Saturday, January 5, 2013

But Mooooooo-ooooooom...

...does I hafta come out?

It was check-up time at our house Thursday and Friday. I have now gotten used to the idea that I don't have to be at the vet every month or week. It's only taken 3 years.

Pilchard went on Thursday. It was good to do her first. She can't really hide in a place where I can't get to her. The second I pulled the cat carrier out of the closet, Mija was gone. Scotty couldn't have beamed that cat away any better. I still don't know where she went, but I think, based on Pilchard's behavior after we got back, she was under the bed for a time. I have to remember at the end of this year that the carrier needs to come out at least 48 hours in advance of the visits so they are lulled into a sense of complacency. (Is this the point I do my evil laugh?)

Pilchard, being the chunk that she is, is overweight. I have to restrict food and no more treats. I didn't know that wet food tends to be more balanced. Cats must have meat because they don't produce taurine, a vital nutrient. Dr. Zollinger said, the problem is that the protein needed to produce taurine doesn't work well in dry cat food. Dry cat food, while many are nutritionally adequate for cats, contains more calories than wet. It's just the nature of wet versus dry cat food.

I have to look at the kind that I'm feeding them. If 40% of the calories are from carbohydrates, it's not good. I will have to look at a different kind. It will be more expensive, but not as expensive as wet cat food. They do not really like wet although, with any change of food, you go slowly, mix a little with the existing and then, as they learn to eat it, the current food will be gone and they will be eating what you want them to eat. I have a couple of names and I know what to look for on the label. There's a chance that what they currently eat is within dietary guidelines. I can hope.

Mija is only a pound over the 10 pounds the girls should be at. But she was like that when I got her and has stayed at this weight. I know I have used food to placate them when I've felt guilty about having to be gone for an extended time. The no treats edict is going to be hard because they have me quite trained and I just bought a bunch. I guess this will last me a long time.

I have decided Mija will continue to enjoy the number of treats she currently gets. Pilchard will get two, period. And I'm going to stop giving them treats when I'm home all day. They don't need it and are happy with me showering them with attention.

Both got rabies shots so we are good for another year. They got distemper last year and that's a three year shot. We're good for awhile on that.

Next year, I should consider doing the senior panel on each of them. A cat is considered "elderly" when they reach age 7. Having a baseline on blood work helps diagnose anything that might come up.

I want to urge you, if you haven't already, to take your pet to your vet once a year. I could get a 3 year rabies shot but knowing I have to take them in every year to get that is good for me. It keep tabs on their health; are they drinking and eating okay, lethargic, dull eyes and coat, etc. A vet appointment gives me an extra measure of comfort.

Our pets give us such an abundance of love. We should return the favor and make sure they are healthy.

Beverage:  Lady Gray tea


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