein and grain free. Felix contains quite a large percentage of vegetable protein which the cat cannot use and also it makes their urine too alkaline. Their urine should be acidic, and this is achieved by feeding a high meat diet.

    A cat's appetite is stimulated by the scent of the food, and if your boy's sense of smell is being affected by a stuffy nose, then he will not want to eat much. I suggest feeding him strong smelling wet foods (including fish flavoured ones as he likes fish) and also warm his food for 5 seconds in the microwave (then mix well to get rid of hot spots) because warming it wiill enhance the scent of the food.

    As for foods he may like, it is very much a matter of individual preference. So you need to try some different ones for him and see if he likes them.

    Do please introduce each new food slowly (to save tummy upsets) starting with a teaspoonful on a separate dish, next to his dish of Felix or Iams. Give a fresh sample every day for several days to see if he will eat it, if not give up and try another new food.

    If he does eat the new food, continue day by day adding more to the dish and reducing the amount of Felix and the Iams.

    Once he is on the new food do not introduce another new food for 3 weeks.

    Foods to consider: Natures Menu, Country Hunter, HiLife Chicken, (all pate style) Little Big Paw,(mousse), all from Pets at Home and others.

    Good quality tinned wet foods from Zooplus UK :

    Carny
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/rafine/animonda_carny_adult/14033

    Animonda Vom Feinsten
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/animonda/trays/14008

    Feringa Classic
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/feringa_wet_cat_food/feringa_duo/437329

    Feringa Pure Meat
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/feringa_wet_cat_food/meat_menu/314353

    Rosie's Farm
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/rosies_farm/rosiesfarm_trial/857727

    MAC's
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/macs

    Tigeria
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/tigeria/tigeria_trial_packs/803010

    Wild Freedom
    https://www.zooplus.co.uk/shop/cats/canned_cat_food_pouches/tigeria/tigeria_trial_packs/803010


    There is a Food Club pinned thread on the Healthboards where you can ask forum members if they have any spare samples of the foods you want to try, to save you having to buy 6 at a time from Zooplus. However if you find you have to bulk buy from Zooplus the company will take back any unopened tins and refund you, if your cat has refused to eat the food,

    I advise feeding your kitten small meals and often, say 5 times a day, and perhaps leave him some food over night in a timed auto-feeder. The best way to get weight on a young cat is to feed little and often, and feed a high meat protein food.

    Omega 3 fish oil is a good supplement to add to the food of a cat who has chronic FHV. It is anti-flammatory. But do not start with the full dose as it can cause loose stools. Build up slowly.

    There is a pinned thread on the topic of persistent "cat flu" symptoms written by a forum member who is an experienced vet (Ceiling Kitty) and you may find it useful to read.

    https://www.petforums.co.uk/threads/persistant-cat-flu.443886/
     
  3. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    Dear chillminx,
    Thankyou for such a long and thought out reply..I really appreciate it.

    Yes Our boy has Feline Herpes Virus.

    He started sneezing a lot then his eyes were running,he was so bunged up he couldn't breathe..It was heartbreaking.
    The vets though cat flu at first but after having blood work done Feline Herpes Virus was diagnosesd
    Yes he had an URI and was treated with antibiotics (Synolux)

    He has improved a lot but the vet has explained that he will have it for life and will be prone to flare ups.
    He had his vaccinations for FeLV X2 and Nobivac "Tricat Trio" x 2 but not for Herpes virus as far as I'm aware?
    I have been heating up his food to release the smell as you say....It's not working now though?
    He has not been on any wet at all now for 2 days and has actually perked up a lot(Today anyway)...just on his dry Iams at the moment.
    I really want to get him on a quality wet food though to build him up and help his immune system too hopefuly(Fingers crossed)

    I was really just happy to have him eat anything as at one point he wasn't eating anything..Although I am a bit perplexed as to why he has suddenly went from 2-3 pouches a day of his Felix to not touching it at all (All Flavours)

    I will look into the brands you suggested and look at the threads you linked too..That would be great if anyone had any samples and of course I would pay for them.
    Thank you very much.
     
  4. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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    This vaccinates against:
    • feline calicivirus, strain F9
    • feline herpes virus type 1, strain G2620A
    • feline panleucopenia virus, strain MW-1
    So it does vaccinated against FHV.

    https://www.noahcompendium.co.uk/?id=-455546

    There is a Nobivac Duo which doesn't include the FPV component, the usual protocol with Nobivac is Trio for initial course & first booster, then 2 years Duo, then 1 year Trio, 2 years Duo etc.
     
  5. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    When the vet initally though cat flu..I explained he had been vaccinated!He said sometimes if a cat has caught it before being vaccinated it can still become ill.
    I wonder if this is what happened here with FHV?
    He definitely came sick as a kitten..as he is an indoor cat and has never been in contact with any other cats or cat owners since we got him.
     
    #5 hiwatt, Oct 19, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020
  6. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    the usual protocol with Nobivac is Trio for initial course & first booster, then 2 years Duo, then 1 year Trio, 2 years Duo etc.[/QUOTE]Hi..Thank you for your reply..Can you elaborate on this please?
     
    #6 hiwatt, Oct 19, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020
  7. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    Hi..Thank you for your reply..Can you elaborate on this please?So he is covered for 2 years before needing his booster?
     
    #7 hiwatt, Oct 19, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020
  8. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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    No he needs a booster with Trio in a year, then Duo in each of the next two years, then Trio and so on.
     
  9. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @hiwatt - Feline Herpesvirus (FHV) is one of a group of viruses that cause what is commonly known as "cat flu". FHV is the most common cause of cat flu, followed by calicivirus and less so, some others.

    I thought you would find Ceiling Kitty's pinned thread useful to read because it explains the type of long term damage that can be caused by FHV infection.

    An article from Icat Care on cat flu may also interest you.

    https://icatcare.org/advice/cat-flu-upper-respiratory-infection/

    If he is eating his dry food well I think that is good, and maybe the best you can hope for at present. You can always put the plan to introduce good quality wet foods on hold for now. I think the reason he likes the dry food is because of its strong appetising scent.

    When you want to try him with wet foods I recommend buying a new pepper grinder and grinding up some dry food into a powder which you then sprinkle on top of the wet food to provide crunch and an enticing odour.
     
  10. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    @chillminx
    Thank you for your help.
    I really would rather get him on a good quality wet food ASAP to be honest as I think he does need beefing up a bit(Parden the pun) and I want to try and boost his immune system...I've ordered Fortiflora to see if that helps too.
    It's strange that all of a sudden he has just stopped eating the wet altogether?(He was eating 2-3 pouches a day last week and now wont touch it?

    He also has soft stools..even though he has only been on his dry the last couple of days..and isn't cleaning himself properly

    I'm really worried about him..
    One minute he'll look all big bright eyed and playfull..Then a bit later he looks unwell and sleeps..

    I think I'm going to take him back to the vet but after his antibiotic course..and the eye clearing up they said they think that's the best they'll get him but somethings troubling him..I can tell...

    P.s I actually read through Ceiling Kitty's thread a few months ago when he was really not well..Thanks
     
    #10 hiwatt, Oct 19, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020
    chillminx likes this.
  11. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @hiwatt - I'm sorry I didn't realise he's on antibiotics at present. Which one is it? If he has a URI the best antibiotic is Ronaxan (aka Doxycycline) as it is targeted specifically at URIs.

    One of my cats, [a rescued stray], was diagnosed 7 years ago by my vet as probably having had FHV as a kitten. My cat gets flare-ups of symptoms every so often, and loses his appetite., The vet used to prescribe a broad spectrum antibiotic (synulox) which never seemed too effective at getting rid of symptoms. Then the vet changed him to Ronaxan and the improvement was immediate and amazing when compared with the synulox.

    I do understand (and sympathise) you would rather have your boy on a wet food diet and it would be better for him, but if he is not feeling well it is encouraging he is eating something. My boy gives up eating altogether when he has a flare-up of symptoms and is it hard work getting him to eat again.

    I would let him be seen by the vet again as you say, after the antibiotic has finished.

    I am glad you read Ceiling Kitty/s thread before. :) Her threads are so informative and well written :)
     
  12. hiwatt

    hiwatt PetForums Member

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    Morning..
    No he isn't on any antibiotics at present
    It's the way I've written it sorry.
    I meant after they treated him with the antibiotics (Synulox)and seen him for his follow up appointment..They said this is probably the best we are going to get him.
    When he was really ill with his URI (August)he was treated with Synulox..along with Bisolvon..
    I did read about Ronaxan in the thread you mentioned before the vet seen him...but didn't want to go against there advice.
    I wonder if I should asked for this to be prescribed?

    Thank you.
     
  13. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @hiwatt - if the vet says he has a respiratory infection then I see no reason why you shouldn't ask if your boy can please have Ronaxan. But to be diplomatic it's best not to say it was recommended on a pet forum (because vets seem to hate that! ;)). Say something like e.g. a friend of yours has a cat who gets URIs and has done much better on Ronaxan than Synulox.

    The vet should take your boy's temperature and preferably also do a blood test to see if WBCs are raised.
     
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