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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16210
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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My kitten is about 12 weeks old and she has gone off her

Customer Question

Hi my kitten is about 12 weeks old and she has gone off her food. She has been looked after for three days while I was away and was eating some food but not normally. She came home yesterday and has eaten about a spoon full of food I've tries lots of her favorites. Is it just fretting
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 month ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

How long has her appetite been reduced?

Any retching, gagging, lip licking, drooling, or vomiting?

Is she drinking normally? Can she keep water down?

Are her gums nice and pink (not white/pale or yellow tinted)? Moist or sticky?

If you press on her belly, does she have any tensing, tenderness, discomfort, or pain?

Could she have eaten anything she should not have (ie bones, toys, plants, chemicals, human meds, etc)?

Any diarrhea?

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
She didn't eat normally whil I was away but she did eat some food but for the last day and a half not much more than a spoonful
She committed while traveling back in the car
She is still drinking
Her gums ar pink
No diarrhoea
No tenderness
She still wants to play with me and is running around
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 month ago.

Thank you,

First, we could have seen her initial reluctance to eat due to being unsure of where she was staying, but if this went on for days and she isn't eating well now that she is home, we'd be wary of that anorexia causing liver compromise (hepatic lipidosis) or other issues being afoot. In regards ***** ***** latter, we'd have to also consider bacterial or viral gastroenteritis, pancreatitis, parasites/protozoa infections, and general dietary indiscretions.

With this all in mind, we need to get her eating. Since she has had some vomiting and nausea is a common cause for appetite loss in cats, we can start by trying an OTC antacid to soothe her stomach (ie Pepcid (More Info/Dose @http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/famotidine-pepcid), or Tagamet (More Info/Dose Here @ http://www.petplace.com/article/drug-library/library/over-the-counter/cimetidine-hcl-tagamet)). Whichever you choose, we’d give this 20 minutes before food to allow absorption. Of course, do double check with your vet if she has a known health issues or is on any medications you haven't mentioned. Though if she were to vomit this or not settle with this, that often is a red flag that we need to bypass her mouth with injectable anti-vomiting medication from her vet.

Once that has had time to absorb and she is steadier on her stomach, try her with a easily digestible diet like boiled chicken, boiled white fish, scrambled eggs, or meat baby food (as long as its garlic/onion free). The aim of these diets is that they will be better tolerated/absorbed by the upset gut. And just to note, if she has had a vomit, we won't be able to syringe feed her at this stage.

Since dehydration is a risk with her being so young, we need to keep an eye on her hydration. To check that she isn't dehydrated, there are a few things you can test. Further to checking for gum moisture, do make sure she doesn’t have sunken eyes and that she doesn’t have a "skin tent" when you lift the skin. To see how to check these parameters for dehydration, you can find a good video HERE (http://www.ehow.com/video_12232503_dog-dehydrated.html). If you are seeing any signs of dehydration already, then that would be our cue to have her seen before this becomes an additional issue for her (especially as it is often dehydration that makes them feel unwell).

Overall, there are a wide range of agents could trigger this GI upset we are seeing with your wee one. Stress may have started this but her poor appetite now suggests a bigger issue afoot. Therefore, we’d want to start supportive care to settle her stomach. If she cannot keep that or water down at any point, appears dehydrated already, or doesn’t respond to the above within 12-24 hours (since she has only a little body reserve compared to an adult cat); then we'd want to get her vet involved. They can assess her hydration, rule out fever, make sure there is nothing in her stomach that shouldn't be there or any sinister viruses present. Depending on their findings, her vet can treat her with injectable anti-nausea medication, appetite stimulants, fluids, +/- antibiotics to settle her stomach and get her eating properly now that she is home.

All the best,

Dr. B.

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Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Thanks very much I will take her to the vet tomorrow just to be safe
Regards
Chris
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 month ago.

You are very welcome, Chris.

That sounds ideal with how young she is.

Best wishes,

Dr. B.

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If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond.

**Please rate me once you have all the information you need as this is the only way I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )