Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Why Sick CatsThat Don't Eat Need Hand Feeding Nutritional Support and Stimulants


What I do and what I keep advising owners to do: "Treatment of the condition will be tailored to the needs of each individual cat, but supporting the strength of heart contractions, reducing fluid buildup, nursing and supportive care (including nutrition), and dietary adjustments are some of the common strategies..." 

If a cat is sick, as Myrna was after the saddle thrombosis, and if they won't eat enough or at all, hand feeding of various liquid food sources every two hours, along with water (if not drinking on their own) is what is needed.  It's one thing for a cat not to eat a meal or two in one day or to skip a day.  But it's another thing when they won't eat anything the next day.  The depletion of nutrition, decrease in electrolytes needed to run the body, decrease in hydration to keep up the blood pressure, will make a body weak.  A weak body won't want to eat, won't be able to recover.  Your cat will feel as terrible and as weak-but at a faster rate-as you do when you are sick and not eating.  

Hand feeding liquid food keeps up the hydration and the nutrition and helps the cat recover.  It will help spur the appetite, also, because a weak cat will lose its appetite.  But Mirtazapine, an appetite stimulant, may also be needed.  Usually, 1/2 tab every two weeks was all Myrna needed. But after the saddle thrombosis, Myrna needed 1/2 tab every day for three weeks. I finally have her down to 1/4 tab a day and will see if I can wean her to every other day.  

What I fed: with a 3ml syringe (from the vet, pharmacy, or order online), her sweet potato vitamin kidney support mixture three times a day; 3ml of tuna juice, and 3ml of baby food beef or turkey (mixed with some water to make it just liquid enough) three times a day; and 3ml of sweetened condensed milk cut with water (use only if the cat is not diabetic) once or twice a day.  The sugar source provides the body with an energy source so that the body does not attack the fat reserves in the body and the liver, leading to hepatic lipidosis. 

After a few days, Myrna began eating on her own.  The next few days, she needed intermittent hand feeding. Finally, after two weeks, she began eating regularly on her own but still receiving Mirtazpine. 

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