Go Back   Pet forum for dogs cats and humans - Pets.ca > Discussion Groups - mainly cats and dogs > Cat health - Ask members * If your pet is vomiting-bleeding-diarrhea etc. Vet time!

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old June 19th, 2009, 06:23 PM
bees_knees bees_knees is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Long Beach, CA
Posts: 1
3 week old kitten with diarrhea

We are currently caring for an abandoned litter (five 3-week old kittens), and one of them has pretty much consistantly had diarrhea (since we started caring for them), and is turning for the worst in the last 12 hours. Two days ago, we visited a veternarian, who dewormed them, and gave us medicine for conjuctivitis, and an antibiotic. The vet briefly glanced over them, and said that because of the conjuctivitis, he thinks that they have an Upper Respiratory Infection. None of the kittens ever had labored breathing, nor a stuffy nose, or have even sneezed! Every single kitten bounced back (eating normally, playing, purring, etc), and the conjuctivitis is non-existent.

And then this morning, one kitten (with consistant diarrhea) started becoming lethargic (so much so, that it seemed that he was in a coma). He seemed dehydrated, his breathing seemed short, and his eyes glassy. We first started alternating sugar water in a dropper, and regular water... about every 15 minutes. And a few hours later, he became more alert and now is walking around (unsteadily), and we moved on to giving the kitten Pedialite. He just urinated on his own, with a little amount of white mucuous along with it... This kitten used to be the dominant, largest kitten in the litter, and is now becoming the runt. What does this mean?
I personally think that the kitten has always had a problem with the milk replacer, could he have an allergy to it? Does he has inflamed bowels/ intestines? I am very worried that the kitten is not absorbing the nutrients he needs... Should I give the kitten kaopectate? His stools are yellow and runny, is that a sign of a bacteria infection...
My vet basically has stated that because he believes that the kittens have URI, that I should be prepare for them to pass on.
Should I get a second opinion?
Reply With Quote
Old June 19th, 2009, 06:41 PM
sugarcatmom's Avatar
sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
Senior Contributor
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Calgary, AB
Posts: 5,357
Originally Posted by bees_knees View Post
Should I give the kitten kaopectate?
Absolutely do NOT give kaopectate. They changed the formula in the US and it now contains bismuth subsalicylate, which is toxic to cats.

Originally Posted by bees_knees View Post
His stools are yellow and runny, is that a sign of a bacteria infection...
Yellow stool can certainly indicate bacterial issues,or coccidia. Here is a link to the Rainbow of Poop. I wonder if some probiotics mixed into the kitten formula would help. You can get capsules from a health food store, like Natural Factors Ultimate Multi, and you only need a pinch per dose.

Slippery elm bark powder might also be useful (also found at a health food store). Try no more than 1/8th of a tsp mixed with some formula or plain chicken baby food, a couple times a day.

Good luck, and thanks for looking out for these little guys.
"To close your eyes will not ease another's pain." ~ Chinese Proverb

“We must not refuse to see with our eyes what they must endure with their bodies.” ~ Gretchen Wyler
Reply With Quote
Old June 19th, 2009, 11:46 PM
growler~GateKeeper's Avatar
growler~GateKeeper growler~GateKeeper is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 17,348
Is there a cat rescue or shelter that has a mother cat who has just weaned/is weaning older kittens you can put these ones in with to get proper nourishment? Perhaps you can foster a mother cat till these ones are weaned?

for the little ones
Avoid biting when a simple growl will do

The Spirit Lives As Long As Someone Who Lives Remembers You - Navaho Saying

Vindication ~ For all those pets who became sick or lost their lives from tainted pet food
Reply With Quote
Old June 20th, 2009, 01:18 AM
edwina's Avatar
edwina edwina is offline
Slave to the Kitties
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Pennsylvania, USA
Posts: 855
Have you tried them on watered down canned kitten food, or like the baby food mentioned above ? I have gotten kittens at 3 weeks to eat solid food, and it seems to be better than having the replacer or cows milk. You may have to put some of it on his face so he licks it off. And it is not too early, because i have seen kittens at 3 weeks nibble on mice that there mothers bring in. Hope he gets better.
Reply With Quote
Old June 20th, 2009, 02:50 PM
14+kitties's Avatar
14+kitties 14+kitties is offline
150% PRO S/N
Starcastle Champion, V:force Champion, UFO Shoot Out Champion, Parachute Panic Champion, Mission To Mars Champion, Disc Dash Champion, Crazy Closet Champion, Railway Line Champion, Penguin Pass Champion
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: MYOB
Posts: 15,408
Just as a precaution. Please do not give kittens cow's milk. Most cats are lactose intolerant. This can cause a lot of issues with them including diarrhea.
Assumptions do nothing but make an ass out of u and me.

We can stick our heads in the sand for only so long before it starts choking us. Face it folks. The pet population is bad ALL OVER THE WORLD!
Reply With Quote
Old June 20th, 2009, 07:23 PM
lUvMyLaB<3's Avatar
lUvMyLaB<3 lUvMyLaB<3 is offline
I'm a softy
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Brandon, mb, Canada
Posts: 1,059
do you de poop them yourself after each feeding? At 3 weeks you should still be doing this. You can try and give some watered babyfood but they will still need the kmr, they eye infection is concerning, could be upper resp, or could have been passed from mom at birth. Are you sure they are 3 weeks? or are they 3 weeks but close to 4? Just wondering because you say they play and purr and noticed one walking unsteady, at 3 weeks they still are not usually that steady anyway, just curious as that can change a lot what you can do. Good luck!, it would be best if you could get them to a rescue and have them place them with a nursing mother.

Also, make sure you clean their faces well after a feeding, that can lead to eye trouble to, also maybe the kitten got some milk into his lungs, something that happens sometimes especially if you are new to this, and that could be a cause also..
Reply With Quote
Old June 20th, 2009, 10:37 PM
Dr Lee's Avatar
Dr Lee Dr Lee is offline
Senior Contributor - Expert
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Bay Area California
Posts: 1,058
Originally Posted by sugarcatmom View Post
Absolutely do NOT give kaopectate. They changed the formula in the US and it now contains bismuth subsalicylate, which is toxic to cats.
Bismuth subsalicylate can be given to cats but must be used judiciously. In Plumb's Veterinary Handbook Fifth edition, these are the following quotes regarding bismuth subsalicylate:

" High doses may cause salicylism, use with caution in cats"
Doses for Bismuth Subsalicylate:
"1. Pepto-Bismol: 0.25 ml/kg PO q4-6h; cats are sensitive to salicylates and probably should not receive frequent or high dosages (Cote 2000)

2. For eliminating Helicobacter gastritis infections: Using triple therapy: Metronidazole 15.4 mg/kg q8h, amoxicillin 11 mg/kg q8h and bismuth subsalicylate (original Pepto-Bismol®) 0.22 ml/kg PO q4-6h. Give each for 3 weeks (Hall 2000)

3. For diarrhea in kittens and young cats: 1-2 ml Pepto-Bismol 3-4 times a day. Refrigeration may increase palatability. (Tams 1999)"

While these doses are present, I do agree that we NEED TO BE CAUTIOUS. For this reason, while I have and do use it in some cats - it is a case by case basis. I would always recommend that you ask your veterinarian first! - for both dose, amounts, etc...

If there is marked dehydration, liver or kidney impairment, etc... it may very well be contraindicated.
Christopher A. Lee, D.V.M., C.V.L.S.
Promoting surgical options and pet comfort through the use of lasers.
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Terms of Use

  • All Bulletin Board Posts are for personal/non-commercial use only.
  • Self-promotion and/or promotion in general is prohibited.
  • Debate is healthy but profane and deliberately rude posts will be deleted.
  • Posters not following the rules will be banned at the Admins' discretion.
  • Read the Full Forum Rules

Forum Details

  • Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
    Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
    vBulletin Optimisation by vB Optimise (Reduced on this page: MySQL 0%).
  • All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:30 AM.