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 Post subject: Unexplained weight loss
PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 5:30 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

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So recently I took my Bengal (Cairo) to the vet for a general checkup as well as checking up on his weight loss. it seems over the last 2 years - he lost a few pounds for no good reason. I ran him through a variety of tests a couple years ago and he passed them all with flying colors.

I did the same tests a month ago - and he again passed them with flying colors.
No one can explain why he is so skinny or why he's lost weight instead of gaining weight - even though he usually has a voracious appetite. Recently - he seemingly lost all appetite altogether.

I have absolutely no idea why - and no one can figure this out.
I currently feed him (and have always fed him) dry cat food (Blue Buffalo) but was told I should switch to something called Origin? I'm getting to the point where I want to try switching him over to wet food and eventually trying to put him on a raw food diet to see if I can start getting some weight on him.

I also want to take him in and do an expensive blood panel to see if there is anything we're missing that can explain his issue.

His history is (in a nutshell) - he was given to me by a couple moving to New York. I've had him ever since and he's always been healthy and active and always on dry food.

Any idea as to what might be going on or ideas on food vs. weight gain that I can bring up to my vet?


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 7:04 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Silvansaria wrote:
No one can explain why he is so skinny or why he's lost weight instead of gaining weight - even though he usually has a voracious appetite. Recently - he seemingly lost all appetite altogether.


The two things that I know of that would explain big appetite, high energy with weight loss are diabetes and hyperthyroid. I don't believe either of those require an expensive panel to verify (hopefully the vet has already ruled those out).

If he's not eating anything right now, then you need to do whatever it takes to fix that. You can't be picky about what you are feeding him, and it needs to be corrected asap. I would be feeding him his very favorite "jackpot" foods and seeing if he will eat those, and if he does, then work your way backwards from there to what he will and won't eat. But yea, I think you need to be a little more forceful about getting him the help he needs.

How old is he btw?

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 7:15 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

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They never gave me an exact age for him. but I discovered he is chipped - so I'm going to contact the chipping company (I had it scanned and was given the information) and find out when he was chipped. Hopefully when he was a kitten.

I would assume he is probably under 7 years old...
They checked for the hyperthyroid and all that - he is clear from them. According to the tests I have run so far - he should be healthy in weight and everything else because he seemingly has nothing wrong with him at all that any test has so far revealed. It doesn't make any sense.

I've recently been feeding him anything and everything (healthy) from his own cat food to table scraps to whatever he'll gobble down in an effort to get his weight back up. Trust me - I'm not being lax on his condition but $$$ for bigger/better tests is my main issue at the moment.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 8:30 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Silvansaria wrote:
Trust me - I'm not being lax on his condition but $$$ for bigger/better tests is my main issue at the moment.


Ok gotcha. That's a shame, but most of us have been in that position at one time or another (I was certainly on a very shoestring budget when I got my first cats after college). I realize this won't help you now, but may in the future: one lesson learned the hard way for me is to always get pet health insurance. It makes these kinds of situations much easier, because you can act without regard to cost, and only focus on what's best for your cat.

... not trying to be preachy, just a lesson learned by me.

Good luck, and let us know how it goes.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 9:15 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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It's hard to accurately guess a cat's age by an exam. I hope the chip gives you more information.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 13, 2016 9:35 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Are there any plants in your home that he may be getting into? Sometimes that causes enough of an upset tummy that their appetite decreases and with cats it doesn't take long to see a drastic change in weight.

It may also be that he's older than you think and he's starting to have a hard time digesting some foods so he's backed off eating them. We've got 3 moggies that are all in the 12 to 13 year old range and one of them has gone almost completely off dry food. So I make sure he gets canned food and snacks of either turkey or chicken sandwich meat (his favorite).

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 14, 2016 3:32 am 
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Bengal Kitten

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He *was* chewing on the philodendrons I have around my apartment - and he always got sick and threw up (serves him right) but he learned NOT to do that through trial and error... Now he leaves them alone completely thankfully.

So the vet put him on a intestine steroid or whatever to fight any intestinal infection he might have. He's been on it a month. Prednisolone. I was maybe thinking that might be the cause of the loss of appetite? I'm going in to talk to the vet tomorrow. he suggested I do a Leukemia/Feline AIDS test and if that comes back negative then either do an x-ray panel or an intestinal type test. The thinking is that since all the other tests across the board came back normal - it might be Cancer or one of these. He's also going to give me an appetite enhancer medication as well as anti-nausea (I guess the enhancer makes them a little sick but it will make him really hungry and hopefully that will help him start putting on weight)...

There really isn't anything else we can think of if it's not any of these. I started him on some wet food today which was a high end cat food (which has a lot of greens and tuna/proteins. I feed this cat food to my Indonesian Blue Tongue Skink for his diet). I'm gonna try and keep him on wet food until I can get an easy raw food diet plan for him... I'll still supplement the raw food diet with K&D prescription dry food as well I think for his Kidneys...

...sigh.
It's a major hassle taking in rescues - especially if you don't have the medical records of the previous owner.
The things I do for my pets :)

*edited*
I was talking to my girlfriend - and I'm going to talk to the vet before I actually do anything. I was thinking - maybe it's the steroid side effects that is making him lose his appetite. I looked up the drug and most people recommend to get off of it as soon as possible. He didn't actually have anything wrong per se (the vet thought maybe he might have an infection or a problem with the intestine) - it was prescribed as a preventative measure really just in case something was REALLY wrong in the intestine but what if nothing was "really" wrong and this steroid is what's screwing him up so bad all of a sudden?

So I'm gonna talk to the vet tomorrow about this and actually see what he says about that. Maybe I can ween him off the drug and see if his appetite goes back to normal...
Stressing me out all this.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 14, 2016 2:58 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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First of all, calm down! The stress you're feeling isn't helping your baby! You may need to try a different type of food to get him to eat and, yes, I think the steroid could be hurting the appetite! Ironically, at one time, my kitty weighed over 14 pounds. Now he stays around 12.8. He is super active, always on the go, we take two long outside walks a day.

You are doing the BEST thing you can which is having him monitored by a qualified vet. It is difficult when you don't have the medical history for your kitty -- but what counts is the present and getting him eating again.

If you could post some pictures of your kitty so we can take a look and see if he looks skinny! Mine looks skinny, but most bengals look skinny.


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 14, 2016 4:43 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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I am pretty sure steroids spike the appetite and cause weigh gain in general. Watch your kitty when giving an appetite stimulant. I had a cat that reacted badly to them. She became very wound up and frantic. It was frightening to see. Find a pet store near you that sells this cat food: http://www.kohapet.com I feed mine the venison, and they still spin in circles as I put the plate down. They also love the kangaroo and wild brushtail.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:15 am 
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Bengal Kitten

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Well - I'm going to stop the steroids he's on right now. This all went downhill when he started those meds.
He's eating wet food. For some reason dry food doesn't interest him now at all even though before he'd eat it like crazy...

I'm gonna try some different dry foods and see...


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:55 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Silvansaria wrote:
For some reason dry food doesn't interest him now at all even though before he'd eat it like crazy...


Some random thoughts...

* Is it the same bag of dry food that he'd eaten with gusto before? If so, how old is the bag, and have you been sealing it up tightly? If it's a new bag, perhaps it is a "bad bag". Check out the expiration date on it.
* Cats have a REALLY strong sense of small, but a really weak sense of taste, so their food preference is largely about how things smell. If the cat gets a runny or stuffy nose, suddenly you could see them go off food, simply because in no longer smells right to them.
* You can get clues by observing exactly how they are rejecting their food. If he shows a ton of enthusiasm during meal preparation, bounds over to the bowl, sniffs, and walks away, that might be a strong rejection of that particular food. That's when you definitely bust out something different and consider tossing that food away.
* If he doesn't show much enthusiasm when you put down food, maybe wanders casually over etc., then that's probably a sign he's simply not feeling hungry and probably feeling ill.
* If he bounds over, sniffs, and bites into the food, then after a couple of bites gives a look like he'd been stung by a bee and abruptly stops eating, that could be something like a tooth problem.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:10 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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We are working on two posts here --

It's not as if cats HAVE to have dry food! If you want your kitty put on a few ounces, he has to eat and he has to eat the food that he loves to eat. If dry food isn't part of that -- so be it. I think there is more of a difference in dry foods than wet foods -- and there may be one out there that he will enjoy. But if you have some wet food that he loves, stick with that for the time being at least. I know it's more expensive, but your baby is worth it.


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 16, 2016 11:34 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:23 am
Posts: 18
Hmmm...

Interesting list. I have a way of calling him that excites him over to where I am to eat whatever I have. He'll eat a little and stop. I can call him over and he'll do it again. Just a little at a time every time where as before he would eat and eat and eat and then go into the kitchen and beg for more and then go over to the table and beg for more and go back to his food and eat some more etc etc. Now - he eats if I kinda force it in his face but if not - he won't eat anything. He seems kinda lethargic most of the time - sleeping or maybe not necessarily sleeping but seems to just stand there for a length of time doing nothing at all. Just staring off into the distance.

Nothing about any of his behaviors seem normal to me and I'm thinking SOMETHING has to be wrong and I'm just irritated that no one can figure it out with all these tests and forum posts etc. I just wish I knew what the hell was going on with him. I should see if I can teach him to speak English and maybe then he can just tell me... :p

...sigh.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2016 2:41 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
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We are also commenting on your posts in the Introduction section, but you seem to be giving more information here. Now the kitten is lethargic and doesn't want to eat. Big problem!!! If you can't get any answers from your vet except "we don't know what is going on," go to another vet!!! There are hundreds of diseases and problems a cat can have. And there can be a ton of testing involved to find the problem. Do not give up until you find out what this is. Do not accept "trying" this or "trying" that without knowing exactly what is wrong. The vet gave you steroids -- yet has no idea what the steroids are treating.

This is sad for the kitty and sad for you. Obviously, the kitty isn't feeling 100% and you need to get him there -- plus the weight loss you're talking about. You may be looking at MRI's or CT scans, X-rays ... just to get a picture of what is going on inside his little body.

I truly hope you can find out something.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 17, 2016 5:21 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:23 am
Posts: 18
I'll stop posting to the other forum and only post to this one.

Regarding the tuna - I just wanted him to eat anything and I was trying whatever. I fed him some chicken chunks and then some tuna just to get his eating. Now that he is - I gave him some Applaws cat food and he's gorging himself on it. I added some of the calorie booster in there as well. My plan is to give him the Leukemia/Cancer test and maybe the Intestinal test just to either get a negative or positive on one/both of those and I will be able to stop wondering about it.

I'm gonna add his photos to Photobucket (I assume everyone has that but not every has a Facebook) and then I'll add the link here.
Unless you all have a Facebook and then I can give you the link to my photography page where I'll add his pics?


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