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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-07-2005, 09:43 PM Thread Starter
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I got a cat for X-mas, ...please read.

Hello all!

I'm rather new here, and let me tell ya, there are a few things about our newest addition to the family that maybe (hopefully) ya' all can help me out with.

My wonderfull girlfriend had gotten me a cat for Christmas (...what a sweetheart), and life has been quite interesting since then. The cat is an all black male polydactyl (six toed front paws), and is less than a year old, and he still needs to be neutered yet. She had adopted him from our local Humane Society. Once she'd brought him home, he just kinda casually walked around the apartment to check everything out (very curious, ...about like all cats by nature), he seemed like, given some time, he would adapt quite well.

Well, the very first night, he'd slept in our bed (right on top of my chest) and at about 3:00 AM, I was suddenly awakend by him, he was at the far end of our bed violently hacking and coughing, almost as if he were having some sort of a seazure. When I'd sat up, I think I may have scared him by my reaction, but he jumped off the bed and continued to cough and hack. He was hunched down with his head very low to the floor, and everytime he would cough, he'd turn his head sideways (almost like if putting his ear to the floor). I was very freaked out by this, and also equally concerned and worried for the poor guy (sheesh!). This coughing was an unproductive, dry type of cough, however, I could tell that it wasn't just a simple hairball, or what might otherwise be considered as a normal kind of cough attack, ..this was serious.

So, I watched him closely for the next couple of days that followed, and sure enough he again had a few more of these crazy coughing attacks, and I could just tell by looking at him, that he wasn't feeling very well. I called the vet, and luckily they weren't real busy and I was able to bring him in right away. The vet gave him a shot of some anti-inflamitory stuff, and said it would help him breath better. Also, he'd prescribed some Amoxicillan antibiotic (pink liquid, ...he told me it tastes like bubble gum) The vet had showed me how to give it to him, by holding his mouth open and squirting 100 CC's of the stuff down his throat using a needleless syringe. He really hated that first dose, but I just wish that he knew that it was for his own good. Vet said it was likely an upper respiritory infection.

Anyway, when we got him home from the vet, he went and sat in a dark corner, and was being very anti-social, obviously not feeling good at all. A couple of hours had past by, he didn't move, and when I got up closer to him, he looked just miserable, and I noticed that he was drooling, and had two strings of clear mucous like stuff coming from both sides of his mouth . Yes, I was alarmed by the drooling, but had passed it off for the moment thinking that it was due to the amoxicillan he was given earlier. However, things had went down hill and rather fast, ...the cat was sneezing, coughing, hacking, and he was really having a hard time breathing through his nose. He continued drooling, and I don't mean just a little slobber, I mean it was profusely coming from both sides of his mouth. It would be hanging from his mouth to the floor, and he would try to shake it off, pawing at it, ..it really bothered him. I'd continued the amoxicillan 100 CC's given twice a day, but the next thing I noticed was that he'd quit eating and drinking almost completely. This really scared me, I thought that he was surely gonna die if he didn't start to progress, and come around soon. So I immediately took him in to see a different vet this time. This vet took his temp, it was 105*! The vet had said that he seemed to be dehydrated, and had decided to give him intravenious fluids to help him out. Also, this vet had prescribed more antibiotics, it was pill form of Zeniquin. I was told that if he didn't get better and start eating again soon, that they would have to keep him in the hospital. Well, I really had nursed the poor fella with extra special care, making sure to remember to give his medicine religiously, no slipping or forgetting. Ever so gradually, he began to come around, he started to eat and drink again (..helped to give him some kind of smelly cat food that appeals), and although not entirely better, he is feeling much better today. Still am giving his meds till gone.

Now, he seems to be more like a normal cat, he loves to play, and snuggle up. However, he is still periodically having these coughing and hacking attacks. I hope this will eventually subside, and go away, ...very concerned about it though. It seems to happen after he has been laying down for awhile, then after he gets up and stretches, he'll take a few steps then it begins, ...still is a violent type of cough.

This is getting rather long, so I'll wrap it up here. If anyone has any suggestions, advise, or tips with regards to things I can do to help him, ..please let me know!

Thanks a million!!!
reeB






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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2005, 01:39 AM
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I'm new to the cat world and haven't had any experiences with my kitten being sick. However at work (I work in a vet clinic) we always recommend keeping the cat very quiet if they are sick. Even locking him in a crate if he won't stay quiet himself (although it sounds like he is too sick to be doing much) and making sure they don't get overheated. Fstybrat on here, had a kitten with URI not that long ago...she didn't mention that hacking cough but her kitty was sneezing a lot? Is he sneezing heaps?
Anyway I'm sure others will be able to help you out a lot more...please keep up updated on his progress.

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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2005, 05:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the response! Yes, he sneezes heaps. Just the other night I woke up due to him sneezing in my face (Ewww! Yuck!). Whenever he purrs, sometimes is when it's audible that he is having some breathing issues (stuffy, blockage, gurgling sound). But yes, he still sneezes a lot.

Thanks!
reeB
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2005, 09:36 AM
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Reeb... welcome to Paw-Talk!

It deffinately sounds like a URI to me, which is very common when you adopt a cat/kitten from a shelter unfortunately.

How is his nose? does it appear to be running or crusted over with mucous? If so Keep a warm,wet wash cloth or paper towel by you & everytime he sneezes gently wipe his nose to keep his nasal openings clear. This helpped with Maggie (my kitten) a TON! Also, if you have a vaporizor or humidifier around get some vicks vaporub & put it in the medicine cup of the vaporizor & sit in the bathroom with the door shut & this running for a couple hours. Or if you don't have one, just bring him into the bathroom with you when you shower so he can absorb the hot steam.
When Maggie had her URI the vet put her on Clavamox & that wasn't completely kicking it so they added another antibiotic on top of that (can recall the name of it off hand) & the 2 combined with the constant wiping of the nose deffeinatly helpped!
I don't recall Maggie coughing a whole lot lot, I was more worried about her sneezing, not being able to breath, the sounds of severe congestion & not eating. So maybe I just didn't notice it as strongly.

I wish you good luck with your baby... btw what's his name & how old is he??
I'd love to see a picture of him if you have one!

Please do keep us updated!
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2005, 09:55 PM
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This sounds just like what we went through with Pixel a couple months ago. She had a URI, but after it was gone she was still having coughing fits and sneezing.
Our vet gave her "nebulus" breathing treatments where she was put in a box with a cloud of antibiotics. She had three 30 minute treatments where she just breathed the stuff in, and after that she was all better.
Our vet said that sometimes the congestion stays in the cat's lungs after the infection is gone, and that the nebulus is the best way to clear it out completely. It worked for us. She had the coughing fits for over a month, but she hasn't coughed since the treatment.

Hope your kitty gets better!
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-08-2005, 10:13 PM
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When I adopted Doodles from the shelter, she battled URI.

She wasn't eating, was sneezing a lot (to the point where her nose was just bubbled with snot), had runny eyes, etc. After going to the vet numerous times, we were finally able to get her on some medication.

I hope your kitty is doing better! Please keep us updated!

Karen

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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-09-2005, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks all! I really appreciate all the great responses!!!

Yes, the very first thing I did when all of this started, ...I got on the internet and I read till I was blue in the face.

I'd read all about how steam really can help the problem. The article I'd read said to introduce the animal to a steam filled bathroom for at least 1 hour per day, and also to put a small amount of Vicks vapor rub underneith his chin (where he won't be able to reach it with his tongue). Both of these things really seemed to help him a lot. After using the vicks, ...it opened him up enough to where he was at least able to smell his food and eventually eat a lil' something.

The vet prescribed these Zeniquin pills, and showed me how to give them to him by securing the cat, and while holding his head back, nose pointed upwards, opening his mouth, dropping it down the throat, closing his mouth and lightly holding it shut until he swallows. Yeah, this is a lot easier said, than done. My vet makes it look soooo easy. However, I rarely am successfull at doing this, ...he always ends up spitting it back out , ... I even try to massage his throat a little to make him swallow. The old saying about leading a horse to water...... (Argh!)

Oh, and his name given by his previous family, was "Cry Baby" ...well, this is going to be changed, he doesn't come to that name anyways, ...however, believe it or not, it still hasn't yet been decided. We have been over a lot of hurdles since day one of his arrival, and it's been an emotional roller-coaster. I guess, we haven't really had any time to think of what to name him .

Thanks for all the great responses!!!
reeB_relliM ---> a.k.a. Robin (..male version. lol!)
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-09-2005, 11:54 AM
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A large cat board that I visit suggests using Grapefruit Seed Extract in the cat's food or water. Many of the members adopt cats who end up with URI and the GSE has helped immensly. You may want to try using it on a regular basis (after he is off the antibiotics...I'm not sure if it reacts with any meds). I put 5 drops in the cats' water everytime I replace it (daily). In addition, have you been giving a probiotic like acidophilus during the antibiotic course? A probiotic will keep the "good" bacteria in the stomach and gut. This good bacteria assists with digestion and using a probiotic can often prevent loss of appetite or a change in stool composition. I use a great human acidophilus tablet by Weber Naturals. You should be able to find acidophilus supplements in most drug stores. Good luck with your kitty.

Candice

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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-09-2005, 01:45 PM Thread Starter
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Hmmm, ...is there really that big of a delay between the time a post is submitted, and when the post actually shows up and is viewable on this board?? I submitted a post early this morning, and it's still not up .

Thanks! He is really doing much better now, and his appetite is very good, too. Very interesting about the GSE, ...and let me tell ya, we sure do eat a lot of grapefruit around here, big Texas Ruby Reds are the best! Please tell me more about this, ...like how I would go about the whole seed extraction method? Or is this something that you can just buy at the local GNC store? Please advise.

Thanks a million!!!
reeB
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-09-2005, 06:22 PM
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Yep, you can buy it at the local GNC store. A lot of humans take it to prevent colds, respiratory infections, and also to treat water when travelling.

Oops, forgot the link.
http://www.patmckay.com/Product_11.html

Candice

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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-09-2005, 06:48 PM
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Sounds like things are going well! That is great to hear...

About the delay in posts showing up on the board... that is because all new members are modereated for the first 10 posts. You should be there in no time (already 1/2 way there ) A mod or admin has to go in & manually approve each moderated post for it to show up & unfortunately we are not always on all the time.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-10-2005, 03:46 AM
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It really sounds like a URI to me, and some URIs can be worse than others.

When my Galina had a URI, she was coughing up a storm but no sneezing. And her eyes were producing this nasty green gunk and her nose was running like a river. Her vet put her on Amoxicllin 3 times a day (I don't remember the dosage) and had some gel stuff I had to put in her eyes. It took her about two weeks to get better. I was so glad she got better when she did because I didn't want to take her to Finland with me while she looked like poo and felt like it as well. I was constantly using a warm damp rag to wipe her eyes and nose with. I don't think it helped health-wise, but it sure did seem to make her feel better. Everyone here is offering good suggestions, though, so surely there's bound to be something that will help make this poor kitty feel well again!

I raised both of my cats from when they were around 1 week old. Gerona had no problems, but Galina was CONSTANTLY having problems. When I started using Bene-Bac (contains acidophilus), she improved a good deal. You can purchase Bene-Bac at most petstores and usually I find it's with the kitten formula.

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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-10-2005, 10:38 AM
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You are probably better off using a human acidophilus supplement over Benebac. As Jade with point out, Benebac contains ethoxyquin (a potentially cancer causing preservative) and artificial color. I use Weber Naturals acidophilus with bifidus (dairy free) in the capsule form. I sprinkle a bit on their food at night.

Candice

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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-11-2005, 04:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Candycane
You are probably better off using a human acidophilus supplement over Benebac. As Jade with point out, Benebac contains ethoxyquin (a potentially cancer causing preservative) and artificial color. I use Weber Naturals acidophilus with bifidus (dairy free) in the capsule form. I sprinkle a bit on their food at night.
I didn't know this. Man ... for them to have artificial colour in it, they could have made it a little prettier. It looked fairly nasty to me.

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