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Discussion Starter #1
We adopted a 3 year old cat from the shelter yesterday morning and as far as we can tell he hasn’t touched his food (the same one they were feeding him at the shelter), water or used the litter box since then. We’re not sure what to do and how long we should give him before taking him to the vet or something. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Try putting some tuna juice on the food he's used to to make it 'smelly good'. OR you can go to Fancy Feast wet, mix it in with his other food. He's probably a bit confused as to what the deal is. He knows where his box is right? How long was he at the shelter? Do you have any history on him? He'll settle in once he feels he is safe.

Its great that you gave a shelter cat a home!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for replying.

Will have to go and get tuna tomorrow. We’ve left him some fancy feast down as well as the dry food he was on at the shelter, hoping he eats throughout the night. Yeah he knows where it is, I’m assuming he hasn’t used the litter since he’s not eaten or drank anything. He was at the shelter since he was born and we were told he’s quite a shy cat anyway which is why he’s been there so long.


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Is he in a quiet room all to himself? It can take a while for a cat to work up the nerve to explore an entire house, but a small space might not be so intimidating.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yeah, we’ve got him set up in the bathroom as I’d read that would be a good option for him.


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are you also offering him what he ate while at the shelter? using the same kind of litter? got the feliway plugged in? maybe some nice soft music for him to create a calm atmosphere?

did the shelter give you any advice? what's his background? lots of questions! but i think starting with everything he was used to at the shelter is the first thing to concentrate on.

i fostered a cat who didn't eat for a whole week! appetite stimulants didn't work. ended up giving her Xanax believe it or not and she did a complete 180. turned from a mad cat that struck out at anything within a foot of her and eating nothing to a total lovebug/lapcat with a healthy appetite. it just took a few days on the Xanax to take the edge off, but i don't think she even needed that much. maybe a couple days with a lower does woulda done the trick for her. just 1 option for you if nothing else works.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah the shelter gave us a bag of the food he was eating there so that’s what we’ve put down for him. Looks like he’s finally used the litter through the night. We do have a feliway plugged in but we’ll also try the music. All we really know is that he’s been at the shelter since he was born so he hasn’t had that much human contact so he’s quite a shy cat. Hopefully he’ll eat some tuna today.


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WOW
3 years at the shelter. He is basically being re-homed to the MAX. I commend you for giving him a forever home! Was he in a cage that whole time basically? Was he ever fostered or is all he knows the shelter? This would be a MAJOR difference for his senses to adjust to. I'm not sure I would eat right away if I landed on a different planet!
Please keep us informed!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The place we got him from has basically a giant enclosure that all the cats roam around together in with an indoor and outdoor area they could go in. I believe all he knows is the shelter and the people at the shelter believe it’s possible that the cat we adopted last year is actually related to him. I completely understand it’s a huge adjustment for him but since we’ve never had this problem before I’m not sure how long we should give it without him eating before we take him to a vet.


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that's excellent progress and a great sign that he used the litterbox! since this is his first real home, that says a lot for him. what a tough little guy.
do you get to sit with him in the room a lot and just read to him or watch tv or listen to music quietly? if he was used to the people at the shelter, i think that would be helpful to be in your presence as much as possible.
is he your only cat right now then? if so, i'll bet it's just hard for him not having other feline companions around all the time and he's been thrown off. hopefully it won't take him too long to get used to having human companionship replace his feline friends.

is he interested in playing at all yet? i've definitely had fosters who were so scared they completely ignored any toys for weeks before even slowly starting to follow the toy very slowly with their eyes.
 

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We have been going and sitting in the room with him and minding our own business. We have 2 other cats but we’re keeping them separated until he’s a bit more settled and eating so it’s not too much stress for him. He’s not really interested in playing yet, mostly just hiding.


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Any news today? I would schedule a vet trip if he doesn't eat as you're 2 days in now. Perhaps putting him with the others might help as he was in that situation for so long anyways (other cats)? If he sees the others eating he might think it's ok.

Hoping for good news!
 

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This might be a really great idea - letting the other cats in or at least letting your new guy see them. my most recent foster (who JUST got adopted on Saturday - Hurray!!!) hid a LOT in the beginning. I noticed, though, that when my own cat was in sight, he would perk up and want to move to get a better look. the shelter had me take in another foster that was a really laid back kind of guy and it worked wonders for that scared, hiding foster. he was all of a sudden walking around the room and getting REALLY close to the other cat despite being hissed at a lot. I think he really needed company and also to see that I wasn't the cat-eating monster he feared I was. after 3 weeks of not being able to pet him, I was suddenly able to pet, brush and cuddle with this guy! he even let me rub his belly! he did actually eat and use the litterbox just fine before the other foster cat joined him, but he wouldn't let me near him. your new guy probably just has a different way of showing his fear or discomfort and that's by not eating as well. so I encourage you as well to let him see your other cats. it might get him to relax a little so he can eat. even better if he can see your other cats eating nearby, too.


good luck!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
We ended up taking him to the vet yesterday, they said there’s nothing wrong physically with him that’s stopping him from eating and that’s it’s because of the big change of leaving the shelter so he’s just scared. They ended up giving him a Valium injection to try and calm him down and increase his appetite, it worked somewhat for calming him down and for the first time he actually wandered around while you were with him, before now he’d just hide until you leave him alone. He’s definitely drinking and weeing so that’s something good at least.
We’ll try letting him see the other 2 today, he was at the shelter with one of them for 2 years so maybe they’ll recognise each other. We’ve been wary of introducing them since the others are both twice the size of him so we thought it’d just be more stress.


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Good for you, as you know this is all about love & patience.
I have had Charlie for close to 4 months now and it took me awhile to understand how 'unsocialized' he really was. The shelter had no backstory on him other than him being there for a month, they even gauged his age wrong (my vet has him at 1.5 yrs, they said he was under a year). Who knows how long he was out in the street fending for himself... but sure enough my persistence of play/food/treats is loosening him up!
Your poor little guy has no clue probably. i know it's wrong to personify them-better to accurately determine HOW they behave based on instinct-I can't help but put myself in his paws..."What is this place? When will they bring me back? Where are all the others?"
Of course we do everything from a place of love but how are they to immediately know?

Glad to hear he's coming along, look forward to you sharing his first poop (no pic necessary)!

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Discussion Starter #16
Glad to hear your little guy is loosening up, hopefully my little guy will soon. We’ve let him out of the bathroom so all the cats can see each other if they want to and so far he’s just hiding in my wardrobe but it’s giving the other 2 a chance to smell where he’s been at least. Will hopefully have some good news to share soon or in the next few days, I’ll certainly mention his first poop haha.


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Discussion Starter #17
Finally we have some progress, after syringe feeding him for 2 days he’s finally had a little something to eat by himself, hooray!


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New cat update

The newest addition, Lincoln, has made so much progress in the last 2 days . He’s eaten nearly 2 cans of Hills a/d by himself, is starting to explore more when it’s quiet and he thinks he’s alone, and has started to find his voice (mainly at 4am of course haha).
Here’s a picture of him in his favourite hiding spot.




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Discussion Starter #20
Oh yes, just like the cat we adopted last year, they look almost the same except Lincoln is about half the size.
Now that he’s eating we have a new problem, he hasn’t pooped since we brought him home and he’s been eating for about 3/4 days now, he’s had no problems weeing.


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