I remember the last time this happened. Vincent is so sensitive that he develops this “food repulsion” tendency where he associates his illness with the food. And he will get turned off by that food, hence, he won’t eat.
The “trick” at that time, was to give him something totally different. That worked…at that time.
So this afternoon, I decided to try my luck.
I was preparing the other cats’ food so before serving them, I just offered it to Vincent. I didn’t expect him to eat any of it, of course.
But he did, he licked some gravy. That’s all.
I thought that was a good start already.
Then, I prepared another bowl of another flavour and offered it to Vincent too.
Yes, he licked some gravy.
After that, he wanted no more.
Afternoon nap. This was at 2pm.
I waited until 7pm before trying my luck again with dinner. I didn’t want to push my luck or stress him too often.
But no luck this time. He refused to lick any gravy, refused everything offered. So I just gave him his meds and went downstairs.
But the vet said he should be force-fed. He hasn’t eaten, except for the occasional “lucky meals” since Tuesday. That’s already 6 days now. In between, yes, just the occasional “lucky meals” or raw meat, which were very few.
Obviously, the effect of today’s meds (through injections) have not kicked in yet. The B12 injection was supposed to give him an appetite. The antacid jab was supposed to make him feel better (if his digestive tract was “burning” from the days of starvation). The Darbepoetin won’t have any effect until maybe a week’s time. This is to get his kidneys to make red blood cells again, to offset the anaemia.
The Kaminox is supposed to work up an appetite too, but there is no effect yet.
I had to give him the Kaminox and that was a struggle this evening.
Then, I decided I will force-feed him. So I mixed a teaspoon of Recovery with water and “blended” it with a spoon until it was quite watery. Then, I used a syringe.
It was a great struggle, though. But it wasn’t as violent as before. I managed to give him two-thirds of it, which is actually very little.
But a little bit is still better than none. I cannot allow him to go on starving and the digestive enzymes might just cause more “burning” in his stomach, giving him even more discomfort and pain.
The vet said that it is obvious he is experiencing great pain in the mouth. There are no visible (bad) ulcers. So, it must be coming from the digestive tract due to the starvation.
If possible, I would like to give him small meals throughout the day. I don’t know if this is wise, though. He might be so repulsed by it…sigh.
But what choice do I have? Let him starve and let the acid “burn” his stomach?
On Tuesday, when Vincent stopped eating, I thought “that was it”. So I did not force him that day. I let him be. The next day, I contacted the vet to help me make him more comfortable. I drove to the vet without Vincent and I was given the Tramadol plus an appetite stimulant. Upon coming back home, Vincent ate a bowl of raw liver! He gorged it all up. That gave me hope.
The next day, I took Vincent to the wet and kidney readings had not declined “that badly”, it was just a slight increase. It must be the pain in the mouth – we shall attempt to fix that with antibiotics, Metrogyl. But it’s been 4 days now and there has been no improvement.
Our next course of action is to boost the red blood cells, which we are doing now. Anaemia can make him feel very lethargic, lose appetite and just plain “lousy”.
I can only hope that all our attempts will make Vincent more comfortable. That is all I’m asking for. Unfortunately, in order to give these plans a chance to work, I have to force-feed Vincent. It’s part of the plan.
So, as much as I don’t want to stress him, I would still have to force-feed him. I hope Vincent knows I am doing the best I can, based on my best understanding.
When I was force-feeding him just now, it reminded of the few days I force-fed Tabs when she was hospitalised with a “mysterious” illness which almost took her life. Tabs was very good in that she allowed me to force-feed her every few hours. She would obediently eat even though she had high fever. I camped at the clinic during opening hours so that I could force-feed her every 4 hours. She finally recovered.
Every cat is different, with their own unique personalities.