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Kidney failure - food

51 replies

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 16/05/2014 14:28

Dcat collapsed with kidney failure over a year ago - and has been on pills ever since (& will be for life she's now 13). Had vaccinations at vet yesterday and found that since she was last there 3 weeks ago she's lost over a kilo in weight Sad which I don't think looks too good.

She always refused to eat the special kidney food samples we were given but I want to try again with them and wondered if anyone had any recommendations for nice (in cat terms) food - preferably fish? She is on biscuits at the moment but am willing to try a mixture of wet and dry food or just wet if it's not possible to mix them.

Many thanks.

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Lonecatwithkitten · 16/05/2014 19:17

You can mix them Royal Canin Kidney diet does come in a tuna flavour if that is any help. It maybe worth buying the first outer from your vet as through RC do a money back guarantee if your cat won't eat it.

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 16/05/2014 20:28

Cheers for that - she may well eat a tuna flavour.

Spoken to vet's who can't find a reason why she's lost all this weight - bloods and urine test came back ok (getting a wee sample from the cat was one I don't wish to repeat quickly).

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Sunbeam18 · 16/05/2014 22:06

My cat had acute kidney failure one month ago and has pulled through. He's gone off dry food but is enjoying wet food. He loves the little gourmet tins of cat food - rabbit a particular favourite.

cozietoesie · 17/05/2014 01:39

A kilo of unexplainable weight loss in 3 weeks is........not so good, I'm afraid. Is she still using her tray and drinking as normal?

When Darling Twoago had kidney problems many years back and was disinclined to eat, my main concern was to get calories into him even if the diet was temporarily out of balance. Roast chicken usually worked.

Does she have favourite flavours?

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 17/05/2014 08:40

She seems to be using her tray - not sure how much she's drinking though. She has various bowls/jugs of water around the house as she likes drinking in different places.

She loves fish. She had tuna (tinned in fresh water) yesterday and day before and devoured them also had 1 bowl of biscuits (purina kind to kidneys tuna as she likes them & won't eat chicken flavour normally). I've got some wet food arriving today in tuna and salmon which she might like.

Vet thought that she looked in good condition - glossy fur etc before she realised about the weight loss. I know that she pulled through last year and that was miraculous really as I thought she'd had a stroke and would need to be put to sleep when I took her to emergency vet at 5am - (she collapsed just before a visit to the vets for bloods as we knew something was wrong with her).

She has just tried to see off another cat - hissing and yowling & I had to go and rescue her. I've really got to keep telling myself she's happy at the moment and if she gets worse then we've had an extra year with her. (Now trying not to cry - she's our baby really and DD who's 4 loves pretending to be a cat like her).

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cozietoesie · 17/05/2014 09:54

Good about the fish flavour then.

My cats have never been keen on fish flavours and Seniorboy despises them to the point that I've just given up on any that occur in multipacks and give them right away to next door. He's a chicken/meat flavour cat who also despises the vet's extra special diet pouches. (Next door's cat was the beneficiary there again.)

I'd personally just let her eat at will. The new pouches sound promising and by and large, pouches are better because not only are they balanced nutritionally but also the other foods might taste stronger and more delicious and she might come to favour them above all things - to her detriment so the longer she can enjoy a pouch the better. Still, if she ends up only wanting tuna in water, so be it.

Best keep a close eye on her though because it seems as if there's something badly up - as you know only too well I think. Is she due back at the vet's in the near future?

Good luck to her.

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 17/05/2014 17:51

Cat has just tried 1/2 pack of royal canin and wolfed it down.....very popular. I got some of their biscuits as well so will give her some of those later as well.

She's just gone back to see if any more has appeared in her bowl since she last ate.

The vet was meant to call me back yesterday but didn't manage to (unfortunately it wasn't our regular vet who's seen her since she was a kitten). I'll speak to them on Monday about her next visit/plan of action.

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cozietoesie · 17/05/2014 18:02

I suppose it's not possible that someone just made a silly error in recording her previous weight and put down the wrong Kg figure when putting it on the computer? Does she look any thinner to you?

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 17/05/2014 18:50

DH was wondering that - especially as it wasn't the normal vet and her record at the vets is a lot of cards attached to each other so it might be easy to misread.

However saying that her hips do look quite skinny and she's never been a thin cat (ok been overweight most of her life). She's now about 4kg. I might try and book her another appointment at vet's to see our normal vet.

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mrsnec · 17/05/2014 19:13

Hi, my cat had bad kidney function after having an illness. We were supposed to put her on potassium supplements but she seemed to perk up without them. She's 4.5 kg and our vet seems to think that's ideal.

She is also fussy about food and didn't like the kidney diet stuff.we do feed her a varied diet but she has a few sachets. I think the fish and chicken ones have higher potassium. Ours loves the whiskas sachet sardine flavour I think it's called oh so fishy in the UK. She'll only eat fish for dinner though never for breakfast! And we give her prawns for treats when we can afford it. We love her to bits but that's a bit much!

Our butcher gives us livers for her for free so she has that very occasionally too.

cozietoesie · 17/05/2014 19:18

I think I probably would - or at least arrange to chat to her normal vet on Monday. Losing a kg/20% of your body weight in 3 weeks is a lot - not impossible of course but I really think I would have expected to see some noticeable physical or behavioural changes along with that. Maybe there have been and you've just been living so close that you haven't noticed - but why not phone and express your concerns?

How recent were the bloods etc?

Best of luck to all and let us know how she gets on.

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 17/05/2014 20:00

Bloods were taken on Thursday as she was admitted then.

When you say it like that - 20% of your body weight. I am surprised she hasn't had more changes, she hasn't appeared off her food particularly, not like when she was starting the kidney failure as we noticed that and had her booked in for tests etc but she collapsed before they were completed.

She's curled up going to asleep on her beanbag now looking very happy. I think the meat and tuna have made her a very content cat.

Definitely a chat to our regular vet is in order - hopefully he'll be back next week.

Thanks for the help Smile

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MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 17/05/2014 22:07

DH now given rest of cat pouch to cat who has finished that off with enthusiasm and then attacked DH's hand in a playful way (not actually drawing blood yet).

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cozietoesie · 17/05/2014 22:11

How much, all told, have you been giving her a day?

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 17/05/2014 22:41

Well today she's had a bowl of biscuits in the morning then some tuna at lunchtime and then this evening she's had a whole sachet of the royal canin kidney food. And some more biscuits are in her bowl if she's peckish.

Normally she has a bowl of biscuits morning and evening - she might not finish them though but likes fresh ones.

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MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 18/05/2014 21:02

Been watching carefully what she's eaten today.

She's had 1/2 sachet of royal canin and about 20g of their biscuits this morning. This evening she's got a mixture of old and new biscuits in her bowl which she's left so far and half a sachet of k/d kidney food which she's just licked the jelly off.

Feeling very sad now I've realised how little she has eaten today.

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cozietoesie · 18/05/2014 21:10

You'll be able to speak to her regular vet tomorrow with any luck - that will help. (It's awful not being able to actually do anything eg late on a Sunday night.)

I'd check with him whether she can eat other pouches/food and if so what. I only say that because Seniorboy despises the stuff the vet lovingly prescribes and she does seem to prefer wet food doesn't she? It's good to give her the right stuff if she'll eat it but if she goes on a hunger strike because she doesn't like it (and an older cat is perfectly capable of that) then you're a little stymied.

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 18/05/2014 21:46

I'm hoping our regular vet isn't on holiday next week. He's a lovely vet who really cares about the animals.

That's exactly what happened last year when she first had kidney failure - refusal to eat the special diet. I thought I'd try it again to see if she'd eat the meat as she always did like meat, but has mainly been on biscuits for her entire life as I hated the smell of wet food.

Out normal vet has always said it was more important that she eat and enjoy the food rather than refuse to eat the special food. I'm happy getting her any food now if she'll eat it of course.

I've just thrown away the k/d as she wasn't keen and put another sachet of royal canin down. She's had a little bit and is licking her lips and washing face but hasn't really eaten much of it.

I could be bulk buying tuna tomorrow and trying not to get too upset in front of DD.

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cozietoesie · 18/05/2014 22:01

Well fingers crossed you get to speak to him soon. Other posters here who are more experienced on the right non-prescription foods may also be able to advise.

timtam23 · 18/05/2014 22:54

I have to say I never had any success with the special kidney diets - my old girl cat definitely had kidney failure (she died last year aged 18, about 8 months after diagnosis) and my old boy cat almost certainly has it (he is coming up to 18 this year). With my girl cat I did initially try hard to get her to eat the special diet but it got so complicated (we had her on kidney diet, old boy on pills for blood pressure to be crushed and mixed into another lot of food, and then we took in a stray kitten so yet another variety of food). In the end we followed the vet's advice that any food was better than no food, and we gave her what she had had for years before (Hills dry food for senior cats). The old boy is even more pampered/cosseted and we give him Feline Fayre pouches (his teeth & gums are not the best and he struggles a bit with dry food). The absolute favourite is "tuna white meat with prawns in jelly", it's often cheap in Home Bargains, or Asda has a massive range of Feline Fayre. "Chicken fillet in jelly" is also accepted as an alternative! I have no idea if it's the best food for his kidneys (it is a pretty high fish or meat content and looks almost like tuna for human consumption) but he polishes off a pouch or 2 a day and seems happy enough for now. His weight is also stable at around 4.3kg (at his fittest he was 5kg, he was a lean mean killing machine as a youngster)

Nocomet · 18/05/2014 23:03

DMILs next door neighbours cat didn't like his kidney friendly food.

This is why they discovered he's being giving her and the rest of the village the wide eye'd I haven't been fed for weeks, aren't I very cute and very very beautiful act.

He was scrounging several breakfasts a day and avoiding his own medicinal one.

MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 19/05/2014 07:42

Dcat now refusing all food - even the kind to kidneys biscuits she's been happily eating for a year. She just wants to sit in her bean bag - she doesn't look happy and been for a very runny poo and tried to be sick this morning.

Me and DH have been in tears this morning as we know that she isn't going to make it much longer. I'll be calling the vets as soon as they open.

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MyCatLovesMeSometimes · 19/05/2014 07:43

She's not even trying to get the toast and marmite that DD is having for breakfast which she usually does.

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cozietoesie · 19/05/2014 09:41

I'm so sorry. When the kidneys fail, it's usually a pretty grim prognosis. (Been there myself.)

Let us know how things go.

timtam23 · 19/05/2014 09:54

So very sorry Thanks

I didn't want to write this yesterday while you still had hope, but when I took my old cat to be PTS the vet said that kidney failure is a terminal diagnosis

At the time this was perhaps a little blunt, although I did know that what she said was true, but it has helped since her death as I knew we had done all that we possibly could for her and there was no point in trying heroics or pushing on indefinitely when her body had started to shut down irreversibly

Thoughts with you today, hope everything goes as well as it could under the sad circumstances

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