Monday, October 20, 2008

October 20. 2008

This past week has been very busy for me as I've been dealing with a few sick kitties. Jonas has continued to do well though he's on some pretty hefty doses of prednisone and also a bronchodilator. We'll start the weaning down of the steroid dose in another week and see how he does.

The kittens are doing very well. They are so active, everything you give them is a toy. They are absolutely fascinated with one of those stuffed mice that has the microchip that squeaks whenever they move it. Of course mom Bella used to bring them dead chipmunks and things so they are used to "real prey". The photo for today is the little sister of the trio, she has got the sweetest little face.

I wanted to speak a bit on the proper diet for cats. If anything good has come out of the pet food problems it may be that people are taking a greater interest in what they are feeding their pets. For way too many years now people have been feeding dry kibble to cats. There is also an overabundance of overweight animals and also greatly increased incidences of diabetes, urinary tract disease and other diseases that have a strong dietary component. If you read the ingredients that are listed for almost any dry food you'll find the first ingredient is almost always corn. When would you ever see a cat in the wild eating corn? Cats evolved as obligate carnivores, they have to eat meat to survive. Left on their own they eat small mammals and birds. The only vegetables and grains a cat will eat are whatever remains in the stomach of their victim. Dry kibble is very, very high in carbohydrate content; something that a cat's pancreas was just not designed to handle. With these high doses of carbs a cat's pancreas just cannot produce enough insulin to deal with it and the cat winds up diabetic. Lots of cats, if fed the proper "catkins diet" that is high in protein and low in carbs can actually become diet controlled diabetics and come off of the insulin! I have dealt with a few diabetic cats that when their diet was changed their need for exogenous insulin was greatly reduced or eliminated all together.

Anyone who is interested in learning more about how diet affects your cats health can read more about it in Dr. Elizabeth Hodgkins new book "Your Cat". This vet spent years working for the pet food industry so she knows what goes on "behind the curtain". When you read it you'll see just how much of it is common sense and you'll wonder why this isn't taught in veterinary school. This book is definitely on my recommended reading list!!


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