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Lethargic Cat

July 5th, 2007, 04:59 PM

My poor kitty hasn't seemed to be feeling herself the past few days. Both her, Loki, and her sister (who I also have), Dixie, are 10 months old, spayed, up-to-date on shots, but need to be wormed (am doing that early next week).

Dixie jumps up every morning as soon as I get up, gobbles down her food, and is outside ALL day (I have to drag her in when I gets dark) playing and hunting and doing normal cat things.

Loki used to be the same (although has always been a bit more laid back than Dixie) but over the past few days has been spending more and more time just sleeping on my bed. The first few days I woke her up and took her outside because I didn't want her asking to go out after dark (I bring them in when it's dark as we've lost a few cats over the years to coyotes) but she would just wander around for a few minutes and then lay down or sneak back inside. She's still eating and drinking (if she weren't it would be off to the vet immediately) but not as much as usual. She still purrs up a storm when I check on her but she's just not herself.

Since both kitties need to be wormed, could worms be the cause? After having the amount of cats I've had (over 40 with all the strays that have shown up! We're suckers in my house. :) ), you'd think I would've run across this before but I haven't. If she doesn't improve within the next couple days, I'll give the vet a call but just thought I'd get some input here first.


Dr Lee
July 5th, 2007, 06:53 PM

Sorry to hear that Loki isn't feeling well. Cats are notorious for hiding symptoms and often the first and sometimes only indication of illness is hiding/reclusive behavior.

In otherwise healthy dogs and cats, an average intestinal parasite infection should be with little to no clinical signs. So unless there was an overly large intestinal parasite infection, I would look elsewhere for the cause of Loki's altered behavior. For outdoor, young cats, infections, i.e. bacterial, are a common cause of malaise.

I would recommend a physical exam by a veterinarian. Have you taken a temperature? Are there any changes in weight? Eyes/ears/mouth - all look normal?

Good luck:pawprint:

July 6th, 2007, 01:21 AM
Thanks for replying to quickly!

Would cats feel warm to the touch if they had a fever? I actually wondered if that's what it was, especially because she felt warm tonight (and she had been out in the cool evening air). I will take her temperature tomorrow morning (she's off hiding as she likes to do at night when she's sleeping). Her weight seems about the same - she lost a lot of weight after she was spayed and has just gained some back. Her eyes and mouth look normal. Her ears are being bit by bugs really bad this year (never had a cat have that problem before?) but the bites were there before this problem.

I think I'll give the vet a call tomorrow.

Thanks again!

Dr Lee
July 6th, 2007, 10:18 AM
Would cats feel warm to the touch if they had a fever?

Good question. :thumbs up
The answer is not necessarily. It is NEVER a good idea to rely soley on the feel of a dog or cat as a relation to body temperature. It is good to monitor and if the pet feels warm then take the temperature rectally to verify. When a pet is sick and the pet feels normal/cool - still take that temperature rectally! They could still have a fever!

The warm of the skin is mainly a factor of blood flow. It is true that if the body is overly hot and the body wants to get rid of the heat the skin blood supply will increase (vasodilation) and the skin will feel warm. And when a body is cold then the body will keep the blood centralized to the important organs (peripheral vasoconstriction).

However I have had so many pets in the room that feel hot and have normal core body temperatures. I also have had critical patients that are cold to the touch with fevers above 106 F. It has to do with where the body wants the blood supply. This can often be independent of the body's core temperature.

Let us know how Loki's vet visit goes.:pawprint:

Jim Hall
July 6th, 2007, 12:40 PM
i would say maybe if the wheather is especially hot thaty will make them letargic Also maybe something scared them outside? Maybe a big cat spryed and they are reacting to that .

August 22nd, 2007, 01:03 PM
Well, Loki finally went to the vet this morning.

After her lethargic episode 6 weeks ago (when I posted last), she perked right back up again and seemed fine so we left her. I've been away for the past 3 weeks and most of my family for the past week with only my brother barely home (to feed the cats and let them in and out). When I got home Monday night, she didn't look so good (my brother said she'd seemed fine but he only saw her brief when she went in and out) - she'd lost some weight (and doesn't have much to lose in the first place), was acting lethargic again, and just had that "I don't feel well" look in her eyes.

So, this morning, the vet took a look at her and discovered she's has a bit of a temperature and a grade 2 of 4 heart murmur! This made MY heart jump but he said not to get "too excited" (:o ) yet as there is a long list of things that could show these symptoms. We also don't know if she's always had this murmur or if it's something new (a friend had her spayed/shots done before I got her so I'm going to call her vet and ask if they noticed anything at that visit). My vet said it could be anything from anemia to infection to kidney issues. He took blood and we'll get the results after 6pm tonight.

I guess I'm not looking for advice but wanted to update and see if anyone had gone through anything like this with their pet.