Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by masschix, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. masschix

    masschix Songster

    Apr 28, 2008
    Central Massachusetts
    I have a very small cat....she is very very tiny, but full grown (turned a year old on Mother's day). Anyhow, about 12 days ago she went missing. I had no idea where she had gone, thought I would never see her again. Last night around 9 pm I went outside and heard a very faint meow, so I took a chance and called out my cats name and the faint meow went to a desperate cry for help. I grabbed the flashlight and started walking down the road until I found her. She was stuck up in a tree on the other side of my neighbor's property (only about 25 feet from their kids play set). Well, I couldn't do anything for her last night, so I had to leave her there, was too dark, and waited until this morning. Got my husband out of bed early and went looking for her. There she was about 40 feet up in a pine tree. We tried everything to get her to come down and she wouldn't. My DH dragged out his tree stand and climbed the tree to get her. OMG she is in bad shape. She probably weighs about 2 pounds, she is all skin and bones. She is missing the fur on the left side of her face, with pine pitch stuck to her everywhere. We estimated that she was up there for at least 10 of the 12 days. She has a couple of sores on her pads, but is walking just fine. She was only standing on a short branch this entire time, so she couldn't even lay down, standing this whole time. Her legs seem to be very weak. MY QUESTION IS: what to give her to eat without making her sick? She is extremely dehydrated. I have kitten replacement formula and was mixing this with her dry cat food (that I made into crumbles), so it looks like canned cat food. She is tollerating this and drinking water. But how much of this should she be getting? Does anyone have any other suggestions for her care? And before you judge me, we can't afford a vet bill at this time. It will have to be a last resort...although I don't think she will need to go for an emergency visit. ALL SUGGESTIONS ARE NEEDED, just no sarcasm please, I feel horrible enough! And I'm very mad at my neighbor's for not telling me that they heard her, she could have died if I didn't hear her. ALSO...what can I do about the pine pitch? Here is a photo of her.....

    By the way, her name is Peanut. She was such a tiny cat it just seemed fitting for her.
  2. OHChick

    OHChick Songster

    May 8, 2007
    do you have some tuna or something you could give her? our cat also went missing for about the same amount of time....another cat had attacked her, and she broke her pelvis, we ended up finding her under the deck after about a week. with our girl, i think we just kept her inside in a small enclosure, so she wouldn't be overwhelmed and get herself into another sticky situation and she got tuna and dry cat food and water.

    i'm not sure about the milk replacer, they don't really need milk after they're adults, so i'd say skip that. but that's just me.

    for the pine, i'm sorry to say, nothing i know of works. our cat (same one again) got in a blue spruce and had it all over her. we tried bathing her, we tried everything, nothing got the gunk out. we ended up shaving her. she looked freakish for a few weeks but she's fine now.

    best of luck, i'm glad you found your girl.
  3. rooster0209

    rooster0209 Songster

    Apr 7, 2008
    North Dakota
    Poor thing, I am so glad you found her.

    I am not sure about Pine pitch but try vegetable oil. It will remove sticky trap stuff off a doxie (dont even ask about that one). Maybe the olive oil will help you slide that pitch out of her fur.

    Let her eat & drink whatever she will eat. Only in small amounts at each time. Make her rest between eating/drinking so she wont gorge herself and get sick. What you are feeding her now is great.

    You are doing a wonderful job. Check her dehydration levels every few hours. You can do this by pulling the skin away from her should just snap right back down. If she is dehydrated the skin will not "snap" or go back quickly. Check this every few hours to make sure she is getting re-hydrated...if not; a trip to the vet may be necessary.

    She is going to want to rest, that is a good thing to let her do but make sure she keeps drinking some. Also in a day or so, make sure her kidneys are functioning.

    You could try some salve on her paws. Something like udder cream (if you have it) maybe even some type of antibacterial ointment or lotion.

    I think she looks pretty good considering her ordeal. She is going to be fine, you are taking excellent care and doing all the right things.
  4. Knight Hawk Ranch

    Knight Hawk Ranch Songster

    Oct 19, 2007
    Labelle, Florida
    Is she wanting to eat or drink?

    I don't know if this product is still on the market, but there used to be a tube of stuff called Nutracal (very high in calories) designed for malnourshed or sick dogs/cats. You just put about an inch on your finger and they lick it right off.

    I wouldn't worry too much about the pine pitch at this point unless it is causing sores. First order of business is to get her hydrated and some calories in her.

    Good luck with the recovery.
  5. robinaggie

    robinaggie Flew the Coop

    May 25, 2008
    I found a stray cat in worse condition than that, and the vet gave him subcutaneous fluids because he couldn't eat or drink anything on his own. Since your kitty is eating and drinking, I think that what you are doing is fine. Just make sure she doesn't eat so much that she throws it back up. It took six months to put normal weight onto my stray cat, and the vet said I was doing a good job - so be patient.

    About the pine sap, I don't know what would dissolve it without harming the kitty, so try cutting it out. Little bits at a time - again, be patient. Maybe someone at BYC can give you better advice on that. Please remember that your kitty will lick anything you put on her - so be careful!

    I'm very happy you found your kitty, and I would also be very angry with my neighbors. :thun
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  6. autsie

    autsie In the Brooder

    Jun 22, 2008
    Hang in there and do what you are doing. Make sure she is comfortable and warm and eating. I wouldn't worry about the pine pitch unless it is bothering her just now. If it is you could try to clip it out, or shave the spots that it is at. When I was 13 my favorite cat Anastasia (the ugly step sister) who was grey just like yours was up a tree in our neighbors yard for at least 10 days. Everyone said to leave her and she would come down, but that never worked. I finally had my dad call a friend to come and climb the tree and she was at least 75 feet up a big fir tree to get her down. She made it fine without taking her to the vet.

    It isn't your fault, she probably got scared. It is annoying that your neighbors never told you, but use your energy now and making her warm, full bellied, comfortable and loved.

    Let us know how she is doing!
  7. s6bee

    s6bee Songster

    Jul 1, 2007
    Western, NY
    I would just start out in small amounts. If she hasn't eaten in a while, and eats too much too fast, she could vomit. Give her wet cat food and moisten it with water and maybe even some vitamins.
  8. klf73

    klf73 Mad Scientist

    Jun 1, 2008
    I wouldn't worry about the pine pitch. What you are giving her is fine, I would only give it to her in small amounts, maybe a couple of tablespoons every few hours, but keep water readily available at all times. I wouldn't do any other foods or "special" treats yet unil she is rehydrated. I think as long as she is drinking and eating some, she should be fine. In a few days, when she is feeling better, I would tackle the pitch.
    I found this for removal at
    product that I absolutely LOVE for getting tar, pine sap, gum, or just about any other sticky substance out of dog hair (or people's!) is called De-solv-it. I have only been able to find it in Wal-mart, with the cleaning products. The company claims to have hundreds of uses for it, and so far, it has worked phenomenally on everything I have needed it for. It is similar to Goo-Gone, except that it has an orange oil base, rather than petroleum, so it is non-toxic, and it comes in a convenient spray bottle.

    I use this stuff on tons of things, just never had to use it on my pets, yet...
    it's especially good on sticker glue etc

    Good luck
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  9. lleighmay

    lleighmay Songster

    May 21, 2008
    Woodlawn, VA
    Baby food (people) is also a help for concentrated calories on a quick/easy to consume basis if you don't have Nutrical. I hope she's ok.
  10. jjthink

    jjthink Crowing

    Jan 17, 2007
    New Jersey
    Poor little kitty - how terrifying it must have been for her to be stuck and getting weaker and weaker, trying to hold on. Heartbreaking.

    As mentioned above, Nutri-Cal - comes in a tube - provides concentrated nourishment. Available at most pet stores.

    I would be reluctant to give her people tuna because of the high salt content that her body may not be able to handle right now with kidneys etc. needing to recover.

    She probably needs a TON of sleep.

    If she is dehydrated (most likely after all those days) subcutaneous fluids from the vet could make all the difference in her recovery. It is by far one of the least expensive vet services - they can do it in 30 seconds. The dehydration test is described above.

    You might also call vet's offices for additional recommendations. Kitty may need electrolytes etc. to help her vital organs that weren't getting nourished during this ordeal.

    I hope this kitty makes a full recovery and has nothing but bright days for a long time to come.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: