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Old November 17th, 2011, 02:16 AM
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Sephrenia Sephrenia is offline
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Signs of Starvation in cats?

So I took my darling kitten, Jasmine to the vet last week because she was exhibiting signs of pain (extremely rare for my kitten, she's a really tough cookie... case in point, I stepped on her once at between two and three months of age *NOT with all my weight of course* and she didn't so much as squeak. And believe me, I found out taking a shower the day I brought her home that she had a voice!). It turned out to be only soft tissue damage, but I had them do her yearly checkup early, as well, so that I did not have to schedule another appointment (I could not afford to do so financially).

The vet told me that she was overweight by a bit, and to cut back her food by 25%, and no more.

Well, there's the problem. I had been dealing with the impending loss, and then the loss of my grandmother over the course of the last while, among other things, and had been neglecting to measure her food. So now that I am measuring again, I have no idea how much to give her!

The vet warned me that cutting her food back by any more than 25% could send her into starvation. I have no idea what that might look like in a cat... So I have no idea what to look for.

I spent some time searching, but the only thing I can find on the internet is people who already HAVE starving cats, not people who can tell me what to watch for to begin with....

She eats all her food, she is still playing, she sleeps about as much as ever.... And we still go for the occasional walk outside (on a leash!), despite the fact that the ground is now covered in snow (she seems to enjoy it, and I only ever let her stay out for a maximum of 5 minutes, because I do not want her to catch cold, or freeze her paws off!).

I currently only feed her once a day, as I have for most of her life. She is on Go! Natural Chicken, Turkey, and Duck dry food, if that makes a difference. It's bloody expensive, and I looked at a lot of them before making the move to that food. One bag does last a very long time, though, at the rate I am supposed to be feeding her.

Any help in what I should be looking for, or suggestions on what I can do to make sure she DOESN'T starve, but loses the weight the vet wants her to lose, would be greatly appreciated. >.<

I probably worry too much, and I am sorry for all the off topic random notes, I just really want to take very, very good care of Jasmine, as she almost literally saved my life when my previous cat, Misha, was diagnosed with cancer, December 16th, 2010, and then had to be put down on April 11th, 2011. Having Jasmine to look after made losing Misha easier, a little. She was a surprise Christmas present from my landlords, who gave in to me having another cat when they realized I could not live without something to love. I picked her up at exactly 8 weeks old, on February 5th. She still sleeps with the teddy I got her to take the edge off losing Misha, and she is the only cat I have ever met that will crawl into a carrier voluntarily, as soon as you put it down. Her favorite treat is a fully popped piece of popcorn, or a little bit of chicken (as she will not eat ANY conventional cat treat I have found. And I have tried them all. Literally. It was a rather expensive endeavour!) I adore her, and I could not bear it if she was suffering because of me. So please, if you can help me, I would be forever grateful!

Last edited by Sephrenia; November 17th, 2011 at 02:39 AM.
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Old November 17th, 2011, 11:33 AM
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sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
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Originally Posted by Sephrenia View Post
I currently only feed her once a day, as I have for most of her life. She is on Go! Natural Chicken, Turkey, and Duck dry food, if that makes a difference.
It does make a difference, and I would say that if at all possible, she should be eating 100% wet food instead of kibble. Cats really are not designed to eat dehydrated nuggets, they need moisture with their food. Plus, the calories of dry food are more concentrated (think raisins vs grapes) and it's very easy to overfeed. Most cats become overweight because of a dry food diet, so often just making the switch to wet is enough to get the excess weight off. You can leave canned food out for free-feeding if you prefer, it doesn't go bad nearly as quickly as you'd think. I would however, start feeding her twice a day. A more even input of calories will help prevent binging and is more suited to the feline metabolism, which doesn't down-regulated during a fast the way a dog's or human's does.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sephrenia View Post
Her favorite treat is a fully popped piece of popcorn, or a little bit of chicken (as she will not eat ANY conventional cat treat I have found. And I have tried them all. Literally. It was a rather expensive endeavour!)
Fresh chicken (even raw) is the best treat! Most commercial cat treats have pretty crappy ingredients. Maybe she'd be interested in eating a raw food diet? Or an occasional raw meal? There's some great info at this link on what cats should be eating and why: www.catinfo.org Also this link specifically talking about diet and obesity (not that your kitty is obese!): http://catinfo.org/?link=felineobesity

About making sure you feed her enough: can you weigh her with a baby scale or at the vets every couple of weeks? That way you can monitor her weight loss to make sure it's not too fast (no more than 1-2% per week). How much does she weigh now and what is her ideal weight? There's info in that second link above which might help you figure out how much to feed her.
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Old November 17th, 2011, 05:20 PM
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Sugarcatmom forgot to ask for pictures????? Welcome to pets. patti
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Old November 17th, 2011, 05:58 PM
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sugarcatmom sugarcatmom is offline
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Sugarcatmom forgot to ask for pictures?????
D'oh! Pictures are mandatory, in case you didn't know, Sephrenia.
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Old November 19th, 2011, 03:17 AM
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Sephrenia Sephrenia is offline
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Thank you for the information. My computer has been down so I read the stuff on my phone. I couldn't reply from there, because it doesn't really work the same. Jasmine is doing wonderfully, and I forgot to mention that she has been on a 50% wet diet since she was a kitten on the vets recommendation.

I feed her Whiskas wet pouches, as they seem to have chicken (or other meats) and things like liver, and stuff as the first and main ingredients. ^_^

I plan on taking her to the vet every couple of weeks (as you suggested) to make sure she is not losing too quickly, or gaining any more.

Pics have been up on my profile since within 12 hours of my signing up Feel free to peruse. Misha, my previous cat (may he rest in peace) is even in one of them, I believe.

Jasmine's very well healed, and has gone back to being a very demanding Siamese kitty. :P She plays fetch, but she demands that I toss the toy IMMEDIATELY, or be heralded with screams. Or whines. The whining is worse. She'll sit at the end of the bed and whine like a puppy. XD

I'll be sure to let you know how she is doing again next week, when we go see the vet to have her weighed ^_^ (I know it's only been a week, but you know >.<)

Thanks again!
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Old December 8th, 2011, 12:45 AM
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Sephrenia Sephrenia is offline
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Jasmine is doing well. She's lost a few ounces over the last three weeks.... I have no idea if that's reasonable, or what to expect, but I know it's not a lot. >.<

Though, she is a cat, and I can't expect her to lose a pound in a month can I? :P

She needs to lose a total of three to four pounds, though, and at a rate of a couple ounces a week, it could take ages O.o

How long should it take for her to lose three pounds?
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