Re: [FH] Hi. My cat Pearl diagnosed with Mitral insuffiency
- Hi Karen,
In a message dated 6/28/05 8:45:03 PM, kchuplis@... writes:
<< Hi there. Feeling a bit overwhelmed. Pearl (8 y.o.) has always had what I
wierd vomiting issues >>
What does Pearl usually eat (brand, flavor, canned or dry)? Vomiting and
other digestive issues are always related to diet. What goes in the mouth has a
direct relationship with what goes on in the gut (and the rest of the body).
<< Where as in the past she coughed maybe once a
There is also a possible connection to diet, which can contribute respiratory
issues. I'm not saying it's the primary factor, only a possibility.
<< We are weeding the pred down to
eventually 1/2 tab everyday. >>
While pred and other corticosteroids can be life-saving, it's also important
to keep in mind that they carry long- and short-term risks.
<< She needs to lose about 4 lbs. too. >>
Obesity is directly related to diet, usually a dry, high-carbohydrate diet,
which adds fat and bloat...both issues in heart disorders. Some links about the
relationship and about feline nutrition in general incl:
Cats will generally maintain the proper weight for their frame when fed the
proper amt of calories (generally 20-30 cal per lb of ideal body weight per
day, adjusted for the individual) from a high-quality, well-balanced,
low-carbohydrate, moisture-rich, meat-based diet.
The calorie content of many Rx and commercial products can be found here:
<< The cardio vet
recommended SD g/d >>
Why? Does the cat need restricted sodium? Does the vet believe that sodium
content needs to be balanced with the nutritional value of the whole product?
G/d canned contains 0.29% sodium. There are a number of canned commercial
brands, with considerably nutritional value, that contain less than or around the
same amt of sodium. Eg, PetGuard venison, rabbit, and turkey flavors contains
0.21%, 0.22%, and 0.26% respectively; Eagle Pack chicken contains 0.28%;
NutroMax Senior chicken and lamb contains 0.24%.
The sodium content of many Rx and commercial products can be found here:
<< (which I gave her a bit of the canned today and that seems fine
with her but the dry she throws up.) Sooo. Poor girl has diarhea today.>>
Not surprising. G/d canned contains: Water, turkey, pork liver, corn flour,
barley, powdered cellulose.
G/d dry contains: Brewers rice, corn gluten meal, pork fat, chicken
by-product meal, soybean mill run, pork protein isolate, chicken liver flavor, fish
If you would like an analysis of the ingredients, I would be happy to do so.
But just in general, with the exception of the turkey in the canned, the
ingredients provide poor-quality nutrition...and most of the ingredients pose the
risk of adverse reactions, incl digestive upset.
<< From stress of
going to vets for two days? >>
Stress may be a contributing factor...or may be the tipping point. But my
suspicion is that it's related to the food in 2 ways: 1) the ingredients, which
are by and large not appropriate to cats and 2) the sudden change in diet,
which upsets the bacterial balance in the gut, which can lead to digestive
<< I'm thinking
of trying to take away all dry food >>
That may be a very good idea, since dry food has little nutritional value for
cats and, for various reasons, puts the cats at risk for a variety of
health-related disorders in addition to digestive disorders, incl diabetes, obesity,
chronic urinary issues, "allergies," dental/gum disorders, and on and on.
<< though that is tough because that is all my other
cat will eat. >>
Cats can become physiologically addicted to the ingredients in dry, some of
which are "allergenic." If desired, it is possible to transition cats, very
slowly, to a species-appropriate, meat-based diet with techniques that minimize
digestive upset and taste inhibitions.
<< She is pretty lethargic since I gave her the meds, but I can tell she is
from the diarehha. >>
Understandable. Diarrhea is irritating to the tissues and dehydrating. And it
indicates a problem with maintaining water balance in the gut. It may be
worthwhile to consider providing a small amt of nondairy mixed probiotics (eg UAS
Labs or Jarrow Pet-Dophilus) to help replenish beneficial gut bacteria and
also consider slippery elm bark, which helps soothe digestive tissues and
<< Feeling very overwhelmed >>
That's understandable. Caring for a cat with a health issue can be
frightening. But the cat is relying on you to help her lead a full life...and you can do
<< It's wierd because I
am most nervous about giving her the heart meds. Vet said I could crush up
and mix in food, which is what I did. >>
If you'd like to brush up on pilling technique, there is a gentle one
illustrated here: www.marvistavet.com/html/pilling_a_cat.html. If a pill has a
pronounced taste (keeping in mind that cats experience taste diff. than we do), it
may diminish the cat's appetite when mixed in food, which is necessary for
health. If pilling is not feasible, it is possible to have meds compounded (by a
compounding pharmacy) in another form, such as liquid suspension, flavored
chew, or injectable.
<< While he said this didn't look bad, he said "I've seen cats live months if
not years with
this". Ugh. MONTHS? >>
It is not possible to predict longevity for any animal. // Rosemary