Sorry for the intrusion. I am saddened, confused and in need of urgent veterinarian help; hopefully you cat lovers can answer. I'll try my best to explain the painful situation I'm going through. I apologize for the long post.
Until Friday 2nd I had 5 kittens in my house: one of them suddenly died because of a virus (not specified by the vets). He died in two days... He had a calm personality so reading any symptom was hard.
He was only 3 months old; I saved him and his brother from abusive people about 1 month ago, when I already had 3 kittens. In chronological order as when I adopted them: My 1st kitten is 5 months old, vaccinated about 3 months ago; my 2nd kitten is 4 months old, vaccinated about 1 month ago. Both are very strong and healthy. Then I found a sickly little kitten more than a month ago, much healthier now, not yet vaccinated. Then I took in the two brothers, perfectly healthy as a vet confirmed with a quick visit. I didn't vaccinate immediately the two brothers and the ex-sickly kitten because I wanted to find homes for them. I kept all of the kittens separated for about a week (the 2 brothers together - my two vaccinated together - the ex-sickly alone), then seeing how healthy were they I introduced them to the others. I also have a vaccinated healthy dog.
During this period, for 20 days, I also kept another dog, who never came directly into contact with the kittens, but they visited the same rooms where the dog stayed (while the dog was outside). My house is clean, but of course the rooms weren't cleaned every single day (there never was piss or poop in the room), so when the kittens played where the dog stays there was only dog fur and maybe a little dirt from the dog's paws. Vets say dogs and cats cannot infect each other with anything, except skin fungus. Is it confirmated or there are doubts?
All the kittens were doing fine, then 1 of the 2 brothers got sick with the following symptoms: being letargic, sleeping a lot, stopped eating and drinking (vomiting when tried to), meowing was very difficult. We instantly thought about a throat laryngitis or something like that. We took him to 2 vets: Thursday night to our vet's assistant, the kittens had fever, used fever reducer, IV was done, said there was nothing much to do if it's a virus. Friday morning to another vet (one of my animal rescue group), said fever reducer was a mistake without doing exams first, the temperature now was too low, she did a blood test, white blood cells were 700 instead of minimum 5000... Confirmed there wasn't much to do with a virus, the kitten wasn't doing good at all, completely weak and not reactive. She did IV and antibiotic and said the rest was all up to the kitten. After a few hours he died.
Both vets made a list of what virus could that have been, but both were unable to identify WHAT exactly the virus was and HOW it infected him. They only made assumptions: maybe it was our fault, not keeping them separated enough, or taking inside the house some bacteria with our shoes or hands, or the dog, or the kitten was already sick...
Incubation period is never of 1 month but a week or two, so they thought something happened in the middle and infected him. But WHAT, WHEN and HOW?
The symptoms lead to which type of virus? Any idea?
Above all we are worried for the other 4 kittens, as they shared space with each other, played and ate together. The vets said it's too late to separate them now, but we still separated the remaining brother (he's on antibiotics because of a little cough, already better) and the ex-sickly kitten from each other, so at least they don't sleep together and breathe the same air. What to do now? The brother is under antibiotics and the cough disappeared, he's doing very well, not sick at all; the others show no symptoms at all, are lively and eat plenty.
Now the issues are: after the brother finishes the antibiotic, we need to vaccinate him and the other kitten. But we also need to start the guinea worm prevention for both of them, so which first: vaccine or prevention? Both at the same time, I think is too much for kittens, I don't want to intoxicate them but I am worried.
How do I protect them now and on? The vets also don't agree on the temperature: some say 39 is already fever, others say it's perfectly fine as the average is 38-38.5, what is the truth? I'm keeping them checked all day long!
This post was modified from its original form on 06 Aug, 8:36
This post was modified from its original form on 06 Aug, 8:38
Sorry for your loss Valentina. I always thought a cat's temperature was warmer than ours which is why my cat sleeps with me at night in the winter. I believe normal is between 38.0C (100.5F) to 39.17C (102.5).
Do they have worms? I am no expert but I think I'd probably vaccinate first; what does the vet recommend?
That was a lot to digest. I think Angela is right about the temps. I know the temp for a cat is normally higher than us.
You never mentioned if the kittens had to be bottle fed at any time, or whether they got the protection from the Mothers milk for a short period of time.
You said the kitten died, and another was coughing, but you never mentioned any sneezing as in the rhino virus that is very contagious. I had a sick Mother cat come here to give birth to 5 sick kittens that died fast as they could not breathe to nurse. I had the Mother on meds as she had diarrhea and the meds were kind that didn't keep the diarrhea going. They all had the rhino virus.
If the kitten was mouth breathing, then he could not breathe through his nose, and could not smell his food. It could be that the kitten refused food? If they can't smell it, they won't eat it..... An autopsy could have been perforned to see what it was that killed the kitten. I do not think it was the dogs.
I wonder why the kitten wasn't checked for the FIV or felv virus.... I would let the others play together if they are feeling good. I think a depressed kitten might get sick from being alone.
What is guinea worm protection? I did read that it is not good to give too many vaccinations at the same time, and some vets still do it.--
Sorry for your loss, Valentina. Loosing a pet is very sad, especially such a young kitten. How are the others doing?
Screamingbelle: By guinea worms protection I meant Filariasis. I am wondering, since there are lots of mosquitos here, if it's better to use the spot-on protection (Stronghold) before the vaccine or after.
To sum it up: the ex-sickly kitten isn't vaccinated, is dewormed, shows no symptoms; the remaining brother isn't vaccinated, is dewormed, had cough for a couple of days (when his brother started to be letargic), was put on antibiotic on Friday, next day cough was gone, cure ends this Friday, he's perfectly fine.
They both have to be vaccinated AND to start prevention for filariasis and external parasites (Stronghold). In which order, I don't know. I don't want to do both at the same time, I'm afraid to intoxicate them.
Can the kitten NOT on antibiotics be vaccinated earlier than the other, like this weekend or next week? The other ON antibiotics has to wait a week after the end of the cure, so they said.
There wasn't any significant, continuous sneezing, in none of the kittens. The deceased kitten was breathing difficultly, and since he vomitated when we gave him food or water, it's like his throat was closed. He tried to breathe with his mouth (especially before dying), but couldn't gulp down anything; his nose wasn't dripping at all.
None of the kittens had to be bottle fed. The smallest one probably was separated from his mom earlier than the 2 brothers, judging by his size, fur, and general appearance (he seems little and weak but is actually doing just fine); his siblings were small too, as far as I know they are well.
The deceased kitten was much fitter, bigger, stronger, with beautiful fur, and so is his brother.
We do not know if the othes are actually good or only SEEM good, the symptoms (if any) should show up in the next days... I agree with you, a sad, alone kitten might get sick, but keeping them all together is risky since two of them aren't vaccinated. Of course I play with them separatedly, but I'm not with them 24/7. I am really uncertain about what to do. Some people keep all cats together, vaccinated and not, sick and healthy; others keep different litters separated; very few people keep EACH kitten apart from the other. Most people I know also have dirtier and smaller houses than mine, with many more animals in them.
Angela: I also agree about the temperature, from 38 to 39 is normal in a kitten. We could do a poop test for both kittens, but they are dewormed since weeks and their poop is fine...
Have you used any topical flea killer on any of them? Some of them are dangerous. Most flea killers, (drops recommended) are ok at 3 months, but not before. I use advantage flea drops, but have also used front line and revolution.
Doen't sound like any of those kittens had the contagious rhino virus or the calicavirus either. It is possible that poor kitten had a tumor. This doesn't sound like the kittens had anything contagious. It is possible that the dewormer could be too strong for the kittens. Always be careful when using a cleaner, especially one with phenyl in it as they will walk on the floor, then clean their paws and get very sick, and some might die.
The kitten not on antibiotics should be able to get vaccinated, and I never heard of a kitten on antibiotics not being able to vaccinated. Vaccinations in themselves can be dangerous. They reek havoc on the immune system. Although, even a homeopath will suggest the distemper vaccine for kittens.
I never heard of that parasite called filariasis. I looked it up real fast but I am going to go back and read it. Nobody ever mentioned it on this group.
Filariasis is not a parasite, it is a parasitic disease transmitted by mosquitos. It is very common in dogs and cats, but vets say it's rare in kittens...
I use Stronghold because it is both a repellent (protects from external parasites) AND it prevents filariasis. The ones you listed are only repellents.
Kittens and puppies on antibiotics do not get vaccinated until the cure is finished, as the vaccine might hide possible symptoms of a virus. This is what most vets do: First symptoms = 1 week of antibiotic; end of treatment = 1 week to see if any symptom shows up; kitten is fine = vaccine. Vaccinating a sick kitten or puppy can kill it... Only healthy animals can be vaccinated. That's what all vets agree on. There isn't an easy test to see if the kitten has a virus or not, which is why after the antibiotic they tell to wait a few days to see if the kitten is fine before vaccinating him.
A tumor in a 3 months old kitten? Bizarre idea... especially since his brother started coughing EXACTLY when the other started to show symptoms. Many people I asked agreed that the kitten might have been "genetically weaker" since birth, with a mediocre immune defence system, so a virus that other kittens can fight and defeat, sadly he wasn't able to...
What do you mean the dewormer is too strong for kittens? All kittens and puppies get dewormed when they are about 2 months old (might be dewormed later if their poop is not worrisome). That's what they do here in Italy, I don't know how it works in the USA?
I have no idea what Phenyl is, I'm looking it up, thanks for the tip.
That must be a new mosquito borne disease. I've never heard of it.
I LOOKED UP ABOUT BREATHING PROBLEMS, AND CONTRICTION OF THE THROAT, , (sorry caps lock sticks) the one connection was some sort of allergy, may well have been a mozzy bite, and the kitten didnt have the strength to fight it , even with the "stronghold" or as Donna said an allergy or reaction to phenyl, which is used in a variety of cleaning products.
The one thing I read,> you said the kitten didnt have a runny nose, this may have meant the nostrills were partly filled with dust, (this could have been another allergy), this would have forced the kitten to breath through his mouth, and if struggling for air, his throat would have swollen, making breathing and swallowing difficult, then being such a weak kitten, he sadly gave up the fight.
I am sorry , I can understand you wanting answers, but you are pretty clued up any way, might I suggest you check the others nostrills for dust, and check they all have the same bed linen, cat litter, and distance away from cleaning materials?, I also read a 3 month old kitten did from a tumour, which was just at the base of the kittens larynx , it caused breathing problems, and swelling, of the throat, as well as a cough, so Donna's suggestion was not that bizzare really.
please do let us know the other kittens are well, and if you find out what did kill the poor kitten , so very sad . we would all empathise with you here for sure, love and hug x wendy k x
I must have mentioned dewormer being given too young, but what I meant to say if I said that is that you have to be careful with the kitten if using the flea drops that are used behind the neck, or flea foam if they are too young.
The CAN find out of a 3 month old kitten has leukemia. I took my 3 month old kitten in for blood work to find out, and he came up positive. The blood was taken from his neck. Miy kitten had an abscess under his paw, then on top and then another under it. He developed a prolapsed rectum, and then pnumonitis, with the high fever. That was when he got tested. I never had his sister tested, and those 2 were together at a yard sale when I found them and took them home. She lived to be about 20 years old.
I did read that mosquitos caused heart worm in cats. I think it is revolution that protects against heart worms.
I just looked it up, and it is revolution that protects against heart worm.
We don't use Revolution on our cats. We use something else.
One of my kittens, Kento, is sick since Thursday, and on antibiotics since then. Fever was stable at 39.5, but yersterday it got higher so we used fever reducer.
White blood cells, at the time of the blood count, are 2000 instead of min. 5000, so it's not leukemia (felv).
He is 5 months old and vaccinated, so he should be covered for panleucopenia, calicivirosis and rinotrachehitis (herpes). What remains is one of the many types of corona virus (like peritonitis), these are the most likely ones. FIV is not a probable option at all. We are making a more specific test to him tomorrow.
So I ask, since the fever reducer cannot be used more than once a day, how to keep fever down without meds. I wet his head, ears, feet and back with my hands (no bath of course...) about twice per hour, keep the window open. He doesn't eat or drink, and has been on IV 3 times today. Diahrrea keeps going although not always so strongly (gave him something for this), no vomit today, no cough or sneeze.
Wendy & Screamingbelle, I appreciated the suggestions, but it seems we are going out of topic. It is not an allergy, a tumor, or a reaction to Phenyl, it is a virus. Please let's concentrate on that, it's already difficult enough for me. I need help in understanding which virus could it be and how to make Kento feel better.
What helps a lot is to know if you or someone you know ever had similar virus problems with 1 or more kittens, if they had the same symptoms, and what did you do. Thank you.
This post was modified from its original form on 11 Aug, 14:36
You mentioned the FIV virus which is feline infectious peritonitis. I had a cat with that, and all I can say is that there is a wet and dry form. My cat had the wet form, and while he appeared to be heavy, it was fluids in his belly, and his back bone was prominient. He got so sick, and with no cure, I had him put to sleep.
I think you are doing the right thing with the wet cloths every 2 hours. You can also call the vets to ask them about another home remedy that you can use.
Sometimes diarrhea can be a good thing when it rids the body of poisons. It is rejecting something, and I also read that cats vomiting is also good. You can cut some grass to see if he wants some, and you will know if he wants to eat it that he is wanting more to come up.
Why is FIV not an option?
Poor little guy! Hope he gets better soon.
Valentina , I am sorry I cant be of more help , I have copied this because it sounds so like the symptons you described, that your cat is showing, however, I read some more, and it stated healing from this virus, will start when the kitten , has stopped vomitting and the diahrrea stops>>>>Feline Panleukopenia
Feline distemper and feline infectious enteritis is caused by a resistant virus that may remain infectious for more than a year at room temperature on inanimate objects. This highly contagious viral disease is caused by a parvovirus and leads to a loss of circulating white blood cells, rendering the cat unable to fight infection. Signs include rapid, sudden onset of fever, lack of appetite, dehydration, vomiting, diarrhea, and often death. It is especially lethal to kittens and infected females can infect unborn kittens. Nursing and supportive care are the only available treatments. All cats should receive vaccines to protect against Feline Panleukopenia. Extremely contagious.
I pray your kitten gets better, seems fluids are so important,
I am so sorry i cant help more, did you try putting a thick cloth in the freezer, then when that cloth is almost frozen , put a thin piece of material on top of the frozen cloth, and when the kittens fever is high, gently lay part of his body on the cold cloth for a few minutes?, apart from that, put a fan near him,( slow speed) to help cool him when you have cooled him with water. good luck, so want him to get better, you are nursing him well , just keep going, please up date us %#&!*% wendy k xx
Hi Wendy, thank you for the advice. I have already read about Panleukopenia, yes, the symptoms match, but the vaccine SHOULD cover him from this virus. Of course it's not 100% certain...
He's on IV (fluids) at least once a day to keep him hydratated. Yesterday evening we did IV at home, then we kept him fresh and quiet at night, wetting his head about 3 times during the night, without the other kitten bothering him. He ate almost nothing, but this morning he started to feel better, he became more reactive and also less prone to manipulation (the usual wild Kento) which is good! Fever didn't raise, this morning was 38.7 instead of 39.5, so we didn't use fever reducer. He was at the vet all day today, done the usual things: kept on IV with vitamines, did antibiotic, took something to help stop diahrrea (he's doing lots of it today...). Temperature went up to 39.2 at lunch time, but after that it went back to 38.7.
The vet says lymph nodes are not swollen, but it seems Kento finds it hard to meow, purr, eat and drink. Of course it's normal to have a bad throat and a low voice when you have flu... But how to know if it is a normal reaction or something more serious that needs antinfiammatory teraphy? We can't give a kitten too much meds at the same time... He ate something while at the vet, but now he's home and doesn't eat. Anyway, he isn't letargic, he cleans himself, greets us when we enter the bathroom, and his fur also looks better, more shiny. We got the blood count, and white blood cells, who were only 2.000, are 5.600 now! We are so glad the virus is not destroying them, Kento is fighting well.
The more specific blood test will be ready tomorrow.
Hi Screamingbelle, what other home remedies do you use?
FIV and Peritonitis are not the same thing... What I know is that Peritonitis, caused by a corona virus, is also called FIP.
I said FIV is not probable because vets stated that 1) it almost never kills a kitten fast, it takes time and usually happens when the cat is older, the other kitten died in 2 days... 2) sadly many kittens get sick or die from viruses, and 3) our vet is checking Kento since days, and his belly is fine, no liquid or pain.
However, as I said we are doing a more specific blood test today, it will be ready tomorrow, wish us luck!
I agree about diahrrea, it tries to get rid of germs and toxins, but it has to pass, or he will not absorb food and get too thin. He didn't vomit today nor yesterday!
Thank you all for the fast replies! We are all hoping Kento, who is a strong and big kitten, fights this damn virus and wins. The others so far showed no symptoms.
Sounds like Kento is quite a fighter.
Hello everybody. Sadly enough, I need your help again.
Unfortunately I don't have good news to post. The virus (a presunt Leucopenia) is gone, but now some of my kittens are sick again, from something different. It's probably a gastroenteritis but the vets aren't certain yet. The current situation is:
Kento (6 months old, vaccinated) = medium-strong cold (sneeze but no mucus dripping), beginning of stomatitis in the mouth, no fever, no vomit, no diahrrea but not perfect poop either, eats play and purrs. Feeding him Hill's I/D. On antibiotics for the cold.
Pedro (5 months old, vaccinated) = strong cold (sneeze but no mucus dripping), no fever, no vomit, poop is ok, eats play and purrs. He's the first who got the cold. Eating I/D too. On antibiotics for the cold.
Sid (4 months old, vaccinated) = weak cold (random sneezing), vomit, diahrrea, doesn't eat or drink (vomits everything), purrs and is awake and reactive but not constant. Giving him Hill's A/D or I/D. On antibiotics for the instestines (vomit & diahrrea) + antiemetic.
Garu (4 months old, vaccinated) = weak cold (random sneezing), no fever, no vomit, no diahrrea, he's the littlest but healthiest one.
Grey, Sid's brother, died 2 months ago from the virus; the others all passed it (Pedro, Sid and Garu very fast and with no problem, Kento with a lot of difficulties).
We've put Kento & Pedro on antibiotics for the cold.
Right now I need urgent advice for Sid as he's the one feeling sicker and doesn't eat.
He has vomit since Thursday evening and it's gotten worse in the last 3 days. Yesterday everything he ate or drank, he vomits, he couldn't keep it. Now it seems he can.
We force-fed him but obviously with minuscole amounts of food, using the syringe. We also tried to make him eat two different supplements, one with vitamines, one with milk ferments (both are products for pets).
First visit at the vet was Saturday, he did abdomen scan and everything was fine except gall-bladder (a little big, but that could be because he isn't eating); he took antiemetic to help stop vomit but didn't work, at home he ate something by himself but then vomited.
Second visit was yesterday morning: temperature went down to 36.5, so they kept them hot and hydratated him (IV + vitamines), took another type of antiemetic twice (one in the morning, one in the evening), did abdomen scan again, nothing different (stomach still empty, gall-bladder still big), except lymphnodes which apparently got bigger (they are infiammated so they said it's likely to be gastroenteritis), poop test result: no parasites.
He stayed at the vet all day, then we too him home for the night, kept him hot, he ate very little but didn't have vomit nor diahrrea, which is a good thing. Tried to eat dry food but looked like he couldn't crunch on it. This early morning, temperature was down again (36.7, his perfect temp would be 38.5). To the vet again, hot + IV therapy, same antiemetic as yesterday, will give him antibiotic later.
I ask all of you if you have any opinion on what could this be (gastroenteritis or not). Any advice, as usual, is welcome. None of the have fever.
He reacts but at times he gets weaker, poor little boy, sometimes he searches food but when he reachs it doesn't eat... Like when we feel sick and have vomit, of course we don't eat!
I am so tired and angry... How absurd is that? Kittens properly taken care of, kept inside, eating good food, staying in a clean place, vaccinated, yet getting sick twice in a month! It isn't normal or common! I know people who own more cats than I, let them go outdoor, and yet never had any health problem, despite not being cleaner people than me. I don't know how this can happen.
This post was modified from its original form on 24 Sep, 3:16
I'm so sorry Valentina....I hope your day goes well at the vets today and little Sid starts to make a recovery. I can't imagine what is wrong with your little guys. I have 3 cats and although they've had some minor tummy aches that kept them from eating for a day, they've never been really sick. Even the cats I feed outside seem pretty healthy. It's so hard when you're dealing with animals since they can't tell you what's going on.
Please let us know if they figure out what's happening with your sweet babies....I imagine you're going out of your mind with worry and trying to figure out what the root of the problem is.
((((((Hugs)))))) to you and purrs to your babies......hang in there Valentina ♥
This post was modified from its original form on 24 Sep, 3:25
Sorry about the new issues with your kittens, Valentina. Hope everything gets sorted out.
Dont know how his will copy, or if it will help. thereare similarities, and the fact your cats dont go outside, see if this is any help . So hope your cats are soon well, You must be so distressed by their illness's , love and hugs x wendy k x>>>>>>
SO HOW CAN AN INFECTIOUS DISEASE NOT BE CONTAGIOUS?
Feline Infectious Peritonitis is a reaction to infection with the feline coronavirus. Most cats who become infected with the feline enteric coronavirus (often simply called “feline coronavirus&rdquo essentially get the flu and never develop anything that can in any way be described as serious. Some cats, however, react with this devastating syndrome.
WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT THE FELINE ENTERIC CORONAVIRUS?
depiction of a coronavirus
Here are some basics about this virus:
It is common wherever cats are housed in groups
and it is readily transmitted between cats.
- Transmission is typically by contact with infected feces. This means that the litter box is the usual place where infection takes place. This infection is unusual in cats that free-roam outdoors (no litter box) or who live in homes where there is only one cat. The virus enters the new host’s body via the nose and mouth.
- An active infection lasts several weeks to a few months. Virus is shed in the infected cat’s stool during this period. If the cat is reinfected, virus sheds again for weeks to months. During this time, the cat may or may not seems at all ill. Some infected cats do not shed virus.
- Households with fewer than 5 cats eventually spontaneously clear of coronavirus. Households with more than 5 cats virtually never clear of coronavirus.
- Most household disinfectants readily kill coronavirus immediately. Room temperature kills coronavirus within 48 hours. Carpeting is protective to the virus and the virus is able to survive in carpeting for at least 7 weeks.
- Once a cat has been infected with the virus and recovered, the cat can be easily re-infected by continued exposure to infected feces. In this way, many catteries where there are always cats sharing litter boxes never rid themselves of this infection.
- The enteric coronavirus attacks intestinal cells and creates GI upset. As the long as the infection is confined to the GI tract, there will be no FIP.
The process of immunological defeat of the virus involves a cell called a “macrophage.” The macrophage consumes infected material, packaging it in special structures which it floods with acids and digestive enzymes. Any virus is killed by this process and its components are then used by the immune system to help mount a specific immunological reaction (i.e. make the proper antibodies, send specific killer cells etc.)
Macrophages (in green) engulf and destroy infectious organisms.
In some cats, a mutation occurs in the coronavirus. This mutation occurs during infection and allows the virus to survive the treatment by the macrophage. Instead of being killed by the macrophage, the virus essentially uses the macrophage to hitch a ride into the body’s core. The macrophage response mounts in an attempt to kill the virus but ends up producing heaps of ineffective macrophages and immunologic proteins which make up a special immunologic tissue called a &ldquoyogranuloma.” FIP is basically the infiltration of normal organs with pyogranulomas.
The mutation to a form of virus that can cause FIP is more likely to occur in a cat with an immune-compromise.&nbs
- WHY ISN’T THE MUTATED VIRUS CONTAGIOUS?
We do not know why. We can inject fluids from a cat with FIP into a normal cat and cause FIP but short of this kind of experimental transmission, the mutated virus doesn’t seem to make into the natural external secretions of an infected cat. This effectively confines the mutated virus inside the sick cat’s body, though the sick cat will still shed non-mutated virus.
HOW IS IT POSSIBLE THERE IS NO TEST FOR THIS CLASSICAL DISEASE?
We used to think that the difference between getting the “flu” and getting FIP was all about the strain of the virus with which a cat gets infected. Lots of time and effort was spent trying to determine what made the “FIP virus” special. We no longer think there is a “special” strain of virus that causes FIP. FIP results, as described above, from a mutation that occurs in the virus after infection has occurred. Whether or not this mutation occurs seems to relate more to the immune status of the cat than any factor in the virus. The more virus there is replicating, the greater the chance of mutation occurring. Having an immature or suppressed immune system means more virus replicating.