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October 2018

Full Issue (PDF)

October 2018 - Full Issue PDFSubscribers Only

 

Editor's Note

The Million Dollar Question(s)

Invariably, any friend or family member with a cat question comes straight to me. And while I always try to help with some form of answer, on occasion, it’s truly impossible to offer a ten-minute solution to a complex problem involving a litter box issue, aggression in a multicat home or a sickly stray in the neighborhood.   More...

Feature

Which Nutrition Websites to Trust

When you do an Internet search on “how to feed a cat with cancer” and come upon a website that says to buy your pet a supplement designed by the person running the site, your instinct to feel suspicious kicks in automatically. Or when you click on a website that says not to feed your cat a diet with grains because cats are not naturally grain eaters, and the site points out that you don’t see cats grazing in grassy fields. (For the record, cats tolerate grains just fine.)   More...

Nutrition Websites: The Best of the Best

Pet Nutrition: General Information vetnutrition.tufts.edu/petfoodology — visit Tufts’ Cummings School’s Petfoodology site, with information on everything from whether you should give fish oil to your cat to what to feed your kitten if she has a health problem to diets for certain disease conditions. You can look for any nutrition topic using the search bar. …   More...

Coping With Feline HerpesvirusSubscribers Only

Most cats are likely to contract an upper respiratory disease at some point during their lives. Although a wide range of viral and bacterial agents may be responsible for these common disorders, perhaps the most frequently diagnosed is infection with the feline herpesvirus (FHV).   More...

Three of the Ancient Cat BreedsSubscribers Only

Thanks to breakthroughs in analytical genetics in addition to art, culture and literature, the oldest domestication of cats can be traced back to over 8,000 years ago. When grain farmers needed help controlling the rodent population in the region called the ‘Fertile Crescent’ — a crescent-moon shaped area including parts of the Near and Middle East — they first tried utilizing the help of weasels. But weasels proved to be difficult to domesticate.   More...

How to Combat Car SicknessSubscribers Only

Car sickness affects a high percentage — perhaps as many as half — of all household cats in the U.S. In some cases, the disorder and its manifestations may be caused by a fleeting disturbance of a cat’s vestibular system — the complex array of nerves and other components, centered in an animal’s inner ear and lower brain, that governs his sense of balance and coordinates the movement of his head and eyes.   More...

The Management of Megacolon

Obviously, it’s very distressing to a cat owner if she witnesses the plight of an otherwise healthy animal having difficulty moving her bowels. The cat will crouch over her litter box and stare fixedly ahead — her abdomen contracting and her legs and hind quarters quivering as she strains to pass an impacted stool. If her efforts pay off at all, she may eventually pass a small, hard, dark-colored fecal mass into her litter box. If not, she is apt to give up the task for the time being, disappear from sight, and then return to the litter box and try again a little while later.   More...

Ask the Doctor

Dear Doctor: A cat with a “hot spot”

Recently, I noticed that my seven-year-old male cat, Bisco, was excessively grooming his hindquarters. When I investigated the site, I discovered a raw, red spot where he had licked the fur and skin off. The vet explained that Bisco had developed a “hot spot” and that these were fairly common in cats, particularly during the summer.   More...

Dear Doctor: Tinkering with a cat’s diet

My wife likes to purée vegetables— like peas, carrots and sweet potato — and mix it into our cat’s canned food. Is this okay to do? Are there any vegetables that should never be added to the cat food? We also add some cranberry powder (made for cats), along with some hairball powder. We trying to be to health-minded, but could we be causing potential problems?   More...

Pet Food and Protein

A study recently published in the Journal of Experimental Biology sheds new light on optimal nutrition for our pets and disputes the common notion that cats want and need a protein-heavy diet.   More...