Kidney Failure in Cats Kidney Failure in Cats: Your cat has just been diagnosed with kidney problems, and you may be overwhelmed by just what that means and what needs to be done to help him/her cope with the disease.

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Management of Kidney Failure in Cats


Your animal has just been diagnosed with kidney problems, and you may be overwhelmed by just what that means and what needs to be done to help him/her cope with the disease.

TERMINOLOGY

Kidney disease indicates some degree of kidney compromise; that is, the kidneys are not working at 100% capacity. This may be from an infection, from a toxin, from trauma, or from old age. The damage that is done may or may not be reversible.

Kidney failure indicates that the kidneys are in a state of deterioration; this may be mild, moderate or severe. While this is usually a progressive disease, the rate at which the kidneys fail varies greatly with the time at which the disease is diagnosed, how aggressive the treatment is, and how well the animal responds to treatment.

Either of the above can be acute; that is, the animal has normal kidney function one day and then because of a toxin or infection, the kidneys are suddenly compromised. Usually chronic kidney failure is a slow, insidious progression of the kidney's inability to keep up with the body's needs. The latter is more common in cats and dogs.

SIGNS OF KIDNEY DISEASE OR FAILURE

Often animals live with poorly functioning kidneys for some time before they show signs that are noticed by its owner. (NOTE: the signs of increased water consumption and urine output may occur with other diseases like hyperthyroidism and diabetes). Typical signs of the disease:

Drinking a lot of water

This may be just staying at the water bowl longer to drink or seeking new sources of water such as the toilet or a dripping faucet.

Urinating a lot

Despite frequent cleanings, the litter box is always full, or a previously housetrained pet has accidents in the house, or when the dog goes out, it urinates larger volumes.

Decreased appetite

As toxins accumulate in the body, the appetite drops off so the pet becomes more and more finicky.

Weight loss

This is the result of decreased appetite, but is often inappropriately attributed to old age.

Dehydration

Even though the pet is drinking a lot, they urinate dilute urine and become dehydrated.

Constipation

As the body needs more fluid, the colon becomes deprived of it. The stool dries out and the pet becomes constipated.

Bad breath

Bad teeth can also contribute, but as toxins build up in the body, they cause a bad odor from the mouth.

Oral/stomach ulcers

Acids build up in the stomach and irritate the inside lining; this may cause vomiting and/or digested blood to appear in the stool which then takes on a dark color.

DIAGNOSIS

Suspicion of kidney disease is based on the owner's observation and the veterinarian's physical exam findings and tests that can reveal the presence and severity of disease.

Bloodwork

An explanation of what these terms, along with the normal values, is shown below. (These values are based the interpretations of IDEXX, our outside laboratory. Linda Mar Veterinary Hospital's in-house values may be slightly different.)

BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen): one of the kidney enzymes that is increased with kidney problems. This value can also be elevated with dehydration and recent ingestion of a high protein meal. Normal values for dogs are 7-27. Normal values for cats are 17-35.

Creatinine: a more sensitive test of kidney function; commonly increased with kidney problems. Normal values for dogs are 0.4-1.8. Normal values for cats are 0.8-2.3.

Hematocrit (Packed Cell Volume, or PCV): indicative of the amount of red blood cells in the body. These cells are produced by the bone marrow when it is stimulated by a hormone called erythropoietin, made by the kidneys. When the kidneys fail, they stop making this hormone. This results in anemia. Normal values for dogs are 37-55%. Normal values for cats are 24-45%.

Albumin: one type of protein that, with some types of kidney problems, can be lost in the urine (i.e. glomerular disease.) Low blood levels of this is detrimental to the animal. Normal values for dogs are 2.6-4.3. Normal values for cats are 2.4-4.1.

Cholesterol: a type of body fat commonly elevated in animals with kidney problems. Unlike humans, it does not result in hardening of the arteries. Normal values for dogs are 86-328. Normal values for cats are 42-170.

Potassium: low blood levels, especially in cats with kidney problems, are due to the potassium being lost in the urine. Normal values for dogs are 4.0-5.6. Normal values for cats are 3.9-5.3.

Bicarbonate: this is lowered because poorly functioning kidneys create an acidic state called metabolic acidosis. Normal values for dogs are 17-24. Normal values for cats are 17-24.

Phosphorus: this component of the blood is normally eliminated through the urine. Because of poorly functioning kidneys, blood phosphorus levels can become increased and can cause problems with the body's calcium levels. This causes the animal to have a poor appetite. Normal values for dogs are 2.1-6.3. Normal values for cats are 3.3-7.5.

Urinalysis: Analyzing the urine can be helpful to check the specific gravity (the animal's ability to concentrate its urine), the presence of protein (suggestive of glomerular disease), and the presence of infection of the kidneys or the bladder.

Blood Pressure: Animals with kidney failure will commonly have elevated blood pressures. Systemic hypertension affects other organs of the body such as the heart and eyes. With the latter, sudden bleeding into the retina and retinal detachments can occur, resulting in a sudden onset of blindness. Blood pressure can be measured by use of a pressure cuff. If it is increased, medication is started to bring down the blood pressure into a more acceptable range.

TREATMENT

Fluid Replacement

Probably the most important component to treatment of kidney failure, it is important to supplement your pet's fluids even though it appears that your animal is already drinking a lot because the urine they produce is dilute, so they are constantly in a dehydrated state. Additionally, poorly functioning kidneys allow toxins to accumulate in the body. Additional fluids have a flushing action to minimize the toxic levels.

Fluids can be given in 3 ways:

Orally: Making sure that fresh, clean water is always accessible to your pet is paramount. Other types of fluids can also be given, especially to cats that like clam juice, beef or chicken broth, or the water found in canned tuna. Milk is not advised, as it is not well tolerated. Additional water can be added to a pet's regular meal, either canned and/or dry.

Subcutaneously (under the skin, or SQ): fluids are administered by placing a needle connected to an administration set (venoset) to a bag of fluids (usually, a balanced isotonic solution such as lactated ringers, but sometimes saline) and allowing the fluids to slowly enter under the skin, forming a 'hump' that is slowly absorbed by the pet. Fluids usually need to be given every other day to every day.

This can be done in the hospital, or more conveniently at home, especially for animals that need it on an on-going basis, which is the case with pets with kidney failure. Owners can become adept at this after hospital staff demonstrate the technique and instruct the client.

Intravenously (in the vein, or IV): fluids are given directly into the vein after placement of a catheter in the pet's vein, that is then taped in place This can be done only in the hospital with careful monitoring by the staff. Administration of IV fluids may be needed initially if the blood values are elevated and your pet is sick (i.e. not eating; vomiting, dehydrated) or in an animal that has been well maintained in kidney failure and then suddenly decompensates.

Diet

When foods containing meat proteins are ingested, waste products are produced. While this poses no problem for healthy kidneys, ailing kidneys allow toxins to accumulate in the body. Because of this, a low protein diet is often recommended to ease the kidneys' work. For dogs and cats, commercial diets that are low in protein are Hill's Canine K/D and Feline C/D and Purina CNM - NF, respectively. Note - these are prescription foods and thus are only available through your veterinarian.

Not as low in protein, but lower than maintenance foods, are any senior formulation of a commercial brand food. Sometimes, an easily digestible source of protein that produces minimal toxins may be needed (i.e. cottage cheese or cooked egg), especially when protein is being lost in the urine.

Medication - usually in the form of tablets to manage the effects of kidney problems. These medications include:

Blood Pressure Medications: These include enalapril (Vasotec) or amlodipine (Norvasc) or benazapril (Lotensin) to bring down blood pressure. After starting on one of these, it is important to measure the animal's response to the medication to determine if the dosage is adequate. These medications are ongoing.

Renagel: given to bind with the phosphorus that becomes excessively high with the poorly functioning kidneys. This medication may or may not be needed long term.

Antibiotics: these may occasionally be needed for treatment of kidney problems, such as infection of the kidney (pyelonephritis) or of the bladder (cystitis).

Calcitriol (Rocaltrol): this is a vitamin D analogue that helps maintain normal calcium and phosphorus balances in the body. It is often given in the food in small amounts daily. Correct dosage is important as an overdose can be detrimental to your pet. This drug is usually given on an ongoing basis.

Antacids: these act to decrease stomach acidity and decrease the occurrence of ulcers, resulting in bloody vomitus or stool. These over-the-counter drugs, such as cimetidine (Tagamet) or famotidine (Pepcid AC), can be obtained at any drugstore.

Procrit (Epogen): this hormone, normally made by the kidneys, is often lacking in patients with kidney problems. It is given as an injection under the skin, usually by the owners at home after an in-hospital demonstration. It is initially given 3 times a week for 1-2 weeks, then tapered to 2 times a week for 1-2 weeks, then one time a week for maintenance.

The rate at which the frequency is tapered depends on the animal's response, as measured by weekly monitoring of the PCV or packed cell volume. Once the PCV is at the desired level and holding, the PCV should be measured on a regular basis.

It is a safe medication; however, occasionally an animal may form antibodies against the Procrit. The antibodies destroy the animal's own red blood cells, thereby worsening the anemia. Or, in some cases, animals may respond too well and make too many red blood cells. Because of cost, this treatment is usually recommended only for cats or small dogs. This medication can be obtained from your veterinarian.

PROGNOSIS

The outcome of your pet's health depends on a variety of factors, such as what type of disease it has acquired, how severe the disease is, at what stage medical intervention was started, the aggressiveness of the treatment, and how well your pet responds.

As with many diseases, the sooner the illness is detected and steps initiated to reverse the damage or slow down its progression, the better the prognosis. It is important to work closely with your veterinarian to help your pet. Rechecks on a regular basis are important to monitor your pet's health. Its weight, blood and urine values and blood pressure levels are evaluated to determine the need for changes in therapy.

If you have any problems or questions regarding this disease, don't hesitate to ask your veterinarian.

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:

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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It’s a given that a cat ages more rapidly than what humans do. Some veterinarians will tell you that a one-year old cat is equivalent to a 16-year old child, although I think this is extreme. The different schools of thoughts propounded by vets and feline experts will tell you that the ratio is anywhere from 4 to 7:1 when it comes to comparing the aging process of a feline to that of a human. Despite the difficulty in predicting an exact age, most vets and experts consider a feline to be “geriatric” once it is 10 years old.

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Continue Reading About Introducing A New Cat At Home


How To Find a Lost Cat

Cats can occasionally wander off, and this can be a very scary time for pet owners. Most cats are found quickly, but it can take some effort for this to happen. If you are trying to find a lost cat, here are the steps you should take:

1. Confirm that the cat is actually lost. Cats are known for being excellent at hiding, and may simply be taking a nap somewhere. Search your home thoroughly, and your yard if your cat is allowed outdoors. Confirming that you cannot find the cat is the first step of the search. Listen carefully for your cat’s meows; it is possible that your cat has wandered into somewhere where they have gotten stuck.

2. Try to entice the cat back home. Even if your indoor-only cat has escaped the home, they are often able to be lured back with food. Set a bowl of food outside and see if the cat comes wandering back. Tuna fish or soft cat food often works best for this, because their smell is easier to detect for a cat than that of dry cat food. However, watch out for other animals who may also be attracted by the scent.

3. Look around the neighborhood. Check all of the streets of your neighborhood. If your neighbors are outside, ask them if they have seen your cats. They may have seen your cat wandering around the neighborhood before you realized that he was lost. Call your cat’s name while searching the neighborhood, and your cat may come running. Make any other noise that your pet is familiar with, like the sound of a treat box being shaken or his favorite squeaky toy.

4. Put up signs. Place signs up around your neighborhood on mailboxes and posts. Your poster should say “LOST CAT” and include the cat’s color and a description as well as your contact info. Include a photo of your cat, if you have one. A color photo is best. These should be distributed up to a one mile radius from where your pet went missing.
Continue Reading About How To Find a Lost Cat


When The Indoor Kitty Decides to Escape

I think that the most frightening thing that can happen to an indoor cat owner is to have their dearly beloved cat escape out the door. Whether it is an accident, where the cat broke through a screen, or someone leaving the door ajar and the cat's curiosity got the best of it. It is an experience that can make even the bravest of cat owners fall to their knees.

However, accidents do happen, no matter how careful we are. So what should a cat owner do first? In some instances prepare yourself for a long day or night of endless searching and calling.

Many studies have shown that indoor cats often show certain types of behavior when they find themselves in strange and unknown territory.

Most often they will go into what is called a "shut down mode" which is a type of self-preservation mode due to the fact that they are frightened and overwhelmed.

Most indoor-only cats have never seen the new sights and sounds of the outdoors and the experience is not only over whelming, but also down right scary.

If you are lucky enough to see your cat escape, keep a watchful eye on where it is going if it is at all possible. A frightened cat generally will not come when called, and now that you are outside, you too, are considered a scary person by the cat.

An indoor-only cat's first impulse is to hide somewhere that is why if you can keep your eye on the escapee you have a better chance of catching him/her.

A word of warning here, however, even if you know where Kitty is hiding, the chances of him/her coming into your arms willingly are slim and none.

First try offering food or treats, should you get no response do not be dismayed, as your cat may just be too frightened or distracted and does not realize you are its friend and not an enemy. If you try to grab the cat or make a fast motion toward it, you are only frightening it more. Talking softly and moving slowly will work better; again, keep in mind that Kitty is frightened and when you try to pick him/her up, Kitty may scratch or bite. This is a defense mechanism and has nothing to do with you. Remember how you would react if someone came toward you when you were frightened, how would you react?

If you know where Kitty is and if you can leave your door open, try to position yourself behind Kitty and sort of nudge the cat toward home territory. Again talking softly and no fast or sudden moves as you encourage the cat toward the house.
Continue Reading About When The Indoor Kitty Decides to Escape


How to Treat Cat Eye Infections - Secrets From a Holistic Veterinarian

Many cats have chronic problems with conjunctivitis (inflammation of the eye membranes). Often, the problem comes and goes. One or both eyes may be red, swollen, watery, crusty, or goopy. Causes include infection, congenital defects (small or absent tear ducts), facial conformation (Persian features), and scarring from previous infections. However, the most common cause of conjunctivitis in cats is infection with a Herpes virus (but don't worry, your cat can't give it to you or your family!). In cats, Herpes is an upper respiratory virus; it's also called "rhinotracheitis" and is one of the components of the upper respiratory/panleukopenia (feline distemper) vaccine that is given to kittens. The vaccine does not actually prevent Herpes infection; its main function is to reduce the severity of the disease.

Virtually all cats are exposed to Herpesvirus as kittens. For most cats, no further problems occur. However, Herpes is a sneaky virus, and it likes to lie dormant until it gets a chance to get one up on the immune system. Because stress suppresses the immune system, cats under stress are particularly susceptible to recurrent Herpes flare-ups. Herpes is irritating and painful, and usually causes quite a bit of redness, puffiness, and a watery discharge or brownish crusty matter at the corners of the eyes. It often attacks only one eye, producing a lopsided squint. Often the cat will squint against bright light, or try to avoid it altogether.

There are several holistic treatment options for Herpes. One of the simplest is l-lysine, an amino acid that is inexpensive and readily available at the health food store. It comes in capsules or tablets, usually 500 mg. Capsules are much easier to work with, if you can get them. The dose is 500 mg twice a day for 5 days (total 1,000 mg/day). Lysine has a slightly salty taste, and is easily disguised by mixing with canned cat food or baby food. That seems like a lot--but that's what it takes to work. Once the acute episode is under control, a maintenance dose of 250 mg per day can be given indefinitely.

To relieve irritation and wash viral particles from the eye, you can make a homemade saline solution. Use 1/4 teaspoon of table salt to 1 cup of water (room temperature). Three or four times a day, use a cotton ball to drizzle a small amount saline into the cat's eyes. Make the saline fresh each and every time, because bacteria could grow in the solution between treatments.

There is a human homeopathic formula that works very well, and very quickly, for cats. It's called "The Herpes Formula" by Aeura. Dissolve one tablet in a 1-ounce dropper bottle filled with a mixture of 80% water and 20% vodka (as a preservative), shake well, and give about half a dropperful by mouth once or twice a day. (Do NOT put it in the eyes!) If you make up a 1-ounce batch, it will last several weeks. It may seem a bit expensive up front, but one bottle of The Herpes Formula will provide years of treatment.
Continue Reading About How to Treat Cat Eye Infections




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American Bobtail

The American Bobtail has grown in popularity in recent years. Originally bred in the 1960s, John and Brenda Sanders found a male brown tabby cat with a bobbed tail while vacationing in Arizona and bred it with a Siamese female. The resulting litter was born with bobtails, but this feral looking cat is most likely not part Bobtail. American Bobtails are medium to large cats that have a naturally short tail (hence the name 'Bobtail') that is usually straight. The American Bobtail's hind legs are slightly longer than the front legs. Females will reach and average weight of seven to twelve pounds and males can average over fifteen pounds.

American Bobtails are not considered fully matured until they are about three years old and will live an average of twelve to twenty-one years. Originally only a longhaired breed, American Bobtails are now both long and short haired. The longhaired Bobtails have slightly shaggy medium-long hair that does not mat. Shorthaired Bobtails have a medium length, semi-dense double coat that is also mat resistant.

American Bobtail coats come in all colors, though white and brown is the most popular color. Many allergy suffers find themselves more comfortable around American Bobtails, they are not considered hypoallergenic. This breed of cat makes an excellent family pet and does very well with children and other household pets. They do not mind much of the rough and tumble play children are fond of. American Bobtails are described as friendly, talkative and social. They enjoy climbing so an indoor cat tree or cat condo is a must.
Continue Reading About The American Bobtail


New Kitten Care - How to Kitten-proof Your Home

A very important aspect of new kitten care is keeping your kitten safe from danger. There are a lot of potential hazards round the home for little kittens. This article lists the most common ones and suggests ways you can minimize risks to your kitten and keep her safe.

Washing machine and tumble dryer:
If you leave the door open and there are clothes inside, there's a good chance your kitten will climb in and go to sleep. Always check your kitten isn't inside these before you use them.

Fridge and freezer:
As soon as you've used these, shut the door.

Hob and oven:
Shut the oven door as soon as you've finished with it. Cover hot hob plates.

Raw meat:
Keep it out of reach - it can give your kitten food poisoning.

Garbage:
Put all garbage in a sealed bin that your kitten can't access.

Plants:
Many plants are poisonous to cats. If you're not sure whether a certain plant is safe for your kitten if she eats it, put it out of her reach.

Pot pourri:
The oils used to scent this can be poisonous.

Open fires and candles:
Use a guard on the fire. Never leave a kitten in a room alone with lit candles.

Electrical wires:
If your kitten is a wire chewer, you'll need to put wires out of her reach or buy plastic covers for them.

Curtain tie-backs and cords on window blinds:
Kittens can get caught in these. Either remove them completely or tie them up out of reach.

Filled bathtubs and sinks:
Make sure your kitten doesn't have access to the room when the tub or sink is full.

Open toilet:
Try to get into the habit of keeping the lid down when the toilet's not in use.

Medications:
Keep them in a cupboard that your kitten can't get into.

Small objects:
Kittens can swallow small things like paper clips, rubber bands, staples and needles.

String, wool, fishing line and thread:
Kittens can swallow large quantities of these. For this reason, balls of wool or string and pom-poms aren't good toys for cats.

Household chemicals:
Most cleaners etc. are highly poisonous to cats and need to be kept somewhere your kitten can't access.

Tobacco:
Tobacco, nicotine patches and nicotine gum are all poisonous to cats.

Reclining chairs, futons, folding beds, drawers:
If kittens get caught when this type of furniture is moved, they can get crushed. Make sure your kitten isn't asleep somewhere she could get trapped before you use any of these.

Safety is a major factor for new kitten care. It's fairly easy to keep your kitten safe as long as you anticipate potential dangers and take the necessary steps to prevent them. Putting brightly colored post it notes up around your home is a good way to do this. Stick the notes on or near potential dangers - for example the fridge, washing machine, oven, toilet and futon - and anywhere else that could be a hazard.

About the Author
New Kitten Care - How to Kitten-proof Your Home
Liz Allan has 25 years experience of caring for cats. To find out more about new kitten care, visit: http://www.cat-behavior-explained.com/all-about-kittens.html

Kitten Feeding with a Bottle

Kitten feeding can feel like a difficult process without a mother cat to do it for you. Newborn kittens are so tiny and fragile, and have to operate almost entirely by instinct. It may seem a daunting task at first, but the process of kitten feeding with a bottle is not so much from that of feeding a newborn human. Once they know what to do, they will do it all on their own. All you have to do is show them proper care and follow a few simple guidelines.

Step 1 Make up the bottle of formula. To do this, first sterilize the bottle and nipple in boiling water for several minutes and allow to cool thoroughly before adding the KMR (kitten milk replacement) formula. KMR is specifically formulated for kittens, and cow's milk is not an adequate replacement. To avoid clumping, add just a little bit of water to the powdered mix and stir until thoroughly combined before adding the rest of the hot water. The final temperature of the formula should be about 95 degrees. If the bottle gets cold, just warm it up in a small bowl of very warm water, but always check the temperature before offering it to the kitten.

Step 2 Prepare the kitten. Place a warm, soft towel either on your lap or on the feeding surface, then place the kitten gently on top of it. When feeding newborn kittens, they will need to be lying flat on their stomachs. It is best if you can do this with the kitten gently cuddled against you, because you need to be sure that the kitten is warm before feeding. Cold kittens do not digest their formula well.

Step 3 Feed the kitten. Gently work the nipple against the kitten's mouth. They will get the idea quickly and take it in. If not, very gently stroke the kitten until it gets the idea. You will need to do this six to ten times per day, around the clock, just like a newborn human. Newborn kittens will need a little over one ounce of formula per day, divided between feedings. Be careful to not overfeed them.

Step 4 Clean up and burp the kitten. While the kitten is still on the blanket, gently slip one hand under its belly and hold it while you very lightly pat its upper back. This will stimulate the burp response. Then, using a warm, damp, slightly rough cloth, gently clean its anal and genital area to stimulate urination and defecation.

Step 5 Put the kitten back to bed. It is worn out from its feeding and needs to rest.

About the Author
Kitten Feeding with a Bottle
Learn more about newborn kittens and other aspects of kitten care by visiting the author's website at http://newbornkittens.net.

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Whats News


Homemade Kitten Food

Do you need a cheap, healthy alternative to store bought kitten food to help wean your kittens off their mother's milk and transition them to traditional canned kitten food? More than likely, they have shown little interest in regular canned food, preferring the milk to anything you might put in their bowl. Dry food will also be too hard on their developing teeth. The best option would be to start them on a food that reminds them of what they prefer, but can be mixed with traditional wet food to help transition them over. This recipe is simple to make, and kittens find it delicious.

Bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil, then remove the pan from the heat and mix in one envelope of unflavored gelatin. Be sure to mix thoroughly, and do not boil the gelatin. If the water tastes bad or has a heavy chlorine taste when it comes out of the tap, consider using filtered water instead.

Pour this mixture into a blender along with half of a 12 ounce can of goat's milk. Blend just long enough to combine thoroughly. Do not substitute cow's milk because cats tend to be lactose intolerant. Using cow's milk can lead to discomfort, diarrhea, and worse if fed to kittens.

Add the following ingredients one at a time. After each addition, blend briefly to combine before moving on to the next. You will want to use the lowest setting to avoid overmixing. Add: 3 tbsp full fat yogurt, 3 tbsp real mayonnaise, 3 tsp light corn syrup, and 1 raw egg yolk. Concerning the egg yolk, raw eggs carry a small risk of salmonella poisoning. To eliminate any risk of accidentally passing this on to your kittens, use eggs that have been pasteurized in their shells.

You can serve the completed homemade kitten food the way it is, or you can store it for use later. To store for later usage, cover the mixture tightly in a small container. You can store it in the refrigerator for up to ten days or in your freezer for up to three months.

If you are going to use food that you have prepared in advance, you will want to warm it up before serving, especially if it is coming from the refrigerator or freezer. Cold food causes severe stomach upset in kittens. Warming it up will also make it more aromatic, and thus more appetizing to the kittens.

Cat allergies

How to Litter Train A Kitten

If the mother cat is still in the home and she is already litter trained, then litter training her kittens is a natural process. Her kittens will simply follow what she does. However, ultimately, each cat should have its own litter tray or else it may create a host of other litter tray problems for you!

For most kitten owners, the mother cat is not in the home if the kitten was orphaned or purchased. But this is not a problem. It is easy to litter train a cat when it's still a little kitten. Cats are creatures of habit and it may not be as easy to litter train once they have become used to their favorite toilet spots.

The key to litter training a kitten is to let it get used to the litter tray as soon as possible. You will need to manually place your kitten onto the tray initially, as it is neither used to it nor is it able to climb over the edge to get in.

Most kittens would defecate soon after waking up and after a meal. You could place your kitten in the litter tray during these times and after a few weeks, your kitten would get used to the routine and it would become a habit.

Just be sure to place the litter tray a reasonable distance away from where the kitten is fed and where it sleeps. Cats and kittens are fastidious creatures and do not like to do their toilet near where they eat and sleep.

When a kitten is still very young, it will not be able to "cover up" very well after its toilet, as most adult cats are capable of. But you don't have to worry about this. Once they are about 1 to 2 months old, they will instinctively know how to cover up their poop.

In the wild or in the garden, cats will scoop soil and earth to cover but in the home, if you provide commercial cat litter, they will naturally scoop the litter to cover up the poop. You will notice, even if you only provide a newspaper for their soiling, your kitten will still scoop at the newspaper in an instinctive act to cover up their poop.

Although you can expect to pick up poop after your kitten in the first few weeks, litter training a kitten is relatively easy and can be 100% trouble-free once it gets used to the routine of using the litter tray.

Cat litter box location strategies

New Kitten Care - How to Kitten-proof Your Home

A very important aspect of new kitten care is keeping your kitten safe from danger. There are a lot of potential hazards round the home for little kittens. This article lists the most common ones and suggests ways you can minimize risks to your kitten and keep her safe.

Washing machine and tumble dryer:
If you leave the door open and there are clothes inside, there's a good chance your kitten will climb in and go to sleep. Always check your kitten isn't inside these before you use them.

Fridge and freezer:
As soon as you've used these, shut the door.

Hob and oven:
Shut the oven door as soon as you've finished with it. Cover hot hob plates.

Raw meat:
Keep it out of reach - it can give your kitten food poisoning.

Garbage:
Put all garbage in a sealed bin that your kitten can't access.

Plants:
Many plants are poisonous to cats. If you're not sure whether a certain plant is safe for your kitten if she eats it, put it out of her reach.

Pot pourri:
The oils used to scent this can be poisonous.

Open fires and candles:
Use a guard on the fire. Never leave a kitten in a room alone with lit candles.

Electrical wires:
If your kitten is a wire chewer, you'll need to put wires out of her reach or buy plastic covers for them.

Curtain tie-backs and cords on window blinds:
Kittens can get caught in these. Either remove them completely or tie them up out of reach.

Filled bathtubs and sinks:
Make sure your kitten doesn't have access to the room when the tub or sink is full.

Open toilet:
Try to get into the habit of keeping the lid down when the toilet's not in use.

Medications:
Keep them in a cupboard that your kitten can't get into.

Small objects:
Kittens can swallow small things like paper clips, rubber bands, staples and needles.

String, wool, fishing line and thread:
Kittens can swallow large quantities of these. For this reason, balls of wool or string and pom-poms aren't good toys for cats.

Household chemicals:
Most cleaners etc. are highly poisonous to cats and need to be kept somewhere your kitten can't access.

Tobacco:
Tobacco, nicotine patches and nicotine gum are all poisonous to cats.

Reclining chairs, futons, folding beds, drawers:
If kittens get caught when this type of furniture is moved, they can get crushed. Make sure your kitten isn't asleep somewhere she could get trapped before you use any of these.

Safety is a major factor for new kitten care. It's fairly easy to keep your kitten safe as long as you anticipate potential dangers and take the necessary steps to prevent them. Putting brightly colored post it notes up around your home is a good way to do this. Stick the notes on or near potential dangers - for example the fridge, washing machine, oven, toilet and futon - and anywhere else that could be a hazard.

Cat allergies

Kitten Feeding with a Bottle

Kitten feeding can feel like a difficult process without a mother cat to do it for you. Newborn kittens are so tiny and fragile, and have to operate almost entirely by instinct. It may seem a daunting task at first, but the process of kitten feeding with a bottle is not so much from that of feeding a newborn human. Once they know what to do, they will do it all on their own. All you have to do is show them proper care and follow a few simple guidelines.

Step 1 Make up the bottle of formula. To do this, first sterilize the bottle and nipple in boiling water for several minutes and allow to cool thoroughly before adding the KMR (kitten milk replacement) formula. KMR is specifically formulated for kittens, and cow's milk is not an adequate replacement. To avoid clumping, add just a little bit of water to the powdered mix and stir until thoroughly combined before adding the rest of the hot water. The final temperature of the formula should be about 95 degrees. If the bottle gets cold, just warm it up in a small bowl of very warm water, but always check the temperature before offering it to the kitten.

Step 2 Prepare the kitten. Place a warm, soft towel either on your lap or on the feeding surface, then place the kitten gently on top of it. When feeding newborn kittens, they will need to be lying flat on their stomachs. It is best if you can do this with the kitten gently cuddled against you, because you need to be sure that the kitten is warm before feeding. Cold kittens do not digest their formula well.

Step 3 Feed the kitten. Gently work the nipple against the kitten's mouth. They will get the idea quickly and take it in. If not, very gently stroke the kitten until it gets the idea. You will need to do this six to ten times per day, around the clock, just like a newborn human. Newborn kittens will need a little over one ounce of formula per day, divided between feedings. Be careful to not overfeed them.

Step 4 Clean up and burp the kitten. While the kitten is still on the blanket, gently slip one hand under its belly and hold it while you very lightly pat its upper back. This will stimulate the burp response. Then, using a warm, damp, slightly rough cloth, gently clean its anal and genital area to stimulate urination and defecation.

Step 5 Put the kitten back to bed. It is worn out from its feeding and needs to rest.

Cat allergies

Getting Ready for the Newborn Kittens

Caring for your cat during pregnancy may require a lot of time and effort in your part but it is a very wonderful and rewarding experience. But after the kittens are already born, you will need to do a different task and that is to take care of the newborn kittens. These kittens will need special kind of attention and care and you must make sure that you could provide it to them.

One good way to start is to prepare your home for the arrival of the newborn kittens. Kittens tend to play with, chew, or nibble anything that attracts their interest like plants, cords, and other materials. You should remove the things that could be harmful to the newborn kittens like anything that could poison them or hurt them. Electrical cords must be kept out of reach. Look for anything sharp and pointed and remove them from the area immediately. Deal with anything that could strangle your kitten like ropes, ribbons, and cords to provide a safer place for your kittens.

You might also want to save your curtains and drapes from kitten scratches so it would be advisable to tie them up so your kittens will not be able to reach them. Make sure that the cabinet for your cleaning liquids are out of your kittens’ reach. Most of these cleaning liquids are poisonous and you wouldn't want your kitty to play with them to prevent any kind of accident.

Another good preparation that you should not forget is to shop for things that your kitten will need. You will have to shop for foods that are suitable for newborn kittens. You should opt for foods that could give your kittens the kind of nutrition they need for growth. The food should also be easily digestible by kittens to prevent any troubles with their tummy.

You should also get them the things they need like their own bowls, kitty basket or bed, blanket, litter box, and toys. This is to ensure that your kittens will be comfortable and that they will have a good playing time. You should provide them with warm and comfortable place or area to sleep in. When choosing toys for your little kittens, make sure that they are safe and will not put the safety of your kittens at risk.

Lastly, you must make sure that your kittens are healthy. After birth, you could have a vet take a look at them to check them up for any illness and to give them vaccines that they need. If your vet saw some signs and symptoms that suggest illness, your kitten might be subjected to some tests and examinations. This is to ensure that they will grow healthy and will reduce the risk of getting sick. These things will help prepare you and your home for the arrival of your cat’s newborn kittens. You will not have to get worried about their safety inside your home and you can be sure that you will able to provide them with anything they need for them to grow happy and healthy.

Cat allergies

Newest Articles

Sick Cat Symptoms - Recognize the Signs of a Sick Cat
To many peoples pets are part of the family. It's never fun when a family member isn't feeling well. How can you tell if your cat is sick? You don't need to be a doctor to recognize the common symptoms. Cats may have some of the same symptoms as humans when they aren't feeling well. Some of these common symptoms include:

Blood in Cat Stool May Not Be Serious
Did you find cat blood in stool and are worried that there might be something terribly wrong? Sometimes you may see bright red blood in cat stool if their bowel movements are very hard or dry which could be from lack of water or moist foods

Feline Bloody Stools - The Cause, the Symptoms, and the Plan of Action
If you notice feline bloody stool, you might feel the urge to lose it but the first thing you need to do is relax. It is a common problem that most likely has a simple solution. The first step is to understand why this happened. Some of the most common causes of feline bloody diarrhea include a bacterial infection, bowel inflammation, intestinal parasites, or a reaction to taking antibiotics.

A Chubby Kitty Can Be a Sick Kitty
Has you cute, cuddly cat gained weight? In this article, we will look at how similar an overweight kitty is to an overweight human. Once you see that your cat can have some of the same complications as an overweight or obese person, you will see that a cute chubby kitty is not necessarily the most adorable pet, but rather a kitty with serious health problems.

What Are the Top 10 Most Popular Pedigreed Cat Breeds?
Pedigreed cats are a source of joy and pride for their owners. Besides their gorgeous coats, beautiful lines, and great disposition, these animals offer companionship and entertainment to those who love them. Choosing a pedigreed cat is not easy, but knowing the most popular breeds of pedigreed cats may help.

Cat Health - Is It Poisonous To Your Cat?
Cats are curious by nature. Everyone has heard "Curiosity killed the cat." Well this can become a true a true statement if you are not careful. The following are a few ways to make sure your home is safe for your cat:



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The Legendary Luminous Pearl:
In 1985, Mr. Li Guangling, a collector from Henan Province, discovered a fluorite luminous pearl, which could give out green phosphorescence in the dark after being held in hand. Soon after that, a friend from Luoyang of Henan showed the author two bored luminous pearls, which could also give out dazzling green light, but the component of which was not determined. It is left unknown if these two luminous pearls are exactly those two of the legendary 12 luminous pearls on the hat of empress Ci Xi....

Cat Litter Box Problems: 7 Essential Keys To Solve The Problem Quickly!:
Has this ever happened to you? Your cat's peeing outside the litter box, and you're desperately trying to clean up after your cat, wondering if you're actually doing anything to stop it from happening in the first place!

Flea Control For Cats And Dogs:
As a pet owner I'm sure you'd be frustrated at the sight of your pet scratching and suffering from fleas. If you look into the veterinary arsenal you will see that there are a number of products that help you fight the war against fleas

Training a Cat to Have Likeable Behaviors
Cats can be very finicky at times. When you are trying to change bad behaviors, this can be hard. Cats will not always do what you want them to. When you are trying to change a bad behavior you need to introduce one good behavior.



temperament of cats
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Feline Obesity
All cats have the potential to become overweight, but the problem appears to be more prevalent in mixed-breed cats. The highest incidence appears in neutered, middle-aged, six-to-eleven-year-old male cats.

Maine Coon - the Facts Every Owner of This Cat Breed Should Know
Like many older breeds, the origin of the Maine Coon is unclear and steeped in rumor. Some believe Maine Coons, also known as American Longhair, American Shag, American Forest Cat, American Snughead and Maine Trick Cat, are a cross between semi-domestic wild cats and raccoons (doubtful if not impossible). Others believe that Marie Antoinette sent her beloved Angoras to America for safety. They escaped and inbred with wild cats. Still others believe a cat was brought to Maine by Captain Coon and the cat escaped to live in the wilds of Maine.

Tired of vet bills for your cat?:
Do you make a lot of trips to the vet's office? Do you spend your hard-earned money on vet bills because your cat or dog suffers from chronic ailments? Give your dog or cat the nutrition he needs, and chances are you can spend your money on other things rather than giving it to your veterinarian.



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Some News About Cat, kitten, cat litter, free content,

  • Cats Pride KatKit Disposable Trays, Includes Litter (Pack of 5):

    disposable tray filled with free cat's pride premium clay cat litter; The all-in-one travel solution designed for convenience and portability; Made from 100% recycled plastic soda bottles; Completely disposable, total convenience Our orders are generally ...

  • $6.24 (Reg $15) Litter Genie Cat Litter Disposal System at Target

    (Deal Ends 9/23) Head on over to Target this week where you can score Litter Genie Cat Litter Disposal Pail for only $6.24, regularly $14.99! Right now there’s a high value $5 off one Litter Genie Disposal Pail coupon, stack it with a 25% off Litter ...

  • 11 Cat Emergencies That Need Immediate Vet Attention

    Remember as well that you are always free to call your cat vet or your local emergency ... Initial symptoms may be subtle: Affected cats may urinate outside the litter box, strain but produce only small quantities of urine, vocalize, or groom their ...

  • Pause for Paws: Kittens are almost ready for you

    So, what we have now are a free ... litter; and more small litters who will need additional time in foster care to be ready to adopt. We are in the process of recruiting a few more foster care homes for socializing kittens and to help with the mother cats ...

  • Cat Not Using Litter Box? Try These Solutions

    I'm a writer and lifelong animal lover who's owned cats, dogs ... container to keep odors away from the litter box area. It’s important to fully clean the litter box once a week to keep the box as odor-free as possible. I’ve found it helpful to ...

  • PrettyLitter: A new ally in veterinary disease detection?

    The color key: Golden yellow or olive green litter: a healthy cat (at least in regard to what can be detected via the urine) Red litter: blood in the urine Blue litter: high alkaline content ... is also chemical-free and biodegradable.

  • Alley Cat Allies Deploys Resources to Gulf Coast for Hurricane Recovery

    Additional supplies such as leashes, cat food, kitty litter ... of millions of cats and kittens worldwide. Its website is www.alleycat.org, and Alley Cat Allies is on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and YouTube. View original content with multimedia ...

  • Best job ever: $500 to spend a day playing with puppies and kittens

    Sydney Dogs and Cats Home wants to pay one pet-obsessed person $500 to basically cuddle puppies and kittens for the day. And at the front of queue to receive that attention is a deliciously gorgeous litter of ... job ever” for free, by donating Airtasker ...

  • Pet of the week: Adopt kitten brothers Milo and Jack

    These handsome brothers were part of a litter of kittens surrendered along with ... Furever Home is a unique facility, where cats await adoption in an open, cage-free environment. Furever Home operates solely on donations and fundraising.



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