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Dr. Susan
Dr. Susan, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 6785
Experience:  8 years of clinical experience with specialty in veterinary pain management, urology, and geriatrics
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my nearly 10 year old cat recently refused the dietary food

Resolved Question:

my nearly 10 year old cat recently refused the dietary food he has been put on to some three years ago as a result of his bladder stones. First, did not touch his wet food for days, tried freshly cooked cod after a week mixed with his wet food and a little gravy. Obviously not good for him but he ate it! Went for the prescription wet food next day and that was it again. Gave him cats milk today, which he took and some tune in brine. Am concerned that this cotains salt and therefore not good for him. Also can't afford to feed him on fresh cod etc. in the lon run. What is wrong with him as he was happy with Hill's Prescription Food for 3 years?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. Susan replied 2 years ago.
Dr. Susan :

Hi, I can help you with your question today.

Dr. Susan :

Although there is a chance that they changed something about the formula of the food, that is unlikely.

Dr. Susan :

I am more concerned that this indicates Charlie has another condition causing inappetence.

Dr. Susan :

We can see this with pancreatitis, liver disease, and kidney disease for example.

Dr. Susan :

When is the last time Charlie had any blood work checked?

Customer:

Not since he was last seen by the vet roughly 3 years ago after having been released after his bladder stone treatment. He was absolutely fine ever since! Loved to be outside a lot , every night indeed, but recently prefers to spend more time indoors, even using a cat loo which was rigourously refused in the past.

Dr. Susan :

Aside from his decreased appetite for his regular food, have you noticed any changes in his activity level or amount of thirst and urination?

Customer:

He now drinks from the water bowl available inside - in the past he only used the birds' bath outside. And yes, he now uses the cat loo for urinating in the night which he never did in the past = although he used to prefer to spend his nights outside, so I am not sure.

Dr. Susan :

OK, I am concerned that this may indicate an increase in overall volume of thirst and urination.

Dr. Susan :

That would be consistent with renal disease.

Dr. Susan :

I do recommend that we rule out /diagnose an underlying medical condition at this point.

Dr. Susan :

I think that is more likely than a simple refusal to eat his regular food.

Dr. Susan :

I would start with a physical exam and senior screening blood work.

Dr. Susan :

Hopefully that will be enough to give us a diagnosis so that we can begin a targeted treatment plan.

Customer:

What is renal disease, please? I paid a lot of money when he needed treatment for the bladder stones but my income situation has changed since. i. e. can I help him without having to take him to a local vet again incurring substanstial fees?

Dr. Susan :

Renal disease, in older cats, usually means kidney failure.

Dr. Susan :

We can definitely work on ways to treat that without hospitalization and severe expense, but the most important thing right now is getting a diagnosis so that we know what we are up against.

Customer:

So you suggest to take him to the vet for blood test?

Dr. Susan :

I do. In the meantime,

Dr. Susan :

I recommend offering him dilute chicken broth or dilute water from a tuna can.

Dr. Susan :

This will encourage him to drink more, which can be helpful if he does have kidney disease.

Customer:

Many thanks for your advice

Dr. Susan :

You're welcome! Please let me know if you have further questions. I am happy to continue until I provide the service that you seek.

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