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Hey guys.

So I just got my first ever cat, and I picked him up from my local Humane Society shelter. Apparently he was a stray, he's about one year old, and they told me he'd only been there 6 days before I snatched him up.

When I was playing with him at the shelter, I noticed he was soooo chill. By that, I mean he's very friendly, I can play with his paws and everything, he's affectionate like crazy and has a beautiful coat. One thing I noticed was that he was always purring, which I thought just meant he was really mellow.

Now that he's been home for about 20 hours, he purrs non stop. In fact, I think it's a respiratory thing because he never stops purring...both inhaling and exhaling. He also coughs/sneezes (not sure which) once in a while. Not lots, maybe four or five little coughs an hour...if that.

Here's the part that worries me. He hasn't touched ANY food, I've dried dry food and wet food, and I've tried to heat up the wet food so that it's more smelly.

I took him into the bathroom and ran the hot shower for steam, in case he had a blocked nose and couldn't smell the food. That did not help.

At the shelter they told me that he had recieved a Rabies shot hours before I adopted him, so perhaps this lack of appetite is a result of that shot? With the coughing and stuff I worry he has URI or something. His eyes appear somewhat runny, but not really bad...and his nose is not goopy or runny at all.

He also has not used the kitty litter even once. I checked around the apartment for ninja turds or secret peeing spots, but nothing anywhere. My theory is that he hasn't eaten, hasn't peed, hasn't taken a crap. He did, however, empty one small dish of water during the night, so he's drinking.

I'm a little worried. He scratches his post, and likes to be petted, follows me around sometimes but also sleeps a lot. I know cats sleep a lot, but I can't decide if his behaviour is normal or if he's sick.

I'm a first time cat owner, so I'm being freakishly over protective and obsessed with every little thing he does, but I can't shake the feeling something is wrong with him. He's also super skinny, but as I said he was a stray street cat for one year and only lived in the shelter for less than a week...so he could be lean from living in the wild.

Help me, you guys!
 

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hm..it might be from the shot he recieved recently..but im not quite sure...if it continues ..just take him to the vet...sorry i couldnt be of any more help.
 

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Many kitties hide and refuse to eat for the first couple of days in a new home. The vaccination could also be making you kitty feel a bit unwell. I would suggest if he is still not eating Monday morning, take him to the vet.
 

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When I got my adult cat a couple of months ago, he hid behind the bed for two days and wouldn't come out, and was very nervous. By the second day, I took a few pieces of his dried food and hand-fed him, he ate that. After two days he came out, was scared of everything, but then started eating/drinking going to litter box normally.
 

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i think all shelter cats come home with a little bit of a cold. i wouldn't worry about the sneezing unless it gets worse. as for the eating, is it the same food he was eating at the shelter? he might just be unused to it- some cats can be really picky. try getting what he had at the shelter, and if he eats that gradually make the switch to what you want to feed him.
 

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Hi Will and welcome to the Cat Forum.

Just try to relax and let your kitty find his balance in his new home. The purring is not unusual, kitties will purr when their emotions are running high. He feels some stress, so he is purring.

Try to keep him close to his food, water and litter box and let nature do its thing. If you have him confined into one area, try to sit in that area with him. Take a book and read it alound, so he will get used to your voice. Take some treats with you and if he approaches you, offer him a treat. Don't fret if he declines to take it, that won't last long.

The shot has probably taken him off his pace a bit, but that should also pass in a day.

He has had a shot and been uprooted from what he was learning was home, taken to a new place with new sounds and smells. Not to mention this human being that is all new, as well.

Of course, if he is still worrrying you in a day or so, contact the shelter and have them take another look at him to make sure all is well. I do think you are going to be OK, you just need to give it some time.

And you are going to have to let me know when Will v.4.30 will be released. :wink:

Peace,
Mike
 

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Congratulations on your first-ever cat, and for taking in a grownup cat! :D

I think that a LOT of cats come home from the shelter with some sort of Upper Respiratory Infection; they tend to spread very easily through shelters because of the too-close quarters. My local shelter warns of this and suggests monitoring the new cat for any symptoms.

By all means, if you *are* worried, then take him to the vet, even if just for a check-up and initial meeting...and I suggest this because I think it's better for a new owner to meet the vet early on, instead of waiting for a major crisis. You'll be able to establish a relationship and trust early on, which will be really important if something more serious comes up later in the cat's life. Really, I'd call the vet Tuesday and make an appointment if for no other reason than having him get an initial workup and you meeting his new vet.

Some cats take a little longer to adjust to a new home than others. Make sure that he has food and water readily available if and when he wants it, and that his litterbox is easy for him to find and not in an uncomfortable location (like near a furnace or washing machine, which can be unnerving for some cats). He's probably just trying to get acclimated...remember, he's been through a lot of changes in the last week...you'd likely sleep a lot if you'd gone from being homeless to a shelter to a new home in under a week, too :) . Cats very often purr to comfort themselves, so he may just be making his own soothing music to calm his nerves. The shots may be making him feel a little low, as well.

You could also try sitting in the room with him when you feed him. My Assumpta is a social eater, and at first didn't want to eat unless someone was there to watch her...it was like she wanted me there to stand guard so no one came to steal her food. Even now, she prefers to eat when we're around. Maybe a little unsalted chicken broth would tempt him, and calm your nerves that he's getting some kind of food (when I've had to tempt Assumpta, I've used little strips of turkey or chicken breast, hand-fed). Also, see if you can tempt him to play before feeding...if he was stray and finding his own food, he might be used to eating after a hunt, so a good game of chase-and-catch might trigger the urge to eat something, too (I always play with Assumpta and give her a spoonful of food before I go to bed...I get less 4AM wakeup calls that way).

Good luck, and hope you and cat are happy together.
 

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I'm a first time cat owner too... and I think everyone here gave you great advice. I have none to add, but just thought I'd say welcome :)

Oh, we want PICTURES!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I wish I had a digital camera, or any camera for that matter, I'd love to show you guys what he looks like for the extra feedback on his condition. But, alas, a camera I have not.

Okay, so now it's sunday...he still hasn't eaten anything. He also didn't drink any water last night, I work the night shift and came home to his water bowl full to the top the way I left it. He took a pee in the litterbox, though, which is SOMETHING at least.

He's also less playful than he was yesterday and the day before. He might just be tired, I guess. Still, this is now two-and-a-half days with no food at all...enough to drain anyone of their energy. He just sits on the ground, sort of like he's going to pounce or something. He always looks like he's kind of scared or ready for something.

He's still affectionate with I sit with him, and when I came home he came out to meet me at the door and meowed loudly before resuming his disturbing sickly squatting. He's also been coughing/sneezing (not sure which one) a lot.

Well, I'm taking him to the vet tomorrow for sure. He's so skinny...
 

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Hi Will. I'm glad to hear you've decided to take him to the vet. It may be just adjustment issues, but its better safe than sorry - and if it is adjustment issues, it sounds as though your new kitty is taking it harder than many, so maybe the vetcan give you tips... I know with Otis, who was my first, we made at least two unnecessary trips to the vet in the first year, but at least I know he's a happy, healthy guy because of it...

Enjoy your kitty, and welcome to the forum!
 

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Will, since we share exactly the same fate, I thought I'd give you a post, even though the content will be repetitive. I picked up Monty from the shelter on June 28 and took him to the vet right away, where he even got a blood test. So I'm pretty confident he's overall healthy. Still, he has the respiratory infection that most shelter cats seem to have. It's worse at night and better during the day. He did not eat for several days and lost weight, and still today his eating is ridiculous. He has the choice between dry food and a fresh can of wet food every twelve hours, and all he does is taking a few licks and that's it. Drinking? Nada. So I got really worried just like you and surfed the Internet and called all friends, but every single piece of information I found really says: hey, it's normal. They are simply under soooo much stress. And the purring is a stress reliever, too, used to calm themselves down in situations of fear. So, really, since it's only been two days for you (as opposed to six days for me), just hang in there and wait. I'm confident it will get better. Just one thing that wasn't clear to me: you've probably taken care of it, but do not place the litter box anywhere near the food. Your cat would not use the box.
 

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Update: Monty just ate his first real meal (after six days!). So don't worry about the eating too much, but get some medication for the infection.
 

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The vet wasn't in at the Humane Society today, but I phoned and the vet's assistant working there told me to come down without the cat.

He gave me some special cat food you mix with water to make kind of a gravy, and some syringes without needles. Today my girlfriend and I forcefed him some food and some water...it seemed so harsh and cruel because he was using his last vestiges of energy to fight us off, but I know it's for the best.

At least this way he's got fluids and some food in him. He was so weak he could barely swallow, but I know the food and water we just gave him will get digested...and I mean, it is calories going in. He'll be okay.

Tomorrow morning I'm taking him to the vet, I think he'll end up being just fine. I hope!

Having a sick cat is so harsh. I have to go work the night shift right away, and he'll be all alone for the next 9.5 hours or so...and I feel completely terrible about it.

I'll be sure to let you guys know how it turns out!
 

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Chester died yesterday, I watched him crawl under the couch and start twitching and then he just stopped moving.

It was so shitty. I was giving him antibiotics I got from the vet and he seemed to be doing better, but then he freaked out and staggered under the couch to die alone. This totally sucks.

The humane society picked him up right away, and this morning the vet called and told me he died of severe bronchial pnemeonia.

I guess the most positive way to look at it is...at least he died in a loving home, rather than a small cramped shelter cage. I guess.

Poor ******* never had a chance :cry: .
 

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Oh gosh, I'm so sorry to hear that :( . I am very glad that you were there to support him when he passed on. As you said, a loving home is a much better place to pass than in a lonely, cramped cell.
 

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oh no...that's so awful. I feel so sad for Chester. :~( Really sorry about your loss. When I first got Polo he fell terribly ill too after a couple of days and I thought he was gonna die and I was really depressed.

But I'm sure Chester knew that at least someone cared for him before he died. Bless him.
 

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Oh my gosh. I just found this post and read it from the beginning. I am so sorry :( That is absolutely awful. Like you said, at least he got to see what love was before his short life ended..........something some cats never experience :( I will be thinking of you....*hugs*
 
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