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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 16921
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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My cat is 10 years old, he has recently lost a lot of weight,

Customer Question

my cat is 10 years old, he has recently lost a lot of weight, his fur is dull and greasy, for the last 2 days he has had what seems to be a stiff neck, he is often putting his head on the floor at an odd angle,he was sneezing a fair bit last night but no sign of that today
he is still friendly and otherwise seems his normal self
any ideas?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am sorry to hear that your fellow Petra has lost weight, has dull, greasy fur, and has an abnormal, flexed, neck position.
What you are probably seeing with your fellow is called ventroflexion of the neck, which is usually secondary to muscle weakness and that can be secondary to low potassium levels (either due kidney disease, diabetes, or a diet deficient in potassium), low levels of thiamine (diet related), hyperthyroidism or a toxin exposure.
His inability to normally groom himself is probably causing his fur condition and would also related to muscle weakness.
The most common cause for this in older cats is kidney failure.
Rarely this can be secondary to idiopathic hyperaldosteronism, or a tumor secreting high levels of the hormone aldosterone. Aldosterone is a hormone which helps regulate electrolytes, particularly potassium.
Though this isn't painful he probably feels unwell, and quite weak.
Ideally he would see his veterinarian for an examination, and have some blood tests and a urinalysis run to see exactly why he is the way he is. If money is tight I would ask for a senior cat panel which should include the highlights of a few liver enzymes, kidney enzymes, electrolyte levels (including potassium), glucose, and a T-4 to look for hyperthyroidism as well as a urinalysis.
Kidney disease is something we can often control for a period of time with fluids, diet and supplements if it is not too advanced. He can have a good quality of life if we can get things under control. Hyperthyroidism is also treatable. Supplements can increase the potassium to appropriate levels in the meantime which will help with his muscle weakness.
Please let me know if you have any further questions.
Dr. Kara and 3 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

thanks Ill take him to the vet

Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
You are very welcome, please let me know how things go for your fellow.