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Charlie: The Food Trial Diaries (ibd / Food Allergy (sensitivity) Or Stress)

Discussion in 'Cat Health' started by FeralHearts, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. Furballsmom

    Furballsmom Cat Fan especially Black Cats Staff Member Forum Helper

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    Honestly, it's nuts!
     
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  2. sidneykitty

    sidneykitty TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Oh gosh! I'd been wondering how things were going for you. I hope you're feeling better!

    That's very disappointed the vet didn't mention the crystals. Any chance they thought it was "insignificant" or an artifact? My cat had crystals in her lab urine twice and when we re-tested each time in house, it turned out to be an artifact, as in they grew during transit? I was a bit confused by this, but that's how it was explained.

    If not, then I'm terribly sorry. That is a lot to manage! But I'm glad he is eating the new food now. I think that if Charlie is eating Royal Canin or Hill's food, all the Rx diets should be formulated to prevent crystals even if its not urinary care food. At least all Hill's diets are the last I knew. That is only helpful if food is causing the crystals, however. Did they do any workup on the type of crystals?

    Random, but I wonder if food allergies and asthma commonly occur together in cats? So if food allergy is managed, it could help asthma too?

    As far as taurine, I thought I'd read on this site before it could be supplemented, but I don't know much about it.

    Yes. If z/d is going to help her and she'll eat it, then that's what she'll get. I don't worry about that too much, but I've also bought her expensive, really pure foods and she won't touch them so I guess she doesn't have refined tastes?

    Amber is doing well (crossing fingers). She gained a little weight back which I am happy about and she's been mostly doing better on eating her wet food. I'd say she's in a stable place. I stopped updating my thread because every time I gave good news I felt like she regressed. :doh: So I had to stop for my own sanity and I'm just keeping my paper log of what she eats, what her symptoms/signs are, etc. and trying to worry less if there's a few times she doesn't finish her food.

    Anyway, thinking of you and hoping things will get better!
     
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  3. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    *nods* XOXOX

    Very much thank you. Still feeling a little drained but a little more sleep helps a lot. A couple of my colleagues got it too. One if fairing less well as he has a heart condition and has been off since January that began with this flu. :-(

    Sadly not an artifact. When he was first brought in all the tests showed no crystals. The last one where we managed to get rid of the bacteria and inflammation and a BOATLOAD of crystals showed up instead - to grow this in transit would be a feat:

    DESCRIPTION:
    SEDIMENT
    Bacteria None seen
    RBC 0-3 /HPF
    Squamous epithelial 1-5 /HPF
    WBC 0-3 /HPF
    CRYSTALS
    Triple phosphate 21-50 /HPF (These would be Struvite crystals)

    Looking over all his results it appears I'm still missing a piece from the Dec lab kerfuffle they had where they / the lab / did a fail. So I'll need to call them tomorrow and get a copy. *sigh*

    His regular vet thinks we were all so excited about the bacteria being gone that we missed it. That's very possible.

    Charlie's dry food is the Royal Canin Multi function urinary + hydrolyzed protein (say that three times fast - I dare you lol!) His regular vet was quite clear that he needs to keep on it to get rid of those crystals. *sigh* I hate the soy idea but I have to accept it at this stage. I am grateful he's eating it and the duck wet - massive win.



    Not as Random as you might think. You have a good mind there.

    A few of us have kitties that have Asthma with a suspected allergy to chicken and possible IBS/IBD tummy issues. The general thought atm is exactly that. We wonder if they are all related and if one can be controlled - will it help improve the others. In saying that, Charlie is a Siamese / Siamese X and they are known to have respiratory issues / sensitivities and are prone to Asthma.

    Here is something kinda neat and sad at the same time. This is one of Charlie's xrays. If you look at the right side you can see the mis-shaped heart. It looks like half a heart shape. That is Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) in it's mild form - which causes breathing issues. Some of the lines you see on the lungs - that is normally Asthma. Once we have everything under control for a good solid year + I'll have another x-ray taken specifically looking at his Asthma. I think this might help to give a good indication of a coloration. As well as watch his breathing of course.

    [​IMG]

    The Taurine thing becomes something to watch as there are no signs of deficiency and is deadly overtime. So I will be doing some research and post back about it once I'm confident I understand it.


    Oh don't I know this one. Charlie does the same and I shake my head. I feel the same way too - if he eats it - I'll take it as a massive win.

    YAY! Good job Amber!

    LOl I swear that they knowwwwwwwwwww and deliberately do it to mess with us. Every time I called Charlie's vet the last three years about good progress with food - BOOM - he regressed. I stopped calling her to let her know as I swear it made it worse. LOL

    Thanks I'll keep you and Amber in my thought too. I'm glad she's at least eating some wet and gaining a bit of weight. :-) XOXOXOX
     
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  4. sidneykitty

    sidneykitty TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Oh noooo. Here I was so hopeful it might just be something not real. :( Darn! I am really sorry then! I guess I can understand missing the crystals due to focusing just on the infection...

    I'm really glad to hear he is eating the hydrolyzed foods, given the battle you've had to get him on it. I understand the concern about soy, but on the other hand, these foods are researched with the intent to help in situations and diseases like this. So, I guess what I mean is it might be just fine for him to have food with soy. But maybe once he's done his hydryolyzed diet you can get him over to novel proteins with better quality? You should feel comfortable with your cat's diet, after all!

    I wouldn't be surprised if there was something to food allergy and asthma! I was thinking its like humans with allergies and asthma, plus a lot of immune disorders can co-occur. That is definitely also a bummer, but I'm hoping the food change will help Charlie!

    That x-ray is really interesting. Amber has a new heart murmur, but we aren't sure if she has heart disease as her Cardiopet Pro BNP was normal. Would taking a regular x-ray help monitor that do you know? We haven't decided to spring for an ECG yet. I might have if her BNP was abnormal.

    Ha yes I think you're right. You've heard all about cat's psychic powers? Well I think there's something to it anyway. One day I even tried to absorb Amber's constipation when she laid on my stomach. I'd rather have it than her haha!

    Well I think things will only get better from here, ok? Keep us updated and keep your chin up! You're doing a great job looking after Charlie. He's so lucky to have you!! :)
     
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  5. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    And they are a new clinic - so between that and the "YAY! Persist bacteria gone!" I can understand. I will simply have to be very diligent and on top of them over things since the communication is in need of improvement. They're good people. It's frustrating though.

    Exactly - they are meant to help so I'll suck it up. When I look it up on the catfooddb.com it's upsetting to see that it's not the best food. In the end I simply want him around for a long time, happy and healthy - so I worry when I see it's not great food. I have to remember the long game though. Heal him because if I don't heal him that long time happy and healthy won't happen.

    I feel good about the bone broth so I'm glad that @daftcat75 taught us that. Gives me a bit more peace of mind.

    Exactly! I'm interested to see what happens with his breathing once the food is sorted out. I have a suspicion it's going to improve, maybe not completely but a measurable amount.


    For the heart - the best way is an ultrasound of it. Expensive but accurate. Seeing the heart in the x-ray was the final 110% confirmation of his HCM. It was incidental as we were rally looking at the organs, kidneys etc.

    Did they tell you what the murmur number was - Stage 1, 2, 3? A murmur of 1 is more often than not a bi-product of terror at the vets office. A lot of cats get a stage 1 at the vets and are fine otherwise.

    Charlie's was a stage 1 murmur - under normal circumstances I'd not have done an ultrasound for that, but, due to his breathing issues etc -I went ahead as I knew something wasn't right and his original vet was, for lack of better words - a complete and total idiot. The final straw, what made me fire him, was on our last visit he double dosed Charlie with a rabies shot because he was so distracted. At that point - I was done. His current regular vet is a complete dream and the clinic has been amazing too - even with the communication glitches.

    LOL yup and I think it's true. In fact I've considered making up a set of carda number 1 -49 and tell the cats to pick the 6 winning lotto numbers! :flail:

    LOl I feel the same way with the kitties when they aren't well. I'd rather be the one dealing with it then them too. Love is an amazing thing.

    Thank you. I'm trying my best. I feel lucky to have them too.

    Ia agree - it's going to get better from here. We've all come so far! :heartshape::heartshape:

    XOXOXOXOXOX
     
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  6. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    So far so good on the food. Though he still will not eat without a topping. I'm almost willing to live with it truthfully.

    He puked once since - food. Twice on kitty grass.
    Fur appears good. Doesn't appear to scratch as much as before. No raw leg - so *knock on wood* no leg chewing.

    We add another issue to the list though. Teeth have tartar / Plaque.

    *sigh*

    In 6 years - no teeth issues. Now I will need to learn to brush everyone's teeth. I'm going to start with I think gause and/or dental wipes and then try to move to brushes. Good idea? Bad idea?

    Could it have been the antibiotics?
     
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  7. daftcat75

    daftcat75 TCS Member Top Cat

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    Has he had a cleaning under anesthetic recently? My concern would be that he may have other dental issues that can't be seen yet. I would want that ruled out before you potentially brush sore teeth and gums.

    Also, you're not going to get much time in any of their mouths. Better to use either a finger cot or a kitty toothbrush. You'll be lucky to get a few quick strokes on the top and bottom. The insides will be left to their tongue.

    Brushing Your Cat's Teeth | Partners in Animal Health
     
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  8. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    No issues that I know. He just went into his regular vet for his annual. She didn't mention his teeth - but I noticed when I read his report card (when I was entering into his heath book - :oops: each cat had a health book/binder) that she noted this on his teeth. So rather than wait for a real problem I want to be pro-active to prevent further build up and of course to figure out how I screwed up since for 6 years he's never had any build up.

    Good to know about the tongue as I was going to try to get the insides too.

    I have a finger brush - but it feels way too big. I have honestly never brushed any of their teeth. I feel bad I haven't as apparently we are supposed too. :bawling: I have failed.

    Thank you for the link - I will look and read more :-)
     
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  9. daftcat75

    daftcat75 TCS Member Top Cat

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    I didn’t brush Krista’s teeth. But to be fair, I’ve read FORLs aren’t preventable via brushing so I don’t feel guilt over that. I don’t want Krista to suffer, but I am secretly rooting for her remaining teeth to finally become extractable. Her current mouth with one canine and the upper incisors and maybe little else can’t be very comfortable for her. I have dreams of a toothless Krista once again eating, and grooming people and blankets with careless abandon. The easiest way I can tell her current mouth isn’t comfortable is that she went from being an avid licker to a very cautious licker these days.

    But because I know her current mouth isn’t entirely comfortable for her, I will stay out of it. No teeth brushing for her.
     
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  10. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    From everything I've read too - yes - the FORL's aren't preventable by the brush, unfortunately. :-(

    I agree that can't be comfy for her at all! I was just catching up on your thread for her and she's coming along nicely - a few setbacks but a lot of positive there! I'm wishing the same as you - no teeth for Krista. It sounds mean to wish it but it's really all about the long term joy for her.

    It's like Charlie with his heart. His vet said, "Let him live his life". Charlie likes to play - he's a very high energy cat - I know that playing hard is not the best for his heart - but we sometimes do ... he needs to live his life and enjoy it. If he's going really hard with me and his chest looks labored - we stop. Sometimes staying out of it - is the right call. :-)

    That video instruction for teeth brushing is awesome. I'm placing bets in my head as to which kitty will be the worst for co-operation lol.
     
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  11. sidneykitty

    sidneykitty TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Glad to hear the food's going well! And that he's not vomiting too often.

    They said the murmur was grade 2 and that's the first we've ever heard that. Generally she's been in about every 6 months for check-ups, so I feel like it must be something new since we'd never been told that before.

    Gah sorry to hear about the teeth! If I were you, I'd just try the finger brush maybe without any toothpaste if you can. Its not really necessary, its just the scrubbing action that does the job not the paste. And don't feel bad, most people probably don't brush their cat's teeth. I don't even though I know I should.

    One other thing you could try is getting a water additive. I use the Strix NB oral care in a powder form. One tub lasts forever you just have to watch out for it to clump like sugar if you live somewhere humid like I do. It actually does a really good job of preventing tartar and plaque buildup and I've been told it can help soften it if used for a while prior to a dental, making it easier on the vet/tech, your cat and your pocket book.
     
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  12. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Me too. His leg does not appear raw atm so he's not chewing on it *knock on wood* and he seems to have less of aversion to being petted. His skin is looking less dry too.

    I'm beginning to think it was the dry food they had him on (chicken based) that was the majority of the issue. At least, this is what I'm hoping.

    I've started a spreadsheet with a list of every single ingredient in his old wet food and will add the new food and compare in prep for when I start adding new things slowly back into his tummy. His regular vet wants him staying on the probiotic and I'm good with that.

    He's getting bored with this food. I know this as he started to snack on the girls wet food the last two days when my back his turned. *sigh* only a few bites before I caught him but I don't want to ruin the progress. Sneaky bugger.

    We have a follow-up with his regular vet for another Cystocentesis to see if the crystals are gone (yep I feel bad about that) and to ensure the bacteria didn't come back.


    Many vets don't tell people about low murmurs as almost every cat that goes for a vet visit gets a stage 1 murmur from fear. Probably as most of us would panic. Even two is still low but it's one of those "Don't freak out - but watch" things. Sometimes a stage 2 can even be the cat extra stressy that day- but it's still a watch and keep an eye on. Did the vet say anything else to you about it?

    Thanks! I feel like we can't catch a break right now. It's almost funny - but not. One of those "One day maybe we'll laugh about this."

    The more I read about the cat toothpaste and what was in it - the more I was like "Ohhh nooesss. No. no. None of that." So I bought him this:



    Tried it once last night (as just arrived) and - yeah - looks like this might kinda work. He oddly didn't fight me all that much so I'm hopeful. If it does work then I will get more for the girls and start on theirs too.


    I so wanted to try that - but they all (but one - Mia) drink out of fountains and refuse to drink from a bowl. I could get some to add to Mia's dish though as she hates the fountains. She looks at them like they are going to eat her.

    Thanks for the heads up on the clumping as I live somewhere humid too.

    *nods* After getting a quote on a price for teeth clean - pocket book needs the break. WOAW is what I have to say. Over $550.00. I don't even want to know what it would be if something was wrong. *touches every piece of wood she can find*
     
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  13. TheBoy'sMom

    TheBoy'sMom TCS Member Kitten

    Can you feed him the same protein from different brands? My cat has a food allergy too. Eventually it got so bad he was throwing up his food on average 4 nights a week bringing his weight down to a whopping 8lbs! After keeping a diary I found he could eat chicken or turkey (with no vegetables) and he would not throw up. If it had vegetables in it he would throw up the vegetables. I had to have a rotation of brands and styles (pate, flaked, smooth loaf, etc...) If I so much as fed him the same brand and style within a couple day period he wouldn't be interested in it even though he may have loved it a few days ago. Mind you, he wasn't like this when he was younger. My cat also has HCM, but he's medicated.
     
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  14. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Poor kitty :-(

    Yes and no is the answer to that. It's not just the protein but the carb as well.

    The most important thing is to check the ingredient list carefully. The food should have one protein and carb that kitty has never been exposed to before.

    A kitty cat be allergic / have a sensitivity to anything. More often than not it's a protein or a carb. So with an elimination diet, you want to add as few variables as possible in order to sort out what is causing the problem.

    So for my Charlie - I have him on a duck and pea limited ingredient food. There are three brands of this but one of them has snuck in a second carb - so I axed it. If Charlie had issues with pea, that same make does have another LID (Limited ingredient diet) that is Duck and Sweet Potatoe. During a food trial, you would not want to switch from a duck and pea to a duck and potatoes unless the kitty was having issues.

    Does that help at all?

    *hugs* HCM sucks. Charlie isn't at the stage where he needs meds yet, but, one day he will. I dread that day so I feel for you. Seems like our boys have some things in common.
     
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  15. daftcat75

    daftcat75 TCS Member Top Cat

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    Can you cut out the carbs altogether? They usually are not allergens but most often irritants. An itrritant doesn’t involve the immune system (not directly) but it does cause disturbances in the Gi that can lead to the changes in permeability (leaky gut) that allows protein to escape into the blood. It is protein that gets recognized by the immune system and triggers the inflammatory response.
     
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  16. TheBoy'sMom

    TheBoy'sMom TCS Member Kitten

    It does. I've tried to give my cat LID canned food from multiple brands and my cat doesn't like it. He'll eat it the first time, but if I give it to him again, he refuses to eat it.
     
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  17. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    That's normally what my Charlie does. Although tbh I was lucky if I could get him to take one bite of anything new at all. This is the first time in three years of on and off trying I've had any luck at all.

    At the start of this thread, @Furballsmom has a list of toppers you can try to entice your baby to eat/try new things.

    Charlie: The Food Trial Diaries (ibd / Food Allergy (sensitivity) Or Stress)

    Post 7.

    That might help.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2019
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  18. FeralHearts

    FeralHearts Thread Starter TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    :yeah:

    This is also something I considered for Charlie. Great advice :-)
     
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  19. daftcat75

    daftcat75 TCS Member Top Cat

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    By "disturbances in the GI", I meant vomiting and diarrhea. It is just as possible that it is the peas or one of the gums that causes a reaction as much as the protein. That's what makes this so difficult. To be honest, LID foods aren't helping here when they add extra ingredients that don't belong there. This is why so many IBD cat parents end up going to raw or homemade cooked to eliminate the nonsense ingredients.
     
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  20. sidneykitty

    sidneykitty TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Love your ingredient idea. I did the same thing so I can cross check once we get to the experimenting stage.

    I am hoping he does not have the crystals anymore! I'm sure you'll let us know :)

    Her murmur conversation went like this. I took her in because she was vomiting and before the vet even got to that she said "Your cat has a heart murmur. Has that ever come up before?"
    This was me: :eek3: No..? *induce internal panic* (yeah I don't take my cat being sick very well..)

    Then she said that at Amber's age (14.5 y) she may have early heart disease and recommended a cardiac pro BNP. She said if that were positive, she'd recommend a cardiac ECG. I then became very concerned about it but we did the blood test and it was negative. She said that was good news but she still may have early heart disease. She asked if she ever gets tired while playing and kind of lies down breathing heavily. I'd say she does somewhat - not open mouthed or anything but with somewhat heavy stomach breathing. But she also has heaps of energy when playing though. I'd say she has slowed down overall in the last year. Right now, we're keeping an eye on it. I had to bring her in to emerg a few weeks after that for constipation and they heard the murmur then as well. She has a checkup in a couple weeks and we'll see what they say at that time. I want them to check her BP at that time, too, in case the murmur could be related to hypertension.

    "Might kinda work" toothpaste is never than not at all! I'm glad to hear its going ok for you.

    I'm pretty sure you can use Strix in a water fountain. If not, it also comes in a liquid form. I just get the powder cause its so cost effective.

    @TheBoy'sMom - your cat sounds a lot like mine! I recently had to change Amber's diet to novel protein and increase her wet food intake, and she loves food when its new but doesn't like to eat it again after that. It took me probably 3-4 months of trying various foods with various toppers and being persistent to finally get her to eat the new stuff. Toppers are a good idea for enticing them and also, I learned, patience and persistence. I hope you manage to find one your kitty will eat!

    Toppers reminds me.. @FeralHearts - if Charlie wasn't liking his wet food, could you get some hydrolyzed protein treats to crumble and put on top? I finally clued in since Amber was getting Hill's z/d that she could have the treats, too, but we have the Royal Canin ones. She really likes them! Ask your vet if they carry them or can order them. Maybe not now if you want to keep it limited, but down the line it could be nice if he has to stay on the diet.
     
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