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Cat collapsing, any ideas on symptoms.(30 Posts)
Last night my female nearly 15 year old British Shorthair came in from the garden, seemed well and normal. A few minutes later we noticed her go wobbly as if her legs wouldn’t hold her up, then head and body sank down, she keeled over to the right, panting and breathing rapidly and shallowly, gums white. I honestly thought she was going to pass away.
I phoned the vets immediately as I thought perhaps poison, and we were there within 15-20 minutes. She had started to recover on the way and by the time we were there she was absolutely fine, acting completely normal, not a trace of being unwell.
Obviously described what happened in detail and the vet gave her a thorough check and said she appeared very well, she has always been in robust good health. Vet thought either, licked or ate a small amount of something toxic and had a temporary reaction, or had a horrible shock outside from something and reacted badly. We live next to a farm, but have an enclosed garden and she’s not a wanderer, so not sure on those but obviously had no clue myself.
Watched her overnight, kept her in today, all fine. A while ago she came through from another room and did the same again. Sank to the floor on her tummy, head hanging, tongue out, shallow rapid breathing. This for about 5 minutes, then gradual recovery, just subdued, listless over 15 - 20 mins or so and then back to normal.
So vet’s theories out of the window? The vet said to film it if it happens again, because obviously by the time I get her there she’s recovered and there’s nothing to see. She didn’t suggest a blood test.
She hasn’t had any medications or e.g., flea treatment very recently, nothing I can think of that could cause a reaction.
I wondered if the symptoms are something someone might recognise that the vet and I might be missing. Any ideas?
I have no clue. How worrying for you.
Did they have a good listen to her heart? I only ask as she sounded like my cat when he was in heart failure.
Poor you and poor cat.
Oh poor cat, no advice but keeping bumped for you ￼
Very similar thing happened to my cat (10 years old). Crying, moaning, couldn't settle on the sofa. Legs went out from under him, led on his side and couldn't get up.
Took him into the vets, they looked for the usual cat problems such as blocked bladder but couldn't find anything.
He has a slight heart murmur so they did a scan, put him on a drip overnight (he was slightly dehydrated) but he came home the next day and was fine.
The only thing I can put it down to is that 24 hours earlier I gave him a worming tablet, but it was a brand I hadn't used before, so possible allergic reaction?
Hope your cat is on the mend. ❤️
Heart murmurs can cause collapses. There are different degrees, depending how bad the murmur is.
Some make animals stop suddenly to catch their breath as if they are going to pass out.
My friend's dog has a murmur. He will be running around like a mad man and then suddenly stop to catch his breath.
Hope your cat's OK!
Sorry, half term so distracted with dcs for a while.
Thanks for the replies. Hilltop, I was wondering along those lines but the vet had a good listen to her heart and couldn’t detect anything untoward. I’m now leaning toward something neurological but not really based on anything I know, more just a process of elimination as nothing else fits.
I should add she doesn’t moan or cry out as if in pain, just goes still and sinks to the ground, then the panting, rapid shallow breathing and remains a bit out of it while she then recovers, which takes about 20 minutes.
We’ve only seen two episodes but she’s a bit of a loner and usually goes upstairs on someone’s bed in the day so there may have been previous times we possibly haven’t seen.
If it happens again try to film it on your phone so you can show the vet exactly what is happening.
Hope you and kitty are OK 💐.
I would say the same as a poster above and it sounds like symptoms of heart failure. I had a cat that had very similar symptoms.
Maybe she has a blood clot that is intermittently blocking off?
My thin cat had loss of strength in back legs several times. Blood test confirmed that she had a thyroid issue and she’s on medication for that. She didn’t have the pale gums or panting though.
I’m a bit surprised that the vet hasn’t done a blood tests - was pretty much the first thing out vet did, to rule out infection as much as to diagnose the thyroid issue.
Very similar thing with our 18 year old but went very stiff too?
Problem was over active thyroid, causing very fast heart rate, causing not enough oxygen to get to brain
Now completely controlled with meds.
I’d be asking for a blood test...
Thanks, keeping a close eye on her and if it does happen again I will be asking for a blood test. Some of the symptoms seem to point to heart disease. 😢
Heart failure for my beautiful boy too, who also had hyperthyroidism.
Definitely blood tests needed.
My girl had very bad heart disease. She was completely asymptomatic with hers. She did well on medication (4 tablets, twice daily) for 9 months but her kidneys packed up.
Our cat just did similar to this today, did you find out what it was. Going to get her to vets.
She's 14 normally healthy and check in August was fine. I think her eyesight has gone really bad too though DH thinks she's fine but she's sniffing to find food, looks like she can't see it. Very happy, purring all day. Quite inactive but seems to prefer that. Today she was sick twice then started shaking for say 20 seconds collapsed over then got up after 10 seconds and carried on as if nothing much had happened. Back to cuddling on bed now but worried about her. Few years back vet suspected heart issues but at next appointments all vets since said not. Does this sound like a heart issue? Looked bit like a fit. First time.
I agree with PP's - blood tests are a must. If her red blood count is high then it could cause the symptoms you describe. One of my cats had similar. The condition can be treated if diagnosed early enough.
Also consider possible kidney or heart issues.
My little boy had very similar. He's only two and he's had the vets baffled. He's BSH too. He's been on steroids for the last month and seems loads better. It tends to happen to him when he's been outside, like he's exhausted.
They think it could be asthma, but I find it strange it's only jus come on.
OP and penguinsetpandas Both of my cats (siblings) had epilepsy. The very said it was very rare but for them it must have been hereditary. My lovely girl cat was at the vets when she suffered a massive fit and lost her sight, which I was told can come back again but sadly hers did not. We didn't really understand at the time what had happened. But my lovely boy deteriorated over several worrying months. He got wobbly and started to miss his fitting a lot which made me question if he could see. Then he would walk round and round very slowly, pausing every now and then with his head against a wall or in a corner. Or he would stop in the middle of the room and sway. We went back and forth to the very who was unable to see symptoms between these episodes but found videos helpful and concluded that it was a burial problem. In the end he suffered a fit in my arms, he was 'pedalling' with his front legs and pulling his head right the was back. The vet recognised that he was fitting as I described his symptoms on the phone and we took him straight to the surgery. Unfortunately we had to have him PTS but I knew that for weeks he had had no quality of life.
I don't know if the outcome would have been different if they had both been diagnosed with epilepsy sooner, or if it's something that can be controlled with medication in the same was as it can be controlled in humans. I haven't posted to frighten you, but it's an option you could explore with your vet. I found very little information about it online, so I hope this is helpful to you. Hope your little one makes a full recovery from whatever is causing these episodes.
Epilepsy in cats most definitely can be controlled by drugs, a relative of mine owned a boy who developed it when he was I think around 4-5 years old. He needed drops on his food every day, and though he did have a few more fits they were much reduced. He would wander around the place looking lost & getting confused for a couple of hours after every fit, like he'd forgotten the details of his own home. He died a few years later of liver failure, not related to the epilepsy.
Thanks very much Dolce and Allergic - So sorry you had to put your cat to sleep Dolce. She's just at vet now - vet has found a heart problem which he thinks would have caused the fit / collapsing. Apparently when they have a heart problem when there's any issue with the blood supply it can trigger this - being sick would do that, think that's what he said at least. He said he thinks I'm right that there is also a kidney problem as kidneys are enlarged. He thinks she's not blind but I am sure she is - she sniffs her way round, she can't see food just in front of her nose, there's definitely an eyesight issue if not complete blindness. I move my hand she doesn't follow it like she used to.
Vet is keeping her in for blood and urine tests and fasting her for afternoon first - think there maybe one scratched vet and one grumpy cat later . He says she needs to see the cardiologist soon. At least she seems to be getting good care though with her being 14 with heart problems realise life expectancy may not be great sadly.
Fingers crossed for you. It's so much easier to treat when you've got an idea what's wrong. I really hope you find out for sure what's going on soon so that you can get her the right treatment 💐
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