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riccil0ve 08-27-2010 12:00 PM

Putting weight on a cat.
 
I have four loveable barn cats, three of whom are related maine-coons. The only boy, Mickey, hasn't been coming around. When I've seen him, he was skittish and pissy; hissing if I tried petting him, and just very different. I've barely seen him all summer. But the day before yesterday, I saw him, and tried to get him to come to me and remember that he loves a good cuddle. He was still a bit skittish, but I got to love on him for several minutes. He is skin and bones. His coat is rough and dirty, and there's literally nothing to him, but he seems otherwise in good health. When I tried to coax him into the barn, as soon as he saw another cat, he darted away. Maybe they had a tiff and he's the outsider now that got "kicked out?"

Anyway, I've been able to set food out for him, but I was wondering if there was more I could do to get weight on him before winter sets in. My parents have a very thin cat. He always has a full bowl of good food [my mom did a lot of research before settling on Royal Canin] but hardly ate. She started giving him about half a teaspoon of tuna in oil twice a day, and he's gained a fair bit of weight. He's still thin, but it's definitely helped. So I was thinking of trying that? I also heard the kitten food is high in fat, would that be an option? What would you try? Thanks in advance. =]

Alwaysbehind 08-27-2010 12:07 PM

Have you dewormed him recently? What about treated him for fleas and ticks?

Those things can be a horrible draw on a cats system.

riccil0ve 08-27-2010 12:16 PM

I'm pretty sure he had Advantix before he "ran away" but it was awhile ago. I think there's more in the cupboard, everyone else probably needs it too. But I find that the mainecoons haven't ever had fleas. The other cat does, but not those three. It's very strange.

And de-wormers, I'm not sure I want to use an OTC. I'll research it a bit to see if I can get one that's actually useful. I know he doesn't have tapeworms though, no rice. He doesn't seem to have a wormy belly either, but again, it's worth a shot. Thanks for bringing it up. It may take a few more days before he gets comfortable enough with me again to dose him, but since he's still showing up, he obviously doesn't think he's dying.

Jake and Dai 08-27-2010 12:18 PM

Ricci...I was thinking about posting this same ? today! So will be very interested in the answers as I have 3 cats, 2 which are a healthy (even a tad more) weight and one who is very skinny. They all get Royal Canin and are all shiny and soft...but the one just doesn't seem to maintain any weight on it.

I have to be a bit careful though because the little skinny guy has to be on the SO forumla. He had the issue with crystals and eventually had an operation to...errr...amputate his little male part and widen the urinary opening.

Sorry to digress...:oops:

riccil0ve 08-27-2010 12:23 PM

Aww, poor guy! I knew a cat who kept getting crystals. It was because of his terrible food. It's amazing how many people willingly feed their dogs and cats sh*t, even the people who feed their horses perfect diets.

I sure hope it's nothing more serious with Mickey. And oh god, I just remembered I'm going to be on vacation for two weeks in September! Crap... maybe I can take him home... crap crap crap... =\

Alwaysbehind 08-27-2010 12:28 PM

A skinny cat that you know has been eating can be a sign of a thyroid problem. Not totally uncommon.

Ricci's cat sounds like he just went on an adventure and did not eat well enough while he was gone.

I worry that if you try to feed him food that is too rich you will upset his digestive system, and that will not help either.

I vote stick to good food and the weight will come back.

riccil0ve 08-27-2010 02:00 PM

Yeah, I've only been feeding him a tiny bit. I know eating too much after eating nothing is really bad for any animal. So the plan is to gradually increase the amount. I wouldn't start adding anything for at least another two weeks. And like I said, he seems healthy otherwise. His eyes are clear and bright, no nasal discharge, nothing obviously wrong besides needing at least five pounds.
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pony1girl2 08-29-2010 12:06 PM

try wet food. It is healthy but cats tend to eat more of it than dry food two small can a day

riccil0ve 09-15-2010 12:05 AM

I'm really leery about feeding wet food, I can't find a good brand that sells it. Or at least the pet stores here don't carry them.

UPDATE: I saw Mickey today and he seems to have put on a pound or two. One of my friends was able to feed him while I was on vacation. I spent about ten minutes cuddling with him, and was able to shove a pill for But I'm kind of jealous, MM. You get quoted and called all sorts of names, while I merely get ignored and only deserve fancy blubbering that actually means nothing. How devastating! Haha down his throat. I am sure he has them, I saw a rice-looking segment in his hair on his back legs. The pill is an OTC specifically for cats, it has 32 mg of pariquantel, or something very similar. I remember seeing a "z" though... Would you dose him again since it is OTC? I gave my house cat a pill once that did the trick, but it was from the vet. I also dosed him with flea stuff, even though I couldn't find any evidence of them. For some reason, my mainecoons don't get fleas.

I will also be buttering him up and throwing him in a carrier to take him home n
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riccil0ve 09-15-2010 12:07 AM

Ugh, sorry. Stupid phone is being stupid. Anyways, I'm going to take him home for a few weeks. I have better food at home than the barn owner buys, and this way, he can eat all he wants whenever he wants.
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