Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Friday Fun: Cat in a Box

You know, for someone who claims to hate cats, reader, Addie Pray, sure likes cat videos! She sent me this fun one yesterday that I have to share with you. She called the one cat a “bully,” but I say all the cats were just having fun.

In other cat news, Miles has been showing signs of feline diabetes lately, so I took him to the vet yesterday for some tests and, sadly, I’m afraid the poor guy is, in fact, diabetic. The vet is running some more tests at the moment to see if his condition can be managed with diet alone or if he’ll need daily injections. If all you Miles-lovers out there could send some positive thoughts our way, we’d be so grateful! I’ll keep you posted, and I’m sure Miles will want to share his thoughts on the whole ordeal once he’s had a chance to process things…

40 comments… add one
  • SpaceySteph September 2, 2011, 2:05 pm

    Is feline diabetes very common? You’re the third person I “know” with a diabetic cat. Poor Miles! πŸ™

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    • Elle Marie September 2, 2011, 3:32 pm

      A lot of house kitties are fed kibble high in corn and gluten, which their bodies are not designed to properly digest for nutrition. In the wild, cats are largely carnivores. Several of the major brands of kibble are corn-based, because corn is cheaper for the manufacturers to use.

      Also, these days cats wind up living good, long lives (especially if they are indoor cats), so diseases like diabetes that can develop over a lifetime are showing up more. That, and since veterinary care for housepets is more standardized and widely provided, the condition is recognized more.

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      • MissDre September 3, 2011, 10:33 am

        Is there a better kibble brand I can feed my girls? I’ve been feeding them Iams for years.

      • AnitaBath September 3, 2011, 4:51 pm

        I’m no feline diet expert, but I’ve done a little research on the topic. I’m currently feeding my cat a mixture of Blue and Nutro’s max cat. The blue is better nutrition wise, but the Max cat isn’t horrible and cats tend to love the taste of it. Really, when you go to get some cat food, just look at the ingredients. If the first ingredient is some kind of corn or wheat meal, it’s probably not very good. If the first couple ingredients are things like turkey or chicken meal it’s better, and if the first couple ingredients are ACTUALLY meat, it’s even better (which is how most of Blue’s brands are).

        Quality protein is better (just like it is for humans). It makes them feel fuller longer and gives them more energy (which also means that they eat less and don’t gain as much weight!). My boyfriend’s cat was fed an Iams food for feline lower urinary tract disorder for YEARS. He needed it for the low ash and magnesium content (to prevent stones from forming), but I honestly don’t think it was doing him much good otherwise. He’s a Persian and got horrible mats and his coat was just dingy, but when I switched him to Nutro’s Max cat he got a lot more energy and his coat started looking A LOT better and he didn’t get matted nearly as much.

      • neuroticbeagle September 4, 2011, 3:10 am

        Not all Purina products are good, but Purina One and Purina Pro Plan (the cat and the dog version) both list meat as the first ingredient. My dog, Mama seems to like it (although she is a beagle and not very picky) and my mom’s two cats like the cat version (with one of them being very finicky).

      • honeybeenicki September 4, 2011, 9:34 am

        There’s a lot of good research online. The best way to find a decent food is find one that has meat as the first ingredient (no a meal/by-product, but the full meat) and without corn if possible.

  • MissDre September 2, 2011, 2:10 pm

    I love you Miles!

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  • silver_dragon_girl September 2, 2011, 2:17 pm

    Aww, poor Miles! I hope you will be able to keep him healthy with diet. I am sending healthy thoughts your way.

    The video is adorable, too. πŸ™‚

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  • honeybeenicki September 2, 2011, 3:03 pm

    I had a beautiful cat named Church (Winston Churchill named after the cat on Pet Semetary) who was diagnosed with diabetes at about 7 years old. It was so hard to see him suffer (we didn’t catch it as quickly as I would have liked) and he sure didn’t like his insulin shots. I wish I knew how to post of pic of him cause he was beautiful πŸ™‚

    I hope Miles’ was caught quickly enough that he can still live a long, healthy, happy life! He definitely seems like a fighter. My 2 cats Rayne and Ares and I are sending him lots of furry love! And I guess the dogs are sending love too, but they are too busy snoring right now!

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    • cookiesandcream September 2, 2011, 3:52 pm

      I really like your pet names! I like how they’re unique rather than the standard pet names (e.g. Fluffy, Spot, and so on). How do all of your cats and dogs get along?

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      • honeybeenicki September 2, 2011, 3:57 pm

        I try to be unique with them, but I can’t take credit for Ares since he came with that name when I adopted him from the humane society πŸ™‚ Rayne’s name was Tink when I got her at 8 weeks from a shelter.

        Before I got my younger dog, my first dog loved the cats. Loved them so much that she would drive them crazy. But, my younger one unfortunately sees them as prey instead, so we have a segregated household. The cats get most of the house and the dogs get the living room and kitchen. My dogs are both English bulldogs. Emma (not all that creative, but originally named Doodlebug) is about 7 1/2 years old and was a breeder dog at a puppy mill. I got her about 4 years ago. The younger one is Justy (full name Jobulls Justified) is about 4 1/2 years old and was with my favorite breeder but couldn’t get along with the other males, so I adopted him about 2 years ago. I also have a hedgehog (Sophie), a bearded dragon (Mushu), and two rats (Merlin and Jiminy).

      • MissDre September 3, 2011, 10:39 am

        My tabby’s name was Tia when I adopted her from the shelter, but I changed her name to Na’ima. My little Siamese kitty was named Donna but I changed her name to Nhuri. But half the time I end up calling them Nima and NuNu… LoL.

  • SGMcG September 2, 2011, 3:05 pm

    Get well soon Miles! Hopefully he won’t need injections. You know, I believe they do make diabetic cat treats….

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    • honeybeenicki September 2, 2011, 3:11 pm

      They do have diabetic cat treats πŸ™‚

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  • callmehobo September 2, 2011, 2:09 pm

    I’m sorry to hear about Miles, and I’m even sorrier that this is the only thing that I could think of once I read this post….

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    • ReginaRey September 2, 2011, 2:18 pm

      HAHAHA! Thankfully, Miles is far more handsome than that fat kitty. Poor Miles! I hope his health improves, and I can’t wait to hear his latest musings on the feeble state of his life.

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  • Elle Marie September 2, 2011, 3:26 pm

    My cat growing up developed feline diabetes when she was about 14 years old. Given that she was already elderly and undergoing other health issues (arthritis, some possible senility, as much as you can tell with a cat) we opted to not make her go through daily injections. We adjusted the type of food she was given, gave her plenty of water (since she needed to urinate more quickly) and she stayed with us until she was almost 17 years old. She ultimately developed a bad infection that her body was not strong enough to fight, and we had to let her go.

    Whatever happens with Miles, I wish you both many, many more happy years together.

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  • ElevenSeven September 2, 2011, 3:49 pm

    Our cat, Calvin, developed feline diabetes when he was about 8 years old and went on to live happily and healthily until age 18 (at which point the poor boy went down hill fast due to other issues). The twice daily insulin injections were really very easy — he did not even seem to notice them and they were much easier to administer (and he seemed to much prefer them) than the occasional times when we had to give him medication in pill form. The biggest problems were finding the right dose of insulin — I recommend getting a glucose monitor and charting that out every few hours for a couple of days and then doing this 2-3 times a year to make sure his insulin doesn’t need to be readjusted — and finding care for him while we went on vacation. Other than that, it really made little difference and we had many, many happy years with him. I hope you and Miles have a similar or better experience.

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    • Will September 6, 2011, 3:28 pm

      Yea, our kitty has been diabetic for less than a year. The twice daily insulin is more of an issue to us as being responsible for administer it than it is for her. Half the time she purrs through the procedure. The only real downside is that you have to schedule your day around the injections. Doesn’t have to be perfect, but it’s not as casual as giving them extra food and water and running out for an overnight, and I hope you don’t like to sleep in, or don’t mind giving them late night injections. It’s a schedule you should stick with.

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  • cookiesandcream September 2, 2011, 3:57 pm

    hehehe! That video was adorable! I’ve never owned a pet in my life and reading everyone’s comments about their pets makes me wonder what I’m missing out on.

    I hope Miles feels better and continues a happy, long life! πŸ™‚

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    • ReginaRey September 2, 2011, 4:09 pm

      Pets are wonderful! Yesterday, our black lab turned 13. She’s been with me since I was 10 years old – through my childhood, adolescence, and now into my adulthood. They’re a real joy, and a true member of your family. But they’re also a whole lot of work! If you’re interested in a pet, I suggest doing some internet research on which type of animal and breed might suit your lifestyle, and talking with current owners about what you might expect. In the end, they’re worth the extra work and sacrifices you make for their well-being. Dogs and cats (and all pets, for that matter) really fill your life with more love.

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      • honeybeenicki September 2, 2011, 4:15 pm

        Completely agree with ReginaRey! And, if at all possibly please, please, please adopt. There are tons of rescues (including breed specific) and humane societies. Another good thing to do in your research is stop by your local shelter and talk to the adoption specialists. They are usually pretty good about asking the right questions to determine what would be a good fit for you.

      • MissDre September 3, 2011, 10:45 am

        Yes, please adopt! There are thousands of pets, kittens and puppies and bunnies and more, that need to be rescued. Whereas kitty and puppy mills just keep pumping out litter after litter after litter to make money and the babies often come sick.

        I know the humane society here offers a lot of incentive to adopt. The adoption fee for a cat is about $150 and the the cat comes with all of their shots, de-wormed, a microchip and a voucher to have the cat spayed or neutered once they are old enough.

        Otherwise you’ll end up paying at least $1,000 for 3 sets of shots, de-worming and spay/neuter and in the end you will have just supported a mill.

        So if anybody wants a pet, please adopt! Thanks for listening πŸ™‚

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        Wendy September 3, 2011, 11:33 am

        Yes, adopt! Or, check Craigslist for pets that are being given away by owners who can no longer care for them. There are SO MANY homeless animals out there who need loving caregivers. I feel as passionately about the idea of adopting over buying from pet factories as some people do about being anti-circumcision. It’s a personal decision to adopt, but one I urge people to really consider. Please!

      • kali September 3, 2011, 4:58 pm

        While I have adopted pets of all sorts, there is another alternative: buying from a RESPONSIBLE breeder.

        I participate in purebred dog activities such as conformation shows, obedience, hunt tests, rally and field trials and our dogs HAVE to be registered purebreds. I have been owned by curly-coated retrievers for almost 30 years now, I’ve shown three to their championships, bred two litters, three have earned field titles, several are breed record holders, one of my pups was the top agility dog in the country several years running and another was the top field AND obedience dog several years in a row.

        If you want a certain personality type or complete records on the parentage of your dog, responsible breeders (not backyard, I have two doodles so Ima breed them and make some easy cash or puppy mills or those insane people selling weird mixes for more money than either breed normally sells for – and NO, labradoodle is NOT a breed!) are also an option.

        If you’re only buying a pet and don’t plan to show your cat, dog, rabbit, guinea pig, etc., then by all means adopt. And spay or neuter your critter. But some of us choose another path and we must do our research, check with the national breed club, the registering agencies, make phone calls, visits and send emails… It’s a lot of work but, in the end, we can rest more easily knowing we have a written guarantee, a contract, a healthy animal and one that will be able to the job for which it was originally bred.

        I know some of the adoption is the only way folks will probably purple thumb me, and that’s OK. I love my purebred dogs and wouldn’t have it any other way.

      • kali September 3, 2011, 4:59 pm

        Also, I’m very sorry to hear about Miles and hope he feels better soon! He’s a handsome guy and holds a special place in my heart. <3

      • honeybeenicki September 4, 2011, 9:36 am

        I agree with you. If someone wants a purebred and can’t find a rescue or really wants a puppy, responsible breeders are a good option. My male bulldog came from a breeder, although he was already an adult when I got him. A lot of breeders (the responsible ones) “retire” their breeding dogs early and often will sell them. The breeder I love doesn’t sell most of his retired breeders because they are his family, but my big boy wasn’t getting along with the other males in the household.

  • amber September 2, 2011, 4:08 pm

    love the video and i hope miles is feeling better very soon! πŸ™‚ my Grandmother’s chihuahua was diagnosed at 7 years and lived to be 14 and got 2 injections every day. didn’t seem to phase her, she was a very happy dog. hopefully miles doesn’t have to deal with that though!

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  • Anna September 2, 2011, 4:32 pm

    Aw, so sorry to hear about poor Miles! Will you have to give him insulin/other medications or just control his diet carefully? My bf is diabetic so I’ve learned quite a lot about taking care of diabetics.

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  • Addie Pray September 2, 2011, 5:34 pm

    boo-yah, i feel famous again! i do secretly [not so secrety] love a good cat video… have a good labor day weekend, everyone! miles, i’m sending you lots of positive thoughts.

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  • Melaina September 2, 2011, 7:28 pm

    Dear Wendy, please send this to Miles:

    I’m very sorry to hear that you are a diabetic. You seem like such a nice kitteh. I wish you lots of love and health. I’m sure your human will take good care of you.



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  • Emsz September 3, 2011, 8:05 am

    Sorry to hear about Miles πŸ™ It sucks for him, and for you, especially if you’re going to have to give him insulin.
    Our cat had an eye problem and we had to give her eye drops four times a day, I sure felt like I was torturing her every time we had to do it πŸ™

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  • MissDre September 3, 2011, 10:55 am

    I think Labour Day weekend is one of my favourite holidays. Autumn is coming, and while I absolutely hate winter, I just love all of the beautiful colours that take over the trees at this time. It’s not too cold, but cold enough that you can wear stylish jeans and fitted jackets. Thanksgiving is coming (for us it’s the first week in October) so I get to look forward to turkey and stuffing and homemade pumpkin pie.

    My parents just sold my childhood home and they are moving to a big log home in the country this month. So going home for Thanksgiving this year will be a little strange. I’m a little sad, because I sort of feel like I don’t have a home any longer. I definitely don’t think of my crappy apartment as “home” – more like just the place I live.

    When I go back to visit my mom… it won’t be home to me anymore. No more childhood bedroom. No more memories from the neighbourhood. It’ll just be the house where she lives. But at the same time, I’m looking forward to building new memories in the new house. And at least I’ll get to see all the trees change colour on her property πŸ™‚

    Happy Labour Day weekend everyone πŸ™‚

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    Wendy September 3, 2011, 11:35 am

    Good news, everyone! I just heard from our vet and she said we caught the diabetes very early β€” he’s still just borderline β€” and with a special diet and a pill medication that he’ll have to take for the next few weeks, there’s a good chance he’ll revert back to normal, no insulin injections necessary. I’m so relieved!

    Thanks for your positive thoughts β€” they worked!

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    • MissDre September 3, 2011, 11:56 am

      Hurray! I’m so happy that Miles will be alright!

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    • Emsz September 3, 2011, 12:46 pm

      YAY πŸ˜€ Giving a cat a pill for a couple of weeks is so much better than giving him shots for the rest of his life.

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    • neuroticbeagle September 4, 2011, 3:30 am

      Hey Miles.
      Not too long ago, I found out I was insulin resistant (borderline diabetic) so I feel your pain. I went on a diet as well, cutting out a lot of sugar in my diet, which really sucks sometimes, but I know you can do it! You’ll feel svelte when you lose the weight and, being a cat, you won’t even have to worry about your clothes not fitting anymore (although my pants not fitting feels good mentally, my wallet does not need to lose weight, it’s probably anorexic, and buying new ones is not going to be pleasant for the bank account). Hey, maybe you won’t fit into those baby clothes Wendy makes you try on, although you did look really cute. (Just sayin’.)

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  • AK September 6, 2011, 8:24 pm

    Our cat Figaro is diabetic – when they get to be 20, that seems to be standard. When he was first diagnosed we gave him insulin for a while, then he “cured himself.” He was no longer diabetic for a couple of years. Then it came back and now we give him 5 units twice a day.

    He not only doesn’t mind, he seems to be reminding us if we’re a little late. Part of that may be due to the fact that he always gets a treat with the evening dose – some wet food to help with the med for his arthritis.

    He’s loving and seems to be content so we’re enjoying the time we have with him and seems to be enjoying his time with us, so a diagnosis is not the end of the world.


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  • September 7, 2011, 2:08 pm

    Diabetes could be a symptom of another, more serious problem, in my experience.
    Certain cancers can shoot the endocrine system to hell without obvious presentation.

    In any case, May you all live long and prosper.

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