I just got a couple of huge vet bills for my 23-year-old cat. It may have been due partially to him eating dry cat food stored with diatomaceous earth mixed in with it. The worst part was probably because I did not watch him carefully enough.
Older cats can end up getting sick because of being dehydrated very easily. I have done a lot of extra things to make sure all my cats get plenty of water, especially the older ones. I have resorted to using an eyedropper and making them drink, if they won't do it on their own. Most of them became resigned to it and would willingly lap from the eyedropper when I brought it out for them.
I always watch my cats' litter boxes to make sure they are eliminating enough, both liquid and solid wastes. If they get low on the solid, they get petromalt and vegetables they like. If they are not passing enough urine, they get the eyedropper.
I bought them a fountain a few years ago and both of them began happily lapping away at it, so I thought my worries about them getting enough water were over. I still kind of watched their litter box, but clearly did not pay enough attention.
If you do not have pets, you still need to know about information in this post. If a little diatomaceous earth in dry cat food is enough to encourage constipation in a cat, it could do that in a human. I already told you this repeatedly on this blog, but now I am telling you to be careful to watch out for this problem and take preventives as a matter of course.
The preventive I decided on for my cats, besides the fountain, are is more water they have to drink.
I did this by increasing the amount of canned cat food they get daily, and adding water to their canned cat food. I am making this a permanent change to their diet.
I am going to make changes in my own diet to accommodate the use of diatomaceous earth for my storage food. I put diatomaceous earth in my bulk grains. So far I only have it in flour, oats and part of my whole grains. I am not getting the full amount that will eventually be my regular diet.
By the time that I finish my gradual diet shift to mostly or all storage foods, I will be getting a much larger dose of diatomaceous earth in my diet without specifically taking the diatomaceous earth for its own uses. I have thought that once I reach that point, I probably will be getting enough diatomaceous earth daily to stop taking it by itself.
In case it isn't already obvious, my cat became extremely constipated and had to have an enema at the vet's office. I was also given a laxative to dose him with.
This incident with my cat was life-threatening and expensive. It also badly frightened both of us. We may not be over it yet.
I also cut most of the hair off of his behind so that his behind looks kind of naked now. His new nickname is, "Monkey Butt". Sometimes the laxative gave him diarrhea and I couldn't keep him clean because of his baby fine fur back there. That meant his fur had to go.
He fussed at me a lot while I was cutting off his fur. I used a pair of blunt-tipped scissors to cut his fur. I gave him lots of treats while I was cutting, so he didn't mind all that much. He just likes to gripe a lot.
I think he was relieved that the short fur on his Monkey Butt made it easier for me to keep him clean. He is a particularly fastidious cat.
The good things I got out of this awful experience were that I can warn readers, and I now have another set of health care ideas to make a regular part of my cats' care. They get extra water in their cat food. I hope that this will give my 23-year-old cat some more years for us to share.
Apologies for the late post. There was an internet outage.