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8 Year old cat. We just returned from vacation and she

8 Year old cat...

8 Year old cat. We just returned from vacation and she didn't eat while we were gone. Still not eating. Drinking water. Lethargic. The person that was supposed to check on her while we were gone did not. So not sure how long she didn't eat. We were gone 10 days. No vomiting or bleeding. No emergency vets in the area

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. This sounds like it might be serious. I'll let the Veterinarian know what's going on ASAP. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the cat?

Weve had her 8 years. No issues at all. Indoor cat.

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Answered in 10 minutes by:
4/24/2018
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19,004
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified

Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

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I'm sorry to hear that your girl isn't feeling well, is not eating, lethargic, and appears to not have eaten while you were gone.

Loss of appetite can be related to eating something she should not have, too many treats or table food, eating foreign material (which could cause a full or partial gastrointestinal obstruction), chronic pancreatitis, toxin exposure, a viral or bacterial infection, inflammatory bowel disease, hyperthyroidism (a tumor of the thyroid gland) with internal organ failure, primary internal organ failure, or even infiltrative cancers such as lymphoma.

Because she hasn't eaten normally in several days I am very concerned about her. As her liver breaks down fats for energy to live she may develop a type of liver disease called hepatic lipidosis. This is fatty liver disease caused by overwhelming the liver with fats being broken down for energy to live when they don't eat such that it cannot perform normal functions. This is a secondary disease, but it can be deadly and needs to be aggressively managed.

Ideally she would see a veterinarian today since it is likely this has been going on for more than 72 hours. Simple stomach upset should pass within 24 to 48 hours. They could examine her, run blood tests and possibly check radiographs and/or an ultrasound to evaluate her and know best how to treat her.

In the meantime they can administer injectable anti-nausea drugs and fluids to rehydrate her.

I understand that you do not have access to an emergency clinic. Since you cannot have her seen right away for whatever reason there are some things you can try at home.

At home to try and settle her stomach you can give either:

1) Pepcid ac (famotidine) at a dose of ¼ of a 10mg tablet per 5 to 10 pounds of body weight every 12 hours

OR

2) Prilosec (omeprazole) at a dose of ¼ of a 20mg tablet per 7 to 20 pounds of body weight every 24 hours

These are acid reducers and may help her feel less nauseous so that she will eat and hopefully not vomit. They are quite safe and can be used long term if necessary.

You can use a medicine syringe to try and force water into her orally.

A couple of hours after giving the acid reducer I recommend offering meat baby foods or a bland diet of 2/3 boiled minced white skinless chicken and 1/3 boiled white rice mixed with some low salt chicken broth to make it easy to lap up and swallow.

If she continues to not eat she should see her veterinarian for an examination, diagnostics and intravenous fluids and supportive care.

It has been my pleasure to help you today, and I hope that I have earned my 5 star rating. Please remember to rate my service by selecting the 5 stars at the top of the screen (rating me now does not close your question). You are welcome to ask follow up questions about my response here until you are satisfied, simply use the reply box and let me know. Thank you!

Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19,004
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
Verified
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Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr. Kara
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Sadly, she passed away, kidney failure.

Thank you for taking the time to let me know how things turned out for her. That would certainly explain her loss of appetite and lethargy. I am sorry to hear that she was so sick, my deepest condolences on your loss.

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