I am becoming discouraged and exhausted taking care of kitten

snowkitten

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Hi everyone,
I just want to start by saying that I really care about this kitten. But I am getting to a point where I am just exhausted and don't know what to do. I know I won't give up on him bc I just could not. I am currently fostering him bc I will not be able to keep him as my apartment is not big enough for both him and my dog. Luckily, I think I've found him a potential home. But he is not ready yet and I want him to be healthy when he finally makes it there.

I found this kitten abandoned near my apartments about 4 weeks ago, so I decided to take him in bc the poor thing was on the brink of death. He was severely malnourished, flea infested, and full of worms. Luckily, I was able to take him to the vet that same day and they treated him for the fleas and roundworms.

However, later that day I found out he had tapeworms as well so I took him to the vet again a few days later, but they weren't able to treat him due to his size and age. So I waited 3 weeks to finally get him treated. The entire time he was quarantined in my bathroom. It was very crazy I won't lie. Id never cared for a kitten before so it was all a learning experience.

Anyways , this entire time I've been cleaning up after him, and making sure I clean any tapeworm segments I saw, and cleaning his litter box several times a day (especially his poop , bc it would have live worms in it ☹).

Anyways, about 3 days ago (after he had a vet checkup and was treated for tapeworms), he was finally able to roam the apartment for the first time and so he's been hanging out everywhere. Only to find out today, that I believe he has ringworm (not sure yet but I'm pretty sure that's what he has). And it just irritates me bc I told the vet on his most recent trip that he was having some hair loss on his upper eye. But he said oh that's looks normal so I didn't think more of it, until today. It looks like it's getting worse. He has some redness on the skin above his eye, and some hairloss as well. He also has some scaly red skin on his front legs. And he seems to be very itchy, i can't tell if it's ringworm or not but I'm thinking it is. And now I will probably need to disinfect everything, and unfortunately hes been licked and sniffed a lot by my dog , so I will probably need to have her checked out too. And it doesn't help that I didn't have good experiences with the 2 vets I saw. And I'd like to take him to another, but at this point I can't afford to pay another vet once again for a third exam.

It's just very exhausting and I feel like I'm running out of energy. I feel awful now bc I will need to quarantine him again, and he's gonna cry and cry. And I feel like I'm a horrible person. It was so nice to have him out and about. And now it's back to square one. But now I've gotta deal with a potential roundworm infection that might spread to my dog (or me and my family, hopefully not). Hes a pretty chill kitten. And I don't want to keep pushing him away (that's what it feel like when I put him in the bathroom, and bc I feel like I can't touch him too much). Anyways, sorry for the long rant. I would just like some advice. Thank you.
 

Meowmee

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Wow you have been through a lot and it certainly can be overwhelming. Thank you so much for saving him. ❤
It will be totally worth it in the end because he will be a healthy kitten and he will now have a great life instaed of suffering outside.

Is your dvm sure it is ringworm? You also called it roundworm so I wasn’t sure. Anyway I know it is a bit of an ordeal since I had that once as a child. After 3 weeks of oral and topical treatment he should be unable to transmit it but it takes longer to resolve so he needs to be medicated still.

A culture needs to be done if it is ringworm and shaving his fur if possible where it is is a good idea as well.

Maybe you can get him so a device to play purrli and or music while he is isolated to help him to feel less lonely. And wear gloves etc when you interact with him. I would steam everything in your house, wash all bedding etc just in case.

When I took Merlin in adult outdoor kitty he ended up having c difficile and it was a nightmare. But pre-pandemic I learned everything I needed to do to isolate him and prevent my kitties and family from being exposed. He was also quarantined for possible rabies after biting me but tg he was ok. The steamer was the best. I also used bleach wipes, gloves and different shoes when I spent time with him.


Big hugs to you. I hope you can let him run around again soon and get him a good home if you can’t keep him.



 
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JenAh

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It sounds obvious you are trying your absolute best. Could you get in contact with a rescue group to see if trheyvwould take him on, with you as the carer to support with any further vet work and finding him a home? They may have carers already with RW litter who could take him if you do need that support- it can be really consuming treatment plan that takes time. Round and Tape worms are never fun but sadly a big part of rescue :(
 

aleeming

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I would go on a petfinder site and by looking as if you're searching for a cat you can find groups near you. I would second the previous suggestion to look to those for support, often financial as well

As far as itching I would also be concerned about mange, unlikely though it is. However as far as ringworm I have rescued many cats with ringworm and although I have actually caught it myself it has not become spread amongst my other cats (we foster and at any point have up to 15 cats and kittens). It simply does not seem to take much of a hold on adult healthy animals. We also have had up to 5 dogs and our dogs NEVER got ringworm despite being very cat friendly.

So don't freak out too much about that. Just treat as much as you can and don't panic if you can't clean everything constantly. I'm a slob and it hasn't seemed to matter much regarding ringworm although I know it can be an issue in shelters. But shelters are full of stressed animals. Homes are different.

Tapeworms are not that big a deal. In a kitten they could be but if you treat and then treat a second time you're usually ok if you don't have a flea problem. They rarely cause much in the way of symptoms so just watch for them in the feces and treat as needed. Roundworms can be treated by pyrantel pamoate which is cheap and sold on Amazon for humans as well. A big bottle lasts forever. Dosage can be googled but for the typical bottle (don't have it with me now) it's 1 ml per 10 lbs. The safety margin is huge so you don't need to worry about exact weights. We had a foster once give kittens that were 2 lb 2 ml by mistake instead of 0.2 ml and they were fine.

Other worms can be more problematic. Fenbendazole can be bought OTC and works on many. Giardia and coccidia are not worms but can be a big problem. If your kitten looks healthy I wouldn't worry too much at this time though.

If it were me with one kitten and a dog I would relax and not worry too much. I would want to verify the ringworm vs mange just in case, but mange is treatable too. It's just not that common in cats so I wouldn't expect it. I have seen lots of ringworm but only one cat with mange. We have actually had many dog rescues with mange and they passed it on to the other dogs but never the cats.

I have found that some vets are not great diagnosticians and rely a lot on tests. I had a dog years ago that we rescued and I was sure she had mange. The skin scrapings never showed it in 2 vet visits. On the 3rd visit it was worse and a different vet said he wasn't even going to bother with a scraping as it was clearly mange. This dog infected all out dogs as we were told it was NOT mange and didn't isolate her. But the first vet didn't look at the dog, just the skin scraping. I don't know how to fix the vet problem though.

Have you tried setting up a go fund me? If you send a link to your friends and coworkers and put it on Facebook etc. you may get some financial help which would also cut down the stress. I know that is the biggest stressor for me when a pet is sick.

Good luck and don't get discouraged. You're doing something very caring and the kitten may not appreciate how hard you're trying, but we do.
 
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tortiesandtabbies

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I have no advice but sending you and the kitten good thoughts. Also experiencing caring for four kittens (and really, cats in general) for the first time so I feel you, a lot.
 

CarmiesMom

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I would go on a petfinder site and by looking as if you're searching for a cat you can find groups near you. I would second the previous suggestion to look to those for support, often financial as well

As far as itching I would also be concerned about mange, unlikely though it is. However as far as ringworm I have rescued many cats with ringworm and although I have actually caught it myself it has not become spread amongst my other cats (we foster and at any point have up to 15 cats and kittens). It simply does not seem to take much of a hold on adult healthy animals. We also have had up to 5 dogs and our dogs NEVER got ringworm despite being very cat friendly.

So don't freak out too much about that. Just treat as much as you can and don't panic if you can't clean everything constantly. I'm a slob and it hasn't seemed to matter much regarding ringworm although I know it can be an issue in shelters. But shelters are full of stressed animals. Homes are different.

Tapeworms are not that big a deal. In a kitten they could be but if you treat and then treat a second time you're usually ok if you don't have a flea problem. They rarely cause much in the way of symptoms so just watch for them in the feces and treat as needed. Roundworms can be treated by pyrantel pamoate which is cheap and sold on Amazon for humans as well. A big bottle lasts forever. Dosage can be googled but for the typical bottle (don't have it with me now) it's 1 ml per 10 lbs. The safety margin is huge so you don't need to worry about exact weights. We had a foster once give kittens that were 2 lb 2 ml by mistake instead of 0.2 ml and they were fine.

Other worms can be more problematic. Fenbendazole can be bought OTC and works on many. Giardia and coccidia are not worms but can be a big problem. If your kitten looks healthy I wouldn't worry too much at this time though.

If it were me with one kitten and a dog I would relax and not worry too much. I would want to verify the ringworm vs mange just in case, but mange is treatable too. It's just not that common in cats so I wouldn't expect it. I have seen lots of ringworm but only one cat with mange. We have actually had many dog rescues with mange and they passed it on to the other dogs but never the cats.

I have found that some vets are not great diagnosticians and rely a lot on tests. I had a dog years ago that we rescued and I was sure she had mange. The skin scrapings never showed it in 2 vet visits. On the 3rd visit it was worse and a different vet said he wasn't even going to bother with a scraping as it was clearly mange. This dog infected all out dogs as we were told it was NOT mange and didn't isolate her. But the first vet didn't look at the dog, just the skin scraping. I don't know how to fix the vet problem though.

Have you tried setting up a go fund me? If you send a link to your friends and coworkers and put it on Facebook etc. you may get some financial help which would also cut down the stress. I know that is the biggest stressor for me when a pet is sick.

Good luck and don't get discouraged. You're doing something very caring and the kitten may not appreciate how hard you're trying, but we do.
That's what i liked about my vet who recently retired he didn't rely so much on tests as the pet itself and his experiance he'd been a vet about 50 years and decided to retire at the begining of this month the new vet took over shes much more into tests and expensive ones at that and shes fresh out of vet school so no experiance so to speek though she assisted and worked at the office off and on sence HS.

Anyway Ring worm is generaly a roundish patch i'd be more worried it was a reaction to one of the worm medications or somthing the kitty has come into contact with in your home or somtimes stress will cause cats to pull their fur out talk to the vet just call them and see if they can offer any advice best of luck.
 
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snowkitten

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That's what i liked about my vet who recently retired he didn't rely so much on tests as the pet itself and his experiance he'd been a vet about 50 years and decided to retire at the begining of this month the new vet took over shes much more into tests and expensive ones at that and shes fresh out of vet school so no experiance so to speek though she assisted and worked at the office off and on sence HS.

Anyway Ring worm is generaly a roundish patch i'd be more worried it was a reaction to one of the worm medications or somthing the kitty has come into contact with in your home or somtimes stress will cause cats to pull their fur out talk to the vet just call them and see if they can offer any advice best of luck.
Yeah I'm not sure if it's ringworm at this point bc he also has patches on his hind legs and I read that that is not a common place for ringworm but I'm not exactly sure.
The vet put him on antibiotics and gave him flea treatment just to see if maybe it was a reaction to something and he developed an infection.
His ear is doing a little better (it was turning crusty and red around the border of his ear). The ringworm test should show results in the next week. I was thinking maybe it was a reaction to my dog's licks bc she licked him on that area. I just want him to get better soon bc his new mom is waiting for him!
 
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