Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Read this if you are a Cat Lover

"Maidel" photograph by Benja Aquila

I want to offer some advice to any cat lover out there -- or anyone who has or knows someone with a pet cat. This is based on my actual experience with Maidel, my mom's 16 year old cat whom I am taking care of. Maidel is very spry -- you can see her in the photo by Benja Aquila above.

Last year, Maidel became very ill. She was constantly puking -- and becoming very listless and tired. We proceeded to take her to the vet who tested her and told her she had kidney failure, and would not live long unless I gave her regular subcutaneous fluid injections. My mom and I decided not to do that -- it would be cruel to the cat, who does not like being held against her will and myself, who would be completely clawed if I were to do this. Maidel once sent me to the medical clinic because the scratches she gave me from her long claws were intense and painful. I was trying to take her to the vet, whom we call Dr. Mengele, because of the how she reacts to him during exams.

I did my own research and found out that dry cat food -- containing phosphates -- and fish in general were very harmful to cats with kidney failure, which is a common malady for older cats and dogs.  I read that low phosphate highly nutritious canned cat food was optimal -- and concluded that Paul Newman's Newman's own cat food was optimal for cats with this condition since it is so low in phosphates. You can read about my experience here and find out more here:

Paul Newman - perfect for older cats with kidney problems. 

Maidel has thrived on Paul Newman.  If she does have kidney failure, it is now hardly noticeable. She is not puking, staying hydrated, and very energetic.

However, three months ago, another problem emerged which was resulting in Maidel dry heaving for 10 minutes at a time twice a day -- as if she was trying to expel something from her system. It looks like she was suffering from a huge hair ball. She was also howling in pain at the same time. This was hard to watch -- and had me thinking Maidel was on her last legs again.

Cat Lax -- cod liver oil is great for older cats

I did more research -- and read that what Maidel was probably suffering from was severe constipation. This is another symptom of kidney failure, and age in general.  I read that feeding a cat in this condition a daily dose of cod liver oil might solve this.

I purchased Cat Lax, a cod liver gel on Amazon for Maidel three months ago, and it has solved her heaving problem. She loves the stuff -- it is like chocolate frosting for kitties. A tube costs 7 dollars on Amazon -- Maidel gets about an inch of the gel a day on top of her Paul Newman cat food and is happy as can be.

So there you have it, my two pieces of advice for anyone with an older cat.  Good luck in making your kitty healthy!

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