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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My Blitz (aka "Doo Doo") is over 17 years old now. He had most of his teeth removed due to Feline Odontoclastic Reabsorbtive Lesions (ok, I think that's what FORLs stands for, if I'm right, consider it showing off), hyperthyroidism, arthritis/spondylosis and early onset kidney failure, which is very early on and stable.

So... he's got to have dry food for his remaining teeth, wet food for his medicine, both of which have to be specially formulated kidney food, a pill for his thyroid, metacam and arthri-aid for the arthritis. Thing is, he hates the kidney food. He has lost 30g in the last month because of his refusal to eat much of it at a time (he actually licks the medicine off, so it's not that...).

The vets say it is more important that he eats than for him to eat the kidney food at this time. She did say that if he doesn't eat properly, he has 3-6 months left.

So we've been mixing other meats in with his food and thus far (since I joined this site) he's been doing well. She's advised boiling chicken and fish for him too.

When I originally joined, I'd just got the news and was hoping for advice. Since we are doing well, I'm hoping for advice as a Plan B in case he gives up again.

Thanks :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I think the idea is that the dry food helps prevent the build up of plaque and stuff. That was the impression I got from the vets. Anyway, he doesn't eat it much, he far prefers the wet food. It's there if he wants it.
 

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At the age of 17 I would let him eat what he wants. If he likes canned, so be it. The important thing is that he eats to keep his weight and strength up. :smile:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The first time we tried moving away from the kidney food, he was interested for a while and then gave up even on the fishy food we were offering him. He's ok at the moment but I'm a little concerned that he might see this new food as a novelty and when it wears off, he'll lose interest again. I guess I'm just wondering what people might recommend as a next tactic.
 

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When I switched Chiquita over to better wet food, I bought a variety and made notes on which ones she really likes.
Now I have a 1/ dozen that she really like to rotate so she doesn't get jaded on any one flavor.
She really likes Merricks, Grammy Pot Pie, Turducken and Thanksgiving Dinner.
I agree feed him what he'll eat that the important thing to keep his weight up.
 

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Hi. My 16 year old cat also has hyperthyroidism and is on the meds for it; I use
the gel transdermal pen to apply the medicine directly to his ear flap. He has
been on it for several years now and there seems to much less nausea with the
gel pen form than with oral meds.....SweetPea doesn't have as
much nausea with this form of his meds and has a better appetite.

You might try adding a little grated Parmesan cheese to his food to try and tempt
him to eat more. I've also found that adding a little warm water to the canned food
helps, as well as crushing some dried bonita flakes and sprinkling them over the
wet food.

Hope this helps and I wish you the best of luck with your Blitz.
 

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My vet recently reminded me most cats do not chew dry food anyway, so the fact that my kitty has had so many teeth removed (most of her molars and almost all of the front tiny teeth) doesn't matter much in terms of my food choices for her, though she gets the majority of her nutrition from a 5.5 oz can of wet food each day and dry to nibble on when she pleases. I'd follow what your vet recommends, but question the need for dry food really.

I hope your kitty feels better and finds her appetite soon. Have you tried baby food? When my cat was really sick with a virus this summer and at her very worst, my vet said give her whatever she will eat. What was finally successful was Beech Nut chicken baby food (just chicken, chicken broth and water in the ingredients). There were a few days that she only ate baby food, then I added the baby food to her wet food (Weruva canned chicken) until eventually I was only giving her the canned food and she had regained her health.

I hope it never gets to this point, but if your vet recommends medication to stimulate appetite - tread very carefully. My cat was prescribed Mirtazapine and did not tolerate it well at all. The prescribing vet as well as a second I took her to really seemed quite clueless about the side effects.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Yeah, the vet said there were appetite medicines available but she wasn't inclined to use them. We haven't got as bad as baby food yet but it could be a final resort, although to be honest if he gets to the point where we have to be more forceful with his food then it is probably time to ask ethical questions.

Thanks :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks :D Although he has a lot of complaints, they all seem to be stable at present (although my understanding of kidney disease is that it is stable until it suddenly isn't) so provided we can sort his eating on a long-term basis, she said he could have a few years left in him. I admit my main health concern is actually his arthritis. I'm still smarting over the loss of my elderly rabbit who had spondylosis and I'm aware that it could come to judging the cat's quality of life, but thankfully he is still able to jump and run even though he shuffles and seeks company a lot more than he used to. I'm finding it harder reading his thoughts than I did with the rabbits so I can't really tell so much how bad he is feeling (except when he really glowers at you). I guess it is a matter of keeping going and playing it by ear :)
 

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As has been mentioned, forget the dry food.

Feed small canned portions, warmed up. Cats with poor appetie just seem to be overwhelmed with large portions.

So, offer no more than a tablespoon of canned food at a time. Warm it slightly by either adding a little warm water to it (good for the kidneys!) or sitting the dish in another dish of hot water, to wamr the food gently.

Warming the food makes it smellier, and that's what cats go by, smell.

Offer the small portion. If he eats it, but leaves some, pick it up, stir it around and bring it to whereever he has moved to, and offer it again.

Do this every few hours throughout the day. Cats of his age and health can feel even sicker if they go too long with out food, making them even more reluctant to eat.

I am deeply concerned that your vet has prescribed metacam for a cat with kidney failure. Metacam is not safe for cats anyway, it is known to cause acute kidney failure in cats. I advise you to research this, and to question your vet closely, and ask for something else, if your cat needs pain medication.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks. I did warm the food up a few times but didn't seem to make any considerable difference. It did bemuse him though, it was funny to see him stalking his bowl and then batting at the food in it.

Yes, the vet and I discussed the use of metacam with his kidney issues. He was obviously in some considerable discomfort and we decided on quality over quantity and chose to treat him and take the consequences when they come.
 
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