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Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
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Experience:  16 years of small animal internal medicine, surgery and preventive medicine.
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Very worried for my cat. Hes a 8 year old persian

Resolved Question:

I'm very worried for my cat. He's a 8 year old persian male. About a month ago, he started vomiting from time to time, like once every week, and suddenly in the middle of the night we would wake up and he was struggling to breathe. We tried to calm him down and it stopped. We thought it was a hairball that time. But when after a few more days, he started vomiting once every few minutes (about 8 times in 2 hours) and also had diarrhoea, we took him immediately to the vet. They gave him a couple of shots, and told us to keep an eye on him. But he started vomiting again in the afternoon a few more times. New trip to the vet, same thing, this time also gave us some pills for the stomach.

That night he started again and we decided to take him to emergency vet. They took him in. They did blood tests, gave him liquids via his arm, and tested kidneys, pancreas, examined him more carefully for signs of blockage, etc. They wanted to see if he would vomit right after eating, but he was afraid and wouldn't eat while being there.
He was with them for a couple of days, only eating a few cookies we were allowed to give him while visiting him, he would only eat with us. And he doesn't like the soft diet food they gave us that is more gentle with his stomach, he wouldn't even try it. He was peeing fine by the way. So they decided to have us take him home with a bunch of medicines. Pills and powder.

Since then, he seemed to do fine, started eating and drinking fine again, only we noticed he drinks a lot, and after drinking he gags only once. Almost every time he drinks. But no vomit, seemed under control.

The other day I grabbed him and I think While grabbing him I pressed his chest a bit by mistake, nothing that would have harmed him, but he suddenly started that thing where he struggles to breathe wheezing and having a hard time. Only for a few seconds. Then when he stopped, he vomited right there and then. That was 2 days ago, and today he started all over again.

Since this morning about 2,5 hours ago, he vomited already 3 times (1st time with food, second time a dark orange fluid, and third time foamy mucus-like liquid, and I found 3 recent liquid diarrhoea stains in the litter. (his backside is still covered in diarrhoea as I type this)

I am not sure if I should take him to the same place as they didn't find anything at all, and I feel like they didn't know what else to do. I'm considering another place where they're specialised in cats. I will certainly book an appointment asap.
Does anyone have any idea what could this be? please help me I'm so worried. Should I treat this as an emergency?

Forgot to mention he also had watery eyes with a little mucus discharge and they gave us a powder to mix with his food or water for a few days. His eyes are always way too wet and he still has a tiny bit of mucus discharge from them from time to time.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 3 years ago.
Welcome and thanks for asking your question. My name isXXXXX am a licensed veterinarian. I am sorry for the delay in response. If you would like to continue can you please answer a few questions so that I can be well informed and give you the best advice.

1- Did either of the vet's do any imaging like xrays or abdominal ultrasound?
2- What is the name of the medication he is on?

There may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies as I type out a thorough reply for you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Many thanks for your help.

No, even Ii requested it, they examined him several times and said there was no sign whatsoever of any blockage. Actually I spoke with 2 vets and one of the two pulled faces at me when I was insisting on the x-rays, as it was so obvious for her that it wasn't necessary.

They gave us first:
- 1 pinch of Bisolvon Sachet 5g every 24 hours
- Zantac oral solution 0.5ml every 12 hours (20 days)

After telling them that he was gagging a lot with Zantac they switched the Zantac with famotidine tablets 20mg (1/4 tablet every 24 hours 1h before food)

Also would like to add, that that thing he does from time to time (did 2 days ago, but it was almost 1 month ago or more the last time before) that he suddenly struggles to breath for a few seconds, after searching for videos of the same thing, I found he makes the same pose and sounds as a cat having an asthma attack.

I removed food and water, should I try and give him food or water this evening again? unless he vomits again, should I keep an eye on him? or you recommend taking him to the vet asap?

Thanks

Monica

Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 3 years ago.
Monica, the gasping you describe is not asthma if it is for such a short period. You see, when having an asthma attack the cat will continue with the gasping for air for a long time. It is very likely he could have a spasm of the upper airway from the vomiting/retching.
As far as the vomiting as you may already know it caused either by disorders affecting the gastrointestinal tract or secondary to a systemic disease. If the initial blood work and physical exam did not provide a definitive diagnosis and current treatment has not eliminated the problem then the next step is to take a closer look at the gastrointestinal tract doing either xrays or an abdominal ultrasound. Highly recommend having him rechecked by a veterinarian to have either of these test done. In the meantime for tonight this is what you can do:

1- Keep him on Famotidine as directed by family veterinarian.
2- No food or water for 8-12 hours. Need to give his gastrointestinal tract time to rest.
3- After 8-12 hours offer a small amount of water. Wait half hour, if no vomiting, offer small amount of rice (50%) and boiled boneless chicken or ground beef (50%) 4-6 times a day.

Note: If he is going to see the vet in the morning best to leave him without food on an empty stomach.

4- Follow up with family veterinarian. For xrays or ultrasound. If they do not find anything on xrays or ultrasound discuss with vet about looking down his upper gastrointestinal tract with an endoscope.

My goal is to provide you with excellent service – if you feel you have gotten anything less, please reply back. I am happy to address follow-up questions. Thank you for your business and I hope to work with you again soon!

Dr. Peter
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks so much for your advise, I will do that.

About that asthma-like thing, just to say that my boyfriend told me that a couple of months ago he did that for a few minutes almost every night for about a week, then stopped and he has since only done that a couple of times. I was't home during that time and I didn't know. During those times, he had not been vomiting either before or after. Might be worth knowing if it changes anything?

The other time he did it it was also after I touched his chest, and since then I try to avoid pressing that area if I pet him or grab him as any pressure there seems to trigger that.

Sorry for the further question, I will finalise and rate right after this.


Many thanks.

Monica

Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 3 years ago.
Monica, I am not really certain why he is doing this especially with the episodes being intermittently. There are many conditions that can affect the upper airway that can cause him to this. For example polyps in the pharyngeal area may cause him to this motion. I would have your vet examine his upper airway when they take the xrays or do the ultrasound.

Please reply if you have additional questions.

Dr. Peter
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