Sunday, November 17, 2013

Siska

Or the incredible vomiting cat . . .



In 2008, in August, I was at work and J and T were at home. I received a phone call saying that someone had dropped a cat off at the complex where we live and he and T had bonded. I came home to meet Siska, our new tabby cat. According to T, he had been wandering around in front of the condo meowing. T, who will someday run a homeless shelter for cats, dogs, lizards, sheep, and horses, sat down on the front steps and Siska curled up in his lap. T walked with J to get the mail and Siska followed them to the mailbox and back. J took T to get the newest Transformer (allowance and planned before the cat showed up). When they got back, the cat was gone. T stood on the porch step and called "Jeffrey". Siska, from clear at the top of the complex, meowed back and tore down the sidewalk to his boy. When I got home, T couldn't wait to show me. I walked up and Siska wound his way around my ankles, purring and looking up. I looked up at J and said, "guess we have a new cat."



In some ways, even after having cats for all of my life, Siska is unique. For one, he has black pads on white paws.


This is both unusual and unique and actually the source of his name. His name is white foot in Lakota. He has been T's cat since he came in the house. He was unneutered (of course) and probably didn't have shots, but he was box trained and sweet. He quickly became part of our family.

Unfortunately, as with a lot of rescues, he had an issue with food. He gorges to the point of vomiting. It's like he can't stop himself. We've tried free-feeding, but that resulted in vomiting. (I am an animal owner who believes in free-feeding, thinking that if an animal has unrestricted access to food, they will self-regulate.) We tried restricting his food to twice a day, which had the unfortunate effect of making the situation worse, since he would eat everything he was given as quickly as he could, and then vomit even more. This has been going on since we brought him home, but has gotten worse as time has gone on. And, as he has found new places to vomit on, including my computer, T's homework, the washer and dryer, pretty much any where.

It's not hairballs. There is no hair and it's almost entirely food in the regurgitation. I thought it might be emotional, caused by stress.

However, we did try a hairball remedy and a calming supplement, to see if we could take the edge off. Instead it caused projectile vomiting. This was not an improvement.

I did some research. Yes, it was bad enough that we needed to figure out why it was happening. It had gone from annoying to "he needs to stop vomiting or we need to get rid of him" and we never get rid of our animals. I was beginning to feel like this wasn't a behavior issue, but maybe an allergy.

I found a new food for us to try.

We are trying Blue Buffalo. Fed twice a day, in controlled portions.

So far, no vomiting. No gorging. Lots of purring and ankle wrapping.





5 comments:

  1. I was going to suggest a food allergy. I hope the new food has solved the problem. :) Most cat foods are complete crap with more corn than meat, so when cats have problems with vomiting it's usually the food. I won't be at all surprised if he has no problems from here on out. :)

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    1. I wish I had thought of this earlier. We just assumed it was behavioral. He is so much happier now and no vomiting for three days. And he's not gorging. He just feels so much more content.

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    2. Don't feel bad. You obviously love him and we all do the best by our animals that we can. :) I'm glad the new food is helping.

      P.S. The only reason I would have suggested a diet allergy first thing is because I have a dog with food allergies, so I had to learn the hard way too. We all do.

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  2. Ahaha, I love your blunt acceptance of "guess we have a new cat".

    I heart great things about Blue. I hope it continues to do well for the little tyke!

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    1. So far, no vomiting and he seems so much happier.

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