My cat Sampson is in a lot of trouble - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 12:55 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2005
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My cat Sampson is in a lot of trouble

Hi. I am new to this site but have become desperate this last week. We have a 3yr old neutered male cat who is loosing weight alarmingly, vomits clear/yellowish bile and won't eat. Is very lathargic, non-responsive to his name (not normal for him) and appears to have frequent seizures/shakes all over.

Some history:
There's not much but the 2 things I can think of are at one time he developed very nasty diherrea. He would go to the litter box but it would literally spray out accompanied by lots of flatulence. I had to tape newspaper on the walls around the box to contain the mess. A trip to the vet and some medication cleared it up within a day or so and it has never happened since.
The other was at about 1.5yr's old he was hit by a car - he's always be a indoor/outdoor cat. Nothing broken or anything but he has lost the feeling in approx. the last 1/3 of his tail. The vet said it was nerve damage only as the tissue is always warm and healthy. He can flick his tail as normal, it has never affected his mobility or agility - he just can't feel it if I gently pinch the end.

About a week ago I noticed that he seemed a little thinner and his behaviour changed a lot. He would not come when called and was not as playfull at night time (when I get home from work) as he had always been. Then the vomiting started. Then he rapidly lost weight and "howled" in obvious discomfort for short periods of time. This all took place over a couple of days.

My wife and I got him to the vet right away where they kept him for a few days. They rehydrated him with an IV and force feed him a few times. They took blood work but notified us that everything there seemed normal. The vet wanted to run a battery of tests (X-rays, berium etc) and possibley exploritory surgery and informed us that the bill was going to be considerable. As we were already looking at a current vet bill of $500+ we hesitated. I'm a little embarresed to say but with my wife pregnant etc money is very tight for us.

The vet said he would keep Sampson 1 more night and to call in the morning. We were then told the next day that he showed improvement, only vomitted once and appeared more responsive. Vet said to take him home, make sure he stays hydrated and gave us a ointment that helps clear blockages/hairballs etc. Other than that the vet is at a loss.

We've had Sampson home a few days now but he's not improving at all. In fact I never see him eat (I've tried force feeding him soft food myself with varying degrees of success), his seizures/shakes are worse and getting more frequent, he's very weak (can not even jump up onto the kitchen counter where he always liked to drink from the sink), and he's still very lathargic. he will not even look at me when I call him from within the same room (we where very close and he had always responed very well to me in the past). After hours of research on the net and not being a vet myself the closest things that sound like his problems are some sort of liver disease or a stroke.

He doesn't appear to be in any physical discomfort, just very weak and often has these seizures that last a minute and disapate.

My wife, my 7yr old daughter and myself love him to death and of course we are all in tears and very upset. Please, any suggestions, tips, hints, ideas, or thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Trout & family.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 03:56 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2005
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A little update a couple hours later:

Poor Sampson just fell down the basement stairs. I went and got him and took him to the litter box as I figured that's where he was heading. I put him in it but he wanted nothing to do with it. He stummbled out of it a lay on the cool basement floor.

Now I heard him "howling" so I went back to check on him again and he has just urinated himself right where he was laying. He's that weak. His eyes are alert and he watched me intently as I came down the stair but he couldn't move the 12 inches to get into the litter box. This is bad......

Please, 30 reads on my original post but not 1 suggestion or idea?? Hmmmm, feeling desperate.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 03:58 AM
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I can offer sympathy, but no practical advice. I'm sorry.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 04:34 AM
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I think you really need to get the cat to the vets immediately.

Sorry I cannot offer any more advice than this, once a cat gets very weak and stops eating they can go downhill very quickly.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 05:56 AM
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Trout, you need to get this cat to the vet ASAP. Either your regular vet or an emergency vet. Your cat not only requires veterinary attention but emergency care.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 06:29 AM
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Go here for help with the bill:
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 08:19 AM
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I think a vet is your only choice here. Though there are symptoms consistent with liver and nuerological problems, my first thought was poisoning, which should always be a suspicion in an indoor/outdoor cat (as should Feline Leukemia Virus infection). Finding the cause (if it's a toxin) may be difficult or impossible, but I think that Sampson definitely needs to be in a vet ward with continuous care, supportive feeding, and hydration. Further bloodwork, with special attention to White blood cell counts and liver/kidney values, may be of help, and an FeLV test might be a consideration, especially if the cat has never been vaccinated, but in any case, I think a hospital stay with supportive care is Sampson's best hope.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 02:14 PM
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Hope he's doing better. The conditions sound like he could've contracted feline distemper as well.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-17-2005, 09:55 PM
Join Date: Apr 2005
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that's too bad, I am really sorry to hear that. ... and I understand about the money situation, I do. Not everyone is able to dump $100+ dollars into saving their cats. We do what we can.

My cat Jazzy just died on 5/11/05 which sounds like the same symptoms as your Sampson, however, you said the blood tests came back normal. My Jazzy had hepatic lipidosis which is liver disease. It is clearly identifiable in blood test... so I wouldn't guess Sampson has that. Jazzy also became very lethargic and didn't and wouldn't eat. I took her to the vet, and they inserted a tube into her throat where I forced fed her through a syringe for 5 weeks. I wasn't able to save her. I spent $2,700.

I guess my point is you do the best you can with what you have. I was able to spend money on her, and I didn't save her. I'm not saying you shouldn't take her to the vet, but what I'm saying is that you are doing the best you can with what you have.

I hope Sampson continues to get better... but if he is losing weight and is not eating, that is not good. They need to eat to keep their liver from metabolizing fat... if they start burning fat instead of food, this is when hepatic lipidosis starts... as with Jazzy.

Anyway, I wish you the best. If anything, your cat will know that it is loved and you gave it the best care you did. As in my situation, who knows... maybe if you ended up dumping $100+ in him, you might not be able to save him anyway. Do what you can... and that's all you can do

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-21-2005, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2005
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I just thought I'd give you nice people who replied a bit of an update. Over the last week+ my wife and I have been caring for Sampson intently. We force fed him ourselves twice a day in little bits. He seemed to know when to make us stop and we would. He drinks by himself and has begun to move around on his own.

Over the last2=3 days he has greatly improved, certainly not anywhere near 100% of course, but he's 100% better than he was, that's for sure. He seems to be making a come back, has a little more energy now, acknoledges us when we entr the room (like he used to) and has even gained back a pound or two.

So we remain hopefully and monitor him every day! GO SAMPSON!!

Thanks everyone for your replies and concerns.

Trout and happy family.
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