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So I just picked up this little guy last Tuesday, we have decided his name is Bruce. He’s roughly 13 wks old, crazy adorable. Poops, pees, eats like a champ, gets along great with the rest is the farm. We love him to pieces immediately.

he’s a raw eater, I started him on Primal when we brought him home and we started Darwin’s this morning (took a minute to figure out the cost issues and get an order in!).

I’m in the parking lot at the emergency vet right now because little guy has been sleeping a lot today (very un kitteny), shivering, and limping - though he doesn’t complain when I press on his joints or paws so I don’t know what the limp is about. He feels hot (hard to judge for a sphynx). He’s passed out in my lap right now. Something isn’t right.

could it be the food transition? What could have happened to this poor little thing? I’m freaking out here...
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Yoda mom

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@dreadpirate_rackham , are you at the ER vet waiting? not to alarm but to share, Darwins pet foods have been recalled in the past for salmonella. I would ask vet to rule it out. ? not saying that is what it is but something to be aware of. (((much love and hugs your way. )) following
closely for updates

as a precaution I would contact Darwins and ask them to send a label/packaging to return the batch to have it tested. I had to do this with a Halo food years ago. kitty is fine but it was food related and they ended up doing a "soft " recall of a certain run batch ( I posted about years ago here).

not saying that is what it is but worth exploring to rule out if that was the only change.

(((((((hugs)))))) feel better soon sweet baby Bruce
we are here for you
 
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@dreadpirate_rackham , are you at the ER vet waiting? not to alarm but to share, Darwins pet foods have been recalled in the past for salmonella. I would ask vet to rule it out. ? not saying that is what it is but something to be aware of. (((much love and hugs your way. )) following
closely for updates

as a precaution I would contact Darwins and ask them to send a label/packaging to return the batch to have it tested. I had to do this with a Halo food years ago. kitty is fine but it was food related and they ended up doing a "soft " recall of a certain run batch ( I posted about years ago here).

not saying that is what it is but worth exploring to rule out if that was the only change.

(((((((hugs)))))) feel better soon sweet baby Bruce
we are here for you
I just had to leave him there - and I took them some poop to culture. They said high fever and they’re doing blood work and administering fluids.

after Leon, this feels really unfair. But here I am.
 
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@dreadpirate_rackham , are you at the ER vet waiting? not to alarm but to share, Darwins pet foods have been recalled in the past for salmonella. I would ask vet to rule it out. ? not saying that is what it is but something to be aware of. (((much love and hugs your way. )) following
closely for updates

as a precaution I would contact Darwins and ask them to send a label/packaging to return the batch to have it tested. I had to do this with a Halo food years ago. kitty is fine but it was food related and they ended up doing a "soft " recall of a certain run batch ( I posted about years ago here).

not saying that is what it is but worth exploring to rule out if that was the only change.

(((((((hugs)))))) feel better soon sweet baby Bruce
we are here for you
The breeder said that issues like salmonella aren’t a problem in cats - that their stomachs can kill that. Can you tell me more about what issues it can cause?
 

pussiette

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@dreadpirate_rackham glad you got him in so fast well done.

@Yoda mom makes a good point it is a risk feeding raw because of bacteria.

Sometimes when cats get infected they can not respond to antibiotics which I have sadly just recently gone through.

While some raw cat foods may provide cats with excellent nutrition, they are still not without their drawbacks.

Studies reveal that commercially prepared raw pet foods suffer from increased levels of contamination with potential pathogens like Salmonella, Listeria, and E. Coli in comparison to “regular” pet foods.

The situation isn’t any better for raw diets prepared at home. USDA estimates show that approximately one-quarter of raw chicken parts in human food-production facilities are contaminated with Salmonella and/or Campylobacter bacteria. Toxoplasma gondiiand other parasites can also be spread through raw cat foods.

You may have heard that healthy adult cats have innate resistance to foodborne pathogens. While this may be true in some cases, reports of cats developing and even dying from diseases contracted from raw cat food do exist.


Raw pet food commonly exceeds hygiene thresholds for counts of Enterobacteriaceae. These bacteria often encode resistance to critically important antibiotics such as extended‐spectrum cephalosporins, and raw‐fed pets create an elevated risk of shedding such resistant bacteria. Other infectious organisms that may be of concern include Listeria, shiga toxigenic E scherichia coli, parasites such as Toxoplasma gondii and exotic agents such as the zoonotic livestock pathogen Brucella suis.


I started feeding my Cornish Rex raw and he got ill fever etc they thought it was toxoplasmosis so now I avoid raw.

I hope he gets good vet care and feels better soon.
 

Sheldon13

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It’s true it is tough to get good raw. You do have to be careful. About the cats being able to withstand bacteria, this is true also. But they can only tolerate so much. So a little is ok, but if the meat sat out for a while at any point and was allowed to grow large quantities of the bacteria it could make them sick. (Much like an ounce of alcohol for a human is fine but 20 ounces could kill you). The other thing to consider is that kittens can take some time to build up their tolerance to these bacteria. There can be digestive upset as they are going through this process. I would also not recommend an immune compromised cat eat raw (like FIV+ for instance).

All that to say, this may not even be the issue. I’d say let your vet do a nice panel of tests and get in some information before you decide together what likely caused this set of symptoms.


Love and Sphynx ~ It’s all you need
 
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th
@dreadpirate_rackham glad you got him in so fast well done.

@Yoda mom makes a good point it is a risk feeding raw because of bacteria.

Sometimes when cats get infected they can not respond to antibiotics which I have sadly just recently gone through.

While some raw cat foods may provide cats with excellent nutrition, they are still not without their drawbacks.

Studies reveal that commercially prepared raw pet foods suffer from increased levels of contamination with potential pathogens like Salmonella, Listeria, and E. Coli in comparison to “regular” pet foods.

The situation isn’t any better for raw diets prepared at home. USDA estimates show that approximately one-quarter of raw chicken parts in human food-production facilities are contaminated with Salmonella and/or Campylobacter bacteria. Toxoplasma gondiiand other parasites can also be spread through raw cat foods.

You may have heard that healthy adult cats have innate resistance to foodborne pathogens. While this may be true in some cases, reports of cats developing and even dying from diseases contracted from raw cat food do exist.


Raw pet food commonly exceeds hygiene thresholds for counts of Enterobacteriaceae. These bacteria often encode resistance to critically important antibiotics such as extended‐spectrum cephalosporins, and raw‐fed pets create an elevated risk of shedding such resistant bacteria. Other infectious organisms that may be of concern include Listeria, shiga toxigenic E scherichia coli, parasites such as Toxoplasma gondii and exotic agents such as the zoonotic livestock pathogen Brucella suis.


I started feeding my Cornish Rex raw and he got ill fever etc they thought it was toxoplasmosis so now I avoid raw.

I hope he gets good vet care and feels better soon.
Thank you for that very detailed response - I really appreciate that.

The breeder told me that she has fed raw for a very long time, and I believe that her experiences of it being positive are true. I also believe that people who have had very negative / catastrophic experiences with raw feeding are also telling the truth. Thus, I feel like I'm getting a crash course in statistics right now: both answers are true, but then there are the probabilities to take into account.

I hope that the vet has enough information to make a good diagnosis and provide good treatment. We brought them a poo sample (his were pretty easy to spot). His poo was very firm, and not at all what a bacterial infection might produce.

The breeder thinks maybe a calicivirus could be at work here - like maybe one of my existing cats is a carrier?

I think he's in the best place he can be right now. I'm just sick about it though.
 

Condo commando

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The breeder said that issues like salmonella aren’t a problem in cats - that their stomachs can kill that. Can you tell me more about what issues it can cause?
No no no. That's a myth that is going around on some web sites but I bet if you ask the breeder to find it in writing, he/she won't find anything authoritative. Here's the deal - cats have a GI system that is more acidic than ours so that helps break down food faster, and their intestines are shorter than ours so they poop pretty quickly which means they expel whatever is bad ASAP. BUT that's not to say that salmonella isn't a problem or that the cat can't get sick; in fact, salmonella is a why many pet foods get recalled which proves it's a problem. Besides, we don't even know that it's salmonella just because someone remembers that Darwin's was once recalled for salmonella. This is all just speculation. Bottom line, the best thing to do with a lethargic kitten is take him to the vet; whatever is wrong the vet will get to the bottom of it. You made a good decision and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

Ok so let's step back for a minute. A lot of contracts say that the kitten has to be seen by a vet so I was wondering if you happened to take Bruce to the vet right after you got him. I realize it hasn't been that long, but if you did take him and he checked out fine, then it's most likely something that happened in the short time you've had him.

There's one thing I wouldn't have done which is start with Primal for a few days and then switch to Darwin's. As long as the Primal wasn't causing an issue, I would have just kept feeding it for 2 months because in case you have a problem, there would only one possible food to blame. Right now we can't be sure if there was something wrong with Darwin's OR maybe something wrong with Primal that took a few days to manifest. To be safe I'd throw out any unused portion of both Darwin's and Primal.

Please update us when you know how Bruce is doing. It doesn't sound too serious but I know how stressful it is when our babies get sick. When Bruce gets over this bump in the road, I'd be happy to give you any tips with raw food because I've been feeding raw for 8 years and if I can save you some of the stuff I had to go through I'm more than happy to do it. I even used to feed Primal. Oh that reminds me...one time I bought a bag of Primal and when I got it home, all the nuggets were frozen together. It looked like the bag had thawed out at some point and then stuck back in the freezer. I talked to the store owner (it was a family business) and casually asked how they got their deliveries and she said that they ordered everything from a pet supplies distributor who delivered in a regular (not refrigerated) truck. I didn't say anything else about it and I just went home and threw the bag of Primal out. So you see, it's not necessarily a knock on Primal or Darwin when food goes bad. Things just happen you don't expect.
 

Condo commando

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OK I guess I was typing and the update went in. One of my cats has calicivirus.....with him it's basically an upper respiratory issue. He's never had a fever because of it. Could you ask your vet if maybe the fever could be a sign of something else? I don't even know what and I don't want to scare you....it's just news to me calicivirus and fever go together. :unsure:
 
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OK I guess I was typing and the update went in. One of my cats has calicivirus.....with him it's basically an upper respiratory issue. He's never had a fever because of it. Could you ask your vet if maybe the fever could be a sign of something else? I don't even know what and I don't want to scare you....it's just news to me calicivirus and fever go together. :unsure:
You have a cat who currently has calicivirus? what does that look like? Reading this article evidently there's a pretty serious calicivirus with high fever that can be fatal

Feline Calicivirus

The vaccination card that the breeder gave me says he got a calicivirus vaccine, and also panleukopenia and FVR. I haven't had a chance to get him to the vet yet. The contract isn't conditional on a vet visit, but he has seemed like a pretty healthy, normal kitten, if a bit chill in a very Sphynx-like way.

Thanks for the valuable info on food - that makes sense. TBH I would have kept him on Primal, but it is very pricey from our local pet store, and Darwin's seemed to be the way to go based on what other raw people said. I would love to continue with it, since I have 10 pounds of frozen blocks in my fridge. It arrived to me solid, I have no reason to be suspicious, but I have had the primal experience that you mention - the last bag we used, the kibbles did seem a little stuck together. IMO the symptoms started much sooner than would have been indicated by feeding Darwin's - he was hot last night and has been sleeping all day just today. We literally gave him his first Darwin's feed at 6 this morning.

I'm hoping that whatever he has can be definitively diagnosed.
 

pussiette

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@dreadpirate_rackham you need to push for blood tests. Likewise ultrasounds of liver, intestines and bowel and kidneys to find infection and a urine sample. This will be the starting point to get a diagnosis fast. A FULL blood count and liver function test (which is part of the blood work).
 

Condo commando

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I adopted a Sphynx that came with calicivirus. It was in his medical history that he tested positive for it. His symptoms are that he sneezes a lot, gets nasal congestion and sometimes he sounds like he has something in his throat (probably mucus). The frustrating thing with a virus is it can't be cured. For what it's worth, Henry doesn't seem bothered by it, probably because he's used to it. I suspect he picked it up in the cattery because both calici and herpes viruses are easily transmitted in catteries. Both of those viruses are included in the FVR vaccine, but what happens with kittens is they are exposed before they are vaccinated. From what I have gathered, herpes and calici viruses are common in catteries and a high percentage of catteries have herpes and/or calici in the cat population. Thankfully, it usually just causes cold symptoms. Henry is going to be 8 in a few months.

I will add this about viruses though - sometimes a cat can get a bacterial infection on top of the viral infection. It's not uncommon because their immune system is already weakened by the virus. Anyway, in the case of a bacterial infection, the cat needs an antibiotic. It's hard to tell when it's a viral infection and when it's bacterial; you have to play it by ear. Henry has gotten antibiotics twice; one time it knocked what he had out so that time it was bacterial, but the other time it made zero difference so it that time it was just the virus acting up.

I totally understand the cost of food being an issue. I started making raw food when I got my second Sphynx because one was bad enough. I can make raw cat food WAY cheaper at home. For example raw chicken costs just over $2 per LB.....rabbit costs between $5 and $6 per LB. The key here is water. Why water? You have to add water to the meat to make pet food. So you might have 5 LB of meat but by the time you add water you've got 6.5 LB of food. Water is free, so you spread the cost of the meat over 6.5 LB not just the 5 LB you bought. When you buy commercial pet food, it already has water added so what you're paying per LB of meat is really high. To be fair, they have a labor cost to make the food. The point is that you can save quite a bit IF you make the food at home and IF you're willing to spend an hour per week.

Last thing on food....remember bacteria grows on food when it thaws. The longer it's sitting thawed, the longer bacteria has to grow. You can refreeze the meat but that won't kill what's already there.
 
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I adopted a Sphynx that came with calicivirus. It was in his medical history that he tested positive for it. His symptoms are that he sneezes a lot, gets nasal congestion and sometimes he sounds like he has something in his throat (probably mucus). The frustrating thing with a virus is it can't be cured. For what it's worth, Henry doesn't seem bothered by it, probably because he's used to it. I suspect he picked it up in the cattery because both calici and herpes viruses are easily transmitted in catteries. Both of those viruses are included in the FVR vaccine, but what happens with kittens is they are exposed before they are vaccinated. From what I have gathered, herpes and calici viruses are common in catteries and a high percentage of catteries have herpes and/or calici in the cat population. Thankfully, it usually just causes cold symptoms. Henry is going to be 8 in a few months.

I will add this about viruses though - sometimes a cat can get a bacterial infection on top of the viral infection. It's not uncommon because their immune system is already weakened by the virus. Anyway, in the case of a bacterial infection, the cat needs an antibiotic. It's hard to tell when it's a viral infection and when it's bacterial; you have to play it by ear. Henry has gotten antibiotics twice; one time it knocked what he had out so that time it was bacterial, but the other time it made zero difference so it that time it was just the virus acting up.

I totally understand the cost of food being an issue. I started making raw food when I got my second Sphynx because one was bad enough. I can make raw cat food WAY cheaper at home. For example raw chicken costs just over $2 per LB.....rabbit costs between $5 and $6 per LB. The key here is water. Why water? You have to add water to the meat to make pet food. So you might have 5 LB of meat but by the time you add water you've got 6.5 LB of food. Water is free, so you spread the cost of the meat over 6.5 LB not just the 5 LB you bought. When you buy commercial pet food, it already has water added so what you're paying per LB of meat is really high. To be fair, they have a labor cost to make the food. The point is that you can save quite a bit IF you make the food at home and IF you're willing to spend an hour per week.

Last thing on food....remember bacteria grows on food when it thaws. The longer it's sitting thawed, the longer bacteria has to grow. You can refreeze the meat but that won't kill what's already there.
I’m learning a lot here. How come my vet...nvrmnd

ok so I have a rescue cat in the house who I’ve had for 12 years or so. He’s a mucus factory. He has ‘sneezures’ (starts sneezing, doesn’t stop). At a few points we have tried to treat him, the vet has gone immediately to look for cancer but that’s not the thing. We don’t know what his deal is, but a long course of antibiotics made him better for awhile. If calcivirus is incurable I’m wondering if he could be a carrier. He had a hard life before we got him, I had him checked before we integrated him into the family years ago.

little guy did have his calicivirus vax before I got him, as I’m sure my adult Sphinx did when I got her (after I had Mr rescue). But...kittens. Hopefully, if this is the issue, the vax helps his immune system.

I expect to hear some more later today.
 

Condo commando

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ok so I have a rescue cat in the house who I’ve had for 12 years or so. He’s a mucus factory. He has ‘sneezures’ (starts sneezing, doesn’t stop). At a few points we have tried to treat him, the vet has gone immediately to look for cancer but that’s not the thing. We don’t know what his deal is, but a long course of antibiotics made him better for awhile. If calcivirus is incurable I’m wondering if he could be a carrier. He had a hard life before we got him, I had him checked before we integrated him into the family years ago.
Sneezures is a great way to describe Henry LOL. I'm gonna have to borrow that term if you don't mind!

Viruses are always incurable. Think the common cold.....all you can do is deal with it and eventually it goes away. Of course there is also coronavirus and the symptoms are more severe. I think calicivirus is closer to the common cold. However, viruses can mutate and that was what the link you posted was talking about. But most of time they just stay as more of a nuisance than anything. I'd say it's possible your rescue has calicivirus but as long as your others are vaccinated they are safe.

little guy did have his calicivirus vax before I got him, as I’m sure my adult Sphinx did when I got her (after I had Mr rescue). But...kittens. Hopefully, if this is the issue, the vax helps his immune system.
Yes, I think that makes sense. On the one hand, once they've been exposed the vaccine doesn't undo that. But then, it's always good to give them the vaccine because the exposure they had might have been minor and the vaccine can protect them in case of a more serious exposure later on.

Common viruses like calici and herpes viruses are more prevalent in purebred cats because they're bred in a cattery. Cats in the wild are actually lucky in this regard.

I expect to hear some more later today.
I'm feeling positive about it but if you have doubts about your vet just look for a full fledged animal hospital. If you are near a university that has a vet school, they have state of the art everything and their fees tend to be lower (they are not for profit).
 
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latest update, but first, a brief rant: this vet tho. I have had to pull the info from them at every turn. I think vet care in this state has been exceptionally stressed by the 'rona, and the urgent care vet he's at has just been slammed. So while I'm frustrated that I have had to call them for info, and ask the questions and ask, and ask, and ask, it is what it is.

OK /endrant/

They tell me he has an elevated white blood cell count, his liver values are off. His fever spiked overnight, but he was at a normal temp this morning at 8 -- they said they'll let him go home if his fever doesn't spike again by a 12hr time, so maybe I'll get to bring little tyke home tonight at 8. He's still eating/drinking like a champ (that's my boy). they've administered antibiotics, fluids.

I asked about FCV, I got a 'what's that?' from the vet tech. Argh! They say that he's not showing symptoms of that, so they're still leaning toward a bacterial (and probably food borne) thing. White blood cell count / fever sounds like it would fit that profile. I asked if they could test for Calicivirus, they said they didn't have a test for it :-/

I have to wonder if the reason they're hesitant to talk to me is because of a bias against raw feeding. I've heard some horror stories (and if anyone would know them, it's a vet). I am really not invested in any dogma, I just want my cat to be OK.

also @Condo commando you're welcome to use 'sneezures' any time, you can thank my husband for that one.
 
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Condo commando

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I've had cats with various infections that had a culture & sensitivity analysis done. The culture part of it is basically taking a sample of the infected tissue to confirm the presence of bacteria. The sensitivity part is to determine what antibiotic to treat it with; sometimes bacteria is resistant to a certain antibiotic and you need to know that so you can prescribe the right one. It might take a couple of days to get the results back from a lab.

Once the infection is under control, it's important to determine what caused it. Honestly, I would not feed any of the same food he's been eating. I would give him something else and make absolutely positively sure that he's fine and it really was just the food. It's an educated guess, but still just a guess at this point.

I found this link that might help Feline Upper Respiratory Infection
 
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