So, I've read the entire thread and am still confused as to what to do. My cat is 14 and, besides kidney stones surgery at age 5, has been healthy all of her life. She's an indoor cat and looks to be most similar to a grey calico. About 8 months ago, she got outside unbeknownst to me and was outside the entire night until I finally found her the next morning.
When I found her, her back legs were giving out on her badly. I took her to the vet where she was given a pain shot and I was told that because of her age, she could take some time to recover. They did xrays, blood work, and everything looked fine. No broken bones, all her organs were working properly, her blood work was fine. The vet said it looked like she may have overextended her joints, maybe trying to jump too high. I did find her in the neighbors patio where she had to craw really low to get underneath the fence. I know she crawled because she is adopted and has been declawed. I thought maybe she had overextended trying to get to an area that felt safe to her.
It's been almost 8 months and on and off again visits and talks with the vet as to what's going on with her. It's not diabetes. She doesn't seem to be in pain even after multiple physical examinations. The past month or so she has dropped down to 5 pounds. She has always weighed 6-7 pounds as she is a small cat and was thought to be the "runt" of the litter. The vet has always said that that was a healthy weight given her size, but that 5 pounds was starting to feel the bones and she'd like to see her gain weight. She suggested kitten dry food as it is high in calories, so I put her on that. She's been eating it fine for about 3 weeks, but no signs of significant gain. She continues to drink, eat, urinate, and use her litter box normally. She's still playful at times, but mostly just lays around and is wobbly when trying to make turns.
The vet prescribed a steroid this past week to increase her appetite and also to try and help her legs. She hasn't taken well to the medicine and vomits shortly after taking it.
Now, moving to the nutrition issue. She is a dry food cat, always has been. I tried some wet food with her this week and she ate all of it. I've noticed that she is strangely curious about the new caulking that was put in my bathroom last week and has been licking it. I haven't heard back from my vet on what the next step should be given that she isn't taking to the steroid.
I'm thinking I will try her on a wet food diet and see how she does. She also loves dry cat treats, but I wasn't aware just how awful dry food was for cats. Maybe this will help. I'm just not sure what other options are out there. My vet seems to be puzzled as much as I am.