Found A Starving Stray. How Would I Care For Him?

Discussion in 'Cats S.O.S' started by Victoria6, Sep 13, 2017 at 10:30 AM.

  1. Victoria6

    Victoria6 TCS Member Kitten

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    Aug 20, 2017
    Central Florida
    After being hit with hurricane Irma, a lot of strays have been turning up around my neighborhood- mostly cats. Yesterday my sister was lucky enough to save a little cat that looks like he hasn't had a solid meal in a week. He looks to be older than 4 months but younger than a year old. As much as we want to, we cannot afford to keep him, but my mother is willing to help nurture him for about a week until we find someone who can give him all the love and attention he deserves. As much as I hate to say this, a vet is not an option at the moment as I am a college student with a tight budget. For now, though, I was wondering if there are any steps I should do to care for him? He has fleas and someone suggested to bathe him in dawn dish detergent to get rid of them. Even though he's pretty calm about being in an unfamiliar place, I don't want to put him through that stress from a bath. That and because he is so skinny (like feel every bone skinny) I don't want to pick him up for fear of hurting him. He has a wound on his paw and from closer observation, it looks like a bite wound that he kept licking at. Any idea how I could clean that up? Despite his condition, he is eating normally, wants to cuddle, is pretty vocal when you stop petting him and is trying to jump onto anything he can. Mind you, it has only been a day since we've had him. I'm guessing this is a good sign? We have the basic necessities for him like dry food, water, a litter box, and a little bed. Is there anything else we can do to help bring him back to a healthy state until we find him a good home?

    P.s. I attached some photos of the little guy. It's a bit blurry because the cutie just doesn't sit still at all when he wants to be pet.

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  2. vyger

    vyger TCS Member Adult Cat

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    Jun 24, 2017
    Northeast Montana
    I don't think giving it a bath would be too much stress. Just be careful to keep the water at a warm temperature, body temperature which would be around 100 f. Being to hot will cause him to be very uncomfortable and too cold will make him shiver. The bigger problem with baths is not so much the water but drying off completely after the bath. Use several towels and get as much moisture off of him as possible. I have used a hair dryer at a low setting but a lot of cats are afraid of that so I don't know that I would try it for a first bath.
    There should be no problem with picking him up.
    Although getting food will make an immediate difference in energy and comfort it will take some time for him to start filling in.
     
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  3. Mamanyt1953

    Mamanyt1953 Rules my home with an iron paw Staff Member Forum Helper

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    Havelock, North Carolina
    Make sure that you feed him small meals all through the day. Too much at one time might overwhelm his little system.
     
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  4. vyger

    vyger TCS Member Adult Cat

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    Jun 24, 2017
    Northeast Montana
    Yeah, he will have the tendency to gorge, and if he does he might just barf it back up. So little snacks right now is best. Once he gets used to the idea that food is always available he won't be so intent on eating as much as possible all at once.
     
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  5. Victoria6

    Victoria6 TCS Member Kitten

    16
    3
    Aug 20, 2017
    Central Florida
    Is that so? I'll start feeding him smaller portions until he starts getting better. So far, I had food available whenever he was hungry and he only ate a little bit every few hours. But I think I'll switch it up just in case. Thank you for the help!
     
  6. catsknowme

    catsknowme TCS Member Top Cat

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    Eastern California,USA
    :angel: You are true cat guardian - bless you for taking him in. I know that money is tight, but if you can give him some canned food, it will be easier for him to digest. Sometimes they get sores in their mouth from dehydration so you can also try soaking a bit of the dry food and see if he likes that. Boiled chicken works, too. The fleas might have made him anemic so just feeding him probably saved his life. If you look at the "Hurricane Irma Is Headed Our Way!" Thread in The Cat Lounge, you can see who some of our FL members are, in case you need local advice, maybe send them a Private Message. Again, bless you and your mom for rescuing that dear boy!:rock:
     
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  7. Victoria6

    Victoria6 TCS Member Kitten

    16
    3
    Aug 20, 2017
    Central Florida
    Thank you very much :blush: So far we have canned food made for kittens his age as well as some high-calorie gel that was recommended. Took him a little bit of time to get used to it because he really liked his dry food, but he's fine with it now! I am definitely going to visit that thread thanks so much!!
     
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  8. Mamanyt1953

    Mamanyt1953 Rules my home with an iron paw Staff Member Forum Helper

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    Oct 16, 2015
    Havelock, North Carolina
    Excellent! Of all the animals left desperate after our hurricanes, I am thrilled that this one has made a soft landing with caring hearts around him. I'm sure you will find a good place for him to wait for his forever home.
     
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