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Unread 03-12-2009   #1 (permalink)
lydia_ravenswood
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Default Several issues I need help with

Ok, for one I have 3 adult cats, 2 male, one female. I'm here for help with my female.

Her name is Hotaru, she's a small cat, but she's very fat, meaning she weighs over 16 pounds. I don't overfeed her, I regulate her food as much as possible, but the problem is I have 2 other cats, and they all like to eat throughout the day, so it's not like I can put away their bowls and keep hers down, or the other way around. But I know she needs to lose weight and not sure how. I live in an apartment complex where we're not allowed to have pets, but we do anyway, so we let them out at night. We live in a duplex style complex, and we're on the bottom floor with our own patio, so the other two will jump onto the fence, and she used to as well, but now she just lies on the patio. She also has heavy breathing due to her weight. I need some help finding out how to help her lose weight.

Also, recently she's been having a hard time going #2. She can urinate fine though. She'll go back and forth from the litter box (yes I keep it very clean) several times before it comes out, and even then it's sometimes a smaller amount than i would think. Just recently she's started going on the floor, like she can't control it, but it's always in the same spot.

The last problem is she gets hair balls or something, but she won't puke it up! She'll heave and heave but then swallow it. I don't think that's a good thing, but I don't know how to stop it.


Any ideas on any of these issues separately or all together? I really need some advice cause I'm very low of funds and can't go to a vet on a whim.
 
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Unread 03-13-2009   #2 (permalink)
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It is good you want to improve Hotura's health.

The first thing Hotaru needs is a check up. Your vet can advise you as to what will be an optimal weight for her. S/he may also prescribe a special extra high protein diet for a short time to get the weight loss started.

How old is she? Hotaru should have blood work before starting any diets or special foods to be sure her kidneys and liver are okay. A high protein diet is hard on the kidneys for a kitty. Also overweight cats have a tendency to have liver disease and diabetes. And heart and breathing problems.

It is very dangerous for an overweight cat to lose weight too quickly, it can cause liver failure.

You are going to have to put the cats on a feeding schedule and stop free feeding, it's the only way to regulate Hotura's intake. Feed small meals four or five ties a day. Premeasure her kibble, and feed from that so you know how much she is eating every day. I can give you more detailed assistance with this if you want it.

You will have to start an exercise program for Hotura also. get on the floor and play with her every night. this is going to take time, as she most likely will not be interested in playing right away. You must keep at it though, and eventually she will take more interest. As she loses weight she will feel better and be even more interested in playing. I can give you more detailed assistance with this if you want it.

As for the pooping, it sounds to me as if she is constipated. this is also a common problem for overweight cats, but also cats who are not overweight.

Chronic constipation is a very serious problem as it leads to megacolon. The only cure for megacolon is surgery, and the surgery is only possible if the cat is in good health. Otherwise she is facing medications for the rest of her life, and the meds have to be increased as time goes on. I speak from experience as I have a kitty with megacolon.

Constipation can be caused by several things, including arthritis, not enough liquid in the diet, not enough fiber in the diet, not enough exercise and kidney failure.

If it's arthritis, it makes it hurt when she squats, so she avoids going, and the poop accumulates. She is blaming the litter boxes for her problem, and that is why she keeps switching boxes, and why she poops on the floor.

The retching could also be something serious. She may just have a hairball stuck, but a stuck hairball can also be a serious problem. It has to be passed. Several days of large doses of laxatone or other hairball remedy may help, but you really need a vet's diagnosis as to what is going on with her.

Sometimes hairballs have to be removed by surgery.

I urge you to take her to the vet and get her a complete check up. Blood work is very important. An xray can show if there is something troubling her in her stomach, and can also show her colon and what condition it is in..
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Unread 03-13-2009   #3 (permalink)
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Hi & welcome!

Hotaru needs to loose weight & imm. We lost our Domino because he was overweight & felt sick of arrythmia, caused by the enlargement of one of his heart chambers.
Like humans, cats can also get diabetes when they are overweight.
We put our Domino on a diet some years ago under the vet's prescription with Hill's r/d & he lost weight but it seems it didn't help so much.
So please, don't wait to put Hotura on a diet ASAP.
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Unread 03-14-2009   #4 (permalink)
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I can't afford to take Hotaru in for a check up. I have my own med bills to take care of, can't go on Care Credit or anything like that. So I need to find a way to go this from home.

I just switched them to Iams Weight control. I've been changing their dry food around every few months cause they get bored easily. I also feed them 1/3 of a can each of Friskies Poultry wet food.

One problem is, we have 2 litter boxes, one in a hallway, one in the bathroom tub, cause we're in a one bedroom apartment. The annoying part one of my males, Vincent, will watch her when she tries to go, and I can tell it bothers her. But I can't keep shoving him away all time. He also tries to hump her a lot, but he mostly humps her bottom, near her tail cause she's too big for him. Yes they're both fixed, so I don't know why he does it.

I can tell it's not a hair ball most of the time. She'll eat too quick and her body won't be happy with it, but she won't allow herself to puke. She likes her food too much!

The odd thing is, she'll breath heavy on and off for no good reason. She's fine half the time.

She's pretty active already with having Vincent to run around with, but I also got a laser pointer for her to chase.

I can't lock her or them in a separate room because of several reasons. For one Hotaru and Vincent hate the other male, Patches. Or more like Vincent doesn't want Hotaru around Patches and Vincent and Patches hate each other. the only room with a door is the bedroom, but it doesn't lock, the frame is warped, so Vincent can open it. Or he'll fight Patches while they're in there. The men also don't like to eat right away. They know how to regulate. I can't put her in there cause she doesn't like to be in the bedroom without someone there, and I hate being in the bedroom cause I've got nothing to do except sleep. All in all, they all have to be in the same room.

In the end I need to find a way to do this from home. There's no real way to take her. I have my own med bills to take care of.

So does anyone know of some high fiber and high protein foods to give her?
 
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Unread 03-14-2009   #5 (permalink)
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I gave you some valid ideas for helping Hatura loose weight. Ideas I use my own self.

However I don't have patience for people who "can't afford" to take their cats who obviously have health problems to the vet.

I live below the poverty level myself, but my cats' health is first priority.
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Good advice acerlt! We can say Lydia good luck.
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Unread 03-14-2009   #7 (permalink)
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So you wouldn't take care of your own health first?

The reason I don't have th emoney to take care of her is that I have to get my blood taken weekly then see my doctor every other week which costs $20, then pay $8 and $7 for two different blood thinners, $35 for a bladder problem, and $22 for another medication that's embarassing to mention. So in total there's no extra money in my budget to take her!

Don't you think that bothers me as she's my cat?!
 
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Unread 03-22-2009   #8 (permalink)
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Question Hotura being overweight

Quote:
Originally Posted by acerlt View Post
I gave you some valid ideas for helping Hatura loose weight. Ideas I use my own self.

However I don't have patience for people who "can't afford" to take their cats who obviously have health problems to the vet.

I live below the poverty level myself, but my cats' health is first priority.
Lydia, no doubt you love Hotura, but I can tell, Acer is very sincere in helping you and others, she is really a rare online friend who cares about other people's problem. N I notice, her advices mostly will content practical, inxepensive tricks/tips, unless health problem becomes the issue, this is I think is not only her first priority, but also my first and foremost priority. As for your girl, she has pee and poo problem, I'm not sure if you can be ignorant, what I'm sure is, those symptoms you mentioned can lead to AWserious acute diseases. I have a big eater too, Earl Blue, 9 months old, so I put him on a strict diet, controlling his intake amount, getting him to excercise by playing with him ... but if his health is in danger, I definetely will take him to the vet, IF YOU DO REALLY DON'T HAVE EXTRA MONEY, MAYBE YOU NEED TO FIND HER A NEW HOME, though I know it will be hard for you...Anyway, I love all my cats for better or for worse ! All the best, Lydia and Hotura !
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