2013年9月28日星期六

December | 2012 | Ine*vet*able Fate


Yesterday, I took Tailor my cat to see Dr. Sergio at Royal Animal Hospital. A few days ago I noticed a blotch of blood on my floor and I found out it was from Tailor. I freaked out and booked an appointment as soon as I could. Luckily, it wasn’t what I feared, I was worried that he might have swallowed something and it hurt his intestine. Tailor has a habit of eating plastic doll dresses from the kids room and he might have sneaked into the kids’ room and ate some. But that wasn’t the case, thank God.
So after I explained to Dr. Sergio Tailor’s symptoms, he took a sample of fresh feces from Tailor’s anus (I know you’re all grossed out now) and he diluted it in a liquid then put a drop on a test bar (image below). The barely there, thin, red line means that he has a few Gastrointestinal Parasites. Tailor has Giardia.

Here’s what I found out about Feline Giardia:
1) Feline Giardia is a small parasite that lives in a cat’s small intestines.
2) It causes diarrhea and sometimes blood in the stool.
3) It is treatable and can be controlled.
4) A cat can get Giardia by eating food (mostly raw meat) that have Giardia cysts.
5) Feline Giardia can infect people and other cats through cysts that are passed out in the stool.


So now we’re taking precautions with cleaning the litter, cleaning Tailor himself, and his water and food bowls. With the medicine Dr. Sergio gave him, hopefully, he’ll recover in no time. Here’s how he looks after taking the medicine, he was furious! (The foaming and saliva is normal from the medicine, he wasn’t hurt.)










“Why are you doing this to me?”








“You’re so gonna pay for this!”








Trying to change the taste in his mouth!

Now, this made me think of explaining the common misunderstanding of a certain feline parasite’s effect on us humans. In Kuwait, it is thought that a woman who owns, takes care of, or lives with a cat can become infertile. In other words, if you come in contact with a cat daily, you can’t have children. That is a mistake most people here make that leads to families or ladies giving up their pet cats or being terrified of cats because they think cat hair causes infertility.
The truth is, there is a feline parasite that can harm the fetus, a baby, while it is still in its mother’s womb. The parasite is called Toxoplasma gondi. If the mother is infected before getting pregnant, she will become immune to it and so will the fetus during pregnancy. However, if the mother is infected during pregnancy, it can cause abortion or even brain damage to the fetus.
Toxoplasma gondi, just like Giardia, is passed out in the stool. Therefore, the precautions are the same:
1) Wear gloves and mouth masks while cleaning your cats’ litterbox.
2) Wash your hands thoroughly after handling the litterbox.
3) If you are pregnant and there is someone else who can clean the litterbox, let them do it.
4) Clean the litterbox more frequently.


Of course, taking your cat to the vet regularly for check-ups and as soon as you can if you suspect your cat is sick, as well as making sure that your cat always has fresh, clean food and water available will keep you and your cat safe from infections.








I will talk about something that is taken so lightly here in Kuwait. Actually, it is totally normal for people to do this, but it has a very negative impact on animals and on our society. I will talk about breeding. Whether it is a cat or a dog, breeding is breeding. It is a reason why we have so many animals running in the streets, the reason why the shelters are full, and the reason why animals are dying out there.As I explained in my “About “page, I will expose myself and I will talk about my personal experience. I will not act as a saint in this. I did breed, I bred once. My first Labrador Sugar, we took her to my dad’s friend who had a beautiful Siberian Husky mix and they mated. I took great care of her, fed her well, took her for Sonar scans and all. But I did one mistake that made me regret that I ever thought of breeding. When the pups were born, three beautiful females and a tiny male, I took care of them for four months, then it was time to find them homes. I had six dogs at that time, Achilles, Sugar and her four puppies. They were well taken care of but they had to go to new homes, I just couldn’t keep them all. As time went by, two of the puppies found homes. Two, unfortunately, weren’t that lucky. My family decided that we couldn’t keep them any longer and they had no place to go but the streets. I personally wouldn’t do it. I can never let go of any of my dogs even if it was to good homes. So my father took them and let them go in the desert somewhere he thought they’d be “safe”. I can never forgive myself for those two lives that I was the one who decided to have them, and then they had nowhere to go. It was like sending them to their death.
What I thought back then is that “it’s alright, they’ll find food and maybe someone will take care of them”. But it’s not always like that. Not a lot of people do what I do, go around picking up sick or lone puppies and taking care of them. They could get run over by a car (sometimes on purpose), they could starve or die of thirst, they could get shot or even poisoned. These thoughts haunt me every single day. I don’t know if these two beautiful pups are alive now, but I highly doubt it, and it is all because of me. I took her to breed with that male, I raised those pups without finding them homes earlier on, and I didn’t know what I got myself into until it was too late.







Sugar and her puppies.


Now, don’t get me wrong, certain people can and are totally allowed to breed. But these are Professional Breeders, not Unprofessional Breeders. (Learn about the difference here. Important link) It takes a lot to breed, raise and sell a puppy or cat, it’s not something anyone can do. And even if you don’t breed, do NOT buy from Unprofessional Breeders (Consider adopting). The puppies/kittens usually have inherited diseases, behavior problems, and are taken away from their mothers way too soon. If you do breed, I encourage you to stop and spay or neuter your pets. It is the best you can do for their health and to control our feral/strays population.



Which leads me to another topic, I will not talk much about it but I’ll try to say it in a nutshell. Spay and neuter people. It is good for your dog/cat’s health. It stops your beloved dog from running away to find a mate or your cat from crying 24/7. It controls the pet population and it certainly saves you the trouble of birth, nursing, and finding homes for the little ones. It saves money (of course). Finally, you don’t want to go through what I went through.



Lastly, K’s PATH is holding it’s first Feral Cat Spay and Neuter Clinic on December 22nd. Here’s the information they posted on their Facebook page just in case you have a friendly cat on the street that can be trapped and spayed/neutered.

 ”We are extremely happy to announce our first Feral Cat Spay and Neuter Clinic to be held on Saturday December 22nd. This is an opportunity for you to bring in the street cats you feed to be sterilized and vaccinated for 10KD per cat. All cats have to be dropped off between 8am and 9am and collected between 4pm and 5 pm. If you would like to schedule a cat or cats please e-mail info@kspath.org with the number of cats you would like to bring and their genders. Please let us know if you have any questions.”


 

I’ll leave you with the video that made me want to write this post.





 



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