Cleo's Progress

One Cat's Struggle with Feline Hepatic Lipidosis

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Cats take their cues from you

Today I saw this article on NPR, and thought I should share it here:

Mind Your Moods, Cat Owners

People have long known that dogs look to their owners -- as their trusted leaders -- for cues about how to respond to something they're uncertain about.  I know from experience that horses do this too.  Now we know definitively (meaning they finally did a study to tell the scientists what the cat owners already know) that cats do the same thing.
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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Reminders of Cleo

I've had a hard time losing Cleo, harder than any other loss I've suffered, and much harder than I expected.  Perhaps it's because she was with me for so long.  Perhaps it's because there are constantly so many reminders of her.

Today there were two.

One made me cry:

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Monday, November 10, 2014

Help Edward fight hepatic lipidosis and pancreatitis

I just found out that a friend of a friend has a cat with fatty liver disease, brought on by pancreatitis.  Edward has been given a feeding tube and an IV, and is currently hospitalized for his care.  As all of us who have dealt with feline hepatic lipidosis know, it's expensive enough to treat when you have them home with you; having to hospitalize your cat gets even more expensive.

If you'd like to help a cat survive fatty liver disease, Edward's owners have set up a page to try to raise funds to pay for his care.

Help Edward fight fatty liver disease

If you've found this page, chances are you know how tough it is to go through this.  Going through it while short on funds has got to be even harder!  That's why I'm posting this link, in memory of Cleo (who died for completely different reasons, years after she made a complete recovery from feline hepatic lipidosis) and what she and I went through together.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Off-topic: Declawing

This is a little off-topic from the blog -- which I created when Cleo was sick with fatty liver disease, or feline hepatic lipidosis, back in 2005 -- but last night I watched a documentary called The Paw Project on Netflix.  It's about an hour long, and lays out a pretty strong case against declawing.

The video explains how the vet who started The Paw Project came to realize the damage declawing was doing to cats.  Initially she got involved because she was trying to reverse the health problems it caused in the big cats -- tigers, lions, cougars, etc. -- that she worked with, but of course the procedure is the same with house cats, so she eventually started a campaign against declawing pets as well.
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Sunday, August 17, 2014

RIP Cleo -- August 2000-August 2014

At the old (for her) age of 14, Cleo finally died yesterday.  After overcoming fatty liver disease in 2005, when she was only five years old, she lived for another nine years before a progressive paralysis affected her ability to function enough that we had to put her to sleep.
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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Cleo's story

This blog was originally started as a way to update friends and family on Cleo's status when she was sick with feline hepatic lipidosis, also known as fatty liver disease. However, I got so many emails and comments over the years that I kept the blog up to help other people going through the same thing with their cats.

Because I've continued to update the blog periodically, however, over the years it has gotten to be a little more difficult to navigate. This will make the 91st post, and as I add posts, it's getting increasingly more difficult to find the original posts about Cleo and my experiences with fatty liver disease.

So I've created a label just for those posts. Click on the label below this post for "Cleo's story" to read all of the posts in the same place. Then be sure to scroll all the way down, as the oldest posts will be at the bottom!


Friday, March 12, 2010

Force-feeding your cat: What to feed

I've said it before but it's worth repeating: Force-feeding is the most important method of treatment if you want your cat to recover from fatty liver disease. As such, the type of food you feed is pretty important.

There are a couple of things to consider when choosing a food to force-feed your cat.

1) A cat with feline hepatic lipidosis needs protein in order to get the liver going again, so the food needs to be high in protein.

2) Most likely you will be feeding via a syringe, so the food needs to be thin in consistency.

When Cleo was sick, my vet had me feed her Hills Prescription Diet a/d, which is a thin-consistency, high-protein food meant for either dogs or cats. By adding a very small amount of water, I was able to make the food soupy enough for it to pass through the syringe. The food also contains a minimum of 8.5 percent protein, which isn't super high but is high enough for curing a cat of hepatic lipidosis.

Buy Hills a/d

Because Hills a/d is a prescription food, you will need to buy it either from your vet, or online with a prescription (the retailer verifies the prescription with your vet). It does make force-feeding much easier, however, and is well worth getting the prescription.