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    dry food and water
    mary418115 posted:

    A couple of years ago we were not doing too well financilly so we were feeding our cat cheap dry food and water. When he was about 3 years old i had to call the vet because all he would do is lay in his litter box. He was miserable. So i called the vet. She said bring him in right away. So i was waiting in the waiting area than the vet came out with a huge syringe full of blood. She said this is what is in your cats bladder. He is suffering. If u cant afford 1600 dollars for the operation you need to put him to sleep cause he is in pain. This tore me apart because i thought i did everything right. He was nuetered and had all his shots.
    The vet told me that some cats if you only feed them dry food and water that it will crystalize in his bladder and cause a blockage so he cannot pee. I was horrified, how come they don't tell people about this? The vet said that they could be sued by the cat food companies if they went public with this. So I decided to tell everyone that i could and post over the internet. And i wish everyone else would too.
    So anyway i called my family and told them what was going on . I was crying uncontrolaby. So i sighned the paper to put him to sleep and walked out to wait for my family to pick me up. Next thing i knew the vet came out and said to me "we do donations sometimes, and i will do the opperation, all you have to do is pay the 35 dollar fee for the appointment. I hugged her and thanked her so much. My family pulled up in the lot. My two daughters were crying and i told them its going to be allright they are going to save him. He is now 12 years old and still going strong. I will never forget the vet for what she did, and I will allways tell people my story.

    Thanks for listening,
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    oreobinz responded:
    thanks for your moving story and I'm glad this is getting out, I didn't know this & I am getting a kitten tomorrow. Thank you for doing right thing by spreading the word, I'll do the same. Glad you got to keep ur cat.:) I think its appalling that things like this are not told to all pet owners. Everybody sees dollar signs....very few are adamant about getting AND telling the truth for fear of whatever,,,,Would be wonderful world if everyone would do the Right Thing!!! thanks for ur story....
    Home2strays replied to oreobinz's response:
    the cats that are most at risk for this are males neutered before 6 months old. a cats urethra is s shaped and stones can get caught in those bends, neutering a cat too young (like most adoption agencies do) causes them to have smaller urethras. there are cat foods that have a higher ph which helps any crystals that may be forming be dissolved before they cause a problem.
    Rohvannyn responded:
    I had a cat who was prone to this, and there were some foods he could tolerate safely. Friskies Special Diet worked for him, so did Purina One Urinary Tract. Both are cheaper than Science Diet c/d. Another thing to do is put water on the dry food, that is if you can't afford canned. Just don't let it go more than a day before it gets changed, and wash the bowl well between times. Whatever you do, don't feed Alley Cat or Atta Cat. Try to get at least the next level up from that.
    srstephanie replied to Home2strays's response:
    Hi Home2strays,

    In this case, many of the researchers and specialists would disagree with you about early age neutering. There have been a number of studies that have not shown any connection between early neuter and smaller urethras. Here are a couple quotes:

    1) From an article on the Winn Feline Foundation website by Dr Susan Little who is a well known and respected Board Certified Feline Specialist with a special expertise in reproductive medicine. You can read the whole article here:

    In it she wrote:

    However, several scientific studies have now shown these concerns are unwarranted. For example, it is has been shown that early-age altering of cats:
    "022 does not cause stunted growth in cats (University of Florida study, 1996).
    "022 does not contribute to increased surgical and anesthetic risks or post-surgical complication rates (University of Texas studies, 1997 and 2000).
    "022 does not cause serious behaviour problems in cats (University of Cornell study, 2004, and Mercer University study, 2001).
    "022 does not contribute to feline lower urinary tract disease (University of Minnesota study, 1996, and University of Texas study, 2000).
    "022 does not cause obesity (University of Minnesota study, 1996).
    In fact, a large-scale study from Cornell University of over 1,600 cats—adopted from a humane society in New York State and followed for up to 11 years—showed early-age altered cats had less risk of certain health problems including gingivitis, asthma and abscesses—than cats altered at traditional ages.

    2) From a 2007 article in the Journal of the AVMA by Margaret V. Root Kustritz who is Board Certified in reproductive medicine, which you can read at:

    "Despite numerous vehemently declared anecdotes of an increase in the incidence of urethral obstruction in male cats castrated when young, numerous studies (35,132,135) have failed to detect a correlation between gonadectomy of cats at any age and a decrease in diameter of the urethra or an increase in incidence of FLUTD, with or without urethral obstruction."

    3) The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) have a Position Paper on early spay/neuter and are in support of the practice. You can read it at:

    The AAFP Statement begins:

    "The American Association of Feline Practitioners supports neutering early in life as a safe and effective method of decreasing cat overpopulation, and one which confers long-term medical and behavioral benefits to the individual cat."

    If you know of a study that shows that early neutered males have smaller urethras, I'd be interested in a reference.

    As I'm sure you know, there are two primary types of crystals that cats get (struvite & calcium oxalate) one caused by too high pH and the other by too low. I think many of the "crystal" diets now aim to get the pH in the optimal range that will help prevent either type of crystal ... rather than just trying to raise or lower the pH to prevent one type of crystal.

    Hope that helps.

    Stephanie in Montreal
    Home2strays replied to srstephanie's response:
    i appreciate those studies, I just know what Ive seen in my clinics- may just be the area Im in has a higher incidence of early altered cats and obstructions. my theory is why risk it? I understand why the rescues and such neuter before adopting out but if you get a cat off the side of the road, I know personally I would wait until it's a little bigger if not simply for anesthetic safety (much easier it find a vein on a crashing cat than a kitten.)

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