Is Your Cat Getting More and More Chubby?

This is Raja, our overweight cat!

Raja started out a reasonably svelte 12 lbs when we got her from a local shelter at age 7. Then, barely 2 years later, she was up to a hefty 15 lbs!

Diet cat foods were no help. Then, I happened to read a book: "Your Cat, Simple New Secrets To A Longer, Stronger Life" and it changed everything.

We invite you to follow our quest for a healthy weight-loss plan for this funny, personable and very talkative cat.

Hopefully, together we can help all our cats live healthier and thinner lives!

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2009-05-17

Constipated Cat? Your Cat May Need Fiber!

Lynn (Raja's mother) went away on vacation for a week and I came over every night to feed the cat and clean her box. That's when I first noticed Raja's problem.

While cleaning her box, I could see that poor Raja was having some pretty hard stools. She also didn't seem to be "going" every day.

So, after checking the Internet for a cure, I tried adding unsweetened canned pumpkin to her food, as recommended by people and some of their vets. Pumpkin is a safe, home remedy for constipation, because it contains quite a bit of fiber and is usually something cats will eat.

Of course, Raja hated it. Apparently most cats love it and consider it a treat, but not our Raja. What little I did manage to sneak into her food seemed to help a couple of days later, so that was good. However, when Lynn returned from vacation, we stopped feeding her pumpkin (she was avoiding any food with pumpkin in it) and we noticed the hard stools again.

Fortunately she was scheduled for a vet visit anyway so we asked the vet about her problem.

First, the vet checked her anal glands (who knew?) and said they were impacted and that was probably causing her hard stools. Also, if she was having difficult bowel movements, she was probably holding it in (talk about anal-retentive!) which explained her not going every day.

So, Lynn paid like $29 to have the vet "express her anal sacs". I could tell by her howls from the back room that Raja really didn't care for the procedure at all. Would you?

Anyway, the vet suggested we give Raja 1/4 tsp Benefiber in her food every day as a stool softener and to add fiber. She suggested Benefiber because it is completely tasteless and would dissolve in Raja's wet food. The other fiber you can buy is not water soluble and usually has a flavor added.

However, the vet did say that expressing her anal glands might be all she needed.

Just to be safe, we started her on Benefiber and it seems to be working. Her stools are looking better (who knew we'd become stool watchers?) and she's "going" a lot easier.

If you are trying the Benefiber cure at home, keep in mind that if your cat has another problem, like diabetes for example, that might be drying her up, adding fiber could actually make things worse. So keep an eye on your cat's stools and if they don't get softer after adding fiber, be sure to take him/her to the vet for a checkup.

For more details than you may want to know about your cat's anal glands, here's an article from About.com: http://cats.about.com/od/healthfaqs/f/diyanalglandsex.htm

1 comment:

  1. Good idea about taking care of our pet cats when they are experiencing constipation. Thanks for the tips. Keep posting.

    ReplyDelete

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