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Postpartum Low Blood Calcium in Cats



This is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition, but it can be treated quickly and the cat's health stabilized if she is treated as soon as symptoms become apparent. If your cat has a high fever, your veterinarian will try to cool her down with a cool water soak and fan to bring the body temperature down to a normal range. Your veterinarian will treat your cat with intravenous calcium until her levels have increased to a safe level, and until her body alone is able to maintain calcium levels.

Your veterinarian will advise you to take the kittens away to prevent them from nursing, to be hand fed with a commercial milk for 24 hours, or until the queen's serum calcium is stabilized. If, after the mother stabilizes, you opt to let the kittens continue nursing, you will need to return to your veterinarian to monitor calcium levels in your cat's blood. Depending on whether her body is able to begin producing sufficient amounts of calcium on its own, she may need to remain on calcium supplements for some time. Your doctor will determine this.


Living and Management


If the kittens are not hand-raised and continue to nurse, it is very likely that your cat will need to be given calcium supplements for the duration of the nursing period, until the kittens have been weaned. Her serum calcium levels will need to be monitored frequently through the nursing period. Ensuring that she eats a diet containing a 1 to 1 or 1 to 2 calcium to phosphorus ratio, before pregnancy and during pregnancy, will help to prevent eclampsia with future litters.


Calcium supplementation must also be avoided while your cat is pregnant, unless specifically prescribed by your veterinarian. Also advised is avoiding high phytate foods, such as soybean mean, barley, rice, wheat bran and wheat germ, as high phytate foods can interfere with the body's absorption of calcium.



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