Cutie & Ella

Discussion in 'Pets & Critters' started by Ken Anderson, Oct 21, 2018.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Given that Lydia has been gone for more than a year now, I guess it's time for a new thread, to replace the Cutie and Lydia, Ella Too thread, although that one will still be here in the event that I have something to say about Lydia. That girl was a pain in the butt, but I sure miss her.

    We arrived back home a couple of hours ago and, of course, the cats were glad to see us. They were well taken care of in our absence, except for the part about our absence. Cutie tried to be mad at me, as she has traditionally wanted nothing to do with me for an hour or so after I returned from an absence, but she couldn't keep it up long today.

    Apart from her excitement about being able to go out for the first time in over a week, Ella has also wanted attention, which has led to a couple of cat fights already because if I try to give attention to both of them at the same time, both of them are angry.
     
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  2. Chrissy Cross

    Chrissy Cross Veteran Member
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    3F80839C-7937-402C-B61B-0CA0EC93A328.jpeg

    Speaking of kitties....I’m sitting at the country club waiting for my grandson and “Tiger” the golf course kitty came to say “hi”!

    I know it’s sideways but I’m on my iPhone and out.:)
     
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  3. Shirley Martin

    Shirley Martin Veteran Member
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    Ken, did you bring the kitties a souvenir from your trip?

    @Chrissy Cross , he's a pretty kitty. Sideways and all. :)
     
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  4. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Just us. That seems to be what they want most. Tomorrow, it will be business as usual but today, they have been obsessive, and I expect they'll both be fighting over a place in bed tonight.
     
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  5. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    In a couple of months, Cutie is going to be 28 years old, yet she fights will Ella a lot, and plays with her quite a bit.
     
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  6. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    I used to talk to Cutie while I was working, or hold her in her box, which she likes, and watch television at the same time. Now that she has gone deaf, she wants me to look at her when I'm petting her. When I look away, at the television or computer screen, she pokes at me, even though I might be holding her or petting her at the time. I guess it makes sense. She's replacing one sense with another and wants me to participate.
     
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  7. Yvonne Smith

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    She has probably started being a lip-reader, @Ken Anderson ; so be sure to be looking at her when you tell her how much you love her.
     
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  8. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    That's what I tell my wife all the time. She reads lips. I talk to her into her fur sometimes, thinking that she can surely feel the vibrations.
     
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  9. Yvonne Smith

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    I just watched this interesting video of a cat left at home alone while the owner was gone , out walking the dog. She was only gone about 10 minutes, according to the video, and you can see that the cat was distraught for the whole time the lady was gone.
    Sometimes, it really sounds like the cat is talking.
    It sounds like he says “where are you?” and other times it sounds more like “I love you”.
    But, even if he is not actually trying to say words, he is definitely talking to her in cat language.

     
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  10. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Yes, I had seen that video. I know that if I am working outside and Ella is inside, she often follows me from window to window so that she can see me out there.
     
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  11. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    I often know when Cutie is feeling good because she moves to the high places. By that, I mean that I have a cat tree and a cat condo in my office, the former of which nearly reaches the ceiling. There are cat beds on shelves up near the ceiling, and there are other ones lower, on my computer desk and on another table near me. Mostly she lies in a bed near me, and often she asks me to pick her up so that she doesn't have to jump up there herself. But when she is feeling good, she picks the high spaces and that's where she's been for the past few days. She's putting a little more weight back too, and I credit the CBD oil for that. However, in her past couple of years, Lydia had times when she seemed to be doing better too, so there are no illusions. She turned 28 last month, after all.
     
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  12. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Very Well-Known Member
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    @Ken Anderson, what do you feed your older cats? You've probably mentioned this before but I couldn't find it.

    My first cat died of kidney failure at 16+. The vet said to cut down on protein when they got older. Do you agree?

    From reading the labels, it looks like there is more protein in regular cat food than pure meat, like chicken. :confused:

    Am I reading them wrong?
     
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    Last edited: Jan 3, 2019
  13. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Yeah, I probably did but I don't mind going through it again. I free-feed them Blue Buffalo kibble, which simply means that it's always available to them, so they nibble on it throughout the day, seldom eating much at a time. Usually, I use the regular indoor chicken flavor but whenever I switch it up to another flavor, they will eat more of it for a while, at least until that becomes old hat.

    I think that's an average high end for cats, but it's increasing as more people are moving their cats to better quality foods. I do agree that it's probably better to reduce the levels of protein as they get older and less active, but that's hard to do when there are cats of different ages in the house. If I try to feed them separately, they get paranoid and neither one of them will eat anything, and I don't want to deprive the younger, more active, one of her protein, so I have been feeding them the same stuff.

    One important thing for older cats, I think, is to feed them more wet food. One of the things that cause kidney problems in older cats is that they tend not to drink enough water, so I make sure she gets that by feeding them canned food, and adding a little bit of warm water to the stuff that isn't already wet.

    I have tried being sneaky and giving Cutie a bowl of lower protein food while giving Ella something else, but Cutie would invariably trade places with Ella, and Ella would defer to her.

    That's probably right. Back to what I feed them, they have kibble there for them all the time, plus they split a can of canned food twice a day. If Cutie asks for more at some point during the day (usually when I am getting ready for bed), I'll give her one of the 3 oz cans. At her age, overeating is no longer a problem, so I'll feed her whenever she will eat.

    I have raised four cats into their twenties now, so I know that another problem older cats have is that they lose interest in eating. For that reason, although many of the experts will tell you not to switch your cat's food very often, I do just the opposite. If I were to feed her the best quality canned food every day, she would refuse to eat any of by the third day. So I rotate them through every single brand, variety, and flavor of premium canned cat foods that I can find, with the exception of the specifically high-nutrition foods, such as Blue Buffalo Wilderness, because she certainly doesn't need that. High nutrition sounds good but, without high activity, they have trouble processing it and it can lead to kidney problems.

    But I buy premium foods online, and I go to Petco, Petsmart, and three smaller chains of pet food stores in Bangor looking for as much variety as I can find. Whenever I offer her something she's never had before or hasn't had for a long time, she'll eat it.

    Premium foods have meat, poultry, or fish as the first ingredient, and don't include much of anything that isn't a food. Since cats are obligate carnivores, it would make sense to feed them 100% meat. In fact, when I was in training to work for Blue Buffalo, the nutritionist said that if we were to allow them to hunt outdoors, the mice and the birds that they would consume would be the ideal meal. However, people are squeamish about such things so I am not going to bring a mouse or a bird home for my cat to tear apart in the house.

    Given that fact, it would make sense to buy fresh meat for them, but if processed foods are bad for us, they have to be doubly bad for a cat. Plus, my cats are civilized and Cutie, who has never once killed another living thing, would be horrified if I were to expect her to eat raw meat. I do cook chicken and other meats for her, separate from my own so that it is without spices and stuff, and I give her them as treats, and she'll usually eat them. Like any other food though, she gets bored with it after a couple of days and won't eat anymore for a while. Strangely, if I were to place a plate of chicken on the floor for her, she won't eat any of it, but if I give her one small piece at a time, she'll eat quite a lot of it.

    Several of the premium cat food companies sell canned cat food that is 100% meat but none of my cats have liked it very much. They prefer to have the stuff that includes meat as the first ingredient, but also carrots, peas, potato, brown rice, and other stuff.
     
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  14. Nancy Hart

    Nancy Hart Very Well-Known Member
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    Thanks so much Ken for taking time to explain. That is very helpful. Right now I feed my cat some kibble once a day and 100% meat once.

    [​IMG]
    I know what you mean about having more than one cat. When I had two, I had to sit between them at feeding times. One was a slow eater. The fast eater would wolf down her food and run the other one off if left alone. Two separate rooms didn't work either.

    I've been afraid to let this cat feed free choice, because I really don't want her to get overweight, but I might give it a try. She would probably strike a balance after a few days.

    Thanks again.
     
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  15. Ken Anderson

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    I suppose it could be a problem for some cats. Very likely, at first she will probably overeat. Mostly like, after a month or so she'll get used to it always being there and no longer feel the need to eat it unless she's actually hungry.

    That's similar to what people usually see when they switch a cat from the Purina brands to premium cat food. At first, they will probably eat quite a lot of it because it's new and exciting. But in a month or so, their body will adjust to the fact that they don't have to eat as much of the premium food as they did the cheap stuff because less of it is wasted (which means less in the litter box). So while premium food is more expensive per ounce, they usually eat less of it, so it sort of balances out, particularly when you add in the absence of unnecessary vet bills and flea problems.
     
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