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OT- who knows anything about kittens?

Old 05-21-2013, 08:28 AM
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OT- who knows anything about kittens?

The girls and I rescued 2 kittens a few weeks ago. They got their first set of shots at the SPCA and for almost 4 days now have had non stop diarreah (sorry!). They can't control it and I seriously am about to lose my mind. I don't love cats to start and this is not endearing them to me.

I took them to the vet yesterday who seemed not the least bit phased and gave me ridiculoulsy expensive food and meds for them and said within 24 hrs there should be an improvement.

Last night was HELLISH. I had to lock them on the porch for today because I can't come home to my house being destroyed and covered in cat poop again today...

Has anyone had kittens with this issue and had it resolve quickly? I don't want to be making daily trips to the vet because spending hundreds of dollars per visit on rescue kittens wasn't really my plan...

I am going to see how they are when I get home today and am praying that they are on the mend....

Just wondered if anyone who's a cat person had any thoughts....

I will say that dealing with this for the past few days has been an awesome pre summer bikini weather diet. I am so disgusted with all that I have cleaned up that I have had no appetite so there's a silver lining I guess! LOL!
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:38 AM
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You aren't feeding them milk, are you? That causes diarrhea.
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:38 AM
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Did the vet check for worms?
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:41 AM
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Stress can cause this, (a change in their environment), worms can cause this, also if you changed their diet from what they were eating at the shelter. I'm sure the vet wanted a "poop" sample, this would rule out worms.
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:47 AM
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Stress, worms, lactose intolerance. I have one cat that looked like he was going to have to be on kitty Zoloft for life, but magically turned around with some love and time.

I hate to say it, but the more expensive food is better for the cats. You don't have to buy the vet food though -- there are more moderately priced items at PetSmart or a local feed store. A loose rule is that corn should not be in the first three ingredients.

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Old 05-21-2013, 08:48 AM
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No milk, same food as shelter (they were only at the shelter for a day and were fine on the food I gave them for 2 weeks then BAM! non stop mess). I did recently close my bedroom door at night bc they were literally insane at all hours of the night, jumping on my head and all and I could not sleep... The vet gave them a second dose (they had their first) at the shelter of de wormer and some sort of cat antibiotic to kill anything that might be going on... I really hope it takes care of it bc almost a week of this is too much... They don't seem to be phased at all-- still tons of energy, drinking plenty, eating fine etc... I know nothing about cats so I didn't know what to think....
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:52 AM
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Okay another question for all you cat experts.... I have one litter box for the 2. The shelter said that was fine. Is it? Should they each have their own? Do cats like ones that are covered better than not? I honestly have no clue what I am doing!
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Old 05-21-2013, 08:55 AM
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Taking care of a kitten sick experiencing diarrhea can be emotionally trying. Your kitten may be weak and tired from losing a lot of fluid from the diarrhea. And your kitten may have a poor appetite and not want to eat. But there are ways to help your kitten feel better while recuperating.

Eliminate the underlying bacterial or viral infection

Give your kitten extra fluids; chicken broth is good, but no soups with onions. Onions are harmful to felines.

Hold solid foods for a couple days to help the stomach calm down; gradually introduce solid foods back in the diet feed soft bland diet rice

Keep your kitten’s backside dry and clean; use moist cloths or baths if necessary

Mashed pumpkin and sweet potatoes can be great in helping to form solid stool. [AND NO CORN. Common cat allergen.]

Your kitten may need intravenous fluids if dehydration from diarrhea is severe.

Give medications for uncontrollable diarrhea. Do not, however, give anti-diarrheal meds for infections. Taking anti-diarrheal meds stops the body from eliminating infections.
And try giving them plain yogurt.

Are they going in the litter box? For giant, male, grown cats, I have one per cat. I think their preferences depend on their size. They are totally fine for now. I wouldn't worry unless they start showing weird behavior down the road.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:01 AM
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When I had cats, two shared the same box and had no issues.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:02 AM
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Some causes are :

change in diet,Dairy or other food intolerance ,Ingestion of spoiled food
Hairballs, Allergic reaction, Bacterial or viral infection, Internal parasites, such as roundworms, coccidia and Giardia, Inflammatory bowel disease, Kidney or liver disease, Cancer or other tumors of the digestive tract, Certain medications, Hyperthyroidism, Colitis.

Some ways to stop/help it:

canned pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) is supposed to be good, or pure sweet potatoes, half teaspoon of Metamucil, and give them more water.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:07 AM
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If you can get away with one, I think it is fine. I had to get 2 when I brought my kittens home. They are both female, they were both ok using the one box for urine, but one of the kittens would not do her poops in there. She always went to the patio door and did it right in front of my door. So I got another box. This worked out just fine.

I now have 4 cats, and 3 litter boxes. On all the websites I think they suggest 5 boxes for 4 cats. But since they are doing ok with 3, and I do clean them once a day, if not twice a day, they are ok.

I have both the covered and uncovered. They (or at least mine) do not have a preference.
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Old 05-21-2013, 09:14 AM
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Thanks! All the info is great... The vet was like in and out in 3 min, gave an antibiotic and wet cat food.... I am going to find some food without corn and push the liquids... They don't seem at all lethargic or sick other than their diarreah. Their energy is endless which I take as a good sign!
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Old 05-21-2013, 01:20 PM
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Sorry you're having trouble. We got a new kitten in November and he had the same problem for a while, but it soon cleared up.

Are the kittens all over the house? I can strongly recommend having a "safe room" for the kittens for the first month/six weeks they're with you. Even though they seem anxious to explore, a safe room is much better for them. It lets them get used to the smells and feel of their new home, and keeps them safer and calmer. It also helps you relax knowing there's less mess to clean when you get home!

You'll find the "safe room" technique helps with toilet training, too, because the litter box is right there and they have peace and quiet to figure out how to use it. Unless they're stressed/disoriented/sick, kittens are naturally inclined to use a nice fresh litter box.

You can let them out of the safe room little by little, and train them how to behave in different parts of the house. We shut the kitten in his safe room every night for at least two months I think.

I hope this helps. They're cute as anything but kittens can be exhausting!
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Old 05-21-2013, 06:46 PM
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BTW, the litter box I've used for YEARS now, and totally LOVE, is the Omega Paw self-cleaning litter box. It's covered, and what you do to clean it is simply roll it over on its top (it has a rounded top), kinda tap the bottom with your hand to dislodge any wet litter, tip it back to normal position, and voila! All the dirty litter and crap is in a little drawer that you pull out and dump. Then you can fill the little drawer with clean litter and scatter it back on top. The drawer stays in the box. You don't have to touch a scoop or dig through it or anything.

The cats seem to like using it (as long as I stay on top of keeping it clean!), and since for the reasons I mentioned in my housekeeping thread the litter box has to be in the living room for now, it is much less yucky than having an open box. I use one for my two adult cats and it is fine for them.

The other great invention I discovered is the "litter locker." It's a small plastic gadget that you put a roll of liners in. Each time you empty the drawer from the litter box into the litter locker, you give the litter locker handle a turn, and the litter is locked in. When it gets too full to turn, you open the litter locker and remove the plastic containing the dirty litter and easily throw it in the trash.

I get totally skeeved having to handle litter, so this is the best solution I have found. Minimal contact, minimal mess, cats like it.
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Old 05-21-2013, 07:22 PM
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I tried to confine them to one room but my house is old and no rooms
have doors ( except bedrooms and bathrooms). I used a baby gate to try and confine them to the kitchen and they scaled it instantly!

I need to come up w a better plan bc that room isolating idea is a good one

Lexie thanks for the litter box idea. I do not have the stomach for it so a self cleaning box sounds heavenly!
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Old 05-21-2013, 07:32 PM
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Baby cats and dogs are real pains in the asses at times.

However, raising an animal from that age makes them more sensitive to you and more likely to conform to the behaviors that you want when they become adults.

Just remember, they are babies for a far shorter time than your girls were....and you got through that!
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Old 05-22-2013, 03:19 AM
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
The vet gave them a second dose (they had their first) at the shelter of de wormer and some sort of cat antibiotic to kill anything that might be going on...
I think it's the cat antibiotic causing all the messy poop. Lots of antibiotics have warnings about causing diarrhoea. I suspect cat antibiotics do the same thing to poop as human antibiotics.
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Old 05-22-2013, 03:40 AM
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You can learn a lot from animal planet too...your girls might enjoy all the kitten shows...there is also a series called "my cat from hell" that focuses on behavioral issues.
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Old 05-22-2013, 07:12 AM
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Hi there. I breed pedigreed cats for about a decade. So, I raised a lot of kittens in my home. Akaisa is right, first you need a safe room.

I think this might be coccocidia. It is a parasite. Most cats have it, but when the immune system is depressed - which often happens in transition - there is a flare up. Kittens are especially vunerable, and can die from dehydration pretty quickly. Even if they normally eat dry food, I would feed them wet until they recover.

Your vet can test for it and give you drugs for it. The drugs interupt the life cycle of the parasite, which otherwise continues living in the intestinal wall. Aside from the fact that a smaller space is less stressful for kittens, it is imperative to keep them clean and away from their feces to avoid reinfection. Even a bathroom. As there are two, they will have company. And you can keep that space clean until this clears up. When it does, just open the door. Leave the boxes and food inside. They will use that a a safe home base to acclimate to the rest of their enviroment.

I only had it once in ten years. And it was awful. I put the whole litter in the bathroom. So much easier to clean. They all got healthy in a week or so.
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Old 05-22-2013, 07:21 AM
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They are on wet food from the vet and are confined to the porch right now... I don't know how to keep them from being in the space where they are sick if they are in a confined safe space...

They were in the kitchen for the first day or so that they were here and then were fine and roamed the house. They only got sick last week (after being here for 2 weeks fine).

They are a LOT better today than they have been so hopefully the meds from the vet are doing the job....
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