Partial paralysis and weakness can look very similar, even to a trained eye. Partial paralysis typically results in a very unsteady gait, falling down, and/or knuckling over of the paws.
Weakness is usually more associated with a tendency for the cat to sit or lay down frequently during what is typically normal activity. The ability to go up stairs or get up from a lying position is often impaired with general weakness.
Complete paralysis results in complete inability to use the limbs at all, and in severe cases, there may be no sensation to touch.
Based on these general criteria, would your best guess be that your cat is experiencing weakness or paralysis?
We have owned cats and dogs for over 40 years. Never had any problems. We’ve had the same vet for that same amount of time. In the past month we just lost 4 of our cats, from a flea infestation we didn’t know we had. The cats were hiding and didn’t know they were covered in fleas. When we found them they were weak, stopped eating, and drinking, and suddenly couldn’t walk on their back legs. I contacted the vet about our flea problem. They never contacted us back. We can’t just take them into our vet without an appointment. We then contacted an emergency vet, who said they were busy, and they’d call us back as soon as they could. They never called. In the meantime we had to force feed, and water them all, keep them warm, because their body temperatures dropped, so we had them wrapped in blankets, and also with a heating paid, under the blankets so it didn’t burn them. We bought formula for cats, to keep them hydrated, because we noticed they were dehydrated and under weight. There was always one of us, in the house, with the cats at all times. We didn’t leave their sides. All 4 of our cats died shortly after. We were with them when they suddenly, had trouble breathing, fell over on their sides, and it looked like they went into congestive heart failure. It was traumatizing to us to watch, them go through this, and even more traumatizing, putting ourselves in the cats position of having to go through it. We are not sure, but to us it looked like, they were suffering and in pain. That’s not what we wanted for our animals that we dearly love. This was extremely traumatic for us, and I’ve personally been crying non-stop since. The cats were 2 years old, 4 years old, 8 years old and 10 years old. 2 females and 2 males. We have a lot of cats in our home, and now we are worried we could lose the rest. No one is helping us. We found out after this loss, when we went to the pet store, to buy all kinds of flea products, that there is some kind of a flea outbreak, in our area we knew nothing about. None of the pet stores had any flea medications left. We talked to the employees, and they said, that so many people were suddenly buying the products they couldn’t keep them in stock. So apparently it’s not just us having this problem. It doesn’t change the fact that we feel like the worst pet owners on the planet. I personally take this to be my fault, because I am with them, all the time and didn’t notice the problem. We’ve never heard or seen anything like this happen before. The vets have never warned us either, and never had us on any kind of flea preventative. Our house is always clean. We have to clean because several of us have Allergies, and I personally have Asthma. We have one child in the house that also has Asthma. So a clean house is a must. After the 4 losses, we had to go to Meijer, and Walmart, to find flea medications as a last resort. We know nothing about flea medications. We know to stay away from Hart, and Sergeants, because we have heard they are toxic. We tried to stay with something more natural. We bought Vets Best sprays, for the cats, dogs and house. We also bought Pet Armor Naturals, as a topical for the backs of their necks. None of this is putting a dent into the flea population. The rest of our cats that are still alive, slowly stopped eating and lost a lot of weight. Not thinking it would help, we tried the force feeding and watering right away. Apparently because we caught the rest, in the time, they are all eating, and drinking on their own again. We had to mix canned tuna, chicken, and pork, into their regular food to vet them to eat. It worked but not right away. Took some time. We gave our dogs baths, and have to spray them down, with flea medication, every time they come in from outside. We had to spray out yard down several times. It seems that’s where all the fleas are coming from, is from when our dogs, go outside and come back in. Finally we bought flea traps and put them around the house. This seems to be killing and catching a lot of the fleas. It’s finally making a dent. We are still not out of the woods yet. We are cleaning even more, and vacuuming like crazy. I even went around and spread baking soda, along with salt, into our carpet, and floors as a natural killer. I am about to start spraying the house, furniture, and animals, with a combination of water and apple cider vinegar. We’ve also been having to flea bathe our dogs every other day. What else can we do? Anything we are doing wrong at this point?
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