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Why would a cat stop eating? (triggers)

June 26th, 2007, 12:26 PM
My dad had moved into a new apartment in May and had given his 10 yr old cat to my brother and his wife since he did not want to bring the cat into a brand new apt and no longer wanted to leave the cat alone while golfing and running errands all day, everyday...he wanted the cat to have more companionship. My brother has another cat and a dog.

On the day my brother took the cat, he immediately brought him to a vet who put the cat on diet food. They saw that the cat was eating sometimes, but after a couple of weeks, my SIL noticed the cat was not around much and when she did see him, he looked thinner. They brought him to the vet where he stayed for 2 weeks having tests run on him. The vet said something was wrong with his liver because he was living off of his body fat instead of his food. The cat died last weekend in the middle of the night at the vet's office. When I ask my dad what he died of, all he says is liver failure.

No one can tell me why he stopped eating though. Could it have been his age and weight finally got to be too much for his body to handle? Could his liver have been giving out before my dad gave him to my brother and that's why he stopped eating? Needless to say, dad is very upset and feels like it was his fault for giving the cat away...I'm trying to reassure him that it could have happened regardless of where the cat was living.

June 26th, 2007, 12:40 PM
First of all, I would like say I'm sorry for the loss of your dad's cat. Losing an animal is always hard. It is not your dad's fault. I believe your cat was sick for a long time. Liver failure does not happen overnight.

To the cat not eating. It probably was due to yes his liver failing, but also maybe the stress of moving. New pets in house. New environment. Cats are very routine animals and don't like change.

Did you notice the inside of your cat's ears starting to turn yellow, the white part of the eyes also turn yellowish, when an animal has liver failure.


June 26th, 2007, 01:16 PM
Sorry to hear about your dad's cat, that's so sad! It's possilbe that the stress of the move combined with the new food might have thrown the cat off of it's food. Sounds like the cat was also overweight (thus the diet food?) and overweight cats who stop eating are very prone to developing something called hepatic lipidosis (fatty liver). Treatment usually involves force-feeding, most often with a surgically implanted tube. Again, I'm sorry that there wasn't a better outcome.

June 28th, 2007, 08:53 AM
Thanks for your responses. Unfortunately, I live many states away so I was not able to see the cat myself and like I said, the cat took to hiding pretty much all of the time so I don't think my brother or SIL could really get a good look at him either. The cat did visit my brother's house on many occassions when my dad would travel so he was somewhat used to the dog and the other cat. There were times when he would be there for 2 weeks so I'm thinking that he might have been sick before the move and the stress of it might have just increased the effects. Thank you both for your condolences and information.