11 Week Old Kitten is Sick with a Virus -- but unsure of which one??

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ct970

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Another update! 48 hours after going off Albon his energy levels spiked, he is not lethargic anymore, he is getting up and playing and running around the house. He is eating fine, he got fluids the past few days so he is definitely hydrated for now. He is also drinking water, sometimes I think maybe a little much at once. His stools are soft but no longer "diarrhea". He has not vomited since Wednesday 9/23. His temperature has been fine, no fever. I did notice his belly is starting to swell. He did test positive for coccidia and was on Albon for 4 days, which made him feel horrible (liquid diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy), and the vet said that should have done the trick for the parasites. He seems to be fine, walking fine, grooming fine, sleeping normal amounts of time for his age. His coat is starting to look better. Vet said possible panleukopenia or FIP but I'm just not sure with his normal eating/drinking fine; and the fact he has a lot of energy and is playing quite often now.
 

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What a cutie! He looks like my cat, Pumpkin! :redheartpump:

I do see the rounded belly, but time will tell if it’s just bloat from eating well or something more. It’s so good to hear that he’s feeling better and playing normally. :)
 
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ct970

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So I have an 18 week old (4 1/2 months) kitten. When we got him at 11 weeks old he was having a very rough time, liquid diarrhea/vomiting/lethargy/fever/anemia/lack of appetite/underweight/blood in stool, you name it. After numerous vet visits, some antibiotics, some blood work and thinking the worst, we finally got him feeling better, slowly but surely. He ended up having Coccidia and then had an adverse reaction to Albon. He is eating well, he has over doubled in weight as well as drinking water good, running around/playing (full of energy - I mean peak running full speed through house at least twice per day but plays throughout the day with us & on his own), acting completely normal. He was switched to a prescription canned food - Purina ProPlan Feline EN Gastroenteric food to help his digestive system, which he seems to enjoy (he always eats it), I also add a little water to it to keep him hydrated. He is on Purina Kitten Chow for dry food.

The issue I am having is that he is still having intermittent runny poop. A few times a day, his poop is completely normal in size, shape, color. However, at least once a day he has a completely runny non-formed poop (not pure liquid like it was). Other times it will be runny at first w/some gas and then turn formed towards the end. I just am puzzled because he is on a special food designed for digestive issues, I am wondering if maybe he also has an issue with the dry? But I don't understand the half the time normal poop half the time runny unformed poop and it's been going on for at least 2 weeks now. I plan to address this at the vet when we go, we have an appointment for him this Friday. But he is acting completely normal, no lethargy, eating/drinking, playing/energy, sleeping normal amounts. I am just at a loss for what could be going on.
 
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rubysmama

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I don't have any experience with digestive issues with kittens, but I do with adult cats.

He was switched to a prescription canned food - Purina ProPlan Feline EN Gastroenteric food to help his digestive system, which he seems to enjoy (he always eats it), I also add a little water to it to keep him hydrated. He is on Purina Kitten Chow for dry food.
Depending on what is causing his sensitivity, the gastroenteric food isn't a 100% guarantee of solving the problem. I gave my Ruby a gastro food for a while, and because I think she has a chicken sensitivity, and the food's main ingredient was chicken, it didn't agree with her.

There could also be something in the kitten chow that doesn't agree with him, so maybe stick with the gastro, and no kitten chow, for a few days and see if there's any difference.

For older cats, trying a novel protein, such as duck or rabbit, can help. But not sure if you'd want to go that route so soon with a kitten.

The one thing that stood out in your above quote was adding water to his food. Is the gastro canned? If so, canned food contains a lot of water content, so it might not be necessary to add water. I've found, with my Ruby, adding water is good if her stool seems a bit dry, but adding too much can have the opposite result, with tending towards diarrhea.

Hopefully some other members will reply with other suggestions. Good luck.:redheartpump:
 
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ct970

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I don't have any experience with digestive issues with kittens, but I do with adult cats.



Depending on what is causing his sensitivity, the gastroenteric food isn't a 100% guarantee of solving the problem. I gave my Ruby a gastro food for a while, and because I think she has a chicken sensitivity, and the food's main ingredient was chicken, it didn't agree with her.

There could also be something in the kitten chow that doesn't agree with him, so maybe stick with the gastro, and no kitten chow, for a few days and see if there's any difference.

For older cats, trying a novel protein, such as duck or rabbit, can help. But not sure if you'd want to go that route so soon with a kitten.

The one thing that stood out in your above quote was adding water to his food. Is the gastro canned? If so, canned food contains a lot of water content, so it might not be necessary to add water. I've found, with my Ruby, adding water is good if her stool seems a bit dry, but adding too much can have the opposite result, with tending towards diarrhea.

Hopefully some other members will reply with other suggestions. Good luck.:redheartpump:
Thank you! This is all good info, I will definitely try not adding water to his canned prescription food as well as trying to take away the dry food and see what happens from there!
 

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Keep in mind that at his age he is growing fast and will be hungry between meals. Try Blue Wilderness kitten dry food; it’s grain-free.
 
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ct970

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Update: I stopped adding water to his canned food, his stools improved a little but not to the extent I would have liked them too. I took him to the vet yesterday and told them what was going on, they took a fecal and ran it for any worms/parasites and it came back clean. Next step is to see if its his dry food causing the issue.
 

rubysmama

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Sticking with one food only, and seeing if it makes a difference is a good idea. Good luck. :crossfingers:
 

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My last two kittens had intermittent loose stools notwithstanding clean fecal exams.I found good success with Propectalin,
Vetoquinol Pro-Pectalin Anti-Diarrhea Oral Gel Dog & Cat Supplement, 30-cc syringe - Chewy.com

Just be mindful to stop the medication when the stools firm up or you’ll have constipation
to contend with. It can be a bit tricky to administer; it depends on the cat. But it really does work, often with just a dose or two.

For my most recent kitten, we’ve also detected a chicken sensitivity and that he’s also very sensitive to sudden changes in his diet.
 
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ct970

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Hi, so sorry about the long post but here goes.

I got an 11 week old kitten from my local shelter who ended up getting pretty sick the day after we got him. He had liquid diarrhea, vomiting, lack of appetite, dehydration, underweight, lethargic, lack of playing/energy, fever of 103, etc. He was treated by several different vets (emergency, and switched primary vet) over the course of a month and a half and finally after rounds of Metronidazole, a blood panel, tests for FIV/HW/FEVL (all negative), fluids, cerenia injection, a diagnosis of coccidiosis and treatment with Albon, an adverse reaction to Albon which made things worse for him and he became anemic, he was taken off and started to improve rapidly, he began eating and gaining weight and had more and more energy. The vet has said that he didn't appear to be quite normal, and did worry about the possibility of FIP if it didn't improve. Currently, he is about 5 months old. His stools were runny for a while after that but after being put on a specialized can diet for gastroenteritis, his stools seem to be normal. He was finally healthy enough to get his last 2 FVRCP vaccines as well as rabies at 15 weeks old. He was acting perfectly normal for a while, he was playing, full of energy, eating dry and canned food on a regular schedule, being a normal kitty.

However, about 2 weeks ago I noticed a slight change in his behavior, he was sleeping more often throughout the day for longer periods, but would still play when he got up and was eating/drinking fine. I then noticed some green discharge around his penile area. I decided it best to take him back to the vet (keep in mind he had just been a week before and was healthy). They checked him out for a possible UTI, he had a fever of 103.6, but could not get a urine sample as his bladder was empty, vet said this is typical of kitties with UTI, they do not fill up their bladder, sent me home with a kit to get one myself with pellets that do not absorb urine but he did not take to doing that, as it was not his normal litter and I was not able to get one. With fever, and fact it was Friday going into weekend, vet suggested antibiotics course of Clavamox liquid 2x a day. I took him home and started that and he gained a lot of energy back and was sleeping quite a bit still but was more energetic once awake.

We started Clavamox on Saturday morning and by Tuesday morning I noticed he seemed off again, he started sleeping more often and was more lethargic, paler gums, not as interested in playing/eating his canned food but continued to eat dry food, rough greasy looking coat, no vomiting/diarrhea, etc. I waited to see if maybe it could have just been the antibiotic making him feel less like himself since it finally had time to kick in, but by Thursday he still wasn't feeling well and didn't look well, I noticed greenish discharge in penile area again and his meds were practically gone, had been out of system about 26 hours so I took him back to the vet (6 days after the 1st trip). He was running a fever of 104.6 this time!! Vet was obviously concerned as this was a higher fever than he had the week before. Vet mentioned possible FIP or underlying condition, as kittens should not be getting sick this often (2x in 2 1/2 months). Vet said he has never been quite normal and suspected something else may be going on but without extensive FIP testing and possible non-definitive diagnosis due to hard to diagnose, the only thing we can do is treat any symptoms that come up as well as give him love/support and if he continues to grow/thrive then we hope for the best (he is growing/gaining weight normally currently). Vet put him on injection of convenia for a longer-lasting antibiotic, cerenia injection for nausea, and also told us to finish up any clavamox that might still be in the bottle and gave him fluids again. Well since I took him to the vet Thursday morning, he was still lethargic and slept all day but was eating well and no other symptoms. Friday was a better day, he actually began playing by himself again (not for more than about 15 minutes, but still an improvement over not being interested at all), he started eating his canned food normally again, seeking attention, being curious (and mischievous at times) and not being as reclusive as he was and his coat began to feel much softer by Friday night. Seems as though he is beginning to feel better.

I guess I am just having to process a lot of feelings. I feared when we got him we may lose him to FIP or something else and I was preparing myself for that when he started getting better (my boyfriend also said he didn't think he would make it out of that 1st illness). Then, I had hope because he was better and acting so much better for a while, and then this happens and FIP gets brought back into the picture and now I'm just feeling a lot of emotions and worry all over again. I do not want to get my hopes up too much, in the case that he gets better only to fall ill again in another month. I guess my question becomes, does this sound like potential FIP? Could it be something else autoimmune causing this? We unfortunately do not have the funds, especially after the bills that just pile up from all his visits, to extensively test for FIP especially not knowing if it could be at the end. My boyfriend seems to think maybe the infection wasn't cleared out of his system by the time his antibiotics ran out and that is why his fever spiked once he was off of it for a day, that maybe now the infection will have more time to clear itself out. I do not know what to think, but it just breaks my heart to see him not feeling well, but I am doing the very best I can in this frustrating and stressful situation, I am doing everything in my power to make sure he can be as healthy as he possibly can and get as much attention/loving as he can. Any thoughts, concerns, advice would be appreciated. TIA!
 

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My goodness, you and the kitten have been through a lot together. Poor little fellow! I know how fast vet bills pile up too. So sorry this is happening.

It is very difficult to diagnose FIP. I would not do all that testing. If he has wet FIP or the dry, non-effusive kind, you will eventually know because he will deteriorate rapidly and need to be euthanized.

The green discharge in the penile area is concerning, and would seem to indicate a nasty infection in the urethra or higher up. So a strong antibiotic is recommended, and when an infection is severe, sometimes it can take two rounds to clear. I’ve had cats who needed meds for a month or more to clear a UTI that got into the kidneys and was causing pain, fever, nausea, and bloody urine. A med called ZeniquIn finally worked better than clavamox.

Another thing to be aware of is when kittens are getting their vaccines they can feel puny or even outright ill from the side effects for several days afterwards. This on top of an infection elsewhere in the system can result in many of the symptoms you’ve described.

I would take a wait and see approach and absolutely not assume the worst. If he can stay healthy for awhile his immune system will only get stronger. Also keep in mind that kittens sleep a lot between play sessions, especially as they grow, and this is normal. In fact, adult cats will sleep 16 hours a day, and that is normal too.

I understand all of your concerns and fears, but try to enjoy him. It’s not uncommon for shelter cats to be exposed to any number of viruses in a shelter. While shelters do excellent work, it is difficult to keep a pristine environment with so many felines in and out.

Let’s hope the worst is behind you and your little guy gets stronger and stronger. Keep us posted! 😊
 
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My goodness, you and the kitten have been through a lot together. Poor little fellow! I know how fast vet bills pile up too. So sorry this is happening.

It is very difficult to diagnose FIP. I would not do all that testing. If he has wet FIP or the dry, non-effusive kind, you will eventually know because he will deteriorate rapidly and need to be euthanized.

The green discharge in the penile area is concerning, and would seem to indicate a nasty infection in the urethra or higher up. So a strong antibiotic is recommended, and when an infection is severe, sometimes it can take two rounds to clear. I’ve had cats who needed meds for a month or more to clear a UTI that got into the kidneys and was causing pain, fever, nausea, and bloody urine. A med called ZeniquIn finally worked better than clavamox.

Another thing to be aware of is when kittens are getting their vaccines they can feel puny or even outright ill from the side effects for several days afterwards. This on top of an infection elsewhere in the system can result in many of the symptoms you’ve described.

I would take a wait and see approach and absolutely not assume the worst. If he can stay healthy for awhile his immune system will only get stronger. Also keep in mind that kittens sleep a lot between play sessions, especially as they grow, and this is normal. In fact, adult cats will sleep 16 hours a day, and that is normal too.

I understand all of your concerns and fears, but try to enjoy him. It’s not uncommon for shelter cats to be exposed to any number of viruses in a shelter. While shelters do excellent work, it is difficult to keep a pristine environment with so many felines in and out.

Let’s hope the worst is behind you and your little guy gets stronger and stronger. Keep us posted! 😊
Thank you so much for all the information and kind words, I appreciate it! 😊 I'm definitely soaking up all the time I get with him, no matter how long that may be! I agree with the wait and see approach, will definitely be doing that and monitoring him. Thank you again, and I will definitely keep providing updates as time goes on.
 
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Just a little update since it's been a while. Unfortunately he has since developed a pretty swollen and hard belly around November 13-14 and has not gone down, which suggests wet FIP to me. However his quality of life has not yet been compromised to the extent that I think he needs to be euthanized just yet. He is eating both wet/dry food throughout the day, drinking water, and playing at least 3 times during the day for about 10-15 minutes and sleeps around 20 hours a day. Unless he exhibits trouble breathing, not eating/drinking on own, or showing no interest in playing/rambunctious, then we will continue to enjoy him and make the decision once we see any of those signs. I hate that this is the likely culprit the whole time and that we still can't get a definitive diagnosis without spending an additional $2K+ on top of the $1k we have already spent, plus there's no way we could afford the black market treatment especially with it being experimental and no guarantee to work, we just simply don't have the funds. For now he is getting all the love we can possibly give him and letting him do whatever it is he wants to as long as he is comfortable. We will not be pursuing anymore treatments as there isn't much else that can be done unless something drastically changes.
 
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Hey everyone. I know it's been quite a while but figured I would post an update. Unfortunately little man has been intermittently ill up to this point. Although he seemed to get better for about a months time, he fell ill again around November 4th with what was suspected to be UTI but after a round of clavamox he still had a fever of 104.6 on November 11th. Vet suspected FIP at this point because he just seems to be in and out of health so often. He was then put on convenía and got fluids and cerenia. He has been doing ok since then. November 13/14 he began developing swollen and hard belly that has not gone down, which suggests wet FIP to me. However; he is not acting horribly as he is still following me around begging for attention, eating wet/dry food, drinking, and playing a few times throughout the day both with us and by himself and sleeps around 18-20 hours a day. Until he progresses further and exhibits any signs of uncomfortableness, we will continue to give him love and provide him with the best home we can give to him until his final days. Unfortunately we cannot afford to confirm this diagnosis, just based on suspicions history and symptoms, we have already put over $1k into him in 2 months time and it would be another $2k per the vet to diagnose. We also cannot afford the black market drug that is unregulated as well as not a guarantee despite good results. We also don't wanna keep putting various medications in him that do not seem to be working, we will just monitor his symptoms from this point on. Was hoping for a better outcome, but this is what has transpired and there wasn't anything anyone could have done differently, but I am glad that we could provide him with a home where he can be comfortable for as long as he is able. Thanks for reading!!
 

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Sounds like FIP to me. I battled dry FIP for 7 months a few years ago with my Himalayan kitten. Intermittent fevers, not wanting to eat, not grooming himself. It turned wet and his belly swelled. I had to put him down within a few days after that because he got so bad. Sorry about your kitty. FIP is such a horrible disease.
 

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I'm so happy he has you! I agree with you, there comes a time when you have done what you can, and now you have to pray for the best. Just love him as long as you are able, I will pray for a miracle for that sweet boy, he is a fighter and deserves what happiness and good health he can get. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.......
 
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