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Thread: Brandi is losing too much weight.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    Missouri, Live on 50 acres with large house that the cats rule.
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    Brandi is losing too much weight.

    Brandi is my four year old and she has been slowly losing weight. She turned 4 on the 8th. So far we have not been able to figure out what is causing the weight loss.

    She had a low grade fever for a while when I would take her in, but the last time I took her in her temp was fine and everytime I took it at home, it was fine.

    She eats, but will only eat a little bit. She will run out with the other cats when I get the treats out and then abruptly stop eating and won't eat any more.

    We have checked her teeth and gums. They look fine. Ran an FIV and FeLV test which were negative. (hope I got the names right).

    Her personality hasn't really changed much. She still comes out to see me and visitors. Sleeps in bed with me and wants to be around the other cats. She was a mommas girl, but mom died last fall and about the same time the kittens were just getting around exploring the house. So we thought that this may have upset her, so I would leave her with me or by herself to see if she would improve. But she always ran out to where the other cats were, so I am thinking that was not the issue.

    Last visit the vet gave her fluids and a b12 shot. And we started her on antivirals and she has an eye condition as well. At one point we were considering that she may have FIV, but with the fever gone and other symptoms not there, we have put that lower to the list.

    She does not drink much water nor does she go to the little box excessively. The vet did a check on her and did not find any lumps on her or anything else during the the visit. The vet did say the kidneys seemed well, but I am not sure what he did to check it.

    So now I am feeding her A/D through a syringe, and will switch to other high cal food to put on the weight. She doesn't like it, but she does not vomit it up. I am to keep increasing the amount until she starts eating more or I get up to 1 can a day.

    So far I haven't made her mad enough to hid from me!

    Wonder if anyone with cat with the same problems would share what they found out.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
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    Waltham, MA, USA
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    Have you checked her poop for worms? Just in case ...
    I've Been Frosted

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    You have been doing a wonderful job caring for Brandi, taking her to the vet repeatedly and now syringe feeding her. As you know, cats are notorious (being prey animals as well as predators) for hiding their symptoms until they are really sick. It can be a nightmare for both vet and caregiver to figure out how to help them, especially when test results don't give you the answer.

    I have fostered several cats who either barely ate or stopped eating because they became depressed after being taken to the shelter. Some have taken months to get back on their feet. Your vet will have checked her liver enzymes and would have said if she had a liver infection or fatty liver disorder, both of which cause inappetence. Even without such a definitive result, she may be feeling slighly nauseated because she is eating so little. Have you thought of trying Cerenia (an excellent anti-nausea medication which can be given by injection or daily pills for 4 days, rest, then 4 days more)? How about Mirtazapine (an appetite stimulant with slight anti-nausea properties)? In your shoes, I would be doing what you are doing, force feeding her. I've kick-started (sounds awful, but I don't mean a physical kick) several cats into eating properly again by force feeding them for days and even weeks.

    Please keep us posted, and good luck on bringing Brandi back to her usual self.

  4. #4
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    At university in Hertfordshire, UK
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    Checking for worms like Karen suggested is a good thing to rule out. I would hope that for a young cat her kidneys would be OK, and certainly her disinterest in drinking doesn't seem to suggest that she's in renal failure.

    I have seen a cat with early-stage heart failure presenting similar symptoms to Brandi's, although I wouldn't let this alarm you as there could be many other explanations. I am sure that if your vet suspects anything of this sort, then they would take the appropriate tests.

    Good luck, and I hope you get to the bottom of it!

    Zimbabwe 07/13


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Missouri, Live on 50 acres with large house that the cats rule.
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    More information. Brandi was given meds for worms. So that is not the issue. That was one of my first thoughts as well.

    Also I notice I said we thought she had FIV but it should have say FIP.

    I also have gotten several kinds of kitten food to feed her hopefully one of them will work.

    Also on examination her heart and lungs sound fine.

    Another thing I forgot in my first post, is that it appears to me, she may have problems eating. Seems to drop food out of her mouth a lot. But again we check her mouth for problems and found none. It doesn't appear that she is having problems swallowing. I am just starting to look for problems that aren't apparent in the mouth such as broken teeth, red gums or bleeding gums. But I haven't found anything yet.

    Any help would be appreciated.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    At university in Hertfordshire, UK
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    It is indeed strange that she drops food and yet her mouth appears healthy. Does she salivate more than normal, or have bad breath? There could be something further back in the buccal cavity/oesophagus that is contributing to the problem. I can't claim to know any awful lot about this type of feline disease yet, your qualified vet is the best point of call!

    Zimbabwe 07/13


  7. #7
    Join Date
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    I was so sure you were going to mention FIP, that that's what I read, not FIV. Nasty disease and in its dry form can cause such a variety of symptoms it's not easy for vets to diagnose.

    I've seen cats do what Brandi is doing many times. I should add here that I've fostered sick and hospice cats for the clinic of a local sanctuary for about 7 years now, as well as caring for my own cats throughout their, usually, long lives. To me, when a cat picks up food and then drops it, it indicates the cat feels hunger but then feels nauseated by food, any food. I've seen it with cats who are fully recovered from lipidosis when they are starting to eat by themselves, and I've seen it in my CRF cat, Sam, when she's recovered from a virus. That's why I feel you are doing the very best thing by force feeding Brandi, she needs to get used to having food in her stomach to get over the nausea. Cats don't have to drool, gag or throw up when they are nauseated; sometimes they don't do anything except drop the food back in the bowl or simply not eat. I don't give drugs unless I absolutely have to, but in your place I'd give Cerenia (if your vet will agree.)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Missouri, Live on 50 acres with large house that the cats rule.
    Posts
    7

    Thank you

    Thank you to every one who tried to help. But Brandi died this evening. She was 4 years and 7 days old. It looks as though she went peacefully. I will post something in pet memorials.

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