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OT: Cat question

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by poindexter, May 22, 2007.

  1. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    I have some questions about my 14 year old cat (and no, this isn't a joke). I had her pic in my avatar for a time last year.

    Just in the last two months, she has really started to go down hill. First, she started to lose her hair in clumps, all over her body. Most of it has grown back, tho its still patchy in places. We took her to the vet, and he said her signs were good (urine, kidneys were good, ect).

    More distressingly, she has kind of quit cleaning herself. Her fur is matted, she stinks like a homeless person, and she usually has a small drop of drool around her mouth. Her breath stinks. I am afraid its gum disease. Watching her eat her dry food was kind of sad, we switched her over to wet food this week.

    We have a lot of cat lovers here. Any advice, words of wisdom?
  2. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    I'd try another vet and get a second opinion. Something's not right.
  3. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    As long as she seems comfortable, try to let her live as she would. My mom had a couple of cats who passed away in the last few years -- one pushing 20, one that didn't make it to 2, but both had heart disease and faded away. As long as she's not in pain, just try and make her as comfortable as possible. If it's obvious that she's struggling to do simple things, then you've got a tough decision to make, because you don't want to take the last trip to the vet if she's still active and not in extreme pain, but you also don't want them to suffer.

    Does the vet know she's not cleaning herself? That's usually a bad sign for health.

    And tbf's right. Get a second opinion.
  4. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    When we took her a month or so ago, it was only the hair problem. She seemed fine otherwise.

    It was a couple weeks later that she has started to go down hill. The vet mentioned "gum disease" but he/we didn't pursue it any further. And here's the weird thing. She's caught two mice and a lizard in the last month. She still loves to curl up on my chest or lap. She just looks/smells like hell. And the drool is disgusting.
  5. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    Ugh Poin. I don't envy you at all. At 14, her time might be short. That her kidneys are good is a decent sign...when my childhood cat went to the great litter box in the sky, it was due to failed kidneys. She was very sick in the summer and she got better, but the vet told us the next time her kidneys failed would be the last. So we had a few months with her before she got sick again.

    One bit of advice: Our older cat (10 next month) has gum problems and we've been told by our vet that wet food exacebertes the problems. I know it's probably painful to watch her eat dry food, but I think you might be making her gum issues worse with the wet food.

    Best of luck. Hope she's OK.
  6. StormSurge

    StormSurge Active Member

    I don't have much to add other than I hope she's okay Poin. I know how attached we can get to our cats.
  7. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    She's lived a great life, my wife (yes, I have a living wife) and I got her a couple months after we got married. She's been an indoor/outdoor cat all her life (a no-no according to the vet), got hit by a car a decade ago and survived; went under the house to die a few years later with some puss-y abscess and I had to go crawling under the house to find her.

    Now she spends most of her day staring out our front bay window. We never really worry when we hear a cat fight in the neighborhood, she knows her limitations.
  8. Mystery_Meat

    Mystery_Meat Guest

    The older cat in my earlier post had the drool thing for some time, but usually she just did it when she was happy and purring. She didn't smell bad until the last few months, and by that point she was sleeping in the catbox or in front of the refridgerator, where she spent more and more of her time in her final weeks.

    But cats can be resiliant fuckers. The older cat probably should have died in July 2001, but she rallied and lasted another four months. That makes the decision tougher.
  9. Dyno

    Dyno Well-Known Member

    If you're unsure the vet is properly diagnosing the cat, by all means find another one. My two best friends have had sick kitties in the past year and changed vets b/c the first ones said there was nothing wrong. Each time, the second doctor diagnosed the cats correctly - one, sadly, was terminal.
  10. bagelchick

    bagelchick Active Member

    I find it hard to believe it's not her kidneys....that's real commons in cats. My 17-year-old is hanging in there, but could go at any minute. She's on special food made just for cats in renal failure (at $20 a bag). Good luck....
  11. sportschick

    sportschick Active Member

    My elderly cat started losing her hair, and she turned out to be in renal failure. Some expensive prescription cat food later and he lived for another three years. If she's got really bad breath, you should talk to your vet about getting his teeth cleaned. If she's got some teeth that need to be removed (a common thing in kitties that age), it'd explain the bad breath and be a relatively easy fix.

    Hope it's not anything truly awful, Poin.
  12. DougDascenzo

    DougDascenzo Member

    One word: Thyroid.
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