4 September, 2010 at 1:53 am #40089
I was given three kittens that were about six to eight weeks old. They were given shots and wormed yesterday. They were doing great last evening, eating, running around, playing. They were doing fair this morning. But, now one has already died and two others are headed downhill. They are not eating or drinking. I have been feeding with syringe. But, that does not seem like it is helping. I have no access to a vet until tomorrow morning and I believe they will both die by then.
I would appreciate any help.
Monica4 September, 2010 at 2:05 am #593082
bump — urgent4 September, 2010 at 2:12 am #593083
Ohmigod, I am so sorry. It sounds like you may need to prepare yourself (but it sounds like you are already doing that). If one kitten in a litter dies, and the others look like they are going downhill, then it is very possible you will lose all three, whether it is due to a virus or fading kitten syndrome or something else. It may be that with all your loving care, there may not be anything you can do.
But where there’s life, there’s hope. The important thing is to keep them warm and comfortable, hydrated and to give them energy to fight. You need to feed them pedialyte to keep them hydrated (I’ll give you a home-made recipe) and Nutrical (a high-calory paste) or, since you probably don’t have that, light-coloured Karo syrup — smear a little on their mouths (no blobs, nothing they can choke on) to give them a little energy.4 September, 2010 at 2:15 am #593084
Home-made pedialyte (or you can buy it in supermarkets in the children’s aisles):
This is the recipe for home-made pedialyte:
* Pedialyte formula (from World Health Organization)…no preservatives so short life-span
* 1 cup water (boiled then cooled)
* 2 tsp sugar
* 1/8 tsp salt
* 1/8 tsp baking soda
* (this Pedialyte formula gives needed electrolytes & some sugar for energy)
Combine all ingredients and warm slightly.
Make new after 24 hours.
Pedialyte and Karo syrup can keep a kitten alive while it is not eating and drinking if that is all that is wrong with it or, hopefully, until you can get them to a vet. But if there is something else that has gone wrong, it can’t fix it, unfortunately. Please keep in touch and let us know how you are getting on. I will also give you the tent test to test for dehydration and a very good website for handrearing kittens.4 September, 2010 at 2:17 am #593085
The tent test, to check for dehydration — although if they are not eating and drinking, I can guarantee you they will be dehydrated:
Pick up a good pinch of kitten’s skin at the neck and let go.If it snaps back immediately, she’s hydrated okay. If it takes a little time to go back down, or, worse, it stays up in a ‘tent’ shape, she needs fluids. The best way to get them is for a vet to inject them subcutaneously but in the meantime, give her pedialyte, little and often.4 September, 2010 at 2:20 am #593086
The thing that has amazed me is how they are just going down hill so fast. The one that died went from appearing fine to being too weak to get liquid in him with a dropper in about 90 minutes. I am wondering if they were too young to take from their mother. I made the pedialyte and have given that to them. How much should I give them and how often? They are sleeping now.4 September, 2010 at 2:21 am #593087
The website is: http://www.messybeast.com/handrear.htm
Check under ‘dehydration’ and ‘hypoglycaemia’ and get them to a vet as soon as you can.
Are there any other symptoms? Vomiting, diarrhoea, respiratory distress? If so, check under those headings as well.4 September, 2010 at 2:21 am #593088
We have goats and sheep, so we have injected SQ with them. So, I will have my husband do that. But, how much and how often?4 September, 2010 at 2:24 am #593089
Nerys, if they are six to eight weeks old, they are a bit young but they should also be weaned onto soft kitten food, so they should be doing better than this. Do you know for sure they are that old or were you just told that? Did the vet agree they were that old?
Kittens do crash very, very quickly, it is one of the heartbreaking things about them. Cats (and other animals) do not show weakness, pain or distress until the very last hours/days anyway because if a predator can see an animal is weakened or slower or in pain, they will single them out as easy prey.4 September, 2010 at 2:25 am #593090
Do you have goats’ milk? That’s a great replacement for mama cat’s milk. I’m thinking a little soft kitten food, drizzled with goats milk, might be a good thing to try them on if they perk up.
Checking for you about the pedialyte.
Give little and often. Initially give 1 – 1.5 ml (depending on kitten’s size: roughly 1 ml per 100g bodyweight) every 20-30 minutes until the kitten is rehydrated and can urinate when massaged. Weak kittens will require tube-feeding. When its condition improves, gradually increase the amount and decrease the frequency.
If all goes well, you could try reintroducing food after about 12 hours — sooner if kitten looks like she is wanting it or crying for it.
Keep checking back, I am hoping some of our very experienced foster kitty mums like CBM and Skyron will chime in.4 September, 2010 at 2:31 am #593091
I have goat’s milk. I know the woman that had them and I rememeber her telling me when they were born, so yes. I think they are about six to eight weeks. The vet did not question it. They did eat well yesterday. No other symptoms. The one that died was just limp like our lambs get when first born if they don’t eat. But, these two were still eating and fine. Then, the other one died and over the day these two have been eating less and less and getting more and more lethargic. The one did throw up one time, but has kept milk down since then.4 September, 2010 at 2:40 am #593092
I’m so sorry, I wish I knew what to tell you but I don’t know what’s going on. You are doing all you can and until you can get them to a vet, I don’t know that there is anything else you can do. If there is, I hope another TDKer will suggest it.
All I can say is that at the shelter I help out at, this does sometimes, very sadly, occur. Everything seems fine with the kittens, they are bright as a button but suddenly one will go downhill and die and the others in the litter follow. We suspect viruses but it’s impossible to know. It usually happens before six to eight weeks though.
I hope these little ones pull through. They are very lucky to have you.
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