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I have a cat that has chronic and kidney issues and has been…

I have a cat that...
I have a cat that has chronic HI and kidney issues and has been in the hospital in the past week with anemia and dehydration. She had a blood transfusion and fluids and is now home. She is on prednisolone, omeprazole, lactulose, oxytetracycline and genteal eye gel for her eyes. She also just started mirtazapine and just finished fenbendazole. Over the past 2-3 days, she has begun not eating, which was one reason for the appetite stimulant. She continually begs for food though, and when I feed her and my other two cats she walk around continually trying to smell the food. I believe she cannot smell the food, as she often has chronic sinus issues as well (she is a Himalayan with a very flat face). I cannot get help from her primary or hospital ER until tomorrow, so I would like your advice and direction based on the info I've shared. I've tried a warm washcloth on her nose, keeping her in a steamy bathroom and heating up her food. She is already anorexic and has lost weight this week. Thanks.
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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Correction: "HI" in message above should be GI.
Answered in 16 minutes by:
10/15/2017
Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11,013
Experience: I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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Hello, I'm Dr. Deb and will do my best to help with this concern about your cat.

It certainly sounds as if she has her fair share of issues, doesn't it???

If her sense of smell is affected to such an extent that doesn't want to eat because of it (which is certainly possible), then I have a few suggestions.

Please give me a few minutes to type back a response for you. Deb

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
she has her issues but she is a trooper!
Thanks for your help.

1. Nasal decongestant drops may be helpful although many cats don’t like them very much as you can imagine. The medicated ones (a-c below) should only be used for three days in a row, with one drop in each nostril; otherwise what’s known as a rebound effect may occur. This is one reason why I prefer "d":

a. Pediatric otrivin --0.05% xylometazoline

b. “Little Noses" Decongestant Nose Drops with phenylephrine hydrochloride
c. Oxymetazoline which is the primary ingredient in Afrin or Zicam

d. "Little Noses" Saline Spray/Drops non medicated which can be used more than three days in a row.

2. Although you may be reluctant to do so, force feeding is sometimes necessary in these cats until the Mirtazapine is effective (although it's not in every case as you probably know). You can mix canned food (or human baby food but avoid onion and garlic formulations) with a lot of water in a blender and use an eye dropper or syringe or even a small turkey baster to dribble some of this liquid into the side of her mouth where there's a gap.

3. It's possible that one (or more) of her medications is causing her reduced appetite although this is going to be difficult to know for sure. But, if that's the case, then she may have appetite issues until or unless her medication is reduced. Supplementing her by force feeding her may be even more important while she's taking her medication.

I hope this helps, Deb

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
Thank you so much. Are there any tricks to how to give the nose drops/spray to a flat-faced cat with a very small nose (and keep them from running into her mouth)? She's pretty laid back, so I'm not concerned (yet) about her fighting back.

You're more than welcome.

I'd probably wrap her in a towel with just her face sticking out but this may take two people: one to hold her body and keep her face up while the other one sprays or applies the drops in her nose. Keep her face elevated for about a minute so that the liquid will flow into her nostrils.

Deb

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Customer reply replied 9 months ago
This was so helpful. I found that the first side effect listed for omeprazole is lack of appetite. It was being given to her in case she has GI bleeding, so I stopped it for the moment and will discuss it with my primary vet tomorrow. Also bought the Little Remedies saline spray/drops and began giving her that immediately after you suggested it. After that, she began eating more within 8-12 hours. She will go to the vet tomorrow for a possible antibiotic injection. Thanks so much.

Thanks for taking the time to send me an update. I'm glad that I could help but even more glad to hear that her appetite is picking up:)

Continued best wishes with her, Deb

Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11,013
Experience: I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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