Five O'Clock Somewhere

Welcome to Five O'Clock Somewhere, where it doesn't matter what time zone you're in; it's five o'clock somewhere. We'll look at rural life, especially as it happens in Rio Arriba County, New Mexico, cats, sailing (particularly Etchells racing yachts), and bits of grammar and Victorian poetry.

Monday, December 25, 2006

The things we do for cats

Can you say, “spoiled”?

Over the past couple of weeks, we have been dealing, once again, with feline medical issues.

It started this summer, when we realized Tres was getting skinny, and he often seemed to suffer some digestive distress. A blood test subsequently showed that he had a thyroid imbalance, and so he had to take medication twice a day.

This put a cramp in our sailing plans. No longer could we simply leave the cats behind with a big bowl of kibbles for a long weekend. Tres really suffered if he had to miss more than one dose. So … we found a place to rent near the lake, and now the cats come with us when we go down there. Yep, that’s right. For the good of the cats, we now have a pied-à-terre in T or C.

Lately, however, Tres started having more and more digestive problems. A return trip to the vet for another blood test showed that the thyroid medication is working, and his hormone level is normal. So the diagnosis was a probable food allergy. Tres has always been sensitive, and even when he was young he sometimes reacted badly to strong food. He’s very fair-skinned, and like fair-skinned humans, he’s easily irritated – he can’t eat out of a plastic dish without getting a major acne outbreak, for instance.

The usual culprits in such cases are the proteins in mainstream cat foods – beef, chicken, and such. The solution is special diet cat food that uses other proteins. So Tres is now eating a cat food made with duck, and venison and rabbit are also available. Of course, one reason mainstream cat food uses such meats as beef and chicken is that they are inexpensive. Duck is not.

Of course, that all leads to logistical problems when it comes time to feed the cats, since Dulce doesn’t need the special diet, and Tres definitely can’t eat the mainstream food. We have to shut the cats in separate rooms to eat now, and Dulce in particular doesn’t like the idea – she much prefers having a dish of her kibbles out at all times so she can snack whenever she wants.

Still, the new diet is working for Tres, and he’s doing much better now. We do have one slight problem – we ran out of Tres’ canned food, and with the Christmas holiday, the vet’s office is closed so we can’t get more right away. We’ll have to see what human food he can eat for a couple of days … in the cabinet right now, there’s a tin of smoked oysters … maybe some lamb or cabrito would work … elk, perhaps …


Post a Comment

<< Home