Egg Lecithin for Hairballs

myrnafaye

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Hi, again, LGD.  It is disheartening that so many cats develop GI problems.  I dont know why this is.  My Obi is 16 and all his blood chemistry is good too, and I have elected to do the palliative care in the absence of a definitive diagnosis.  Me throws up hair.  usually not food, just hair.  My 6 year old girl Mittens - of the pic here - also throws up a hairball about once a month.  Its frustrating.  GI disease is frustrating.  
 

mphscat

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Thanks to all.  LDG, when you say "expensive" for the biopsy, can you quantify that?  $500?  $2,000?  Also once you had the results, did you start her on chemo and, if so, how is she doing?   I've heard that small cell lymphoma treatment if detected early enough can be successful for years because it is so slow growing.

And when you said you took her in when she started vomiting, what was she vomiting?  Just hairballs?  Just food?  A combination?  And with what frequency?  (just to have a baseline of comparison).

And just fyi...I lived in Europe for 25+ years and have had multiple cats and have NEVER HEARD of IBD/IBS/small cell lymphoma in cats.  NEVER.  So I find it very disconcerted that apparently it is so rampant here.  Maybe that just proves the GMO ingredients that are used here (outlawed there) are killing our pets?!?!?
 

ldg

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It is frustrating. It is my personal opinion that it is the foods we feed. I don't think people eating only highly processed foods would have happy GI systems going into their golden years if they'd never eaten any fresh food, ever. Our GI systems become less efficient as we age, and I'm sure that's true of all mammals. My cats that are the healthiest are the youngest, and hopefully as I'm feeding them fresh homemade food now, I guess we'll find out if my theory is correct as they age. Not that four cats will prove much. ;) Here is some food for thought. http://feline-nutrition.org/health/feline-inflammatory-bowel-disease-nature-and-treatment

I think hairballs and allergies are precursors: warning signs along the way, as it were, that something in the diet is amiss. Just my thoughts.
 
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ldg

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I think there are too many variables to discern a difference between Europe and the U.S. I suspect a big difference is that far more cats in Europe are allowed to roam. It is seen as a natural thing for cats to do - be out and about. And these cats can hunt, and supplement their diets with the food they are meant to eat. They have access to fresh food, as it were, so don't rely solely on highly processed foods. I also think that 30 years ago, pet food was much better for cats. No, they didn't know about the need for taurine, and sadly, many cats paid the price for that. But overall, higher quality human food production leftovers were used, and they were more meat-based. I think all the carbs in the current foods, as technology lends itself to more and more leftovers going back into other human foods - combined with pet companies wanting to increase their margins (and corn costs less than byproducts, for instance)... many factors influencing this, I think.

Spooky threw up three or four times in one week. Just undigested food. Normally I take that to mean they have a hairball blocking passage through the pylorus. But as it was so unusual for her, we zipped off to the vet. The last time I made an assumption like that, Lazlo had large cell lymphoma that wasn't discovered as early as it could have been had I not assumed it was "just" hairballs. (He's fine, he went through the 6 months of chemo. We transitioned to a raw diet at that time, and I give him supportive supplements. We'll celebrate 3 years in remission on the 30th of this month, knock wood!!!!).

The full surgical biopsy cost about $1,100, and the biopsy cost of the lab itself was $185. But obviously leading up to it was the bloodwork, the ultrasound, etc. And the leukeran costs about $350 a month. I don't know what the prednisolone is monthly, but she takes 5mg twice a day. (Spooky is on 2mg of leukeran - one tablet - every other day). But she's doing extremely well with it. Most cats, in fact, seem to tolerate it really well. Plenty of IBD cats take leukeran for 3 or 4 months to squelch out-of-control inflammation, and then wean their cats off of it. My understanding is that with the definitive diagnosis of small cell lymphoma, she'll be on it for life, though her dose would become much less, and the dose of pred would be reduced, too. They measure remission in small cell lymphoma by intestinal wall thickness, which is measured via ultrasound. So we have the baseline going into it. We'll do a follow-up ultrasound after six months, which I think is February.

Edited to add:

Here's the discussion / progression of what happened with Spooky: http://www.thecatsite.com/t/282725/spooky-could-use-a-few-vibes

...and....

Kitties shouldn't be eating wheat, corn, soy, etc., so exposure to GMOs shouldn't even be an issue. ;)
 
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mphscat

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Thank you, LDG....I sent you a private message for more info. because for some reason, the posts on this site were showing up VERY slowly.  Your answer above is complete and I thank you so VERY much and will help me have more information when/if it becomes necessary for me to have "that" discussion with the vet.  Right now there is medium thickness in his small intestine but no other signs...no lymph node inflammation, etc.  He has not thrown up any undigested food....when he throws up a hairball, it's in a transparent liquid and only once have I seen anything darker.

And congratulations for Spooky!!!!  Excellent news!!!!
 

mphscat

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LDG...I saw the post about Spooky's symptoms but what about Lazlo's? What was different??
 

ldg

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Lazlo was having bad trouble with hairballs. We did an x-ray in January, and didn't see anything that merited further investigation. Blood work was normal. He continued to have problems off and on through June. I transitioned them from free-fed kibble to canned only over a month or so. It stressed Lazlo, and he lost weight (he didn't need to). I wrote off the weight loss to the transition. At the end of June, we went to the holistic vet. Blood work this time indicated anemia. His brother has an autoimmune disease that causes anemia. He was given a shot a depo. Obviously he perked up. Then about two weeks later, he crashed. Not eating, lethargic, just... so sick. Took him back. I don't remember what we did or why we didn't do an x-ray then. But we did about two weeks later. That's when the "massive mass" was found, along with the bleeding ulcers. Had he been vomiting then, we'd have seen it. But he wasn't. We were fortunate in that he was biopsied (needle aspirate) at the same time as his ultrasound. Results were back the next night, I think. Our vet referred us to an oncologist, who fit us in the next morning, and we began chemo that day. July 28, 2011.

So symptoms were hairballs, weight loss, stomach ulcers - though they were diagnosed at the same time as the cancer. But large cell is aggressive enough it went from nothing visible on x-ray to "massive mass" in 6 months.
 

nanax3

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This is not about the capsules but raw eggs given to cats.:blackcat:

Raw Eggs
There are two problems with giving your cat raw eggs. The first is the possibility of food poisoning from bacteria like salmonella or E. coli. The second is that a protein in raw egg whites, called avidin, interferes with the absorption of the B vitamin biotin. This can cause skin problems as well as problems with your cat's coat. :kitty3:

From Web MD - Pets
 

ldg

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If one is concerned about using raw egg yolk, feed it cooked. The acetylcholine will still do the job.

As to raw egg white - we're talking only about yolk. If one uses whole eggs in a raw recipe, note the yolks have plenty of biotin. Also, cooking "de-activates" the biotin-binding action of avidin in whites.

The primary source of salmonella is the outside of the egg. Wash it before separating the yolk and white. I have fed my cats raw yolk for three years now. Never had an incidence of food poisoning yet. Knock wood.

Of course, I do recommend caring for your cats' immune system function and overall GI health with probiotics. This practice maintains the colonies of healthy bacteria that enable a proper bacterial balance in the gut so kitty can handle ingested pathogens. Same holds true for people. Tomatoes, lettuce, spices, alfalfa sprouts, nuts - a zillion recalls of many things for bacterial contamination. We don't live in a sterile world. We have to tend to our gut health so our immune system does its job. So it is with our kitties.
 
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mphscat

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I have to say in my experience with Rube, the egg yolk lecithin, probiotics, digestive enzymes and Vet's Best hairball remedy have been a GODSEND for preventing the hairballs.  He has completely stopped vomiting hairballs.

On on another note, some of you will remember that I had problems with suspect IBD in him and I had also introduced a stray to the household about 4 months ago.

The SEB, probiotics and digestive enzymes seemed to have greatly helped because Rube's last ultrasound showed that his intestines were back to their normal size and no longer inflammed....but he was still occasionally vomiting about every 2-3 days in the morning.  The hairballs had stopped but he was throwing up bile, albeit a very small amount.

The agression with the new cat was better but concerning so I bought 3 Feliway Comfort Zone diffusers and after about a week, all the aggression stopped....but not only that, Rube seems to have completely stopped vomiting as well.  So a combination of things AND stress?
 

llawen

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Good! I felt it was important to mention the med metabolism is an issue with all mucilaginous fibers, as SEB was the only one mentioned earlier. :)
I found it terrible to have a suffering child with Crohn's Disease. He was so brave-is my hero. That is why I was excited to find this wonderful website,when my beloved elderly rescue cat began having bouts of constipation and throwing up (despite grooming, which she loves) the odd hairball:
http://www.felineconstipation.org/index.html

It is a complete guide to what is known about feline digestive system, but also has discussion about good remedies and bad as well as dosage recommendations.

There is an excellent explanation of why cats DO need "good" carbohydrates;not for their nutritional value, but to assist the village in forming waste. ("Poop" is not nutrient,and if one feeds only good nutrient,the village cannot form waste properly;a great article which was very enlightening. She also supports egg lecithin for preventing hairball). I think SEB was also recommended? Much to read and digest. .

Suze
May it be of benefit.
 

mrsgreenjeens

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Just posting on this older thread wanting to know if anyone else is having trouble sourcing egg yolk lecithin?  Particularly the Swanson's brand?  Obviously anywhere you order it from, THEY must get it directly from Swanson, and Swanson says "this item is unavailable", and it has been for quite some time now.  I'm almost done with my last bottle, and have been having to give Tinky less and less each day to try to get thru.  

Luckily Darko and Callie love the Nature's Plus EYL,  but Tinky doesn't, so it's difficult to get it in him
.  He doesn't mind the Swanson...gobbles his food right up when it's mixed in (but balks at his food with the Natures Plus...figures)  I'm about to get desperate since I haven't seen a hairball all season and do NOT want that to change. 

I called Swanson and they have no idea whether or not they will EVER have it in stock again.  Anyone have any other suggestions.  As far as I know, there are only these two brands that are good to use
 

mphscat

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If you mix the EYL in with a tablespoon of yogurt, would Tinky take it? I've read somewhere else someone had to do that and it worked. NOT good news about the Swanson's brand. :(
 
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mrsgreenjeens

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If you mix the EYL in with a tablespoon of yogurt, would Tinky take it? I've read somewhere else someone had to do that and it worked. NOT good news about the Swanson's brand.
I doubt it....Tinky is my picky eater, so I can't always even count on him eating his normal food
.   He's so easily distracted...the slightest noise and he's off to see what's happening elsewhere.   I'm trying remember in the past if he was the one who would NOT eat yogurt off my finger or not.  One of them wouldn't
  (but it's a good thought....I'll try it and see what happens...it's that or nothing)
 
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myrnafaye

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@Mrs. Greenjeans - YES.  I am very frustrated with Swansons, not that they are having a problem but that they know so littlle - or are not saying.  THis posts is prompting me to call in the AM and ask to speak to a customer service supervisor so we know what is going on.  I did order the other brand, and it is very difficult to get out of the gel caps, And it needs to be refrigerated.  OK so  guess I will have to live with that.  I hope we can all keep one another posted.
 

mrsgreenjeens

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Yes, the Natures Plus is difficult to get out of the capsule, but I have these nifty measuring spoons that are teeny tiny , and I use the one called "smidgen".  It fits perfectly into the capsule to dig out all the good stuff.  I just keep that measuring spoon on top of another bottle of cat "stuff" on the counter so it's always available.  My only issue with Natures Plus (other than the price
) is that Tinky simply doesn't like it.  But I'm just going to have to figure out a way to get him to take it, for his own good
.  I give them all Vet's Best Hairball Relief too, but during hairball season, I don't think that's enough.

Personally, I think the shortage of the Swanson product might have something to do with the egg shortage due to that bird flu or whatever it is that is causing the price of eggs to skyrocket.  
 

mphscat

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I use a toothpick to get the Nature's Plus EYL out of the capsule and it works fine.
 

momof3b1g

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I want to give Shy Guy EL. Right now he is getting cat lax. Where can I get some?
 

myrnafaye

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Swanson's vitamins - very fast shipment - or Amazon.
 
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