Clues on How to Proceed in a Crisis
You'll notice a curious pattern if you begin reading the symptoms of very many cat health problems. 'Inappetance' appears on nearly every list. Instead of writing the symptom off as simply non-specific, the real significance of this pattern is the fact that loss of appetite is a red flag that something is about to become a nightmare, so we have to do something. But what.
The absolutely simplest way of providing a sensible cat diet that I've seen after 4 years of experimenting is the 'natural prey' approach, namely assembling the basics of small critters. Animal parts are basically either 'muscle' or 'organ' or 'bone'. The latest thinking is that cats belong to the animal family with a 'seal' ancestor and their bodies are adapted to consuming fish and seaweed -- aka grass.
Weekly preparation area.
Simulating a cat's natural prey diet -- 30-50% innards.
It's neither time consuming nor expensive.
You have two choices: force feeding in an attempt to get enough through their system with strenuous feeding sessions every couple of hours, basically 8 or 9 times a day for a possibly extended period of weeks and weeks on end IF you manage to catch up -- and if they throw it up undigested, it doesn't count, you've missed another chance -- OR using the tactic developed by grass juice advocates and accessing the nutrient absorption potential of the lower digestive tract without taxing the mechanisms in trouble in the upper tract. Or, of course, some combination of the two. It's been successfully done with humans.
In any case, she said that among the equipment available to do what we're proposing is a combination she had used, consisting of a short length (about 3 inches) of aquarium air-line hose -- with its end finely file-rounded and smoothed and liberally lubricated -- which would fit well on the dispensing tip of an eccentric-tip syringe -- about 60cc size -- and be more comfortable than a rectal thermometer. The former is available at walmart for about a dollar, and the latter can be bought from your local veterinary hospital for about $3.
When things are normal...
After an hour out of the freezer, the fish are separable, though frozen solid, and a serated butcher knife can carve each fish into usable portions.
Next to the box of 'dressed and headless' being processed in this session, is a container suitable for a day's feedings. Each frozen fish is divided into segments -- each segment approximately 1-2 feedings in size --, to be packed into the day-container, and replaced in the freezer. One day-container will be moved to the refrigerator to defrost for the next day's needs when the previous one is about used up.
The strips along the fins are quick to defrost, so we keep those strips for the first feedings.
By comparison, we found that when the upper digestive tract is in hepatic lipidosis trouble, then kibble -- and likely similar cooked concoctions such as canfoods -- was undigested to any degree after even 2 hours in Butters' stomach and would be vomited when it was time to begin the next needed feeding. The same serving size of raw foods was successfully digested over the same time period.
The kitchen shears with fine serrated jaws is ideal for this process of cutting the strips away from the fins. The dorsal and ventral fins are about the only part we dispose of, along with the tail fins.
For grass juice there's a figure of 7calories/oz that's found at some weight-loss sites. This number is however not supported by several very dramatic demonstrations. During the depression, a family -- the Charles Schnabel family in Kansas -- lived for several years on grass and raw milk with very healthy results and they were successful for a while in attempting to develop a health food business later based on their dietary experience. Many of our ancestors were avid 'spring greens' officianados, maybe from pioneering days, and knew their weeds.
To confirm these ideas, BJ Sandoz used her Omega juicer and quantified the data we need to get a working value. Using a 1 pound supply of fresh tray-grown grass, precisely one of the ones used by the juicebars, she measured the first pressing as only 5ozs, only about 1/3rd the grass's substance. The Omega neatly ejects the pulp, so she cycled the damp pulp through the juicer a second time and the result was a more velvety 3 ozs. Repeating the process, she extracted another oz of more sauce-like juice, getting much more of the 'dry-matter nutrients' into the juice liquids. Almost twice as much as the juice bar/weight loss product, with its 7 calories/oz. The pulp, by that time, was extremely dry.
| Calories Achieved|
| Sessions |
| 20% |
over 2 hours
1/5th of the can
| 20-60% |
over 2 hours
|15 cal max||20||50|
|27cal/oz||1.0oz || 100% |
over 2 hours
|7-13cal/oz||2.0oz || 40% |
over 1/2 hour
|Honestly when it happens to me after shots I have found the best way to start them eating again is to give a course of Amoxi. Within 24 hours for some reason the kitten is eating and playing again. I am not a big fan of antibiotics but it is so easy to lose a kitten.|
|I'm thinking that *if* the FVRCP shot and worming were the problem, he should have had problems the day after the vet visit, but he was fine then. So that makes me suspect the diet change. Any thoughts? If the shot is suspect, I won't be allowing more shots.|
| although intracolonic absorption is true to some degree, this is NOT something that your average pet owner should even attempt to undertake.Your friend was a vet or vet in training and had knowledge that the average pet owner does not have.I have heard more horror stories of breeders(who are usually more knowledgable than your average pet owner)who have bungled things, thinking they know how to do something.By all means if a vet shows you how to do something, use it--but do not attempt it yourself without proper instruction.
i would definitiely try to find the right homeopathic rx first. if there are no homeopaths close by, then you can contact any of several vets who will do phone consultations. it is a lot less draconian than the force feedings described and the right rx can work like magic without the pain of the anal feeding tubes
Since there are a variety of ways to provide nutrients to a kitty that is not
eating, I find this "back door" approach quite unsettling to say the least. If a kitty is not eating and weak, etc., a vet (holistic or otherwise) should
be consulted and the kitty could be put on IV nutrients (at vets office) or syringed liquid food by mouth (vet can teach for use at home).
I cannot imagine under any circumstances where a "lay person" should even attempt this procedure. I also cannot imagine a vet doing this to get nutrients into a kitty when other means are available that are much less invasive and more nutrients would be delivered. The "appreciable degree" of absorption by using this method, IMHO, would not be enough to offset the fact that nutrients would be better served by mouth, whether syringed or vet IV, where nutrients could be delivered that would benefit a kitty in a more usable manner through the digestive tract.
Maybe I am missing the point on why this would be done, but I guess that I feel that this is a very invasive, let alone quite uncomfortable (for kitty), way to give nutrients for the limited benefit that would be provided - and an affront to kitty's dignity.
|Clearly you do not understand vaccines and what they do.Vaccines actually SUPPRESS the immune system for about 10 days to 2 weeks after vaccination.If a kitten has a sub-clinical infection(meaning it is not apparent> a vaccine will push it to the surface.|
No, some vaccines are killed and some are modified live.The killed viruses have supposedly been inactivated, but improper storage can cause them to "re-activate" and become a live and very deadly form of the virus.Modified live viruses have been modified by taking viral protiens out and using them.These can cause a whole mess of problems.
Then there is also the preservatives used(like thermosol(a form of mercury) and aluminum.Plus there is the tissues that the virus has been cultured in to make the vaccine...Then when you add to the fact that vaccines are injected sub-cutainiously (much the same way an allergen is to do allergy testing)as opposed to the normal route the disease infects the host(oral-mucosal route).Well it sets up the immune system for a crash course.
|Titres do NOT indicate immunity and they are NOT what defends the immune system.A titre is merely an indication of recent exposure to something.You DO NOT understand immunity and your advice is more confusing than helpful in this case.|
|There comes a point in time where common sense plays a big part.Your experience is not the same as this kitten's.As a breeder I have nursed many a kitten back from death's door.Most of these kittens stopped eating as a result of a vaccine reaction or teething.And yes sometimes a change in diet will do this.I think the person is doing the right approach and is on the right track... but this comes from nearly 20 years experience, not the experience of one incident.|
|Eh? How does raw liver support a compromised liver?|
Cats are not humans.There are many things that humans can take...medications, herbals that would KILL a cat.Advocating such things is at best foolish, but
IMO are downright irresponsible.I don't care if it worked for your friend and
I don't care if YOU think she is the most wonderful vet on the
planet...clearly many on this list have a problem with her treatment
methods(and at least one well qualified holistic vet)
Again this is for humans--humans are NOTT cats and things DO NOT APPLY.
|Have you EVER tried to take the temperature of a cat on a regular basis?Vets are pretty skilled at it and can usually do it in a manner that is not so invasive...but I have NEVER know the average cat owner to be able to do it.I can't and as a breeder I KNOW I have had way more practice than your average cat owner.I have taken rectal temps on co-operative and not so co-operative cats.Cats so ill they can barely move too...and I have to say...ALL cats HATE it and fight like mad...even the ones at deaths door.It is an extremely invasive procedure.I expect giving a colonic to a cat is 100 times worse.I know PEOPLE who have had them--they DO NOT consider it pleasent.I remember as a child being given anti-nausea medication that way(I had some sort of bug where I could NOT keep any food down and I didn't LIKE it.I darn well know how a cat would feel.|
|You cannot compare human treatments to cats.As a breeder I have treated many a kitten who would probably have died.But I have treated the kitten with dignity and compassion.I have chosen methods that are the least invasive as possible.NONE of my strategies are self-defeating or ineffective.I have heard many a story from people on this list about kittens and cats that people have saved...so I'd have to say the same is true for most, if not ALL of them.I will say though that all of the measures people have used on this have been compassionate the least invasive possible. No one is telling anyone here to sit on their hands and do nothing.But we are advocating compassion and common sense.There is the adage that says to do no harm--questionable procedures might work, but their potential to cause harm far out weighs their usefulness.|
|Yes hepatic lipidosis is a risk...but the solution to that is NOT colonic feeding.It is force feeding, giving fluids and if necessary getting a gastral tube inserted surgically by a qualified vet so the cat may be tube fed.Anything else I would consider inhumane and unethical.|
|If a cat is seriously ill and DOES have hepatic lipidosis the owner should be working with their vet to remedy it.If ANY of my cats had HL I would not self treat(in spite of the fact that I likely have enough knowledge to do so), I would be working with my vet to treat my cat.I expect most on this lit would do the same. Negative experiences with vets does not excuse failure to give a cat or kitten proper care when required.When a kitten or cat is seriously ill, veterinary care is required.Anything less is abuse IMO.I know quite a few breeder who think like you...that they know better and don't need a vet; they can do it themselves.Well they often end up with dead cats or cats that are more ill than they were to start with.Those kinds of people do not impress me one bit.|
|...And using a tube inserted into their rectum/colon is not going to cause a struggle??? Let alone the possibility of internal injury as you suggested aquarium airline tubing. I have a couple large aquariums and airline tubing is not soft, rubbery, and pliable, it is somewhat rigid - yes, you can bend it, but that doesn't make it safe; and IMO it is not suitable for this purpose.|
|I am quite vigilant with my kitties and have never had a kitty that got to HL, so in that regard, no, I have not had to "force" feed because of this. But, I have had to use a syringe to introduce a less-than-paste-type mixture (the right consistency works very well, with the correct size syringe) when he wasn't eating enough to get calories into him. I used a cat-sack with Tuffy when he didn't want to cooperate; he didn't struggle being put inside the sack, and it seemed to comfort him to be "snuggled" inside. Each kitty is different, so you have to use whatever is most comfortable for your kitty. IMHO, getting into a wrestling match with your kitty is not the way to go.|
|Your attacking me by saying that my idea of dignity is rather strange, comes from someone that thinks intracolonic feedings isn't in the least bit an affront to their kitty's dignity. Dignity aside, if you try to stay on top of things, HL might be avoided in the first place.|
|Again, the attack, calling the idea that intravenous is less intrusive 'ludicrous'. There are ways to say things that don't totally alienate someone from listening to what you have to say...really, there is...|
|If a kitty needed more than an intravenous feeding i.e. more nutrition, a port for feeding could be used in the long-term, or less of an aggressive approach (but that seems to be part of your personality) to "force" feeding with a syringe. I have never had a kitty struggle when an IV (in > a vet setting) was used. From my experience with my CRF kitty, intravenous feeding and fluids boosted him when his appetite was almost nonexistent (after ONE day of hardly eating) and helped > him immensely. The IV feeding with my CRF kitty was to introduce calories, vitamins, electrolytes, etc. to give him help in the short-term; and to avoid HL.|
|Also, for intracolonic "feeding", I would imagine if Butters struggled so with trying to syringe him, that anesthesia would be required to do the intracolonic procedure, no?|
|Yes, my dear, the colon is part of the digestive tract, but at the **end** of the digestive tract, where **less** nutrients are absorbed and used by the kitty. And I am taking it that the intracolonic feeding was a last resort for you and Butters to introduce nutrients in a time of immediate need|