Mickey, my 27 lbs foster and his journey back to a healthy weight

carolina

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Mschauer, what a big, fluffy sweetheart you got there :clap:
I want to see if by the end of this journey he will be a foster, or a failed foster :lol3: he just looks too much of a lover boy :thud:
Anyways, one thing recently has made a MAJOR change on Bugsys weight loss, and I thought of posting, if you run into a situation where his metabolism slows down: I added krill oil to his diet, and all of the sudden he started to lose weight again.... Like it's no one business. Sure, I decreased his intake by a tiny bit, but the krill oil was whoa!
There are some papers on omega3 and weight loss; green lipped mussels didn't really help.... Krill did. Now I had to increase his intake back to the original amount :lol3: we will see how he does this week, bet he is much happier for sure!
Anyways, just a tip, if you need :)
Vibes for this fluffy lil man! :vibes:
 
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mschauer

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Mschauer, what a big, fluffy sweetheart you got there

I want to see if by the end of this journey he will be a foster, or a failed foster
he just looks too much of a lover boy

Anyways, one thing recently has made a MAJOR change on Bugsys weight loss, and I thought of posting, if you run into a situation where his metabolism slows down: I added krill oil to his diet, and all of the sudden he started to lose weight again.... Like it's no one business. Sure, I decreased his intake by a tiny bit, but the krill oil was whoa!
There are some papers on omega3 and weight loss; green lipped mussels didn't really help.... Krill did. Now I had to increase his intake back to the original amount
we will see how he does this week, bet he is much happier for sure!
Anyways, just a tip, if you need

Vibes for this fluffy lil man!
Really. How interesting. I'll definately keep that in mind. Thanks!

I'm actually a little worried that he might end up as a "foster failure". Just what I need, 5 cats!   
 
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mschauer

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Lessons Learned

I had an unpleasant surprise Tues. I weighted Mickey and he was 26:9 (lbs:eek:z)! That's 1 oz heavier than he was 3 days before. It was really confusing because I weighted him Mon and he was 26:6.5, right on track to be at the expected weight of 26:5 on Wed. The Mon weight in was kind of a quick check and I didn't wait for the scale to settle on a constant weight but I've been using this scale for a long time and I've learned how to read it when the weight is "bouncing" a bit. So I thought the Mon weight might be a bit iffy but I really thought it was probably accurate. But Tues I made sure the 26:9 weight was accurate. So ***?? 26:8 on Sat, 26:6.5 on Mon and 26:9 on Tues??? Then I realized what probably happened. Tues I weighted him right after he had eaten. I'm looking for such small changes in weight that the at least 2 oz of food he ate could look like weight gain. Also, any as yet "unexpelled" matter destined for the litterbox can throw the weight off. So, I decided to wait until the "official" mid-week weight in on Wed before panicking too much.

Today (Wed) I weighted him *before* he ate and he came in at 26:7. Still a disappointment. I was hoping for 26:5 but at least it wasn't 26:9! Also he didn't use the litterbox all day so there is still hope he will be close to his week 2 goal of 26:2 by Saturday.

Lesson 1: Be consistent about when to weight!

Contributing to the problem is that this past weekend I made the mistake of upping his food to 7 1/2 oz. I thought he was acting hungry. I still think that but rather than upping the food quantity I've started dividing his food into 4 meals a day. I have one of those timed feeders so I give him 2 1/2 oz FF as usual in the morning and evening and then before I go to work and before I go to bed I put 1 oz of frozen raw along with an ice pack under the food tray in the timed feeder and set it to open at 1 PM and 1 AM. Hopefully that will keep him from getting too hungry between meals. He still isn't scarfing up all his food in one go but he is eating more of it right away and not leaving much for later.

Lesson 2: Don't rush to change meal sizes!

I cannot believe how content this guy is to stay in his room. Usually my fosters will be OK with staying in the foster room for a few days but then, even with the shyest ones, it becomes a challenge to keep them from breaking down the door trying to escape. Not Mickey. He has voluntarily taken a few steps outside his door but no more. This afternoon I confined my cats to a room then carried Mickey out of his room and to the end of the hall. At first he wanted to hightail it back to his room but I blocked his way. Then he actually walked out into the living room and explored a bit. He only walked around for 3 or 4 minutes then headed back to his room but it is a start. I don't think he is going to be ready to meet my cats for a while!

I also discovered this evening that he loves chasing a feather type toy on the end of a wand. He will actually run after it! That is some great exercise!

Oh yeah, one more thing. This guy is a raw eating maniac! I'm giving him beef now and he scarfs that up just like he did the quail, rabbit and lamb.
 
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mschauer

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Update - Week 2

This hasn't been a great week for our boy.

The good news is that he weighted in today at 26:5 (lbs:eek:z). That is not quite the 26:2 I wanted at this point but considering my blunder early in the week of prematurely increasing his meal size I think it is pretty good. So I'm staying at 7 oz for now.

The bad news is that he has started throwing up his raw food which is strange because he has been eating raw for almost 2 weeks.

The time was Saturday morning. That was 1 oz of lamb that I put frozen in the timed feeder. It would have opened at about 2A Saturday morning. I found the throw up when I went to check on him that morning. I didn't give him any more raw that day. Saturday night I put another 1 oz of lamb in the timed feeder and set it to open at about 2A again. I go in Sunday morning and he had thrown it up. I started to think it might be because the raw was thawing faster than I think and maybe the bacteria was growing to a point where he couldn't handle it. After finding the throw up Sunday morning I gave him some fresh raw lamb. He threw that up also but maybe his stomach was too unsettled at that point.

I'm going to back off the raw for a few days to give his stomach time to settle then I'll try reintroducing it with a prebiotic/probiotic/digestive enzyme supplement I have. 

Unfortunately the last time he threw up was under the bed ... in my carpeted guest/foster room. 
 Oh well, that 's why I have a SpotBot, the greatest carpet spot cleaner in the world! But I had to get the bed out of the way first. I had been thinking about leaning the bed up against the wall to get it out of the way and to keep Mickey from hiding under it so I went ahead and did that. Now there is more room to play with him. He can still hide in the closet if he wants to.

Mickey was so funny about the new room configuration! I put him in another room while I worked on his room. When I had it ready I just opened the door to the room I had him in because I knew he would go back to his "safe" room on his own. He waddled down the hall towards the room. When he got there he stopped at the door, looked in and started hissing. He didn't approve of the changes! 


It took several minutes before he would go in. A couple of times he would start to but he would just start hissing then go back to laying the hall. This boy is not Mr. Adventure!
 

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:lol3: :lol3: at Mickey's reaction to the room changes! :flail: Oh that boy does NOT like change. Medora, this has foster failure written ALL over it! :rub: :)

Well, everything considered, I think you should be happy about the weight. :nod:

Had he had lamb before? Most of my cats needed red meat introduced slowly. They needed it in a small amount with something they already knew (pork, chicken, or turkey), and then I had to increase the amount from 25% lamb/75% "white" meat, to 50% red meat/white meat; 75% red meat/white meat, and then they'd be able to keep it down. :dk: Just a thought, if he hasn't had lamb before. Moot if he has. :lol3:
 
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mschauer

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Had he had lamb before? Most of my cats needed red meat introduced slowly. They needed it in a small amount with something they already knew (pork, chicken, or turkey), and then I had to increase the amount from 25% lamb/75% "white" meat, to 50% red meat/white meat; 75% red meat/white meat, and then they'd be able to keep it down.
Just a thought, if he hasn't had lamb before. Moot if he has.
That's the thing. He ate lamb all of last week. But I forgot I switched him to beef this week. But he has been eating it all of this week. 
 
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ldg

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Hunh. No idea. Have the same questions here. Shel was eating lamb and goat just fine for months. Then he started throwing them up. :dk: I had to split my meals - instead of turkey for breakfast and goat for the late night meal, I have to make each meal 50% turkey and 50% goat. He keeps that down. :dk: No clue what happened or why, or why he was fine then wasn't, or why this works! :lol3:
 
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mschauer

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Strange. I'll keep that in mind when I start reintroducing raw. Thanks Laurie!
 
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mschauer

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At his mid-week last night Mickey came in at 26:03 (lbs:eek:z) last night. That's a little bit more than I would have hoped but still pretty good. Since Monday he has been on 6 1/2 oz of food where he had been getting 7 oz. I did that because a couple of daily weights showed he either wasn't losing or was losing very slowly. So he gets 2 1/4 oz of Fancy Feast and 1 oz of raw twice a day.

Due to his throwing up beef and lamb, I've started giving him chicken for the raw component of his diet.As with the rabbit, quail, beef and lamb, he loved it. At some point I'll try a mixture of beef or lamb with chicken or turkey as LDG suggested. I'm going to keep increasing the raw portion of his diet with the goal of having him on 100% raw. That will make it a lot easier to have him fully integrated with my raw eating clan. Of course I'll have to figure out how to keep him from eating all of his then eating any that the others don't eat right away. That's going to be awkward. It might come in handy that he likes "his" room so much!

More good news is that Mickey has decided that the world ouside of his room is deserving of his attention. He has spent quite a bit of time exploring my entire house and no longer runs back to his "safe" room every time he encounters something new. Just walking is pretty good exercise for a cat his size and it is exercise that doesn't require me! Yea! He has shown little interest in my four cats which is great because that is what works best with mine. Mine are non-territorial but a couple of them can get very nervous and respond badly if a strange cat approaches them. Mickey has no interest in approaching them. Mickey ignores mine and mine ignore him. Perfect! 
  It also helps that Mickey can't jump up on things. That kind of sudden appearance on top of table or chair already occupied by another cat is something that can lead to misunderstandings between cats that don't know each other. So far, so good!

At this rate it will be forever before he gets to an adoptable weight but I knew that going in! He is a very sweet boy. I won't mind having him around for a while.
 
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ldg

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He sounds perfect! This has "foster failure" written ALL over it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GREAT job so far! :clap: :clap: :clap:

When you decide to reintroduce beef and lamb, I'd recommend starting at just 25% red meat. :nod:
 
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mschauer

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Thanks for the kind words Laurie. He is going great! He is getting more active. He has been playful from the start but he seems to be moving more easily now. 

Everyone keeps telling him he is going to be a "foster failure"!  
  He's a great fella but it will be a *loong* time before I  have to make that decision!
 
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mschauer

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Week 4 Update

Mickey weighted in at 25:14 (lbs:eek:z) today for a total of 1 lb lost since I brought him home. Yea!

His weight loss has really slowed down though. He is losing less than 1% of his weight a week. Any loss is good but I'd really him to go down a bit faster. I was giving him 6 oz a day, 4 of raw and 2 of Fancy Feast. I really don't want to feed him less than that so rather than reducing how much I feed him I've switched to a lower calorie food, Sheba. Where the FF and raw averaged 30-34 calories an oz the Sheba is in the 22-25 calorie range. 

He frequently comes out of his room now. Mostly he just sticks close to me so part of his exercise routine is me walking around the house with him following me!
 

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Well hey, at least he is still losing weight. Sounds like a good idea to switch him to the lower calorie food rather than give him less. I'm sure he'd notice if you gave him less food!
 

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Week 4 Update

Mickey weighted in at 25:14 (lbs:eek:z) today for a total of 1 lb lost since I brought him home. Yea!

His weight loss has really slowed down though. He is losing less than 1% of his weight a week. Any loss is good but I'd really him to go down a bit faster. I was giving him 6 oz a day, 4 of raw and 2 of Fancy Feast. I really don't want to feed him less than that so rather than reducing how much I feed him I've switched to a lower calorie food, Sheba. Where the FF and raw averaged 30-34 calories an oz the Sheba is in the 22-25 calorie range. 

He frequently comes out of his room now. Mostly he just sticks close to me so part of his exercise routine is me walking around the house with him following me!
I've been following this thread.  I'm very happy that Mickey is losing weight.  I have a question, if you don't mind... you're feeding him (now) the Sheba 2oz for about 50 calories, then 4 ounces of raw.  Do you know the estimate of the calories per ounce of the raw?  I only ask b/c I have a larger cat, although not as large as your Mickey, but I've been very confused.  Soon, I will be transitioning to commercial raw, but I'm just wondering the total calories your Mickey is getting per day - out of curiousity.

 congrats on the weight loss :-)
 
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mschauer

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Well hey, at least he is still losing weight. Sounds like a good idea to switch him to the lower calorie food rather than give him less. I'm sure he'd notice if you gave him less food!
Yeah, I'm afraid he would notice too. He tends to hiss when he isn't happy and I wouldn't want him to hiss at me! 
 
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mschauer

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Week 4 Update

Mickey weighted in at 25:14 (lbs:eek:z) today for a total of 1 lb lost since I brought him home. Yea!

His weight loss has really slowed down though. He is losing less than 1% of his weight a week. Any loss is good but I'd really him to go down a bit faster. I was giving him 6 oz a day, 4 of raw and 2 of Fancy Feast. I really don't want to feed him less than that so rather than reducing how much I feed him I've switched to a lower calorie food, Sheba. Where the FF and raw averaged 30-34 calories an oz the Sheba is in the 22-25 calorie range. 

He frequently comes out of his room now. Mostly he just sticks close to me so part of his exercise routine is me walking around the house with him following me!
I've been following this thread.  I'm very happy that Mickey is losing weight.  I have a question, if you don't mind... you're feeding him (now) the Sheba 2oz for about 50 calories, then 4 ounces of raw.  Do you know the estimate of the calories per ounce of the raw?  I only ask b/c I have a larger cat, although not as large as your Mickey, but I've been very confused.  Soon, I will be transitioning to commercial raw, but I'm just wondering the total calories your Mickey is getting per day - out of curiousity.

 congrats on the weight loss :-)
Sorry I wasn't clear. I'm feeding him the Sheba only. All of the raw  I make comes in at between 32-35 calories same as the FF. So with the 4 oz of raw and 2 oz of FF he was getting about 198 calories. With the Sheba he's getting about 138 calories. I know that sounds like a huge drop but I'm not really sure the Sheba is as low as the 22-25 range I gave. That is a calculated value based on the guranteed analysis on the label. I've emailed the company to see if they will give me a more accurate analysis to base the calculation on. The food is low in fat and high in moisture so I expect it will be lower than FF. Until I hear from the company I'll keep a close watch on his weight to make sure he doesn't drop too fast.

At this stage he probably would do well on a pretty low calorie diet. He is playful but he likes to play while rooted in one spot and preferably while on his back! In other words he manages to not move very much while he plays!
 
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