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Tammy F.
Tammy F., Not an active Expert
Category: Cat
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Experience:  Not an active Expert
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Elderly Cat Very Sick

Customer Question

I have an 18 year old cat who I am sure is in chronic kidney failure. She has all of the symptoms related to that disease. Over the last several weeks she has stopped eating, stopped passing stools, sleeping a lot, weak, etc. I try different foods to entice her and she responds well to tuna water, chicken water, etc. My question is that taking her to the vet is going to be a traumatic event for her. She does not do well in the car or at the vet. I do not want to see her poked and probed w/ needles at this stage in her life. She has never been sick a day in her life and I realize at this age this disease is normal. She has started turning her neck down more which I know is a sign of low potassium levels. My husband thinks that we should just let her go peacefully at home and not take her to the vet. I am torn on what to do. I know my local vet has said bring her in we will do blood work, etc. I feel taking her in is going to traumatize her more. But yet I feel not taking her isn't good either. What can I expect to see from this disease as it progresses, can she be helped at this point, should she be helped at this point. Any thoughts would be appreciated. I've had this cat since she was 8 weeks old and she has lived a long, happy and healthy life until now. I want to do the right thing. Thank you.
Cindy
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Tammy F. replied 11 years ago.

Yes. There are drug therapies and hydration techniques that can lengthen her life and give her some peace.


Keep in mind that most cats with renal failure will go blind because of retinal swelling and detatchment if the progression is not stopped. So, her life could end with her being confused about her surroundings.


Therapy for this is in steps -


First, you will want to flush the kidneys with sub-q fluids. This will help a great deal. You can even do this at home if you are not squeamish about needles.


Then you need to change her over to a prescription renal diet that you can get from your vet. Often, this alone causes a marked improvement.


Third, you can use a drug therapy to stop the progression of the disease.


This IS common at this age but it can be helped.


If your cat doesn't do well at the vet, I would call a mobile vet and have someone come to your home. There are mobile vets in almost every city, now.


I just lose my 17 year old cat in the same way but she all the sign of the disease - the blindness, the lethargy, the confusion. It was not a pretty thing to watch. I do feel bad for you and know what you are going through.


I hope this helps.


Let me know if you have questions.

Tammy F., Not an active Expert
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 9168
Experience: Not an active Expert
Tammy F. and 3 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Tammy Falkner's Post: Tammy, thank you for the advice. I have just called a mobile vet to make an appt.

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