Diabetes Mellitus in Cats Diabetes Mellitus in Cats : Cats who do not have insulin have a disease called diabetes mellitus. Diabetes mellitus is and extremely common disease in cats

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Diabetes Mellitus in Dogs and Cats

All consumed food is eventually converted to sugar, the energy source for every organ in the body and for every cell in every organ. If too much food is consumed, the extra calories can be stored by the body for later conversion to sugar. Sugar is carried in the blood to all areas of the body, and any cell that is in need of sugar simply uses the sugar present in the blood. How do cells move sugar into their interior from the bloodstream? A substance called insulin, produced by an organ located in the abdomen (the pancreas), is the key that allows cells to obtain sugar from the bloodstream. Insulin is necessary for life.

People, dogs, and cats who do not have insulin have a disease called diabetes mellitus. Diabetes mellitus is and extremely common disease in people, dogs, and cats. There are two common forms of diabetes. The form in which an individual has absolutely no insulin has several names: insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM), type I diabetes, and juvenile-type diabetes.

The other form occurs when an individual has insulin but either does not have enough or has a condition that interferes with insulin function. It has several names: non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM), type II diabetes, adult-onset diabetes.

Approximately 10 per cent of people with diabetes mellitus have type I disease and 90 per cent have type II. Approximately 60 per cent of diabetic cats have type I and 40 per cent type II. Virtually 100 per cent of dogs with diabetes mellitus have type I disease.

What happens when an individual has diabetes mellitus? Without sugar constantly being removed from the blood by cells everywhere in the body, the diabetic person, dog, or cat has more and more sugar accumulates that it begins to "spill over" into the urine through the kidneys along with water. Therefore, diabetics urinate large volumes. In dogs and cats, sometimes the first thing that an owner observes is that the pet is no longer "housebroken" or the pet cat begins urinating outside the litter box. Because the volume of fluid lost into the urine of diabetics is excessive, they make up for these losses by drinking more and more water.

Because cells throughout the body have lost their access to sugar, they begin to "starve." Individual cells do not see the lack of insulin, they see only a lack of energy (sugar). Therefore, messages are sent out for energy (sugar) and the diabetic begins to eat more and more. Cells still have no access to the sugar, so additional messages for energy are sent out and the body begins to break down fat and muscle for energy (the components of fat and muscle can be converted to sugar by the liver). Although it makes sense to create more energy, the body still cannot use the sugar resulting from this process. The symptoms common to all diabetics now become obvious: they drink excessively, urinate excessively, eat excessively, and lose weight.

When a dog or cat is brought to a veterinarian for any or all of the symptoms known to be associated with diabetes, the diagnosis is quite easily made. Testing is necessary, however, because there are other diseases that cause all or some of the same symptoms. However, once the diagnosis is made, the real problems begin. Treating diabetes mellitus is not easy. It takes skill by the veterinarian, commitment by the owner, and some luck.

The cornerstones of treating type II diabetic people include weight loss, exercise, and changes in diet to increase fiber content and to decrease simple sugars. If these factors do not help enough, pills can be given. Use of all these treatments rarely helps type I diabetic people. Type I diabetic people, like 100 per cent of diabetic dogs and 80 to 90 per cent of diabetic cats, require insulin by injection to live. All diabetic dogs and cats do best with good commercial pet food given in two equal-sized meals (cats that tend to "graze" all day should be allowed to continue feeding that way). High-fiber foods may be of benefit but are not critical.

Unfortunately, although insulin has been available to treat diabetics for more that 70 years, it must still be given by injection. Your veterinarian will teach you how to give injections to your pet. It is understood that this can be quite intimidating for owners and that your pet will feel the needles. However, once you have done this for a few weeks, you will become quite competent and your pet will accept the tiny pinpricks. Don't give up! Your pet can live an extremely healthy life despite requiring insulin.

There are several different kinds of insulin. Regular (R; crystalline) insulin is the most potent and the shortest acting; Ultralente (U) is the least potent and the longest acting; protamine zinc insulin (PZI) is similar to Ultralente; neutral protamine Hagedorn (NPH;N) insulin is less potent and longer acting than regular but more potent and shorter acting that Ultralente; and Lente (L) is 30 per cent regular and 70 per cent Ultralente and has effects similar to those of NPH.

One insulin may not work satisfactorily in your pet but another may work well. It takes time to determine which insulin and which insulin dose are best for an individual cat or dog. Whereas most cats and dogs respond best to insulin given twice daily (do not try to give the insulin exactly every 12 hours; it is not necessary), some do well with only one injection per day.

Remember the most important goal in treating a diabetic dog or cat: we want the pet to be happy and stable. No diabetic pet becomes absolutely normal.

Finally, regardless of treatment, virtually 100 per cent of diabetic dogs (not cats) develop cataracts and become blind within the first 6 to 24 months; this is inevitable and not a reflection of the job you have done in treating your pet.

The above is general veterinary information. Do not begin any course of treatment without consulting your regular veterinarian. All animals should be examined at least once every 12 months.

About the author: From the Textbook of Veterinary Internal Information: Client Information Series. Copyright 2000 by W.B. Saunders Company. All rights reserved.

Linda Mar Veterinary Hospital and its cat-only affiliate, Coastal Cat Clinic, are small animal practices located in Pacifica, California. To find a veterinarian or to learn more about the vet clinic and our staff, visit:[http://lindamarvet.com/]


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Feline Anxiety Causes Cat Litter Box Problems

Cats experience anxiety and get stressed out just like us human staffers. Unlike people, cats don't have a lot of creative ways to express their feelings. Unfortunately, when cats suffer from stress and anxiety, they generally communicate it in a very clear way that can really turn humans upside down. They usually tell us by not using the cat litter box.


And since we can't speak meow, and cats don't talk, the challenge is to figure why our cats aren't feeling right. Usually when a cat stops using her litter box, it's a medical problem. But if it isn't, one of causes high on my list is stress and anxiety.


What do cats get anxious about? Here's a partial list:

- Moving to a new home

- Gaining a new household member, animal or human

- You change jobs and start a new schedule

- You bring new furniture into your home

- Kitty's favorite person moves out, and she misses that individual

- Construction and/or remodeling of your home

- Relocation of her cat litter box(es)

- Change in type of cat litter


This list is not complete. Felines are complicated creatures, and almost anything can set them off.


If your cat suddenly stops using the litter box out of the blue, eliminate any medical causes first. If kitty gets a clean bill of health, examine the list above, and think about any recent changes you've made to your home. If it appears to be a coincidence, it probably isn't.


This can be a tough problem to solve, but once you figure out the cause, you can start developing solutions. If the stress-inducing situation is temporary (such as the last three items on my list), they can be dealt with. On the other hand, if the problem appears to be one of the first five, you'll need plenty of patience and a strategy to get kitty right again.


Often, once kitty gets used to the change, she'll calm down and start to use her litter box again. During her adjustment period, it may work to confine her to one room with her food, water, litter box, bedding, and toys. This limits the amount of damage done to your home, and as kitty realizes the changes mean her no harm, she'll get back to her good cat litter box habits.


You can also help kitty calm down by purchasing synthetic feline hormones. These will reassure her that life is still OK. You can also administer homeopathic remedies that are completely natural and cause no side effects.


Many feline owners get an anti-anxiety prescription for kitty, but if your cat freaks out over being pilled, this will increase her stress. If this is the case, rely on the synthetic hormones and homeopathic remedies to solve this problem.

Consult with your vet on the best course of action to help your kitty quickly get over her stress and anxiety. Reassure your cat with lots of extra attention and love, and this too shall pass!


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Focus On Cat Health

Cat Health

CHRONIC RENAL FAILURE

The kidneys of a cat can become diseased in a number of different ways. Cats can be born with congenital kidney disorders or the kidneys can become damaged due to injuries, infections, kidney stones, tumors and toxins (such as antifreeze). While all of these conditions are life threatening they are, luckily, all fairly uncommon. The kidney condition of cats which is very common is a progressive deterioration of the kidneys with no apparent underlying cause that progresses with age. We refer to this as Chronic Renal Failure (CRF). This condition is the most common cause of death in aged cats. When deterioration of the kidneys occurs, they are not able to function normally. The kidneys have several important functions. They help clear toxic waste products from the body, keep several blood chemicals at normal levels, and control fluid balance to maintain normal hydration. They also produce a hormone necessary for the production of red blood cells and are involved in the regulation of calcium and vitamin D.

In the very early stages of renal failure the body is able to compensate so symptoms may not be evident. As the disease progresses and imbalances become more marked, symptoms such as increased thirst and urination, dehydration, loss of appetite, lethargy, weakness, and vomiting may occur. Your veterinarian will be able to assess the state of your cat's kidney function using blood and urine tests. In some cases veterinarians may also use x-rays, blood pressure measurement, ultrasound and even kidney biopsies to gain more information about kidney function.
Continue Reading About CHRONIC RENAL FAILURE


Understanding Cat Arthritis Symptoms - Caring For An Arthritic Cat

The increasing amount of cat owners feeding highly processed commercial cat food is reported by many veterinary experts to be a contributing factor in the increasing amount of cat arthritis happening in cats.

It is certainly not coincidence that owners who feed their cats homemade and raw food see lower occurrence of degenerative arthritis in their cats.

Today, although there are no concrete proof to show that commercial cat food contribute to arthritis development in cats, it is widely believe that they play a big part, From there, we understand that your cat’s diet would play a major effect in preventing this stressful cat disease.

Apart from diet, overweight older cats are also more likely to develop arthritis because of the extra pressure they put on their joints causing the cartilage and bones to wear off faster. Naturally, a cat who enjoys a healthy diet and who exercise regularly will be less likely to suffer from the same condition.

The symptoms of arthritis in cats would be that he will find it difficult to walk around and run. Moving around stiffly, he will not make jumps that he use to make and will have difficulty in climbing up stairs. Showing signs of depression, your cat would hide away and appear listless and even bad tempered. Not allowing you to touch and stroke him in areas where he is painful, he might cry out if you touch him on a painful joint.

To diagnose arthritis in cats, veterinary will observe, use blood test and most importantly the x-ray examination. The X-ray will show joint degeneration in areas of worn, irregular bone position and possible distortion of the joint and see if the bone is causing pain and forcing the cat to stand in an awkward position to compensate for the discomfort.
Continue Reading About Understanding Cat Arthritis Symptoms - Caring For An Arthritic Cat


The Cat With Kidney Problems

Does your cat have a kidney problem? Then you are not only going to need to learn more cat information in general so that you can comprehend the animal better but as well you are going to need to produce a proper feline kidney diet.

Changing to a feline kidney diet will help in a number of ways; it is going to make certain that your cat is receiving all the nutrition they require to strive. A feline kidney diet needs to include special vitamins and minerals than you do not generally get in a regular feline diet because there are kidney problems.

Where to begin
To understand what is going to help your cat and what dietary changes it will require you need to understand the cat. Cats are naturally carnivores, and the greatest way to formulate a feline kidney diet plan is to make sure to comprise foods that the cats would eat out in the wild, as this is where they initially come from.

The next step is where it gets tough. You are going to need to understand how to read a pet food ingredient label, so you can make sure that you are selecting the correct food for your cat. The current labeling system for pet foods is gravely deficient in functional information and looking at the list of ingredients will tend to give an imperfect picture of what is in fact in the food in terms of the quantity of each ingredient.

Even though you may have heard different, the majority if not all of the so-called prescription diets that are sold in veterinary hospitals are not formulated for most favorable health of a carnivore. A lot of of these products include corn, wheat and soy which really have no logical place in a cat's diet even though most people incorrectly think this because this is believed by so many people.

Diet is the brick and mortar of health, and so if you want your cat to live a long healthy life, you are going to need to make sure that they are eating all the right foods. Not only do you need to provide them with a proper feline kidney diet but as well make sure that they are drinking enough water and getting enough exercise.

You will want to do as a great deal investigation of your own, so that you can find out more about cats in general and as well about your cat in particular, what their health problems are and what you can do to obtain care of them and get them to a most favorable condition of health.
Continue Reading about The Cat With Kidney Problems

Got Cat Urine Smell Blues?

It's a couple of hours before my big party and I'm almost ready to go out. I took the cats to the neighborhood vet for a weekend stay. I cleaned the house from top to bottom and everything looks great. As I leave to go and pick up some last minute items for the party, I went back into the house only to be greeted with the awful smell of cat urine when I entered the door.

Surely, the cat smell should be gone. The rugs were shampooed. The party starts in 4 hours and my house smells like industrial cleaner, air freshener and cat pee.

It is very embarrassing when you have company over, your house is clean and your guests get a whiff of cat urine. Not good at all.

For those of you who have problems getting rid of cat urine odor, this one's for you. Here are some home remedies to help you kick the odor.

Cats are clean animals which have peculiar ways. The best way to control the place where a cat urinates is by always keeping their litter box clean. A cat will not urinate in its litter box if it can smell the odor of urine. Instead, it will find some other place to urinate like the carpet or that favorite rug which is so cozy.

A cat will urinate in the same spot until it can smell the unpleasant aroma of urine and then will seek another area.

One economical recipe for curing cat urine odor and stains from the carpet is to use common household elements such as vinegar, water, peroxide and baking soda. The way this works is you will first try to get up the excess urine from the carpet. Dilute vinegar with 3 parts water and soak on soiled area. Once you've soaked the area you can pour peroxide on the area and sprinkle with baking soda. Vacuum the excess.

This is a cheap economical way to remove cat urine odor from rugs and similar areas in your home.

Once I tried this home remedy, I realized that if I would just do this once or twice a week, my house would keep a fresh smell. The one key to keeping an odorless home, is to make sure that I am keeping the litter box as clean as possible so that the cats will feel comfortable peeing in their preferable place
Continue Reading about: Got Cat Urine Smell Blues?


Focus On Cat Breeds

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Persian Cat Grooming

Persians require grooming. A wide-metal greyhound comb is suggested and should be combed through the coat daily from the root to the end. Don't forget the chest area, behind the ears and up under the armpits.

Frequency of baths depend on each individual cat's fur. Dilute coated cats tend to be able to go longer between baths yet they mat up faster. Silk coats tend to look string faster- yet hardly ever mat and knot.

Some Persians require baths bi-weekly, while others can go up to six weeks between before even looking dirty.

To the untrained eye, a Persian cat most likely will appear clean even when dirty. Show cats are degreased and bathed to look their very best. The coat of a well- groomed Persian will not look separated or greasy. Many breeders degrease with either Dawn or Joy dishwashing liquid in the bath water or Goop on a dry coat. But be careful, because degreasing can also strip a coat if moisture is not replenished when weekly show baths are given.

Each color of coat may require a different Cat Shampoo. For example, Whites need a shampoo with a brightening or bluing formula to whiten the coat. Blacks need to be darkened and spared from too much light and drying. Tabbies require their bars to be enriched and Reds need to redden the orange appearance. Bicolor's and Dilutes require a shampoo to bring out the color they have the most of, keeping in mind to also brighten the white. Shampoos are sold with colors of coats in mind and will specify exactly what they are intended to do. Our Oatmeal Almond can take care of any coat color and texture.

Mats need to be removed before the bath or they will become worse. Never cut them out with a sharp-pointed tool such as scissors...you could cut the kitty if he jumps. Rip them apart into little knots and try working them out with a comb or your fingers. Sometimes powder can help too.
Continue Reading about Persian Cat Grooming



Know More About Purebred Cat Breeds

All types of cats and no matter if they are purebred or not do wonderful feline companions. If you have your heart set on getting a purebred cat, here are some popular breeds that you might consider. Some might be surprised to know that you can find cats and kittens in your local rescue. If you are looking for a specific race that you could call or go by the local emergency center before seeking a breeder.

British Short Hair
British shorthair cats are one of the oldest cat breeds and English ancestry goes back to Rome. This breed was first known for its ability to hunt because of his physical strength. However, this breed is also known for his calm demeanor and loyalty.

The British Shorthair has a short plush coat is very soft and easy to groom. These cats are larger and they prefer to stay on the ground. They are pets and families are very loyal companions. The original color of these cats is a grayish blue, now you can find these adorable animals in a variety of colors.

Birman
Birman cats are believed to have originated in Burma and they were considered sacred animals and belonged to the high priests. It is believed that this cat breeds were created in the Western world around 1925. These cats are lovely companions and were marked by very distinctive.

Birman cats are usually very long and thick. Their hair is long and silky, but it is not as thick as the Persian cat and does not mat easily. Their fur is usually light in color with a gilded plaster. The points on the face, legs and tail are darker and are similar to Siamese. They have big blue eyes and a face looking strong. The only thing distinctive about the Birman cat that makes them stand out from others is their very distinctive white feet. These cats have great personalities that make them good pets and family companions.

Burmese
Burmese cats get their distinctive colors of selective breeding to Siamese cats. They come in a variety of different colors, including champagne stable, blue and platinum. Their clothes are very short and had a texture of silk, which means they require little grooming. Burmese cats are compact and have a more rounded head and large expressive eyes.

These cats are very lively and like to play even when they are adults. Burmese cats are very intelligent and they seem to have each their distinct personality. Some people say their dog-like tendencies because they like the shade of their owners and have a desire to give and receive affection. They love being around people and our great companions.

Persian Long Hair
Persians have been appointed for the country they were from and their heritage is known back to 1600 BC but nobody knows their exact origins. They have long flowing coats and faces very distinctive which makes it a very popular breed. Persians are sweet and nice and well suited to any family. They have short legs with heavy support their great bodies and like to have short feet firmly planted on the ground. They are not in climbing and jumping. They can be playful, but like lounging in their favorite chair or window.

Persians should be kept indoors because of their long flowing coats. They must be combed daily to remove tangles and hairballs. When most people think that the Persian cat they think of the color white, but actually come Persians and range of colors, including solid color, tabby and bicolor.

These cats can easily live to 20 years with proper care and annual visits to the vet. Cats are beautiful to watch and their gentle nature makes them ideal for all types of families. These are just some of the most popular breeds that work well with families. There are many more types of cats that are just as friendly and popular as those mentioned above, including the Manx and Siamese cat. The cats can be expensive and you need to ensure they had adequate food and are kept healthy. This can be done by keeping them inside and take each year to your veterinarian.

To ensure your cat breeds remains healthy and enjoy a long life, you might consider obtaining insurance cat snacks unexpected medical expenses will be in years to come. You have insurance on the rest of your family and peace of mind that you might want to get insurance on your cat feline companion.
Continue Reading about: Purebred cats


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