hoping for any sort of an answer about why my cat died

by april

Our cat died yesterday. I just want to know if anyone has heard of anything like what he had. I don't know what it was. The emergency vets around here are greedy. Pay upfront (the cheapest basic fees were 150 dollars flat, not counting other treatments given). Otherwise we don't care enough to treat your animal. So sorry.

Anyway, sorry for the small rant. I guess it started when I noticed that his nose was severly dry and rough. Almost like it was scabbed over, but I couldn't see any. Then he started sleeping in the bathtub or the bathroom sink. A lot. Yet he'd come out and sleep wedged between me and the arm of my chair as usual. He was eating and drinking normally.

Then it changed. He started sleeping in a two handled pot in the kitchen. How our 10 lb cat curled up into the pot I'll never know. Once he started sleeping there, he only got up to use the litterbox, to eat, or to get water.

He slept next to me on my chair once or twice after that. He still seemed to be eating and drinking. Then I finally got the rest of the pots in the kitchen cleaned. I had to move him and wash the one he was sleeping in. He started sleeping on the kitchen floor.

I don't know exactly when things went pear shaped, but one day he was on my lap, and he started getting sick. This cat always went somewhere else to get sick. Never on the bed, or furniture. He'd get down on the floor. Not this time. I had to set him down. When he did vomit, it was milk white, with unidentifed chunks. No furballs. He had very few furballs. He only got sick that one time.

It was after that that he stopped eating as much, but he was still drinking. THen he just seemed to sleep mostly in one spot. He stopped eating. Stopped drinking. Seemed to sleep all the time. The next to last time I saw him stand up, was a day or two before he died. I was petting him, and he didn't want me to stop. He was so unsteady. The last time I saw him walk was before he died. He lurched down the hallway to find a quiet place, and barely had the energy to collapse in my roommates mom's room. Later I moved him back to the kitchen on a towel (it was warmer there). Then he was gone. The last part of his sickness, when he went downhill, it was fast. In maybe 3-4 days. Before that he seemed mostly normal, other than his weird sleeping place (the pot).

I will tell you that we've had a hell of a flea problem this year, and we've been fighting a loosing battle. Our dog is allergic to fleas, and his hairless, mostly. Our cat however, his coat was glossy, soft, shiny, thick. We didn't realize how bad he had them, until he was very ill. He was not allergic to them. They just merely annoyed him. His coat didn't start looking bad until the day before he died. Mostly I think, because he'd stopped grooming by then.

I should also mention that during all of this my roommate's mom fell and broke her hip. Two to three days after her surgery,
My mom fell and broke her hip. So between hospitals, and therapy treament centers (aka the nursing home), we've been run ragged. Stressed beyond reason. The brakes on our car went out. My roommate's brother has a car, but works from very early in the morning until late in the evening, if not until early the next morning. So no transportation, and emergency vets around here don't seem to care. I (We) loved our cat very much. We would have done anything for him. The timing was horrific. If anything could go wrong, it did go wrong.

I looked up symptoms of feline lukemia, and parvo, but the symptoms didn't match. He only got sick once, he didn't have the runs, he didn't have half the symptoms. Not even a fever. (My sister made me panic. Said we can never bring another cat in the house again, because they'd die too. She dislikes cats, specially house cats.) Have you heard of anything like this, or have any sort of idea of what could have went wrong? I'm sorry this is so long, but right now I feel so lost. Will it really be dangerous to bring another cat in, in a few months? A year or more? (Who knows when we'll find one, once the hurting stops.)

Thank you for your time, and any help you can offer. Again I'm sorry this is so long.

Oh April what a terrible time you've had and I'm so sorry for your loss.

Unfortunately the symptoms you discuss could have been caused by many things. Cats can get cancer too and i lost one of my cats that way too. She too started to sleep all the time in odd places and eventually stopped eating much and got thin and passed away. but there are also many nasty little viruses out there that can make a cat go down hill fast. The Calici virus for instance is a nasty little one that is constantly changing and so is difficult to fight. but without blood work and swabs etc it is impossible to say what could have caused your cat to pass away.

Fleas can carry nasty things which can cause infections too so if your flea infestation was so bad it may have been this that caused your cat to catch something he could not fight off.


I think your sister is being rather horrible if you don't mind me saying. you've just lost your cat and she is saying things like that to you.

Anyway, you need time to grieve for your at and also to make sure your home is flea free before you consider getting another cat. this can take some time as fleas can be rather hard to get rid of in your home. Please see this page for more on this


I know at this moment you are looking for answers and thats completely understandable. But sometimes there is simply no way of finding a definite one. As time passes you will go through all sorts of emotions and thats all part of the healing process.

you did everything you could for your cat under the circumstances, so don't blame yourself.

Give yourself some time, gather yourself together and then perhaps in 6 months time or so you will be ready again to give another cat a home.

best wishes kate

Comments for hoping for any sort of an answer about why my cat died

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My cat
by: Anonymous

First off, I'm so so very sorry for your loss.

I am losing my cat right now. He's getting similar symptoms. He has been trying to sleep in the kitchen since and tried to get into our shower when the door was open. He stopped eating, but he's still drinking.

He has lymphoma, I just found out today. It's super severe and he's not going to make it. Many tumors all over, it is just awful. It sounds like your kitty was the same way. I'm so very sorry. This is always so hard 😥

Re: Spend Money
by: Anonymous

In an earlier comment someone said:

"Basically, if you notice odd behavior from your cat, it is because they WANT you to notice."

This is wrong. And a tad bit unfair.

Animals hide when they are sick or injured. They specifically *don't* want anyone to know. In nature, showing that you are sick means showing you are vulnerable and can be eaten. Plenty of people lose a close pet friend and did not notice any signs until it was too late. That's because their pet was hiding their condition.

That being said, just because an animal doesn't want anyone to know they are sick doesn't mean that they are going to hide it perfectly. It sounds like you noticed a lot of things that seemed off and they were getting weirder as time went on. I don't mean to suggest that it was your fault, only to emphasize for readers that if something seems off about your cat, the best thing you can do is take them to your vet. It will feel far more productive than just wondering why they are acting strange.

Secondly, the single best thing you can do for your cat is routine (annual) vet visits. If your vet is any good, they will be testing urine and doing a full check up. Urinalysis can inform them if your cat has a urinary tract infection (which can be easily fixed with antibiotics but left unnoticed can kill your cat; RIP grumpy cat) or reveal signs of cancer. It is absolutely worth the money and should be something you are budgeting for them, just like their food and kitty litter.

Fatty liver
by: Anonymous

It sounded like your cat was ill, it could have been a number if things. What the cat likely died from was the side effects of not eating and drinking (fatty liver and dehydration) - this can be fatal after 24 hours. If a cat stops eating they must be given fluids and food... Which is best done by a vet, who can also teach you the best ways to hydrate a fed the cat at home, while a diagnosis is discovered and treatment started - Especially anti nausea meds. It is essential to not ignore a cat who stops eating as it can quickly become fatal, no matter the root cause.

Sorry, but spend some money!
by: Jeremy Leo

I understand losing something you love is hard, but how hard is it to come up with money for your cat? $150 is not outrageous for an emergency vet. From your story, you had plenty of time to make an appointment.

My cat of 13 years now had similar issues. Of course, the original problem started with him peeing and pooping just in what seemed like random places. Long story short, vet figures out he is diabetic. He lost almost 6 pounds in one year, and would almost just sleep right in the water bowl. He was ALWAYS thirsty, but never hungry. Reason is with no insulin, his body couldn't break down the food, so he would just vomit it back up. He was peeing so much because he was drinking so much. No insulin equals feeling hot ALL the time. He would find ANYWHERE that was a cool spot and stay there. Hell, I couldn't get him to come up from the basement for a week one time.

Basically, if you notice odd behavior from your cat, it is because they WANT you to notice. If you don't know what is going on, go to your vet. Ask for payment plans, use a credit card, save up the money, something. Your animal is begging for help!

Your poor cat
by: Anonymous

I’m really sorry your cat died. When you do get another pet try to have money set aside when your animal gets sick or see about buying medical insurance to cover some of the unexpected medical costs. If you can’t afford the costly bills then it might be best not to have an animal full time. You could always foster shelter pets temporarily so you get the living animal fix but no associated bills...

Just my thoughts.. I don’t mean to sound harsh...

My cat starting sleeping in the bathtub
by: Anonymous

I rescue this poor. Cat last year someone move and left him. He was fleas a ticks on him. And someone shut one of his legs, anyways he was in bad shape.. I took him to the vet. For treatment, they didn't seam to care much! I got him a flea color. But my house was infested . With fleas last year everybody around here had problems, with fleas. I figure he was ok. After I got my house and flea free. Well about three month ago he couldn't put one off his leg down so I took him to the vet again he said he had a fever. And gave him a shot, and that was it. About a week later . He started to loose a lots of weight . Not eating or going to his kitty leather.he sleeps a lot . And always sleeping on my bathtub.he has this crust on his eye all the time. Clean it all the time. It looks like blood. Can anyone help me?i feel so bad for him. Sence the day he got that shot from the vet... He never been the same. Please help!! April I'm so sorry about your cat.

Vet bills
by: Brian

Recently lost our cat, Billy. Similar situation. Going to the bath tub and other unusual places to rest. He had complications from colon torsion and gastrointestinal cancer. Surgery would have cost over $7000.00
Now I wonder how much someone would be willing to spend to help their pet.
The sadness of losing a cat is terrible but that is part of loving them.

by: Anonymous

Thanks for all of the info and the comments. I am adopting an 8 1/2 year old cat.

Possibly kidney failure
by: Anonymous

Hi April,

My cat is in a similar situation as yours was. She's almost 9, and has been a very violent, murderous, bloodthirsty cat all her life. Every mood of hers is intense, there is never a dull moment. Until she got sick. She started mellowing down. Slept all day long. Ate and drank normally, but without much enthusiasm. Then started spending more and more time in the bathroom. First slept on the cool marble floors in the dry area, then in the patches of water in the shower. Yesterday she ate a little and threw up all of it. Keeps drinking water a lot. Today she ate nothing, just drank water, and vomited that too. Looked dazed, shallow breathing. Her muscles are wasting away. Hind quarters are not able to sustain her weight. Hasn't passed stools since her last meal, lies in her own piss.
Took her to the vet this morning. She diagnosed it as kidney failure. I'm not sure how long my cat has, because she seems to be going down a very steep hill just like your cat.
I hope her condition is curable. And I wish your cat had survived.
You should get one just to keep the love going.
Lots of love,

I'm so sorry....
by: Christy

Cats rule!! I can't imagine not having one in my life.

I know your pain all too well, but I firmly believe when the time is right another feline soul will choose you to be their companion and there will be nothing anyone can do about it except you and kitty.

You'll be okay although it feels like you won't. I promise.

Same situation
by: Maureen

I'm so sorry for your painful loss. It's as if it was meant to be that I saw your post because I'm going through almost the identical scenario right now with my Priscilla and am falling to pieces. She went to the Vet last Monday with vomiting and diarrhea symptoms. Did every conceivable test and possible pancreatitis. She's on pain meds and antibiotics. He also found a mammary cyst. Her usually nonexistent purr is louder and her breathing rapid. I fear she has breast cancer and it's spread to her lungs. He can't do surgery until she's stabilized. She hasn't had a bowel movement in four days and I just started adding Miralax to her food, also Pedialye in her water in case she's dehydrated. She has been staying in one little area of the kitchen by her feeding and drinking area for four days. Hasn't slept anywhere else. I'm a wreck. Talked to Vet and he said give her frequent small amounts of food and give the Miralax a chance as it takes a while. He wants to see her Monday if the breathing hasn't improved.

by: Anonymous

You mentioned surgeries and I am wondering if flowers were at your home? Lillies (any part) make a cats system shut down within 3-6 days, unless treated within 12 hours. I did not know this and lost my beloved 5yr old cat. It tooks years to realize that is what it was. He had gotten into a bouquet of Lillies I had on my coffee table. Did not know they are toxic to cats.

Sorry for your loss. I love my cat.
by: Anonymous

Sorry for your loss. If only cats could talk. Mostly, I have noticed that the behaviour of cats change a lot if they are ill. They get a look in their eyes and sleep in weird, unusual places and are not playful or very respondent. I am going to take my cat to the vet for a checkup because he is getting so fat and it is hard to cut him back on his food.

Dying cats
by: Anonymous

It's 7a.m. I'm laying in bed as my 20 year old, Simba, is laying on the bathroom floor, where he's mostly been for the past two days. He's as skinny as a rail now, as his kidneys have shut down. It's been a very slow process since the failure started a few months ago. But the failure now is complete and is in free fall. It's only a short while until he passes away. I'm giving him all the comfort he will let me give him, but Simba prefers the cool floor, over my quilt. I know how you feel about losing your cat, and I'm sorry for your loss. There is really nothing a vet can do with kidney failure in a cat; it is a common (very common) cause of feline mortality. Being there for someone you love when they go, including a pet (and especially a cat!) is emblematic of a civil and decent person. It shows you have good character, in a world that would just as soon throw away, or euthanize an animal out of convenience. Long live your cat! Long live Simba!

Cats need doctor visits just like people
by: Anonymous

I am sorry for the loss of your cat. I have learned the hard way that cats need to have regular checkups. If you are not willing or able to take your cat to the vet for regular checkups or when something is wrong, you should not have a cat. Sorry to be harsh. If you notice your cat has behavioral or physical changes, it needs to go to the vet right away. Your story of watching your cat suffer and slowly die while you speculated what might be wrong with it made me sick to my stomach.

by: Anonymous

I'm so sorry for your loss. My cat is doing the exact same but he wedges himself under the off radiator and on a small block of wood at the bottom of the stairs. It is caused by stress which not only can be good for your cat but to much can unfortunately kill it. I hope this helped a little but keep your hopes up.

Words of comfort
by: R Castro

My sympathies on your loss. May loving memories sustain you always as you think of your feline friend. Peace to you.

unknown reason cat dies
by: Anonymous

You MUST change the cat's water DAILY..they hesitate to drink with slimy water which happens in ONE DAY..it sounds like kidney failure..I lost one like that..also use laxatone for fur balls..for poor appetite buy GOOD cat food with lots of juice..good luck..

Sorry for your loss
by: Anonymous

Sorry to hear of your loss. Ours had the same kind of seeking running water behavior. She infact jumped into the bathtub when I turned the water on and started drinking.

I stupidly didn't realize there was a problem and thought she just wanted a bath. She was also meowing at night for no reason that I understood, but I realize now she was in pain and trying to tell us.

A few days later, she was lethargic, and we took her to the vet. They found her kidneys had failed. Normal cat BUN is something like 36, she had over 300. They put her on an IV to dilute her blood, but she didn't improve so had to put her to sleep.

A few days later, I saw a webpage about certain plants being poisonous to cats. I really wish I saw it sooner. Turns out I bought lilies and she must have eaten some - they cause kidney failure in cats. :(

thank you
by: April

Thank you for your kind and reassuring words. I know it could have been lots of things. I know lots of things went wrong. I just couldn't stand the thought that we'd never have another cat. I grew desperate for anything.

My family has never understood the need to have a cat as a pet. Specially one indoors. Mostly they were vaguely accepting of outside cats, but nothing else. I don't care. Gotta have a cat!

Thank you so much for your help, time, and patience.

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