Cat discharge, sleepy, diarrhea, very worried

by Moe
(Cupar, SK Canada)

Our 3 year old male cat has slept for two days and has diarrhea and now his bum has a discharge. He just got up to use his litter box but won't eat. His meow is different too. We are really worried. Please help. We live in the country and the vet doesn't open until Monday. It is Saturday night. We appreciate your advice. Thank you.

Dear Moe,

I am sorry, but your cat does indeed sound very ill and there's little you can do without the help of a veterinarian. Are you certain there is no veterinarian anywhere in your area that sees emergency patients on Sunday? It would be better for you to go to a different veterinarian than you usually go to if you can be seen today than to wait until tomorrow for your regular vet.

There are so many things that could cause the signs you describe that I couldn't begin to tell you what is wrong with him. However, in addition to whatever else is bothering your kitty, he is most likely dehydrated.

It is difficult to get a cat to take in enough fluids, even if you try forcing them, when they are dehydrated and not eating and drinking on their own. Also, eating and drinking can make diarrhea worse in many cases, so forcing water in him may not be the best idea.

However, if there is absolutely no veterinarian for you to take him to, I would suggest you offer him a variety of liquids such as the water from a can of real tuna, chicken broth, or water flavored with either of those, and take water to him instead of waiting for him to get up to go to it.

Also, you should clean his rear end with a soft, wet, warm cloth and apply a dab of human antibiotic skin cream which you may already have or can get at your pharmacy. Do that as often as his bum becomes soiled again.

Try offering him chicken baby food (stage one or two, just plain chicken). Often cats will eat chicken baby food when they won't eat anything else and it is fairly bland and has a large percentage of water in it. Again, take it to him wherever he is lying instead of waiting to see if he comes to it.

Keep him warm if he feels cold.

I am so sorry about the situation you are in and, again, the very best thing for your cat is to be seen by a vet right away. I hope everything works out well for you and your precious kitty.

Dr. Neely

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