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I have a 10 year old female cat who has been fixed up. Over…

Hi, I have a...

Hi, I have a 10 year old female cat who has been fixed up. Over the past few months she has had a infestation of flees. 2 weeks ago I squeezed a vile of purina total care flee control. within a few days she seemed very happy and that she was no longer scratching or liking her fur as much. My concern is that she has gone off her food. I usually give her a variety of whiskas cans and some dry as well. Apart from the not eating, I can find no other area of her health that would be of concern. hope you may shed some light.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Using the wrong medication for fleas can be dangerous. You should definitely talk to the Veterinarian. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the cat?

She has lost quite a bit of weight but she was over weight prior.

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Answered in 1 hour by:
3/14/2018
PitRottMommy
PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11,207
Experience: 15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
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Hello, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and would be happy to help you today. I'm reviewing your question right now.

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How long ago was bloodwork last performed?

Was the weight loss intentional through diet?

How long has she been without food?

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Customer reply replied 1 month ago
Blood work has never been completed. Weight loss seems to be related to the flee control, there has been no intentional program for weight loss. She dabbles in food eating only very small amounts, to the point where the food in the bowl is old and i throw it out.
My Name is*****

Without intentional weight loss, I am concerned that avoiding eating may be due to an underlying condition. In a 10 year old cat with a history of fleas, this could be anything from flea-induced anemia to organ compromise.

Here are my concerns: When cats begin not eating their liver suffers the effects. This can result in a condition known as Fatty Liver Disease (aka Hepatic lipidosis) which can result in liver failure if not addressed. More info here: http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=1+2135&aid=217 I would urge you to have Shah examined and to also schedule some diagnostics at this time. Bloodwork to look at the liver values would be wise, but also to determine on the blood work if there are any additional concerns which might have originally been the cause of not eating. We can see medical concerns like liver disease, pancreatitis, kidney disease, bladder infections, periodontal disease, etc. all contribute to not eating in any age of cat.

If you absolutely must address this from home, I can give you some steps to take at home to help your companion’s stomach feel better. However, if you do not see a marked improvement from your pet or you see worsening of symptoms, they absolutely must be examined by a veterinarian. If you need help finding a location that can see your pet (even just to keep on hand), I can help. I’ll need you to provide your location as the website does not give us this.

The first step is to administer a dose of regular pepcid (famotidine) every 12-24 hours. This should help with GI symptoms like nausea which may be keeping her from wanting to eat. You will want to give 0.5mg/pound of body weight (a 10# ***** would receive 5mg, a 5# ***** would receive 2.5mg, etc). For this, you can visit any human pharmacy and buy the OTC brand name Pepcid, or you can use the cheaper, off-brand “famotidine” that’s available. Either will be useful. If your companion is avoiding taking medication, you will likely need to using a pilling technique like this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-P6NfbxeLX0 (this video is of a dog as it shows the finer details of how to complete the action, this method can be used in dogs, cats and other mammals needing oral medications). [Note: once symptoms have resolved for at least 48 hours, discontinue the famotidine.]

2 hours following a dose of famotidine, the time needed for the medication to begin working, you can offer a bland diet. To make the bland diet, you’ll combine white or brown rice, boneless, skinless chicken breast and sufficient water for cooking in a stock pot (note: if your companion is allergic to chicken you can use a protein source they can have such as ground turkey, a filet of salmon, etc). Boil on medium until it turns to mush and the breast is easily flaked. To avoid nausea, start with small amounts to begin with and offer the amount every 2-4 hours. A few teaspoons to start is typically sufficient and you can work your way up every 2-4 hours in incremental increases until you’re sure no vomiting will be seen. If your companion requires a more palatable food, try adding in pureed baby food in chicken, turkey and similar flavors. Avoid those that contain onion or garlic in the ingredient panel. Work up to feeding exclusively until at least 3 days following the resolution of symptoms. After this, work on slowly switching back to the regular food that your companion typically eats over 10 days. My recommendation is a 10% switch every day. Day 1: 10% new food, 90% old food; Day 2: 20% new food, 80% old food; Day 3: 30% new food, 70% old food, etc. This slow switch process should minimize any risk of GI upset from changing food.

If she's avoidant of the bland diet, I would try giving the famotidine then, 2 hours later, trying both KMR and pureed baby food to see if she will take either. If she refuses, you've exhausted what can be done at home and she does need a vet visit with diagnostics.

I hope this information has been helpful. I will be standing by if you have other questions. Let me know if I can help further. Also, before signing off today, please take the time to use the star rating system at the top of the page to leave a rating for me (bottom of the page if using the app). A 5-star rating is appreciated as top notch answers are my focus. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply so that I may help until you’ve received the assistance you need. Until you issue a rating, the website will not compensate me for helping you. You will still be able to chat with me even after issuing a rating at no further charge on this thread.

I will also check in with you over the next few days to be sure you don’t need any additional assistance. If you would like to request me in the future for pet-related questions, you can do so by accessing this page: http://www.justanswer.com/pet/expert-pitrottmommy/?rpt=3800

PitRottMommy
PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 11,207
Experience: 15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
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I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

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