Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.
Now as I am sure you can appreciate, weight loss in the cat can be influenced by a number of factors. Therefore, we have to consider inputs (which food
intake sounds reduced for Chips), outputs (our protein/electrolytes/etc. are going to be greatly tapped by the diarrhea), and internal ongoing issues (always a potential concern until ruled out). So, we potentially have multiple avenues and reasons for this weight loss.
Now in regards ***** ***** question to potential differentials, as I am sure you can appreciate, just like people, cats can have diarrhea that is caused by a range of agents. These include bacterial viral, parasitic (worms
but also protozoa like Giardia, Coccidia
, Tritrichomonas), toxin exposure (less likely here), nutritional issues and general dietary indiscretions causes. Furthermore, we also have to be wary of underlying metabolic conditions (ie diabetes
, thyroid diseases), organ diseases (kidney
, liver, etc), inflammatory diseases (ie IBD), and even cancer (GI lymphoma).
With all this in mind, if he suffered a relapse after their treatment, then further diagnostics would be warranted as the most straightforward approach at this stage. To start, you will want to consider a fecal sample tested. This can let you know if infectious agents are present and guide you on effective treatment. As well, if the weight loss is severe or underlying disease is a concern, a baseline bloods would also be indicated. Otherwise, if these we all clear, then ultrasound or endoscopy would be ideal to check for gut thickening and biopsy with these could help you to rule out or confirm IBD or lymphoma.
So, those would be our concerns and approach to diagnosing the culprit so that treatment can be targeted for Chips 's condition.
Finally, since broth/Pedialyte are not going to be sufficient to balance his weight loss, I do want to note some further supportive care you can use while taking the above diagnostic steps. First, if he has not been wormed since this started, you can consider using a good quality wormer that will cover against all GI worms. Examples would be Panacur, Drontal, or Milbemax. These are available over the counter at the vets, pet stores, and some pharmacies. Do make sure you have an idea of his weight before purchasing, so you make sure to get the right dose for his size.
Next, if his appetite is poor and therefore we have low food intake, we need to address this. Specifically, you can try tempting him with a light diet option (ie boiled chicken, white fish, scrambled egg, meat baby food, etc) but otherwise we need to try to keep his nutrition up even if he isn't keen to eat. Therefore, we can offer Hill's A/D, Royal Canin Recovery, or Clinicare Canine/Feline Liquid Diet. All of these are critical care diets that are calorically dense, so a little goes a long way nutrition-wise. Otherwise, kitten food would be another option as it too has more nutrition per bite. And these could just help get some more calories into Chips even if we can’t get a huge volume of food in. As well, if he won't eat, all can be watered down into a gruel for syringe feeding to keep his nutrition intake up and slow this weight loss.
Finally. you may want to speak to your vet about feline safe anti-diarrheals to slow things down for his gut. As I am sure you appreciate, these would not be a cure (since cures would depend on the culprit and might include antibiotics or anti-parasitics, etc.) but would slow the diarrhea to aid the body potentially absorb more water/nutrients then it would have if the diarrhea were unchecked. In regards ***** ***** options for him, the one we most commonly use in cats is Kaolin (More Info/Dose@ http://www.petplace.com/drug-library/kaolin-and-pectin-kapectolin-k-p/page1.aspx) available from your local pharmacy. As well, you can buy this OTC in combination with a probiotic in treatments like Propectalin, Fast Balance, or Protexin Pro-Fiber (which is available OTC at vets, pet stores, even Amazon). All will slow diarrhea safely for a cat and the last few have the bonus of providing support to the delicate good bacteria of the GI. And just to note do avoid using any Pepto Bismol (or similar products with aspirin in them) or Loperamide/Immodium (as this can cause adverse signs in cats). But this could just slow that diarrheal pouring out of him and give you chance to diagnose this before he wastes away.
Overall, if Chips had a short term treatment response, then the injections may have contained something that the culprit was sensitive to. Therefore, it is worth knowing what was given. That said, if he is showing a relapse and continued signs, then we need to take the next step diagnostically to pinpoint which cause is present here. That way we can focus our treatment appropriately and treat this effectively to address this for Chips.
I hope this information is helpful.
If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!
All the best, *****
If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is how I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )