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Sweet Kitten with mystery illness

September 23rd, 2008, 07:45 AM
Hi there!
I've taken my one and a half year old kitty, Vinnie to the vet three times this past month. First because he was hiding under the bed and seemed to be sneezing a lot. I thought this was because he had a respitory disease much like the cat I had previously. He was treated with antibiotics, which cleared up his sneezing, but then he quit eating.

I took him back, and they gave him appetite enhancers, which didn't work. Now poor little Vinnie has been on 4 different medications, and is now only taking two: Valium and another appetite enhancer.

He has recently began eating on his own, but does not hold himself like he used to. He cowers when he sits...(He used to sit very straight and proud)
Also, he always nestles himself in blankets when he wants to sleep. He always loved to cuddle but now I wonder if its because he is cold...

He also has developed a haze over one eye, and it is more dilated than the other, but I don't know if it has just developed for sure...or if it has always been there.

His mannarisms have not changed much, but he has developed a bit of a head comes and goes.... He also creeps around rather than walks, and is usually off balance; I think this may be due to the drugs and the weight loss he suffered during his non-eating spell...

He is very loving and social, and seems to be recovering but my vet has no idea what is wrong with my kitten. I would appreciate any help in my investigation of his symptoms... I'm down to FIV, (Which I doubt is what it is...My other cat bites Vinnie on occasion, and is quite healthy and large!) or he may have suffered a mental disorder from a fall or something?

Am I heading in the right direction? It seems like I have exhausted all my resources, but at least he is feeling better and eating's just heartbreaking to think that he may be on the trail to death if he does have FIV.....My vet said that the last option is exploratory surgery, which she thinks may not determine anything... I just don't know what to do.

Thanks so much.

September 23rd, 2008, 08:15 AM
I would probably get a second opinion.

What is the other med that your kitty is taking and the dosage of both the valium and appetite enhancer? Have you tried to wean your kitty off these meds to see if she is better? How long on the valium (it should only be used for a very short period as it can cause liver damage). Valium is an appetite enhancer in itself, has your vet mentioned why two appetite enhancers?

September 23rd, 2008, 08:29 AM
Vinney hasn't been taking much valium lately. The dosage was supposed to be once a day for two weeks, The other pill he is taking is the respitory pill, sorry for misstating that. He was on two appetite enhancers before the valium. (one weak one to try, then another if that didn't work)

Vinney takes the valium about once every 3 days now, if he doesn't eat much. The vet recommended giving it to him every day regularly, but he is quite feeble and it was making him quite unstable to the point where he would fall off couches etc... He also seems to want to move around more when he takes the pills, so I have to make sure I'm there for the day when he takes his pills so that he doesn't get hurt. (our house has a lot of stairways and such he could fall from.)
He seems to do better when there is a gap in the days between dosages. The effects seem to last for a while.

It's hard to get a second opinion here (even for emergencies) because there are only two local veteranarians and each is booked full due to a large amount of strays in the area. I will make an appointment with the other vet. I was comfortable with the advise of the first vet as she has had a lot of recommendations...(probably because half of the population goes to her, eh?)

September 23rd, 2008, 08:34 AM
Personally, I would be looking for another vet. It sounds to me like the antibiotic your cat took for the UTI interfered with his appetite (as many of them do, notably Clamavox) so the vet started rolling out all these other meds and one thing led to another. When the vet throws up his hands, time to move on. Ask for a copy of your cat's file, which you have a right to.

What is the reason for the Valium? Unless there is a very very good reason, I would take him off it. In fact, it may be the cause of many of the weird behaviours you are seeing. Remember you have to taper the dose. I would also start experimenting to see if he'll eat without the appetite enhancers. But your new vet will help you with this.

Whoever the vet is, it is worth educating yourself about common cat ailments so you can ask the right questions. Whether you are advocating for your cat or just trying to keep costs down, no question is too stupid.

PS Just read your post. I would run away from this vet.

September 24th, 2008, 09:39 AM
Well, I'm leaning more towards FIV for my little cat now... I've read a lot of information on it and it seems like he has a lot of the signs.

I called a different vet last night about FIV testing. This vet is cheaper than my previous one, and seems to be more interested in Vinnies' state of health. I know the testing isn't 100% accurate, but I would like to try it out.

Now my new question is: If he does have FIV, what can I do to help him?

Jim Hall
September 24th, 2008, 10:56 AM
i would try no meds and some plain yogurt what happens with neds is that is wipes pout all the good bacteria in the digestive tract and yougurt replaces them valium will make a cat go tipsy for sure

September 25th, 2008, 08:10 AM
Thanks! That's a great idea! (Haven't tried plain yogurt yet, but I'm sure he would enjoy it...)

I'll pick some up tonight and try it out on him.

September 25th, 2008, 10:14 AM
I was going to ask about the two appetite enhancers myself. I know that Valium does that on its own. Shouldn't need another. Thanks for clearing that up.

He also has developed a haze over one eye, and it is more dilated than the other, but I don't know if it has just developed for sure...or if it has always been there.

This is the comment that got me. My little guy had the same issue a while back. One eye dilated although still receptive to light. I took him into the vet and had him checked. The possibilities included a concussion or FeLuk. Has your kitty been checked for Feline Luekemia? Is it possible he has suffered a concussion? Have either one been ruled out by your vet?

October 4th, 2008, 07:56 AM

I was just wondering how your little kitten was doing?


October 24th, 2008, 07:31 AM
Thanks for all your help and information.

Vinny was checked and was negative for Feline Lukemia. I do suspect that he was suffering from FIV.

Vinny died last night. He had not been able to walk because he was so weak... He was eating but losing weight and losing control of his body functions. It's heartbreaking that he is gone, but I'm sure that he is happier now as you could tell he longed to be "normal" and playful like his brother, and my two kittens recently adopted from our animal shelter. (All vaccinated against FIV, although Vinny was not aggressive).

Anyways, thank you again for your help... I will miss him very much. It's so heartbreaking that he was so young. Only one year old...

What a horrible disease.....

November 3rd, 2008, 11:32 AM
I'm so sorry you lost Vinny. :cry:

November 3rd, 2008, 12:29 PM
Thats so sad!! :rip: Vinnie, and I'm so sorry that you lost him--- so young too! He is happy now... :angel2:

November 3rd, 2008, 01:50 PM
I'm so sorry for your loss, Hcormier. :grouphug: It's always so hard to lose them, especially when they're so young.

:candle: Vinnie