Ways To Make Sick Cats Feel More Comfortable
Posted byThe Cats Inn
Its never easy to have to care for a sick cat. Just like us, cats are prone to common illness as well as occasionally needing immediate medical care. While medicine is available for cats, treatment is never quite that simple, because cats cant speak to tell us whats wrong.
Reading your cats cues and noting any behavioral or dietary changes as well as pain and discomfort when moving or being touched are all good starting points in determining if something is wrong.
The first step in alleviating any discomfort for your cat is to visit your local veterinarian.
However, there are circumstances in the life of a cat where medical intervention is not appropriate. In these cases, it can be tough to care for your sick cat, especially when you dont exactly know what to do for them.
Here is a guide of a few things you can do to keep a sick cat comfortable:
- Turn to pain medication when necessary. Pain medication can alleviate a lot of the discomfort.
- Encourage your cat to drink as much water as possible. Staying hydrated can often combat a lot of illnesses. If your cat is finding it difficult to drink from a bowl, use a medicine dropper.
- Keep the noise level down. We know how difficult it can be to rest when it is noisy and our cats feel the same. A dark a quiet room is an ideal environment for a cat that is sick.
- Many cats crave contact and giving warmth through body contact is a great way to keep your sick cat comfortable.
Check For The Cat Moms Presence
According to vets themselves, one of the most common health concerns kittens are diagnosed with is an upper respiratory tract problem, such as the common cold.
Its a good thing that most baby cats will bounce back from it in one to two weeks, provided that their mother is around to breastfeed them and keep them warm and cozy.
Its for this reason why you should see to it that the sick kittens mom is around.
Just because the mommy cat is nowhere in sight doesnt necessarily mean that it has abandoned its little one it could be that its looking for something to eat or doing a number one or two not too far away from the nest.
Especially if the kitten doesnt look like its very sick, its mom will be there until the day the kitten fully recovers.
Unfortunately, its not always that a mother cat is around to take good care of its youngster with a health issue. If the mom senses that the kitten is too sick to recover, it might leave it behind, taking with it the rest of the family to keep them from catching whatever it is that the sick kitten has.
There are also instances when the mother cat will choose to kill its young if its very sick.
Feeding And Hydrating Stations
If you want to treat strays and ferals with a bit of food, I suggest you find a dry and safe place for them to enjoy the meal. To prevent the food from getting wet from the rain and keep the water clean, make a simple DIY feeding station. The station will conveniently protect the food and water bowls from the outside elements.
The DIY feeding station is pretty easy to make and you only need a plastic container.
Dont put the food and water bowls inside the cat shelter. These can easily get spilled so your furry friend will have to sleep in a messy, wet shelter. Always keep those two separate.
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Caring For A Sick Cat
Monitor eating & drinking. If not eating, force feed meatballs of canned cat food 4 to 8 times daily Discharge in the nose and eyes can be wiped clean with a moistened cotton ball or facial tissue, then apply a thin coat of white petroleum jelly to skin where the discharges accumulate. Monitor urination & defecation. We have a canned food that is very rich in calories and vitamins that is easy to syringe-feed. Any canned cat food can be dropped as a small ball into a catâs mouth to encourage it to eat.
We worry that any sick male cat could have a urinary obstruction. If you do not know if your cat is urinating, then it should be seen sooner rather than later .
Any vomiting cat can easily become dehydrated and if the vomiting is from swallowing a string, the cat needs surgery before the string gets caught somewhere and starts cutting through the intestines.
Administration of Subcutaneous Fluids
& copy Fruit Valley Veterinary Clinic 2015. Design by Henrik Ehrhardt.
Helping A Stray Cat Find Its Home
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Here Are More Tips For Feeding A Sick Kitten:
- Water can soothe an irritated stomach and stimulate hunger. Adding additional water bowls, topping off the water bowls, placing ice cubes in the water, or providing a fountain can encourage cats to drink. Some older kittens love to drink out of faucets or sip from other forms of running water. Offering a few spoonfuls of tuna juice in water can stimulate cats to drink.
- Dont overfeed as your cat they may eat the entire bowl of food and could experience vomiting if their stomach is upset. For a kitten weighing about 5 pounds, try offering a piece of meat approximately one inch squared that has been sliced into smaller pieces. If your kitten does not begin vomiting, offer another small amount of food about one hour later.
- Another option is to tempt your kitten into eating by offering small amounts of chicken-flavored or other meat-based baby food. Make sure it is free of onions and garlic, which can be harmful to cats.
- Once your sick kitten has begun eating, gradually return them to regular cat food over the next one to two days. First, mix a little of your cats regular food into the bland diet and feed that for one meal. Next, feed a 50/50 mix for one meal and feed Â¾ cat food and Â¼ bland diet for the meal after that. Finally, return to feeding your cats regular food over the next week. If your cat stops eating again at any point, please see your vet.
Ensure Proper Body Temperature
The normal body temperature of kittens around four weeks of age range anywhere from 99°F to 101°F. Afterward, they begin to reach the normal body temperature range of adult cats .
Before they become four weeks old, kittens are unable to regulate their body temperature.
When a baby cat is fighting an infection, its body temperature rises a temperature of more than 102.5°F is considered a fever.
Placing the kitten in a hot and humid area can cause its body temperature to increase further, leading to hyperthermia, which can cause organ failure and, if not dealt with immediately, even death.
On the other hand, a temperature of less than 99°F is considered as hypothermia. Its just as bad as hyperthermia because it can cause the heart rate and breathing rate to drop considerably, causing the kitten to slip into a coma.
A sick kitten thats panting could be overheating, and a sick kitten thats lethargic could be very cold.
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How Do I Give My Cat Her Medication
Give your cat any medication at the dose and frequency prescribed by your veterinarian, and complete the full course of treatment. Separate handouts are available that describe how to administer medications. If you are having difficulty giving tablets to your cat, you may be able to crush them and mix them with a little water so that they can be given by syringe. Ask your veterinarian if this is appropriate for the medication that your cat is taking. If this does not work, contact your veterinarian to see if a liquid formulation can be prescribed.
“Do not give your cat any medications other than those prescribed by your veterinarian.”
Do not give your cat any medications other than those prescribed by your veterinarian. Never give your cat over the counter medications unless specifically instructed by your veterinarian, who will tell you the exact dose needed by your cat.
Ways You Can Help Feral Cats
If you know of a single feral cat or colony of community cats in your area, you can provide animal care. Kind human caretakers can help feed and water the cats, provide extra shelter , look after their living area and facilitate trap-neuter-return efforts to control population growth in the colony.
Caring for one or two feral cats living in or around your property is somewhat simple. Caring for larger colonies of cats is a bit more work. Several national animal welfare groups offer education and assistance to people who care for feral cat colonies, including Alley Cat Allies, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the Humane Society of the United States, and the Stray Cat Alliance.
According to Alley Cat Allies, some of the most helpful things a colony caretaker does for community cats include:
Trap-neuter-return is a humane way to manage colony size and reduce cat overpopulation.
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Supplies Needed Prior To Bringing It Home
The supplies that you will need before your kitten comes home are:
- Kitten Food ask your veterinarian which is best
- Food and water dishes
- Stow away fragile objects that you dont want broken
- unplug power cords when not in use
- Tie a knot in drapery cords
- Keep the toilet lid down
- Secure the screens on windows and doors
When Should A Kitten Get Vaccinated And What Vaccinations Should It Get
Certain vaccinations are critical to ensure that a kitten doesnt contract any preventable illnesses or transfer them to other cats while promoting overall health and the longer life of the cat. The core vaccinations that are recommended for all cats are distemper/panleukopenia, viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus and herpes virus, and rabies. There are other non-core vaccinations that may be recommended based on the cat breed, whether it lives indoors or outdoors and geographical location.
Initial vaccinations are typically administered starting when the kitten is six to seven weeks old and may be offered as late as 20 weeks of age, depending on the vaccine. Check with a veterinarian to schedule vaccinations, as each case is dependent on the specific cat. Boosters for adult cats are administered by the discretion of the owner and veterinarian when the cat is full-grown, generally beginning a year after the kitten vaccinations have been given.
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Schedule A Kitten Care Appointment With Cat Care Center Of Baton Rouge Today
Caring for a kitten can certainly be one of the most fun and rewarding experiences you can have as a cat owner, however, if you are under-informed about the needs of your kitten during this time, you can leave them at a developmental disadvantage.
At Cat Care Center of Baton Rouge, kitten care is one of our greatest joys. Our veterinary staff would be delighted to spend some time with you and your kitten, ensuring that your relationship will be a healthy, happy, and rewarding one for many years to come. Schedule your first kitten care appointment today!
Create A Safe Atmosphere
Your kitty may hide at first, but it will explore when no one is watching, becoming more comfortable in their new home. Making sure the room has hiding places will help your furball feel secure. If there isnt furniture to hide beneath, place paper bags or cardboard boxes near the walls or cut holes for doorways into them they wont notice the difference.
One of the best new kitten tips youll get is to resist snuggling and petting as soon as you welcome them into your home. You need to let them come to you, and avoid overwhelming them with emotions in the beginning. Sure, it wont be easy resisting cuddles with a cute kitty, but hey, nobody said that learning how to raise a kitten is all fun and games!
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Get The Most Out Of Your First Vet Visit
Is The Cat You Found Stray Or Feral What Is The Difference
Lets first explain the difference between strays and ferals. If youre not familiar with the distinction between those two, this will give you some clarity.
Feral and stray cats are the same domesticated species, but the contrast is in their attitude towards humans.
Stray cats were socialized while they were young and they had positive experiences with people in their earliest months. They learned that humans can be trusted. They see us as a source of food and protection. Strays were previously someones pet, but they were either abandoned or no longer have an owner for another reason. A stray cat will let you pet them and they will most likely not be hesitant to approach you. Some of them can be a bit reserved. You can bypass that by approaching them in the right way.
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Stray cats can become a pet again. They will just need a little bit of adjusting.
Feral cats, on the other hand, never had contact with loving humans while they were kittens. Or they simply lost touch with humans over time so they developed a fear. Stray cats can become feral after living outside for a while, without any kitty to human interaction. Feral kitties are fearful and wont let you pet them or come near them.
You suspect the feline is lost? Here is what you can do:
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Sick Kitten Affliction #: Constipation
Some kittens will have fewer bowel movements than their siblings. This is fine as long as the stools are loose and the kitten isnt having difficulty passing them.
In this sick kitten, the abdomen may be swollen and doughy to the touch. If severe, he will appear bloated.
The nursing mother should be taking care to lick her newborn kittens often to stimulate them to pass stool and urine, but if one is being neglected you can find out how to do this yourself in this feeding newborn kittens article.
If the newborn still wont pass a stool, you may need to consult a professional for care.
You may be advised to care for the newborn yourself by administering a warm soap-water enema by eye-dropper, or orally giving the kitten a few drops of mineral oil or milk of magnesia.
Read our post on kitten constipation for more information.
Sick Kitten Affliction #: Toxic Milk Syndrome
The queens milk can become toxic to her newborn kittens for a number of reasons, but most commonly the cause is mastitis, an infection of the milk glands.
Postpartum uterine infection can also lead to toxic milk, and other times the cause remains unknown.
A symptom of toxic milk syndrome is that the newborn kittens will be distressed and will cry constantly. Diarrhea and bloating are common. Their anuses will be red and swollen from continuous diarrhea.
To take care of a sick kitten with this condition, he and his litter mates should be removed from the mother immediately and treated by a vet for dehydration. If severe, it will be treated with subcutaneous fluids.
Your veterinarian may then recommend you use Pedialyte or a Kaopectate solution. After 24 to 48 hours feeding a commercial milk replacer should become part of the care regimen for a sick kitten.
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