|November 6, 2011
Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF) blockers, Azathioprine and/or Mercaptopurine:
Update on Reports of Hepatosplenic T-Cell Lymphoma in Adolescents and Young Adults
The only one of these ever used in cats is the azathioprine (Immuran) and while the chances of a cat getting the
side effect being warned about are probably minuscule, the mention of the med has brought up the bigger issue
that it is extremely toxic to cats. Plumb’s vet reference states that: Azathioprine - rarely used in cats for
refractory/severe IBD, has terrible toxicity and is generally, strongly not recommended to use it at all as it can
suppress the bone marrow and cause death. "Most do not recommend azathioprine for use in cats because of
the potential for development of fatal toxicity and the difficulty in accurately dosing."
The word "most" refers to researchers, experts, or published articles, that's where they get dosing info from since
so few studies are done on cats for FDA approval of meds. If your vet is prescribing or pushing for you to use it
you should get a second opinion from an internist before starting it or at least question your vet as to the
possibility of there being something else to try such as Leukeran. Few vets use it, but some do and for that
reason I thought there should be a reminder about the toxicity, not infrequently fatal, of azathioprine. And there
has been a case of this happening on an IBD forum. (thank you to Dr. Barb for the Plumb’s info).
Susan Thixton of the website Truth about pet foods has created a petition to make the government accountable
for what’s in pet food. Please pass this petition around to as many people as you can! Put it on your Facebook
We believe the Obama Administration should require
the FDA to enforce the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act with pet foods.
There’s some great information here on dental surgery on your pet.
Before and After Surgery and Dentistry - Preparing for Surgical and Dental Procedures
Did you know you can put out a Pet Amber Alert for your missing pet? www.petamberalert.com/. Our member
Peggy did just that for her wonderful Linus who’s been missing for almost a month. Please check it out and if you
know anyone who lives in that area, ask them to keep their eyes out for him.
Tink’s mom Barb sent me this and I thought it was fascinating! (I know way too many Barbara’s, LOL).
Amazing Physics at work when cats drink
Just for the record, this vet is COMPLETELY against this (thank goodness)!
Can I Make My Dog or Cat a Vegetarian?
What a wonderful article this lady wrote on grieving the loss of a pet.
I’ve been in contact with her and she’s thrilled I’m sharing this.
Staten Island pet cemetery helps animal lovers find comfort amid grief
Because winter is coming soon and our windows are starting to remain closed, I know how stagnant and gross
the air inside can smell after awhile. Many people use those plug in air fresheners but I’ve seen way too many
health problems develop with pets because of those. This is about people but I am adamant on the same being
said for pets.
Air fresheners can trigger allergies, asthma
I have a few tricks I do to freshen the air in my place. I crack the windows open slightly for at least an hour or
more every day unless it’s like CRAZY cold! I live in the northeast so I can take it pretty cold. But I try let some
fresh air in here for a short time and get the yucky smells out. I buy a couple of those baking soda stickups that
you use for the fridge and freezer and I place one INSIDE the garbage can on the side or underneath the bag.
Make sure you have a can with a lid that stays closed. I have one of stainless steel ones you have to step on the
pedal to open. NO potpourri as that’s also toxic to pets. I do burn those little seasonal Glade candles for fresh
scent but not for long, maybe 30 minutes and somewhere in an open area. And again, most of the time when I
have a window cracked. What I usually do with things like onion peelings or other veggies and food that needs to
be thrown out. If my garbage bag isn’t near full, I’ll put those scraps in a plastic bag and put it back in the
refrigerator to take out with me in the morning or put in the trash bag when it’s more full. That way that stuff isn’t
sitting in the bottom of the bag smelling up the kitchen.
Now for some FUN stuff! You’ve got to see this. I really have no idea how they swallow some of these things.
World's wackiest animal X-Rays reveal the things pets swallow
So cute I can’t stand it! I need to hire this kitten, LOL
I love the music they put with this and I just love the expression on this guy’s face.
My kitten is grooming my hair.
And I saved the cutest for last (I’m biased, what can I say!)
My new Finnegan and Lacey video! (my little terrors for those of you that don’t know). Enjoy these little
November 12, 2011
One of our members recently sent me a link for a product called IntelliFlora. This is supposed to be a version of
FortiFlora but without the animal digest in it. She was super excited because she knows I don’t recommend
FortiFlora for that reason. BUT! This product is deceptive! Yes, it’s great there’s no animal digest in it. But
Unfortunately the ingredients I bolded here are NOT much better!
Dried Poultry Liver, Maltodextrin, Dicalcium Phosphate, Sucrose, Silicon Dioxide, Salt, Ascorbic Acid
(Vitamin C), Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin E Supplement, Zinc Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Ferrous
Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Taurine, and Sodium Alumino Silicate.
Sugars, salt and too much vitamin C, A, zinc and Copper and even Vitamin E in a cat’s diet can cause major
issues. Even a TINY extra bit can hurt them! I’d never recommend this. Most people have no idea what animal
digest is so in looking it up, I found this: Animal Digest is a common ingredient used in pet foods. As defined by
the AAFCO, it is material which results from chemical and/or enzymatic hydrolysis of clean and un-decomposed
animal tissue. The animal tissues used shall be exclusive of hair, horns, teeth, hooves and feathers, except in
such trace amounts as might occur unavoidably in good factory practice and shall be suitable for animal feed. A
cooked-down broth made from specified or unspecified parts of animals (depending on the type of digest used).
If the source is unspecified (e.g. "Animal" or "Poultry", the animals used can be obtained from any source, so
there is no control over quality or contamination. Any kind of animal can be included: "4-D animals" (dead,
diseased, disabled, or dying prior to slaughter), goats, pigs, horses, rats, miscellaneous roadkill, animals
euthanized at shelters, restaurant and supermarket refuse and so on FDA: Digests, which are materials treated
with heat, enzymes and/or acids to form concentrated natural flavors. Only a small amount of a "chicken digest"
is needed to produce a "Chicken Flavored Cat Food," even though no actual chicken is added to the food. -
I know this is completely disgusting but I’m asked so often about WHY I don’t want animal digest I feel it needs to
be spoken about. Meat by products are no better but sometimes can’t be helped if the cat won’t eat any other
foods. Read this carefully and if you don’t know what something is, like Phenobarbital, google it. Pheno btw, is
used to euthanize animals among other things.
This also applies to pet products in a BIG way maybe even more so than humans.
Don't Be Fooled By Health Fraud Scams
Taking the Sting Out of Pain for Your Pet
The FDA has new guidelines for disposing of all sharps such as needles:
Needles and Other Sharps (Safe Disposal Outside of Health Care Settings)
This page is no longer being updated but is still used for reference
State Disposal Laws
I know a lot of you are always looking for heated pet beds and boy are they expensive! I did find one very
reasonably priced and gets very good reviews at a company I’m now an affiliate with: Greg Roberts Pet
Supplies. I like this company, they have a lot of great products! It’s called a Thermo Kitty Heated Mat and it’s on
this page of my site.
I also want to talk about this myth that “life stage” foods are the only thing you should be feeding your cat and
that kibble is a necessity as they’re kittens! Both not true at all. When I took Finney and Lacey in both at around
5 months old, the kibble went out the window and so did the grains. As long as they’ve been in this house, I’ve
fed them only grain free wet food and hardly ever any kibble and of course that’s grain free. The only reason I do
keep kibble around is for times during the summer months when it’s super hot and they have no interest in wet
food at all, they just want to graze and even that doesn’t last long. If you notice, most grain free foods do not
have them especially made in life stages. They say right on the can for kittens and adult cats. That’s because
they contain the proper amount of protein and nutrients and that’s really all they need. Kittens need to be fed
more frequently and more calories as they’re still growing, that’s the only difference.
Busting the Most Common Myths About Pet Behavior and Care
There are a few things I disagree with on this page but not much. Please read this entire page as it has really
good information on so many things but the main part I want you to read is this section:
3. Dogs and cats should be fed a food appropriate to their life stage - puppies need puppy food, kittens need
kitten food and senior pets need senior diets.
My favorite part is this: For kittens, kibble is not recommended to be a large portion of the diet (nor for adult cats)
as it can contribute to dehydration, urinary tract issues and less than optimal health over time. Cats are obligate
carnivores - which means they are designed by nature to eat meat and very little carbohydrates. The newer
higher meat content grain-free foods may be a good option if kibble is to be fed to kittens, but canned, freeze-
dried, dehydrated and raw are better choices.
November 15, 2011
I’m very excited to announce that IBD Kitties is now working with UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine in their
study for IBD and small cell GI lymphoma in cats. I’ll be putting this info up on my website as well and PLEASE
pass this information out to other forums, your blogs, websites, etc. This is an important study and the results
could possibly mean a much easier way to diagnose GI lymphoma other than invasive surgery and biopsy. If your
kitty has had a biopsy already and has been diagnosed with IBD and Small cell GI lymphoma, and you’d like to
participate in this study, they would need a blood sample and some other information from your vet. If you’re
interested please contact me at IBD Kitties and I’ll be happy to provide you and your vet with the Dr’s contact
information and the proper form.
The University of California at Davis (UCD) School of Veterinary Medicine's Department of Veterinary Surgical
and Radiological Sciences is conducting a study in cats with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and Small Cell
Gastrointestinal Lymphoma (GILSA). This UCD study is comparing two lymphocyte populations in cats with
biopsy-confirmed IBD or GILSA: those lymphocytes circulating in the blood and those found in the tumor
biopsies. The goal of the study is to determine if a blood test can be used to predict which disease the cat has
based on lymphocyte populations. Additionally, if the test is predictive of one or the other disease, this study will
also determine how specific the test is for the two diseases and how sensitive the test in distinguishing between
the two diseases. This is not an intervention or therapeutic trial. While enrolling your cat in this trial will not help
your cat specifically, your cat's involvement may help other cats with these two diseases. Results from this study
may aid in providing a non-invasive pre-surgical/endoscopy diagnostic tool in the future.
This same university is also doing a drug trial for feline breast cancer and I’ll be providing information in my next
newsletter on what we can do for that. Peggy’s Tallulah passed away from breast cancer and there are several
members who has a kitty that is in treatment for this disease or has had some removal of a tumor. I’ve got a lot to
write about with this also so I’ll save this for the next couple of days.
I want to talk about the safety of something you would not suspect. I’m sure because kitties love catnip that some
of you may use catnip SPRAY on toys, beds, etc. Guess what! Catnip spray is made from catnip OIL, an
essential oil, which is in fact toxic. I’m positive of this! I’ve spoken to a few people who are certified
aromatherapist, one being Purrcy’s mom, Arlye, who is also a registered nurse. She’s agreed to let me include
her thoughts on this subject in this newsletter to get the word out:
I think I would be very cautious using catnip oil. It is an essential oil and all essential oils are concentrated - so
the potential for toxicity exists. This state’s it should not be used during pregnancy or on young children - I put
cats in the same category as young children because children's ability to metabolize is under-developed too.
Essential Oil Safety Information
If you notice, this well known product From the Field - Catnip Spray Rejuvenator states right underneath it:
Without A doubt, the most potent catnip oil spray product on the market! Made from essential oil extracted from
our legendary catnip buds and distilled water.
The reason we began talking about this is that another member had purchased something made of honeysuckle
that is supposed to be better and safer for cats. I’ve never heard of such a thing and I have a honeysuckle bush
in my yard. I’ve never in my life seen a cat even go near it other than to hide to jump at a bird. But the place
where she bought it specifies that it’s just the essence in a distilled solution. Here is the information Arlye
provided for me on this:
I'm just not sure about the essential oil being BLENDED with "pure spring water". Oil and water just don't mix.
The word "essence" quite frankly bothers me in reference to the honey suckle - I'm not sure how the "essence"
actually is produced. She maybe producing an emulsion, but many emulsions are not stable. AND they still
contain the essential oil and even in a diluted form I don't think they are safe for cats. http://en.wikipedia.
org/wiki/Herbal_distillate. I have never seen any cat go up to a honeysuckle bush and start rubbing on it and
acting as if it were as intoxicating as catnip seems to be too many cats.
Basically the safest and best way to refresh your cat’s toys, beds, products, etc. is to take dried, organic catnip,
crumble it up and just plain old rub it on the product! Period. It’s safer and you’ll also be saving money.
I have added a couple more months of back issues of the newsletter and I urge you to go through them. There’s
some VERY important information there and so many of you were not yet receiving the newsletter. I’m glad so
many of you urged me to put the back issues up as there is a lot of info I’d like to have available continuously.
November 19, 2011
I have some additional info on the criteria for the IBD study at UC Davis. The blood sample that’s needed for the
study needs to be taken after biopsy and diagnosis but BEFORE any therapy has begun. So before any drugs
like pred and chemo have been introduced to the kitty’s body.
I also said I’d talk about the trial UC Davis is doing for feline mammory cancer. Peggy, Tallulah’s mom and I have
been trying to find a place to make monetary donations for feline breast cancer and have not been able to find
anything anywhere. After I emailed someone at The Veterinary Cancer Society she managed to find Dr.
Rodriguez at UC Davis and this is how we began conversing on both the IBD/lymphoma and feline mammory
cancer issues. The gemcitabine trial for feline breast cancer will be running until August of 2012. Here are the
details from Dr. Rodriguez.
At Davis, I am currently investigating the role of gemcitabine in feline mammary carcinoma. This drug is good in
the human breast clinic but has had a dismal track record in veterinary medicine. We believe that we have found
the optimal (non-toxic but useful) dose in the cat and have a clinical trial investigating just that: this identified
dose in feline mammary cancer. With more than 15 veterinary oncologists in the San Francisco Bay Area, there
is (tragically) no shortage of these patients. We ARE still taking patients for the gemzar trial. The kitty can have
ANY measurable tumor. They come in every other week for as long as they tolerate the drug, for as long as the
owner wants, or they run out of dose levels, whichever comes first. The kitties must also be nice. We have to
draw blood frequently and the cats that require whips and chairs to get near are not amenable to this trial.
Donations would help defer the owner's costs of therapy for their kitties. There is a specific way that donations
from individuals are handled. In particular, when donations are made for a particular cause, a cover letter from
the donor dictating where the donation should be channeled and HOW the donation may be used are
paramount. Donations made without these stipulations go into the general operating budget.
I now have a copy of the form letter for donations. If anyone is ever interested in making any kind of donation to
this cause, please let me know and I’ll be happy to provide you with the letter to mail in with your donation.
FDA Continues to Caution Dog Owners About Chicken Jerky Products
Speaking of Pets - Thyroid disease in cats
Difficulty Breathing - Dyspnea in Cats
This is important as dogs and cats can spread the flu virus between them very easily, it’s happening now! The
flu can be dangerous no matter who contracts it, humans or animals.
Does Your Dog Need a Flu Shot?
Flu shot for Fido? Vets advise flu vaccine for dogs after nearby H3N8 canine flu outbreak
This is a landmark case and it’s about time! This case will now give pet owners more rights when horrible
mistakes are made.
Fort Worth court says pets worth more than market value
I love this article and there’s a particular part I love best.
The incredibly growing pet - Americans aren't the only ones with an obesity problem. Just look at our
dogs and cats
Cats are different, she says. They become overweight not from treats, but because their diet is too high in
carbohydrates. "Cats are nature's pure carnivores," she says. "They were never meant to eat carbohydrates.
Their bodies are not designed to handle them at all. Unfortunately, a lot of the cat foods on the market are high
in carbs, especially dry foods. It's easy for us to leave a bowl out all day, but then they're snacking on
carbohydrates all day." Canned or moist foods from pouches are a better choice, she says. www.chicagotribune.
Thanks to Julie for this REALLY great buy. This is a fantastic price for this huge tower.
I want to give my condolences to John. Tigger was diagnosed just a little over a week ago with cancer that had
gone into his pancreas and liver. Yesterday John came home from work to find Tigger had passed away. He’d
been acting completely normal since his diagnosis so it was a shock! Tigger was not alone when he passed, he
was surrounded by all of John’s other kitties who were there to comfort him when he crossed over.
At the same time, Peggy’s Linus was found! He’d been missing for over a month and he was discovered
yesterday when they went to visit a friend 3 miles from their home. He saw their car and literally ran over to them
meowing his brains out! I’d give anything to know what he was saying, LOL. He’s got a few cuts and scrapes,
lost a few pounds but otherwise in good shape considering. Needless to say he’s never getting outside again.
Call us corny but we feel that Tigger had something to do with Linus suddenly popping up after everyone losing
hope of finding him! RIP little Tigger.
November 26, 2011
Those chicken jerky treats for dogs that are causing problems are from China so it looks like a “here we go
again” scenario. I know many of you have dogs and also some give doggy treats to their kitties so please do not
Chicken Jerky Products May Be Associated With Dog Illness
Chicken jerky treats linked to mystery illnesses, deaths in dogs
FDA Issues Warning on Chicken Jerky for Dogs
It’s really amazing what they are doing with stem cells now for humans and animals. These stem cells were taken
from this pig’s own fat and helped her arthritis. I show these stories because they bring me hope that soon we’ll
be using these treatments for our kitties and other pets. Aging animals develop debilitating arthritis everyday and
anytime we can avoid using medication and use something from the body to heal itself, is the best answer! I truly
Stem cells helping beloved Houston Zoo pig battle arthritis
On the same token this story broke just two weeks ago and has many doctors very excited! Again, in terms of so
many pets with heart disease, this could lead to wonderful new treatments for them as well:
Stem cells cure heart failure? What "breakthrough" study shows
Diseased hearts to heal themselves in future
This shows how there needs to be a lot more accountability with vets!
When vets make mistakes, pets pay the price
Owners outraged over botched surgeries, medication errors, misdiagnoses
The dangers of Air Transport
Turns out this vet is only 30 minutes from me!
Coughing a sign of feline asthma
I emailed this vet about this article and she’s so nice. She said she can’t get over the epidemic of these diseases
Real reason not to give begging pet those table scraps: Pancreatitis
Some of you have asked me about Vitamin E and proper doses, as Vit E is a fat soluble vitamin and can be
Vitamin E Doses for Dogs and Cats
If you already have a PALS card at Petco, go to this link and update your account profile to get this NEW PALS
card. It gives you new rewards and savings. And if you don’t have one, I urge you to apply.
I have great news for those of you who cannot brush your cat’s teeth! I have been using this product for about 3
weeks now on Finney and Lacey and it WORKS! And I checked the ingredients and they’re fine. NOTHING
terrible in them. This has no dyes, no fragrance, no sugars, no alcohol, nothing. My cats had horrible breath and
I found some tartar building up on Lacey’s upper teeth. Believe it or not I found this by accident at Petco. They
breath is both much better and their teeth are looking cleaner. I don’t put as much in their water as the directions
say to. I use an eye dropper and just put in 5 tiny drops daily and that’s it!
Petkin Liquid Oral Care
If you don’t have a Petco around you, you can get it off my site:
This is one of our member’s website, take a look at this page:
A Frankenprey/Whole Prey Feeding Guide
Check out her kitties on the site as well, they are GORGEOUS!
November 28, 2011
OH MY GOD! Just when you think I can’t get any more angry at pet food companies. Yesterday one of our
members, Kerri, emailed me some info about Iams having a recall on some food due to alfatoxins in both their
dog and cat foods. This was on several watchdog sights including Truth About Pet Food and the ONLY place
that listed it was a store called Price Chopper. When I went to check on this, the information on Price Chopper’s
website had been removed. After emailing several people to find out what was going on, Susan Thixton of Truth
About Pet Food has gotten to the bottom of it. Ugh, I shouldn’t be surprised since it’s manufactured by Proctor &
Gamble. Basically we (the public) were never meant to know about this:
Per Iams it was a Product Pull
THIS is how a company should be proactive when there may be even a potential problem.
Giant Eagle Canned Pumpkin Media Statement
This is encouraging news since this is all we hear about now in our food:
New Antibiotic May Cure and Prevent E. coli O157:H7 Infection
If you have a dog and take it to someplace like Petsmart or Petco, be aware that this is fast becoming a
Canine flu outbreak at Farmingdale PetSmart
I’d like to give my condolences to Deanne for the loss of her handsome boy Topaz. He was in my Living section
and unfortunately between IBD, pancreatitis, diabetes, CRF and then several strokes, at 17 his poor little body
just couldn’t take anymore. He’s now located in my tributes section, please visit his page: www.ibdkitties.
November 29, 2011
I have to offer condolences to another member. This has really been a rough winter for losing kitties! My
wonderful and dear friend Pat lost her Purrdie of the Cornish Crew unexpectedly today. Pat has been making
beautiful wings for kitties on Catster that pass away now for years and does it out of the goodness of her heart. I
know personally because she made them for my Alex. It changed how I saw my baby in a positive way. Before
that, it was hard to look at her pictures, I still felt bitter about her passing. And although I’ll never be over that
feeling that I was robbed of my soul kitty, those 3 pictures of her in wings healed me as I saw her for the first time
as she really is…an angel sent to me and now an angel that helps so many others. So thank you Pat, you do
wonderful work and I know that doing this has helped many, many others heal a little bit faster.
A kitty parent on Catster posted this and after I saw the product and great reviews I decided to add it to my site:
Our cat had patella surgery this spring and we first bought a metal cage for him because he had to be extremely
limited in his activity for six weeks. He hated the cage, we hated the cage, and then a friend who works for a cat
rescue group suggested BestPet's pet play pen. It changed our Sugar's quality of life enormously for six weeks.
It's round and soft rather than rectangular and hard; it opens for very easy access, and it's absurdly easy to
clear. I can't recommend it enough. Why every vet, especially orthopedists, don't carry them for sale is beyond
Scroll down to see the Teal colored play pen. It comes in all kinds of other colors as well.
Here are some new photos of my furkids and my garden if you’d like to see them:
New Finney and Lacey pics
New garden pictures
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