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Jessica Gamauf
Jessica Gamauf,
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 9
Experience:  Associate veterinarian at Wynn Haven Animal Hospital
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My cat has been sporadically meowing in pain since yesterday

Customer Question

My cat has been sporadically meowing in pain since yesterday evening. I think he got into the garbage and ate some raw chicken packaging. He hasn't eaten or drank water since yesterday and vomited yesterday, but today he vomited clear liquid. He has also taken several trips to his litter box but hasn't defecated. He keeps adjusting himself like he can't get comfortable and has been moving slow like he's in pain. What can I do to help. I don't have pet insurance. Any natural remedies you can recommend?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Jessica Gamauf replied 1 year ago.

Good evening, I am Dr. Jessica and I'd be happy to try to help you and Kuhn.

I have a couple things I would be concerned about with Kuhn and unfortunately neither one will be easily treated with natural remedies. The biggest issue I have other than the fact that he won't eat or drink, is the fact that he is vocalizing and showing you signs of pain. Cats are very tough and if they are verbalizing their pain, then they are truly hurting.

Firstly, the obvious concern would be if he actually ate some packaging with the raw chicken. An intestinal obstruction would be a concern and could certainly cause pain. If he isn't able to pass the material he would require surgery to remove it. The raw chicken by itself could cause diarrhea but may resolve on it's own. Vomiting would be attributed to the obstruction. However, cats don't tend to gorge themselves like dogs and I see obstructions in dogs far more commonly. X-Rays may be necessary to diagnose an intestinal blockage but it isn't necessarily an emergency. But I would recommend getting him evaluated tomorrow if the vomiting continues and he can't hold down liquids. Pancreatitis is another gastrointestinal problem that can arise from eating something like raw chicken. They will vomit and be painful in the abdomen but most of my pancreatitis cats aren't vocalizing.

My other big concern would be a urinary blockage. I know you said he has gone to the litter box frequently and not defecated, but when is the last time he urinated? If he has gone several times to the box with no urine produced, and he is vocalizing in pain, then this is an emergency and he needs to be evaluated as soon as possible. Male cats can get an obstruction in their urethra causing them to be unable to urinate. This then causes extreme pain and distress as the bladder fills. They will quickly go into kidney failure as the urine backs up into the kidneys. It can be life threatening and they need to be unblocked immediately. This is easy to diagnose and would just need a veterinarian to palpate the bladder. If it is full and hard and urine cannot be manually expressed then a urinary blockage can be assumed. If you feel a urinary blockage is possible, he needs to be seen tonight because they can be life threatening. I don't mean to worry you but I want to make sure this isn't his problem.

I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

Expert:  Jessica Gamauf replied 1 year ago.

I have to log off tonight. If you have any other questions or concerns I will check back tomorrow. Good luck with Kuhn. I hope he is feeling better very soon.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He just defecated. I think he might have urinated as well. I'm not completely sure because I have two cats and I didn't see him. He's also walking a lot easier now and he hasn't cried out in pain for some time now. I'm still worried about him not eating. He didn't even eat his favorite wet canned food. What can I do to get him to eat/drink?
Expert:  Jessica Gamauf replied 1 year ago.

Keep monitoring his urination to make sure he is going. You may want to confine him to a room with his own litter box to know for sure if it is him. Hopefully if he did eat something it is passing so the pain may improve as it makes its way to the colon. You can try to entice him with stinky food. . .the stinkier the better. Pieces of tuna, tuna juice, chicken broth in a syringe, or canned flaky food with gravy so he can lick the gravy if he wants. You can try to syringe water to him or even fine baby food to get some fluids into his system. However, if he vomits don't force it. If there is something passing he may not eat until the nausea subsides. I wouldn't let him go more than a couple days without food as cats can develop liver problems when they starve themselves. I am happy to hear he is walking around a bit better. That is certainly a good sign. It is possible the passing of feces will help him. Let me know if anything else develops. I am working today but I will check in periodically. Good luck!

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He looked worse today. I took him to the vet. Good thing because it was a urinary obstruction. He's staying overnight at the animal hospital for the next two days... The doc says he's responding well to treatment. Thanks for your help.
Expert:  Jessica Gamauf replied 1 year ago.

Oh I am so glad you took him in! That can have catastrophic consequences. I'm sure he's feeling much better now. :)

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He looked WAY better last night. Thank you.