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elderly very frail cat, what to do? advice pls!

(35 Posts)
dolphinsandwhales Sun 23-Mar-14 17:21:11

Hi all, I have an elderly cat, nearly 16yo. In the past year she's lost a lot of weight and wobbles when she walks, she spends a lot of time in her basket and only really gets up to eat/drink/use litter box. When I took her for her annual vaccination two weeks ago the very lovely vet kindly told me she couldn't be vaccinated as my cat is too frail and may not survive it. She also tactfully told me that my cat could eat what she likes etc as she's likely to move on at some point this year, so just make her comfortable :-( if her quality of life deteriorates she said it may be time to bring her in..,

Anyway, for three days now my cat has had bad diahhorrea, no vomiting but stools like water. I've tried giving her turkey but it made her worse, so back to her usual Hills biscuit food and water. I haven't taken her to the vet as my cat hates it and I feel it's unlikely she can be treated.

Does anyone know if there's any food I could use to help her? I'm thinking she's going to pass away due to her frailty and the diahhorrea or maybe I will need to take her to the vet tomorrow as this could all be too much for her to cope with and it's cruel to keep her struggling on?

wellmoisturised Sun 23-Mar-14 19:18:48

Hi op, your poor puss. Is she drinking any water? With such watery stools she could quickly become dehydrated. She does need to be seen by a vet, but I understand your concerns with regards to taking her. Could you have a vet come out to see her? These things always seem to happen at the weekend.
I have two girl cats and one of them had awful diarrhoea a few years ago, although not watery, I poached her some chicken which she managed to digest, but she was only 5/6 at the time so a spring chicken compared to your old girl.

DramaAlpaca Sun 23-Mar-14 19:19:45

Sorry to hear about your cat. It's horrible when a much loved pet is ill.

I think you know in your heart you need to take her back to the vet. It does sound like her quality of life has deteriorated and that she is struggling.

I know it's difficult, but you'll be doing the right thing for her.


dolphinsandwhales Sun 23-Mar-14 19:24:53

Hi thanks so much for replying, I'm so worried for her :-( I fed her a nibble of salmon this evening and I've seen her drinking water. She's resting again now but I fear her deterioration recently may be a sign the end is coming :-( I'll phone at 8am to see if my lovely vet recommends bringing her in or whether she'll visit my house.

Thanks again

spudmasher Sun 23-Mar-14 19:32:48

Ahh my heart goes out to you dolphins we are in exactly the same position. Darling 17 year old cat got an infection in her mouth about a week and a half ago. We took her to the vets last Saturday fully expecting to have her put to sleep. They gave her an antibiotic jab and tablets for the week. They told us to call on Wednesday. She had responded to the antibiotics and the infection had burst- horrid pus and blood oozing out of her eye. She's been eating a tiny bit and drinking a bit. Went back yesterday and she had another jab. But she's not eating at all now. Squitty poo all day, very wobbly. Very minded to call vet tomorrow as there's no quality of life bless her. So hard. So many tears from me...I've had my cat longer than I've had my kids!! But it feels like the kindest option at this stage in the game. Wishing you strength.

dolphinsandwhales Sun 23-Mar-14 19:42:06

Thanks Spud, I'm so sorry to hear your cat I'd struggling too :-( I wish that I could improve the diahhorrea but I think it's symptomatic of her being too frail to fight it. My other cat is fine, so no contagious bug, my elderly cat is just losing the fight I think :-(

As the vet wouldn't vaccinate her due to frailty I expect she may not be able to treat her? Though by your experience spuds it sounds like it may be better to let her go :-( I wonder if the vet would put her to sleep at my house? I don't want my cat to have the trauma of visiting the vet :-(

DramaAlpaca Sun 23-Mar-14 19:46:05

I think most vets will do home visits to pts, I know ours does.

<<Un-mumsnetty hugs to you>>

cozietoesie Sun 23-Mar-14 19:47:08

Most vets will do home visits when necessary and it sounds as if it might be best for your old girl.

It's all about her now - but take care of yourself as well.

dolphinsandwhales Sun 23-Mar-14 20:19:41

Thanks, I feel very reassured that hopefully the vet will come to me if necessary. Hopefully I'll wake up I'm the morning and she'll be better and more spritely :-) but I'm ready to call the vet if needs be (in truth this is what I'm expecting). I just hope my favourite vet is on duty tomorrow.

cozietoesie Mon 24-Mar-14 07:54:29

How is she this morning?

dolphinsandwhales Mon 24-Mar-14 08:39:24

Hi cozie, thanks, she's still very frail and barely eating. Ihad put her in the kitchen overnight so sshe was close to food, water and her litter box. This morning she trotted into the living room so looks like she's feeling some strength otherwise she'd have stayed in her bed!

I'm waiting for the vet to call me back with options, should be later this morning...

cozietoesie Mon 24-Mar-14 09:31:14

Let us know how she gets on?

dolphinsandwhales Mon 24-Mar-14 09:38:59

I will do, thanks! The nurse said there may be something they can do to make her more comfortable even though she's so frail. She's just eaten lots of cat biscuits that I left by her bed, she's a fighter I think :-)

cozietoesie Mon 24-Mar-14 09:44:34

Good for her.

DramaAlpaca Mon 24-Mar-14 10:14:55

Thinking of you & your lovely puss this morning x

Lancelottie Mon 24-Mar-14 10:19:21

Has she had a thyroid test?

Our cat was just as you describe two years ago (she's now 18), and it turned out to be a thyroid problem causing strain on the heart and a whole raft of other symptoms.

nipersvest Mon 24-Mar-14 10:22:41

yep, could be thyroid. we have a 17 yr old cat who almost died before his thyroid was under control. we tried 2 types of tablets for it both made him vomit, but after a while with no treatment, he became very listless and would barely move, it was like we were watching him die.

took him to vet and they admitted him, after a day, he improved and we put him on the thyroid friendly diet. he's doing ok, he does look elderly though, but he's not struggling like he was.

Lancelottie Mon 24-Mar-14 10:30:40

With ours, it was a case of one overnight at the vet's with rehydration drip, plus an appetite stimulant, and then (long-term, at about 50p a day) thyroid pills -- which we are now pretty good at getting into her.

We had multiple cats at the time and weren't prepared to switch everyone onto the thyroid-friendly diet, but it does sound a good option otherwise.

dolphinsandwhales Mon 24-Mar-14 14:22:31

Thanks, which food is good for the thyroid? Is it one of the hills prescription diet ones?

I've had a telephone consultation with the vet. She saidthat as long as my cat isn't vomiting (she's not) and is eating and drinking then she can give me some probiotics to give my cat twice a day. If my cat isn't improving by weds or if she gets worse then she said to bring her in. She didn't mention thyroid, it's a shame I didn't she those posts before I spoke to her.

I found out too that if she needs to be put to sleep then the vet will do a home visit if I'd prefer, though it's £240, whereas it's £110 in the surgery and I only live 200 metres away...I will still have it done at home if needs be though, I think my cat would be very sad to end her days at the vets, she's always been a homebody and hates being taken to the vets.

cozietoesie Mon 24-Mar-14 15:42:48

Maybe have quick word about thyroid possibilities when you pick up the probiotics?

dolphinsandwhales Mon 24-Mar-14 18:35:26

That's a good idea cozie, I saw the nurse when I collected the medication but will be speaking to the vet on Wednesday. I cooked some white fish for me cat to give with the probiotics and she liked it, though she didn't eat it all. Fingers crossed she gets stronger now...

ThistledownAndCobweb Mon 24-Mar-14 18:40:02

You poor thing, it's a horrible situation to be in.
We had to have the vet out this week to have one of our cats PTS as he had kidney failure and treatment wasn't working. He hated going in the car so it seemed kindest to call the vet out.
I'm shocked at the cost to you - our call out fee is £30 and we live miles from the surgery.
Our lovely vet arrived an hour after we phoned and was so kind, he agreed we'd done everything we could and said even if we continued he would only live another ten days or so.
We know the cat wasn't happy so we agreed to have him PTS.

nipersvest Mon 24-Mar-14 20:55:52

yes, thyroid diet is hills y/d. hope your cats ok.

dolphinsandwhales Tue 25-Mar-14 22:34:19

Thistle so sorry to hear about your poor kitty :-(

Nipers thanks I'll order some of that cat food.

It's good news today, she seems to be responding well to her twice daily white fish and probiotics, she's been walking around more and even meowing for attention do definitely much improved. I'm due to speak to the vet tomorrow, I'm hoping my cat will make it to the summer as she enjoys the warmth and sun :-)

dolphinsandwhales Tue 25-Mar-14 22:35:01

Thanks for all your kind replies thanks

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