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Old 03-21-2010, 07:21 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Cat not urinating or eating

Hi All,

I'm a newbie to this forum but not a newbie to cats. My husband and I have had Yoda for 5 years. Last night we noticed he kept going into his litter box alot but apparently nothing was coming out. We figured he was constipated so today bought some Laxa-Stat that we mixed into some canned food. But he wouldn't eat the food. That is completely abnormal for him. Normally he'll eat canned food any time. His normal routine is 2 controlled portions of dry food a day so loves any opportunity to eat canned food. We believe he's a Maine Coon and has a long, thick coat which he grooms alot! He occasionally gets hairballs so we have Petromalt on hand, which he normally gobbles up. He wouldn't eat that either. So we've called our vet and left a message asking if he we can bring him in right away tomorrow. We plan on taking him in at 8am even without an appointment, hoping he'll be able to work him in anyway.

Yoda is also yowling sometimes which he normally only does when we've held him too long (I'm guilty of this sometimes =). So for him to be doing it when we're not even touching him or even near him is strange. Can anyone think of anything we can do for Yoda today while we wait to take him into the vet tomorrow?

Thanks.
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

You need to get him to an emergency vet tonight, do not wait till tomorrow...it sounds like he is blocked and in severe pain. A urinary blockage can lead to death very quickly. This is a very, very serious situation. Here is an emergency vet locator web site if you don't know where the closest one is to you.

http://veccs.org/hospital_directory.php

Please go immediately and let us know how he's doing.
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Old 03-21-2010, 07:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

I absolutely agree. Any time a male cat visits the litterbox frequently but expresses no urine, it is an emergent, life-threatening situation and requires IMMEDIATE veterinary intervention. While it is possible that your cat is experiencing a severe constipation (which in itself can be extremely painful and make the cat very ill), if your cat has a urinary blockage, it can kill him in a matter of hours. Please get your cat to a veterinary ER now!

Laurie
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Old 03-21-2010, 09:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

Well we took Yoda to the emergency vet. Good news is that he's not blocked. Bad news is there was blood in his urine. He hadn't peed but when we put him in the carrier to take him over to the vet, he peed all over his carrier and on my husband's leg. So he's going to stay overnight at the vet's and they will call us in a couple hours to give us the results of all the tests they are running. They're going to check for crystals in his urine and check his white blood count. Poor guy.
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Old 03-21-2010, 09:43 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

Thank goodness you got him to a vet and he's not blocked. Three of my boys have suffered complete blockages, so I know how excruciatingly painful that is for them and how quickly it can turn life-threatening. I hope Yoda is just having a bout of interstitial cystitis and has no crystals or infection, but the vet will be able to determine what's going on soon enough.

This is the only reason I would prefer to have females. Because of their anatomy, they very rarely block, so their urinary issues are not life-threatening. The boys, though, always require an immediate trip to the vet when a urinary problem arises. They've prompted a few midnight runs to the vet for me, which, surprisingly enough, neither I nor my vet particularly enjoy. :roll:

Sending healing vibes to Yoda.

Laurie
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Old 03-21-2010, 11:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

Thank you Laurie and everyone else. Yoda's vet still hasn't called, but she did say there were a few other cases in front of him. I guess it's a good thing he's not blocked but I'm really worried about the blood thing. Has anyone else had cats with bloody urine? If so, what ended up being the cause & treatments for it?
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Old 03-22-2010, 12:07 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

Awesome that he's not blocked, that's no fun for a cat.

Kobi had a urinary tract infection when he was a kitten. He spent an entire day at the vets while they were trying to get him to go and he just held it and held it. Got him home and he went to the spot where he had been peeing (not the box, hence the vet visit) and let loose....full of blood. Antibiotics and it took 4-5 days before they really kicked in and he started using the box consistently again. Hopefully that's all your boy has going on.

Sometimes when a cat has an infection, it can cause swelling and constrict the pathway, so urine doesn't flow freely. That may be why he wasn't going.

I noticed in your first post that you mentioned he's on a dry food diet....wet food is your best bet for urinary health. Dry food is very dehydrating and cats, being desert animals with low thirst drives, don't drink enough because their system is designed to get their water from their prey. So a cat on dry produces small amounts of concentrated urine. They don't go very often and this allows crystals, which are normally present in urine, to clump together and cause blockages. And by not peeing as often, there isn't the opportunity to flush bacteria out of their system.

So I'd really recommend a switch to wet food when you get him home to avoid a repeat occurrence. Once it happens, they're prone to it happening again, so it needs to be managed.
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Old 03-22-2010, 12:28 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

My cat had blood in his urine. He was diagnosed with interstitial cystitis, which means that his bladder will occasionally become inflamed because of stress.

Because Mak's condition happens so rarely, when it occurs he is given 10mg Tramadol as a painkiller, and 1 drop of Metacam, which is an anti-inflamatory, to reduce the swelling of his bladder. The treatment goes for a few days, or until the symptoms disappear (usually 24 hours).

If the inflammation occurs seemingly at random and too often, your vet will probably prescribe a more preventative approach.

The most important thing to know about bladder health is water water water. Your cat needs as much water intake as possible during these periods of inflammation, so be sure to get your cat to eat wet food watered down into a thick slurry. In between meals, you can even add some canned tuna juice to his regular water to entice him to drink more.
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Old 03-22-2010, 12:54 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

All three of the major urinary issues - crystals, infection, and interstitial (idiopathic) cystitis can cause bloody urine. Only your vet can determine which issue(s) are at work and the appropriate course of treatment. My boy, Phantom, has had both a complete urinary blockage and a bout of cystitis (years apart), and in both instances his urine looked like almost pure blood.

Water is definitely the most important and helpful management tool for crystals. The more the cat drinks and urinates, the more crystals get flushed from his system before they have a chance to clump together and form blockages; It's also very important to keep the litterbox immaculately clean so that you don't give the cat any reason to want to "hold" his urine to avoid using the box. Anything that causes urine retention gives crystals time to clump together. If Yoda is developing crystals, it's important to know which type of crystals he has because they develop in different pH environments. If your vet recommends a diet change, you need to make sure the new food adjusts his urinary pH in the right direction for the crystals involved.

Interstitial cystitis often occurs in response to stress, so keeping the cat calm and happy are the best preventatives for this problem.

UTI is a bit tricky. I have read that extra water intake isn't the best solution for this problem because water dilutes the urine, making it less acidic. The less acidic the urine, the more friendly an environment it is for bacteria that can cause UTI. I don't know if this is really true, but it does seem logical to me.

Laurie
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Old 03-22-2010, 01:00 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Cat not urinating or eating

The emergency vet finally called. Yoda has an infection that they've localized to either his bladder or kidney. He's stable but his blood count is really high. He's on 2 antibiotics so that should help with the infection. He's also using a catheter to give him fluids. We're to pick him up tomorrow morning then take him to his regular vet. I'll post after Dr. Chris gives us his diagnosis & treatment decisions.

I noticed the post about his dry food diet. The reasons for this are that a) his regular vet originally prescribed dry Hill's Prescription Diet for weight loss, then Maintenance for after he lost his weight, which he did, and b) he is a piggy and demands food early so we bought an automatic portion feeder so he can eat without us having to get up early to give him food. Wet food cannot be put into the automatic feeder so we only give it to him as a treat once in a while.

To respond to the posts about making sure he has water, Yoda's water dispenser is a Petmate electric dispenser that dispenses fresh, flowing water, and he normally drinks regularly from it. Until yesterday he had always urinated, pooped, eaten and drank regularly without problems.

I'll ask my vet tomorrow to see what he thinks of wet vs dry and go with whatever he recommends.

Thanks everyone!
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