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Old 01-03-2013, 12:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New cat from shelter

Hello,

After giving it much thought, I recently adopted a very cute female cat from my local shelter. So I am here to read information and ask the occasional question. She is about one year old and was found outside a couple of weeks back. She's really great and cuddly. The shelter sterilized her before we could pick her up though, so I must say the first few days were a bit stressful. Not knowing her normal behaviour, it was hard to know if she was ok... you know with the surgery, moving to a new house, and having been exposed to shelter viruses. Anyways she is now eating normally and finally had a bowel movement today. The occasional sneezing also seems to have diminished (no discharge).

I guess the only couple of things that still worry me is that she doesn't drink much water. I gave her some wet food and some 'cat milk' to keep her hydrated (I know milk should only be given sparingly as a treat, but she literally climbed into my cereal bowl one night. She must have been given milk by people while living outdoors...).
Any tips to encourage cats to drink more? I could boil some chicken bones to make broth... (without the salt of the packaged stuff).
The other thing is that she does a bit of dry retching. I think she has a hairball. I have a routine vet appointment next week anyways...
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Old 01-04-2013, 02:42 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Congrats on your new kitty and kudos for getting her from a shelter! I have a 1.5 year old who doesn't drink much and a 5 month old who is a great drinker! I don't think cats drink much, they get their fluids from their food. Therefore make sure to feed them wet food which is predominantly water. You can add a little extra water to the food because cats tend to lick up the Juices first.

I'd also suggest getting a pet fountain. I really like the multi level pet mate fountain which I buy on amazon. My kitten loves drinking from the top level and some cats prefer to drink Moving water over still water. My pump for the fountan is broken and I'm getting my new fountain tomorrow and I noticed the cats drink less since the water stopped moving. There are ways to tell if your cat is dehydrated, which I'm sure a quick google search could point you to the ways.


Good luck and congrats
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Old 01-04-2013, 02:45 AM   #3 (permalink)
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My girls haven't been drinking much water these past few months, maybe it's the cooler weather.
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Old 01-04-2013, 09:52 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for rescuing a shelter kitty! Some cats don't drink much while others drink quite a bit. Discuss it at the vet meeting. (Write down your questions ahead of time, I always seem to forget things once I get in there!). I've never rescued a shelter cat that didn't sneeze, already have a cold, diahrea or some other malady from being in there. Shelters are better here now than they were even a few years ago, but the communal environment is hard on cat's systems. Also try Whiskas Cat Milk. You can find it in the pet food section of the grocery stores. It's made for cats and better than cow's milk. My Missy will immediately throw up cow's milk but loves and tolerates the Whiskas. I give it as a treat.
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Old 01-04-2013, 12:41 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Thanks for your responses. It's reassuring to know that it's normal for shelter cats to be a little sick at the beginning. And my apologies for posting again in the introduction (I was expecting it to appear there...).
We're having a lot more success feeding her wet food (Wellness gain free). I guess that's no surprise given the impressive amount of crap in the ingredients of the Royal Canin dry food I bought from the shelter (Woah!). I might try to feed her a fresh frozen prey to see how she reacts... The broth from chicken bones didn't work. I will look into a water fountain and discuss the drinking situation with the vet.

I think it's interesting to try and guess what kind of life she lived before the shelter. She likes to cuddle and she sleeps with us, so she's definitely socialized to humans. She doesn't seem interested in playing though, but she still sneezes, so that might be because she feels sick.
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Old 01-04-2013, 01:02 PM   #6 (permalink)
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My Gadget sneezed for the first few weeks. Vet checked him out the first week and said he was fine. Sneeze got better though.

Last edited by marie73; 01-04-2013 at 04:26 PM.
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Old 01-04-2013, 03:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Don't panic too much that she likes milk - the most recent research suggests that the majority of cats aren't lactose intolerant after all.
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:16 AM   #8 (permalink)
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My shelter cat sneezed and had terribly runny eyes. The shelter gave her some antibiotic ointment and it made it worse. We suspected It was allergies so we have him 1/2 pill of crushed Zyrtec daily and it fixed it right up! Now we give him 1/4 pill per day and it keeps his runny eyes and sneezing at bay. He sneezes a lot after a particularly intensive play session, but otherwise it's good.
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Old 01-06-2013, 06:26 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MyBabiesDaddy View Post
My shelter cat sneezed and had terribly runny eyes. The shelter gave her some antibiotic ointment and it made it worse. We suspected It was allergies so we have him 1/2 pill of crushed Zyrtec daily and it fixed it right up! Now we give him 1/4 pill per day and it keeps his runny eyes and sneezing at bay. He sneezes a lot after a particularly intensive play session, but otherwise it's good.
Maybe he's allergic to humans!!!
I've learned of SO many home remedies on this site: 1/8 tsp of Miralax for constipation, 1/4 Zyrtec for sneezes and runny noses!! You are all an amazing group!!
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Old 01-06-2013, 06:40 PM   #10 (permalink)
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If your kitty likes milk I would suggest goats milk. It is fattening so beware. I give it to fosters that are under weight or nursing mothers.

There have been mix results posted by members here with cat fountains. Mine love their fountain. After using a Drinkwell and hating the weekly cleaning of the cracks and crevices and it being plastic, I bought a cat fountain from Hammacher Schlemmer! Say it seven times fast! My cat and fosters love it and it is easy to clean plus its ceramic and has a great guarantee.

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