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The Flea evasion this year and last year seem to be one of…

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The Flea evasion this year...
The Flea evasion this year and last year seem to be one of the worse. Using the best flea drops (Advantage) seem to only now last 2-3 wks. I do not want to over dose, I've read many articles on people loosing their pets do to over doses.So, I've been told to only use it once a month instead of once evry 2-3 months. Also, I have bougth pro-spray and spraying the house once a 1/4 and the outside as well. But now I am not sure this is all that's wrong with my red cat, he has lost weight and sheds fur only on certain occasions. He's always had a timid stomach since we've adopted him 4-5 years ago and sometime vomits his dinner or breakfast, and others months he's okay. lately he hasn't vomitted but still not putting on weight. I'm thinking we need to work up a blood test only being nervous on the out come. Right now visiting a vet and running the gammit on test would be too tight on the budget. Just
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Cat Veterinary
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Answered in 55 minutes by:
6/13/2010
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Scarlett, Cat Veterinarian replied 8 years ago
Dr. Scarlett
Dr. Scarlett, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 4,110
Experience: I am a practicing small animal veterinarian with 18 years experience.
Verified
Hi,
Can I get a little more information?
What food are you feeding your cat?
Why do you think your cat has fleas--are you seeing live fleas or flea dirt on your cat? Any scabs on his lower back?
Does your cat go outside? Does he hunt?
Any change in his drinking or urinating? Are his stools normal?
How much does your cat weigh? Can you feel his ribs? Can you feel his spine easily?

Thanks,
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago
He has been eating Purina Felates fish and Purina One specialty dry food , he takes to it quiet easily. I have seen the fleas on him as well as fighting the flea eggs on the bed sheets , tables and floors. He does go out during the mornings and afternoons, but is in for the evening after eating his dinner. He hasn't gotten into any cat fights in the last few years, he knows most of the cats in the neighborhood for they hang around close buy, my wife and I recognize most of the cats and where they live, this being only 4 cats. So, there is no cat bite marks or scabs on his back, no infections, ( we've been thru this with another cat who would always find a fight and had to have many a shots for infections) I'm assuming he chases small bugs and lizards here in Florida, but on the most part he is extremely mellow. I have felt his spine and noticed his rear hips are a little thinner then normal and his head and face seem to be a bit thinner. I'm guessing he is weighing about 6-7 lbs. We have seen him get a little thin back a couple years ago during the summer months which tend to get really hot in Florida and we tried to keep him in a bit more so he could gain more appetite so he would eat more, and yes we saw a positive change back then. However, his eating habits a year ago were only seen as eating not quiet half his dish, then sometimes throwing that up, then eating later on dry food. But just in the last 4 wks his eating habit changed to where he is eating all of his plate and not leaving anything left, but with no change on his weight.
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Scarlett, Cat Veterinarian replied 8 years ago
Hi,
The things that come to mind with an increased appetite and no weight gain and/or weight loss:
-intestinal parasites--tapeworms are common in cats with fleas and rodents/other small critters can carry roundworms and other intestinal worms.

-diabetes--these cats are hungry and losing weight. Usually they are also drinking and urinating a lot, but owners don't always notice that. If he uses the outside as his bathroom, increased urination can be very difficult to spot.

-hyperthyroidism--usually a disease of older (>9 years old) cats, but can be seen in younger cats, too. This is an overactive thyroid gland and the cat's metabolism is "revved" up. They will eat a lot, but lose weight.

-increased activity outside that you aren't aware of.

Fleas causing his problem are a little less likely. They can cause anemia, which can make him lethargic and may lead to weight loss, but I wouldn't expect him to be really hungry. As far as treating the fleas, I like Advantage, but I think Frontline might be worth a try. Apply it RELIGIOUSLY every 30 days year-round to help break the cycle in your house. Since he goes outside and you probably have other wildlife (and cats) that roam through your yard, he will always be exposed to fleas. I would also treat your house. If you have carpet, I would get Mule Team Borax (the dry laundry detergent) and sprinkle it liberallly on the carpets. Work it down into the carpet with the back of a garage broom (the kind with the wooden slat that holds the bristles). Then vacuum. The borax will get deep in the carpet fibers and help dry up the larvae. I would repeat this treatment monthly, too. Be sure to dispose of the vacuum cleaner bag after vacuuming.

I would go ahead and have your regular vet take a look at your cat. He/she will likely recommend bloodwork, but everything I've mentioned above is treatable (and without a lot of trauma to you or your cat). Broad spectrum deworming and treating for tapeworms would be very worthwhile. Depending on what is found on the physical exam, your vet may want to take some x-rays of the abdomen to rule out a mass. Cancer can occur in younger cats but won't show up in the bloodwork. But the sooner you figure out what is causing the problem, the sooner you can get started on treating your cat before he gets so thin he won't do well.

Good luck!
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