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Help, need some advice on next step.

Shawn Myers

Savannah Child
Hi, My name is Shawn. My girlfriend and I purchased a beautiful f6B female name Mia just over 3 weeks ago. Ever since the ride home she has had diarrhea. It would be uncontrollable and just drip everywhere from her rear. The first few days we let it go thinking it might be some stress from the move to a new home. We fed her the same dry food that the breeder was feeding her. The only thing we did different was stopped her raw diet. I really wanted to get a second opinion on it before diving into it. A week went by and we set up an appointment for the local vet because the diarrhea had gotten worse. The breeder suggested give her some boiled chicken and rice to ease her stomach. They then mentioned that one of her litter mates had giardia, but she had received treatment for it just in case. We went to the vet they gave her another round of dewormer and giardia meds. Im unsure of what the meds were. Im at work right now and the paperwork is at home. This seemed to help with the dripping but she continued to have diarrhea and we noticed that there was some dark blood in her poop. So over memorial day weekend her third eyelid started to show and I called the vet and they said its most likely an upper respitory infection and she is going to need some meds. So we go to vet last tuesday and they give her a shot of antibiotics for the upper respitory infection and we also brought a fecal sample so they could perform a fecal exam. Everything came back negative including the giardi and they gave us another round of meds, again unsure of the name can get later if needed. He explained it as kind of like yogurt, but a million times more powerful and it would help build her immune system back up. Its a brown substance that comes in a syringe and you unscrew the back of it 1 ml and inject in her mouth. It also came with a pill that is suppose to be given daily. Now the gross and disgusting part. Since she was not longer dripping we let her roam the bedroom at night. Mostly she would just sleep with us. Saturday into sunday night when we woke up there was a little drop of poop on the comforter and as we got up we noticed a big pile by our closet. We were unsure the cause of her not using the litter box and were scared the drips were back. Last night was the bad night. She pooped on 3 blankets and the sheets on the bed. This is where we are currently at and we are back to the boiled chicken and rice since that seemed to help the first time. We are on natures variety instinct chicken dry FYI. Any help you guys can give me would be really appreciative. Vet bills are racking up fast and the girlfriend and I are already very attached and getting depressed on the situation.

 

WitchyWoman

Admin
Staff member
She is a beautiful girl. How extensive was the fecal test -- did the vet do a PCR for coccidia and tritrichamonas? If the vet is giving metronidazole (Flagyl) for the suspected giardia, be aware that it is now widely accepted that Flagyl is ineffective in treating it. And I'm sure your vet knows this, but the giardia cysts that are shed in poop are not shed every day. So it's possible to have a negative giardia test and the cat still have the parasite.

I just went through a case of giardia with one of my cats and after 2 courses of Panacur, he is still positive. When I spoke with my vet today, she said that studies are showing that it may not be possible to rid the cat of the parasite. That the goal of medicating is to reduce the number of cysts shed which can cause reinfection. So, because my cat has no symptoms (diarrhea, gas, lethargy, suppressed appetite), we won't treat him any more until/unless he starts showing symptoms. In your case, treatment is necessary because diarrhea can quickly debilitate a kitten.

Even though cooked chicken and rice is not a balanced diet for the long term, keeping her on it for a week or two and adding in some probiotics (which sound like what the vet prescribed in the brown gel), will give her intestines time to heal from whatever is causing the diarrhea. Adding in a good supplement (http://www.mazuri.com/MazuriCarnivoreSupplementforSlabMeat.aspx) will help make up for the unbalanced chicken/rice diet. If you choose to purchase the Mazuri, be sure you get the one for slab meat and not whole prey. The link takes you to the slab meat version.

You can poach the chicken, use thighs or legs rather than breasts) in plain water and feed the broth too. She'll need the fluid to avoid dehydration from the diarrhea. On that note, I would also stop feeding the kibble. Due to the nature of cats' digestive system, kibble diets require they drink a lot of water and some cats won't drink sufficient water which can lead to all kinds of troubles. So, at least until she is healthy again, try eliminating the kibble. You can substitute a good quality canned instead if you feel the need to supplement the chicken and rice. Avoid fish-based canned food at this time. Stick with chicken and turkey.

In the interim, you may need to keep her in a bathroom until the diarrhea is gone. Make sure there are 2 litter boxes available to her and be scrupulous in keeping them clean. And remember to provide a dish of fresh water.

Good luck and keep us posted about her progress.
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
As WitchyWoman says, it's really important to know WHAT testing was done. It may be that your vet did a fecal float in house and although that can show some things, it not nearly as accurate as a PCR Diarrhea panel (https://www.idexx.com/pdf/en_us/sma...tes/realpcr-canine-feline-diarrhea-panels.pdf). You need to know exactly what you are treating!

As also mentioned, some vets prescribe metronidazole (Flagyl) for giardia infections, while fenbendazole (Panacur) is more effective. Sometimes a kitten might need an extended course...and probiotics (which I think is the brown paste you mentioned).

It's definitely best if you can post the specifics, the names of the medications and the specific testing that has been done...else it is hard to know what to suggest.

Just as a headsup to any others reading this thread, it is definitely recommended to take a new kitten to the vet within 72 hours of receiving them, and in fact most contracts require this for the health guarantee of the kitten. And with these kinds of things, the sooner you get veterinary attention the better!

You mention your kitten not pooping in the box... what you need to realize is that your kitten is in some discomfort and distress so accidents can happen. Additionally, if she has felt pain trying to poop in the box then sometimes they associate that pain with the litterbox and can start avoiding it. Resolving the diarrhea is the first step, but maybe using Kitten Attract litter now may also be a good idea.

Poaching the chicken and giving the broth with the chicken to the kitten is definitely recommended. Diarrhea can lead to dehydration which can lead to the kitten deteriorating fast :-( The good news is that kittens bounce back fast so as soon as you are treating the infection successfully, things will improve fast too :)
 

admin

Paige
Staff member
Agree with Witchy and Brigitte...it is possible that the kitten may have TriTrich as well, so that should be tested for...in addition, has your vet given fluids to replace that which your baby is losing through having diarrhea? You can also always go get some pedialyte and syringe feed this to your kitten to make up some fluid loss...

As for vet bills...have you discussed with the breeder?
 

KMcgown

Site Supporter
My goodness she is beautiful. I can't any more than what the others said. I would ask the vet for further tests if she has had the issue for 3 weeks. Poor girl.
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
Your girl is gorgeous! I'm so sorry you're having these issues. I agree with the others that you need to run a diarrhea PCR panel to identify the culprit. If you feel it is too expensive at least test for tritrichomonas and coccidia. Continue with the probiotics and you can also add some psyllium (e.g., unflavored metamucil) to her food to help bulk up her stools. Plain pumpkin has also been known to soothe the gut. I hope her issues clear up quickly!
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
When I spoke with my vet today, she said that studies are showing that it may not be possible to rid the cat of the parasite. That the goal of medicating is to reduce the number of cysts shed which can cause reinfection.
This is correct - giarrdia is part of the normal flora of most cats' (and humans') GI tracts. There is giardia in our drinking water, so really hard to avoid unless you drink, cook, and wash using bottled water. Typically stress or illness will cause changes in the GI tract (stress response) allowing the giardia to proliferate leading to the diarrhea.
 

WitchyWoman

Admin
Staff member
This is correct - giarrdia is part of the normal flora of most cats' (and humans') GI tracts.

We call giardia Beaver Fever in Oregon because they are the source of most wild water contamination here. Many a backpacker has regretted not using a filter when taking their water from our streams.
 

Shawn Myers

Savannah Child
Thanks guys, have been talking to vet about our next course of action. He wants to get the PCR test done, but he says that we have to wait a couple weeks because she has to be off antibiotics for at least a week. She just had a shot for that upper respitory infection last weds. All this is breaking my heart to have her go through this. Hoping the PCR test gets us to the bottom of this. The vet kind of thought it could be tritrich. I keep meaning to post what she has gotten but my computer crashed the other day and I only have use of one at work. I got a new hard drive last night and will try to install it tonight. Thanks everyone for the help so far.
 

Carykd7kau

Reincarnated cat Moderator
Shawn. All I can say is I will keep you and your lil darlin in my prayers. She is a gorgous girl, BTW.
 
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