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Old July 6th, 2005, 12:43 PM
rwcats4 rwcats4 is offline
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My vet and others have no idea what happened to the 3 kittens I rescued on 6/25

I am new to this type of discussion. Please bear with me. I am at my wit's end. I rescued 4 kittens whose mom had been injured and could not take care of them. I watched her hiss and scratch at one of the babies. The two rescued first had been in the sun for 4 hours according to the neighbors and were dying. About 2 hours later I caught another one, healthy and frisky looking. Then the next morning (approx. 24 hours after mom's injury) I caught the last one. He didn't live through the day. The vet said he was dehydrated and said I should give him sugar water and kitten milk every 1/2 hour, which I did. In the meantime, the surviving 3 were in a rabbit cage with food, which they were able to eat (kitten food, canned) right away after a few false starts, and using their little litter box. These kittens we estimate to be about 5 weeks old. Their eyes were still blue. I had contacted the vet to make an appointment for the kittens. Then I saw dead round worms in the kittens' stool and called the vet again. He prescribed panacur suspension, which I picked up yesterday. He did not feel it necessary to bring them in because they were too young for shots. Last night, the healthiest of the kittens became weak, dehydrated, lost control of his bowel function and died. The remaining 2 were fine when I went to bed and when I checked on this about 2-3 hours later, the little female was dead. There is one male left and the vet doesn't feel it necessary to see him. NO ONE I have talked to today has any idea what this could be. I have 4 adult cats in the house also and I am very scared. The vet said that if the adult cats start showing symptoms, I should bring them in. He says it is not distemper. He feels it is from the roundworms. Does anyone have any idea? It is killing me that these babies are dying. Thank you.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 12:56 PM
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Angeleyes1437 Angeleyes1437 is offline
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I think you need to call another vet for second opinion. Maybe he/she should see a stool sample of the little guy. I think your vet should have seen the kittens immediately! They probably needed fluids under the skin etc. and who knows knows what else! Additionally, can you quarantine the kitten left? To avoid possible sickness passed on to your adult cats. Even if you keep the cage in the Bathroom only or the bedroom... somewhere your cats don't need to go.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 12:58 PM
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LavenderRott LavenderRott is offline
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Find a new vet!

I can't imagine why on earth a vet would not want to see these kittens but was willing to dispense advice and meds sight unseen! For all he knows, the meds he had you give them killed them and not the worms.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 01:17 PM
Lucky Rescue Lucky Rescue is offline
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Tiny kittens from dire situations such as this often die despite our best efforts and for hard to determine reasons.

However, I too am shocked that the vet saw no reason to see them!

I'm sorry you're going through this, I know how hard it is to see these babies die. Thank you for trying to help them when no one else would.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 01:35 PM
doggirl doggirl is offline
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Are you sure he didn't say electrolytes, not sugar water? Sugar water would only dehydrate them further.

If the vet is actually telling you not to bring them in, call another vet or better yet show up at the vet's office - three kittens dying is urgent. If it's distemper you'll lose them all quickly. Have you told the vet you want him to see them? It's strange he'd say you don't need to bring them in, unless he thought you didn't want to.

What do you mean by kitten milk? Don't feed cow's milk - goat milk is acceptable but best is formula, you can get that at a vet. If you haven't bottle-raised before there are a lot of little things you need to know. I'd say call a cat rescue in your area and ask for their help - even if it's just advice - usually they're the ones with loads of knowledge on bottle-raising orphans.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 02:32 PM
Prin Prin is offline
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Definitely need a new vet. That's incredible that he would prescribe something without seeing the animal. Isn't that illegal?

Sorry for your ordeal. Animals dying unexplicably is a hard thing to go through.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 02:45 PM
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Shamrock Shamrock is offline
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I too would suggest another vet - why he would NOT want to see them is a real mystery. Also, definitely find out all you can about bottle feeding.
I tried this once many years ago, all the babies were lost. I didnt have all the info I should have, though may not have changed the outcome.

There is what's known as "fading kitten syndrome" that sometimes claims all the babies - for reasons that are unknown. As LR says..in spite of every attempt to get them through, there seems a type of genetic "flaw" that causes a failure to thrive. It's very heartbreaking to witness them weaken and die one by one. :sad:

Good luck to you, I truly hope the one remaining male will pull through.
Bless you for helping these poor little ones, and trying to give them a chance.
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Old July 6th, 2005, 05:53 PM
rwcats4 rwcats4 is offline
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I had questioned the sugar water, but was told by the vet that the baby's blood sugar was probably low and to try that. I believe it was too late for that kitten when I found him, and it was on a Saturday. But he did call me back 3 times during the day. I believed the babies were old enough to eat from a dish, although the first time they tried, it sounded like they were sucking. But they adapted. Near as I can tell, they were approximately 5-6 weeks old. Their mom is a first time mother from the colony we inherited when we moved here. We are trapping and spaying/neutering the cats as we can, but there are still females we haven't caught. Not too many, maybe 2. I realize that 2 can lead to many. The baby who is alive seems to be doing better. He still won't drink water though. So I have been giving him some in a dropper. Maybe a few ml is all. He is isolated in the bathroom and has a little bear to sleep with now that his brother and sister are gone.

I called another vet and was told to wait until the panacur has a chance to work. Third dose is tomorrow. My best guess is that these 2 or 3 vets in this horrific place are way too busy to see just a little kitten. But I could just be feeling out of control of the situation.

Thank you all for your thoughts and insights. I appreciate you all listening to me.
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  #9  
Old July 6th, 2005, 08:01 PM
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Angeleyes1437 Angeleyes1437 is offline
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It is very nice that you are trying to help this little guy, especially dealing with how hard it is to loose a baby even if you haven't had them for long. Just keep your head up... you are doing the best you can. I would still try to get him into the vet.

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Old July 7th, 2005, 12:16 AM
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catmundu catmundu is offline
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i'm so sorry to hear about the passing of the kittens. i commend you for being a caring soul and trying to help them as you have!

as the others have suggested- i would definitely get the little one seen by a vet ASAP!!

best of luck with the baby- keep us posted on his progress.
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  #11  
Old July 7th, 2005, 10:05 AM
rwcats4 rwcats4 is offline
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The little baby is still alive this morning and seems to be doing okay. His diarrhea seems to be lessening. I called another vet (as I mentioned, in this area there are only a few). He will see the baby but feels that travel may traumatize him more. I sat with him last night and he snuggled and then settled down and went to sleep, just like he should. He's eating well and today is day 3 of the panacur. Maybe it was roundworms, after all. But I have not seen any dead ones yet. I've tried giving him water with a syringe. He didn't take to the bottle feeding, though, even laying on my lap as instructed in one of the many sites. I have to mention, though, I was absolutely horrified when the vet, the night the two babies died, told me to give the baby Gatorade or skim milk. I thought cow's milk gave them diarrhea. But Gatorade? I can see Pedialyte. He's eating Triumph kitten food, canned, turkey - none of my cats eat fish. And Chicken Soup for the kitten dry food and (don't laugh) Purina Kitten Chow, dry only. He seems to like chewing. He's trying to play a little bit, which is encouraging. Thanks again for all your thoughts and ideas. I am amazed that the vets are not more caring. Its rather scary because I have some aging adults. Thanks again so much for listening.
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  #12  
Old July 7th, 2005, 10:58 AM
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Angeleyes1437 Angeleyes1437 is offline
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In NYC we have vets that will come on house calls. You should look into that- just to be safe with your aging cats- should there be an emergency. I am glad to hear the little booger is doing better! YAY!

Good luck!!
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