Dog ate chocolate?

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Cat died suddenly.

Species: Cat
Breed: none - born on a far
Age: 1-2 years
Hi and thank you for your time

My son met me at the door in tears as 1.5 year old Jasper had just died. He was a black farm cat - one of a litter of 5. We had him since weaning and he was a very affectionate wee man. The only odd thing was a slight weakness in his back legs he shared with his sister (my friend kept her) that their vet put down to the large litter size and the cramped space in utero. He did get into a few fights months ago before neutering but there was a swollen eye and a scabbing pimple on his temple only last week. No fleas or ticks. I wormed him 6 weeks ago using a prescription wormer. He did not have vaccinations.

He was an outdoor cat who hunted birds and mice in the field at the back of the house. Chris was towelling him dry this morning and then he arched his back in spasm, his tongue protruded and he mewled. A couple of choking noises followed and he fitted and then collapsed and died. My son tried to revive him in the only way he knew how by blowing in his mouth and compressing his chest but to no avail.

I am sure other readers may have similar experiences and I was hoping your experience might shed some light on what has happened to an otherwise bright and bouncy and very chatty cat.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

I'm sorry to hear about Jasper. The most common reason for a young cat to die suddenly is a condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). This is a problem that some cats can be born with that causes the walls of the heart to be too thick. Cats can live normally with it and have no clinical signs of illness and then suddenly can die.

Anything like poisoning or a serious illness should have shown signs of him being sick before he passed away.

I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. If this was HCM please know that there was nothing that anyone could have done.

Dr. Marie.

---This question was asked in our Ask A Vet For Free section.---


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.