Weight loss in a younger cat

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DonnaK
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Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by DonnaK » Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:47 am

I am worried about my cat, who is 8 years old and has recently lost a significant amount of weight. I took her to the vet and all her blood work was completely normal. He assumed she had been stressed by my absence for 10 days when a reliable cat sitter was caring for her, but a month+ after my return, she is still losing weight. He checked her teeth and they were fine too. She eats a few bites and then stops. This was a cat with a voracious appetite previously. How can I put some weight on her? What other possible health issues might be the cause?

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lilynmitz
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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by lilynmitz » Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:04 pm

Hello Donnak, I would be worried too. In your position I would get her straight back to the vet for more tests, and PERSEVERE with them. I don't want to risk worrying you unnecessarily, but in two instances (aged 7 and 12) it turned out to be advanced cancer, and in a third (aged 4) I'm pretty sure it was the same, but the vet was useless even with the post mortem and couldn't make a diagnosis on what had brought about his sudden death after a period of weight loss, as a result of which I changed vet after nearly 30 years with them. In the case of the 4 year old and the 7 year old, the vets couldn't find much wrong other than a "mild liver issue" - they only took blood tests to humour me (turned out to be advanced cancer, found on post mortem) and "pancreatitis" (he died less than a week later). I'm not suggesting it is necessarily cancer or anything that serious, but this does need checking out properly.

In fairness, the vet who I did trust completely at that practice (but has sadly since retired) said cats are so good at hiding illness that the vet often only has "he's just not right, and is off his food a bit" to go on. But sometimes when they're dealing with more observant owners, the vets will listen to that and take your concerns seriously. So if you are seriously worried, persevere. 8 years old is not too young for serious medical conditions to crop up, so go with your instincts, take her back, and ask for more tests.

Hopefully it's something that's easily treatable, but soonest caught, soonest mended.

DonnaK
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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by DonnaK » Wed Jul 17, 2019 5:58 am

I am heartbroken to report that you were absolutely right, lilynmitz. I brought Lucy back to the vet yesterday and she had a very advanced lymphoma. I was stunned to see how large it was on the scan. My poor, sweet kitty had to be put to sleep. I had concerns at the first visit that he had not been as thorough as he should have been and I suspected cancer, but when he told me that all her labs looked good, I was so relieved, I didn’t press him further on the weight loss. I have left my cat with a sitter multiple times and she didn’t lose her appetite.
I miss her so much already. She was such a cheerful presence in my house. My other cat has been searching for her and being unusually vocal. I have been crying off and on all day.

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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by booktigger » Wed Jul 17, 2019 12:17 pm

I'm so sorry to hear this, unfortunately cancer rarely shows on blood tests, and not all cancers can be felt/seen on exam. RIP little one

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Mayday21
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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by Mayday21 » Fri Jul 19, 2019 3:08 am

Hi Donnak please accept my condolences on the passing of your fur babe. If you need support please post. People are so understanding & will give you all the support you need. And as Booktigger posted RIP little un. Vivian

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fjm
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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by fjm » Fri Jul 19, 2019 5:59 am

I am so sorry Donna - what a devastating shock. Sleep well Lucy

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Lilith
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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by Lilith » Fri Jul 19, 2019 7:14 pm

Hi Donna, I posted on 'bereavement' but am just adding post on here. It's bad enough losing a cat when you know their time is coming but a sudden loss is dreadful. I feel for you and the remaining cat.

About 20 years ago one of mine, at 11, began to lose weight and look fine-drawn. I knew she was on the way out and so did the vet, wonderful vet, but did the bloods show anything? They did not. 12 years ago another of my cats, a streetwise ex-feral, stepped out of her front door and under a car. Normal morning became a disaster. Expecting it is bad enough but a sudden death ...

I do wish you hadn't had to lose her like this. Lots of hugs and love, Lil x

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lilynmitz
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Re: Weight loss in a younger cat

Post by lilynmitz » Sun Jul 21, 2019 11:53 am

I'm so sorry Donna, I really hoped I was wrong but what you described was so similar to my own experiences, I feared the worst but hoped for the best.

It's so hard when they go so young and so suddenly, but cats are so good at hiding even severe medical conditions, it can be really hard to pick it up. One of mine was climbing trees the day before he died, and playing with me in the garden. but even we humans can carry cancer undetected for months and months, which is why some are so advanced by the time they are detected.

But she will have felt your love and care right to the end, and you were with her when she was released from her failing body, which is the best you could possibly have done for her. It's just terribly hard saying goodbye when you love them this much.

Thinking of you xx

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