|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).
Did you know you can put out a Pet Amber Alert for your missing pet? www.petamberalert.com/
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.
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
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. -
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 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.
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.
Speaking of Pets - Thyroid disease in cats
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.
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
I emailed this vet about this article and she’s so nice. She said she can’t get over the epidemic of these diseases
now! Real reason not to give begging pet those table scraps: Pancreatitis
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
This is one of our member’s website, take a look at this page:
A Frankenprey/Whole Prey Feeding Guide
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
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