Hyperthyroidism in Cats

Hyperthyroidism in Cats

By Dr. Karen Becker

Recent research has revealed that yet another chemical substance found in households may be contributing to feline hyperthyroidism, a disease that affects a significant percentage of cats over the age of 10. The chemicals are called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and they are widely used as water and oil repellents. According to ScienceDaily:

“PFAS are a family of more than 3,000 structures of highly fluorinated chemicals used in industrial processes and consumer products, such as protective coatings for carpets, furniture and apparel, paper coatings, insecticide formulations, and other items.”1

PFAS are used in many industrial applications calling for nonstick or slick surfaces, such as food packaging, stain- and water-resistant fabrics, nonstick cookware and firefighting foam. These chemicals are now ubiquitous in our environment, having migrated into the air, household dust, food, soil, and ground, surface and drinking water.

Study Links PFAS Chemicals to Hyperthyroidism in Cats

For the study, a team of researchers at the California Environmental Protection Agency looked at blood levels of PFAS in two separate groups of Northern California kitties, most of which were at least 10 years old. The first group of 21 was evaluated between 2008 and 2010; the second group of 22 was sampled between 2012 and 2013.2

The researchers observed that the higher the blood levels of PFAS, the more likely the cat was to be hyperthyroid. One type of PFAS in particular, perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) was significantly higher in hyperthyroid kitties. These findings “… may indicate a possible link between PFAS levels and cat hyperthyroid, warranting a larger study for further investigation,” according to the research team.

In a bit of good news, the scientists noted a slight decline in PFAS blood levels between the first group of cats tested eight to 10 years ago, and the second group tested more recently. This mirrors recent results in humans as more companies phase out use of these chemicals, and presumably, as people gradually replace PFAS-treated household items.

Reducing Your Family’s and Pet’s Exposure to PFAS

Your best bet is to avoid all products that contain or were manufactured using PFAS, which will typically include products that are stain-resistant, waterproof or nonstick. From the Environmental Working Group:3

Find products that haven’t been pre-treated and skip optional stain-repellent treatment on new carpets and furniture
Cut back on fast food and greasy carryout food, since these foods often come in PFC-treated wrappers
Especially when buying outdoor gear, choose clothing that doesn’t carry Gore-Tex or Teflon tags, and be wary of all fabrics labeled stain- or water-repellent
Avoid nonstick pans and kitchen utensils — opt for stainless steel or cast iron instead
Pop popcorn the old-fashioned way, on the stovetop, since microwaveable popcorn bags are often coated with PFCs on the inside.
Choose personal care products without “PTFE” or “fluoro” ingredients; also avoid Oral-B Glide floss, which is made by Gore-Tex

It’s also important to filter your pet’s drinking water, and yours, to remove contaminants such as fluoride, chlorine, heavy metals and others. Household tap water typically contains enough toxic minerals, metals, chemicals and other unhealthy substances to damage your pet’s health long term.

Flame Retardants: Another Enemy of Indoor Kitties

Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), or flame retardants, are another type of household chemical that has been linked to overactive thyroid in cats, and a 2017 study confirmed the results of earlier studies that prove the high levels of PBDEs measured in indoor kitties are from house dust.4

PBDEs have been used since the 1970s in textiles, electronics and furniture to prevent them from burning, but like PFAS, they aren’t chemically bound to the product material, so they drift into the environment and cling to particles in the air such as house dust.

A number of these chemicals have been banned for use in household products, but they are extremely persistent and can leach into the environment for many years. Contaminated household dust can be inhaled as well as ingested, and can have an adverse effect on the health of kitties.

Brominated Flame Retardants Are Known Endocrine Disruptors

Prior studies of PBDE blood levels in cats have focused primarily on potential causes of feline hyperthyroidism, however, the intent of this study was to measure levels in healthy cats to establish their dust exposure.

The researchers took “paired samples” from the homes of each of the cats, meaning they took both dust samples and blood samples at the same time. They found evidence not only of brominated and chlorinated contaminants currently in use, but also chemicals that have been banned for decades. According to study co-author Jana Weiss, Ph.D.:

“By taking paired samples, we have greater insight into the environment that the cats live in. Moreover the cats in the study spent the majority of their time indoors and therefore air and dust in the home is expected to contribute more than the outdoor environment.”5

The study results are a heads up not only for cat guardians, but also anyone with small children, because both kitties and kiddos engage in a lot of “hand-to-mouth activities.”

“The brominated flame retardants that have been measured in cats are known endocrine disruptors. It’s particularly serious when small children ingest these substances because exposure during development can have consequences later in life, such as thyroid disease,” said Weiss.

Minimizing PDBE Exposure at Home

Most new foam products are not likely to have PBDEs added. If you have foam items in your home, office or vehicle that were purchased before 2005, however, they probably contain PBDEs. The Environmental Working Group offers the following tips to help limit your family’s and pet’s exposure to PBDE-containing products:6

Whenever possible choose PBDE-free electronics and furniture; PBDEs shouldn’t be in mattresses, couches and other foam products sold in 2005 or later, however they’re still put in some new televisions and computer monitors
Avoid contact with decaying or crumbling foam that might contain fire retardants, including older vehicle seats, upholstered furniture, foam mattress pads, carpet padding and kid’s products made of foam
Use a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter vacuum cleaner, since these vacuums capture the widest range of particles and are also good for reducing lead or allergens in house dust
Replace couches, stuffed chairs, automobile seats and the like that have exposed foam (if you can’t afford to replace them, cover them with sturdy cloth and vacuum around them frequently)
Don’t reupholster your older foam furniture, especially in homes where children or pregnant women live
Be careful when removing or replacing old carpet, since PBDEs are found in the foam padding beneath carpets; isolate the work area with plastics, and avoid tracking construction dust into the rest of your house
The replacement chemicals for PBDEs in foam are not fully tested for their health effects, so buy products made with natural fibers (like cotton and wool) that are naturally fire-resistant and may contain fewer chemicals

Did You Know PBDEs Are Also in Commercial Cat Food?

The same researchers who published the 2017 study I mentioned earlier also measured PBDE levels in cat food (both canned and kibble) matching the diets of the kitties in the study. They found that blood levels of PBDEs in the cats also significantly correlated with concentrations of those chemicals in the cat food.

In addition, another recent study concluded that fish-flavored cat food is a problem.7 A team of Japanese scientists evaluated cat food and feline blood samples and discovered that the type of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) and PBDE byproducts found in both the food and blood samples are derived from marine organisms.

The researchers were also able to simulate the way in which the bodies of cats convert the type of chemical present in the food into the type of chemical seen in the cats’ blood samples.

Based on their results, the team concluded the byproducts detected at high levels in cats’ blood samples likely came from fish-flavored food and not exposure to PCBs or PBDEs. However, further work is needed to determine the link between the metabolites (byproducts) and hyperthyroidism. If you’re wondering how these chemicals wind up in fish-flavored cat food, Dr. Jean Hofve of Little Big Cat explains it very well:

“There is a link between the feeding of fish-based cat foods and the development of hyperthyroidism, which is now at epidemic levels. New research suggests that cats are especially sensitive to PBDEs … [which are] found at higher levels in both canned and dry cat foods than dog foods; and more in dry than canned cat foods.

Fish-based foods are even worse, because marine organisms produce PDBEs naturally and can bioaccumulate up the food chain to high levels in fish; this compounds the exposure cats get from fabrics and dust.”8

5 Tips to Help Prevent Hyperthyroidism in Your Cat

  1. Rid your environment of flame-retardant chemicals
  2. Provide an organic pet bed
  3. Feed a nutritionally balanced, fresh, species-appropriate diet to control iodine levels in your cat’s food, since iodine has also been linked to hyperthyroidism
  4. Avoid feeding your cat a fish-based diet, since seafood is a very rich source of iodine, and cats aren’t designed to process a lot of iodine
  5. Avoid feeding soy products to your kitty, as they have also been linked to thyroid damage

I also recommend checking your cat’s thyroid levels annually after the age of 7.


Diabetes in Cats

Diabetes in Cats

By Karen Decker and comments by Diane Weinmann

Sadly, feline diabetes rates have skyrocketed over the last decade. The disease is most often seen in overweight and obese adult cats who are fed biologically inappropriate dry food diets and get little to no exercise.  However, this is not always the case!


Feline diabetes is almost 100 percent preventable, so for the sake of your precious kitty, I hope you’ll give serious consideration to the importance of nutrition, exercise and maintaining your pet at a healthy weight. Tips for preventing diabetes in your cat:

  • Avoid dry food. All dry foods require starch (carbs) for manufacturing. Avoid canned cat foods containing grains (e.g., corn, wheat, rice, soy, millet, quinoa). Also avoid starchy “grain-free” high calorie, high-glycemic diets containing potatoes, chickpeas, peas or tapioca.

All the carbs (starch) in your cat’s food — which can be as much as 80 percent of the contents — break down into sugar. Excess sugar can result in diabetes.

Help your cat stay trim by feeding a portion controlled, moisture-rich, balanced and species-appropriate diet consisting of a variety of unadulterated protein sources and healthy fats, and specific nutritional supplements as necessary.

  • See to it that your kitty gets a minimum of 20 minutes of daily aerobic exercise.
  • Don’t allow your cat to be over-vaccinated. There’s a growing body of research that connects autoimmune disorders to diabetes in dogs, and the same may be true for cats. If your kitty has had vaccines in the past, there’s a high likelihood her immunity will last a lifetime.

Each time a fully immunized pet receives a repetitive set of vaccines, it increases the risk of overstimulating the immune system.

If you’re concerned about your cat’s disease risk, I recommend you find a veterinarian who runs titer tests to measure antibody response from previous vaccinations. Titer results will tell you whether vaccination is necessary, and for which specific diseases.

One of my friends was able to turn around the diabetes in her cat with diet changes—here is her story:

Case Study- Bonnie’s (Diane’s friend) Cat

Caressa is Bonnie’s cat who was diagnosed with diabetes.  Bonnie fed Caressa only wet cat food with the highest amount of meat and the lowest grains and veggies.  She chose Fancy Feast Classic and she stayed away from the fish variety.  The cat was fed only two times a day -morning and night – as close to the same time as possible.

Bonnie feels that if you catch the diabetes early enough sometimes just switching the cat to only moist food will bring them back to a normal blood glucose reading.  But with Caressa she had very high numbers and had to be on insulin.  She followed her vet’s tight regulation protocol.  With this protocol you draw blood and test it with a glucometer and then determine the amount of insulin to give your cat.  This was done twice a day, morning and evening.

It took a while but in time we no longer needed to give Caressa any insulin and her body stayed in a good range.  She remained diabetes free for almost 6 1/2 years before she ended  up with hyperthyroid.  One thing that is super important is that if your cat is ever diagnosed with diabetes you must always feed her the moist food, giving them any form of dry food can send them right back into the diabetic state.

Thank you, Bonnie, for sharing your experience with Caressa’s diabetes.  Caressa has transitioned into spirit but she was a sweet, darling girl and I was so glad you were able to keep her comfortable in your last few years together.

Cats that Eliminate outside their Litter Box

By Dr. Becker and Diane Weinmanncat litter box covered

At some point in their lives, many kitties do something their humans find quite repulsive – they pee outside the litterbox. (Some cats also poop outside the box, but this is a much less common problem.) Even worse, for reasons known only to them, some kitties turn their owner’s bed into a second bathroom.

And let’s face it – there are few things as unnerving as waking up in a puddle of piddle left by your loving kitty.

But all joking aside, feline house soiling is such a widespread problem that it is the number one reason cats are banished to the outdoors, dropped off at animal shelters, or even euthanized. Additionally, this is the number one reason why clients call Diane, an animal communicator, to determine the root of the problem as many times it is emotionally based. That’s why it’s important to address a litterbox issue as soon as it occurs.

If Kitty is Relieving Herself Outside the Litterbox, There’s a Reasoncat lines up to go

Cats adapt quickly to using a litterbox because their natural instinct is to eliminate in a substrate (earthy material) that allows them to bury their urine and feces.

Domesticated cats descended from African wildcats for which the desert served as a giant cat box. Modern-day felines are probably attracted to litter because it’s the closest substrate to sand they can find inside a house.

It’s also the nature of cats to bury their feces in their urine, and wet desert sand is the perfect substrate. This is likely why most domesticated kitties prefer clumping litter to other varieties. Although, I have had cats tell me, as an animal communicator, that they do not like the pebbles in their toes especially as they get older and are less able to groom themselves correctly.

Since it’s entirely natural for your cat to seek out her litterbox to eliminate in, you should immediately assume something is haywire if she chooses another location to relieve herself.

It’s is not entirely misguided to suspect your feline companion has suddenly developed anger issues or an attitude problem—because I have found through my animal communication business that sometimes this is indeed what is going on. But—I always recommend that vet care be sought out to determine if any physical reasons exist for your cat’s behavior before assuming they are mad that you moved the furniture or got another pet.

First Stop: Your Veterinarian’s Office

Any behavior change in a cat is the first sign (and often the only sign) of a medical condition, so if your kitty has started relieving himself in inappropriate places, you’ll want to rule out a health problem first.

Urinating outside the litterbox is one of the primary symptoms of feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD), which is a very common condition in cats. Other signs your pet might have this problem include:

  • Frequent or prolonged attempts to urinate
  • Straining to urinate
  • Crying out while urinating
  • Blood in the urine
  • Excessive licking of the genital area

Any kitty can develop a lower urinary tract disorder, but it’s most commonly seen in cats who are middle-aged, use an indoor litterbox exclusively, eat a kibble only diet, don’t get enough exercise and are overweight, and who are stressed by their environment.

If you suspect your cat might have a lower urinary tract infection, it’s important to make an appointment with your veterinarian.

If your cat isn’t passing urine, a situation more commonly seen in males than females but can happen to either sex, this is a life-threatening medical emergency and you should seek immediate care.

Once a kitty’s urethra is blocked, the kidneys can no longer do their job. This can lead to uremia, a ruptured bladder, as well as organ failure and death within just a day or two.

Besides lower urinary tract disorders, other medical conditions that can contribute to inappropriate elimination include diabetes, cognitive dysfunction, and hyperthyroidism.

Is the Problem Actually Urine Marking?cat sitting in litter box

Another common reason cats pee outside the litterbox is to urine mark. Kitties who urine mark generally use the litterbox normally, but also perform marking behaviors. Some cats do both house soiling and urine marking.

It’s easy to tell the difference between the two once you know what to look for. Urine marking, when it takes the form of spraying, happens on vertical surfaces.

Urine marking can be hormonally driven, but more often it’s the result of a natural system of feline communication, or stress. Examples of common kitty stressors include:

  • The addition or loss of a pet or human family member
  • Changes in the daily routine brought on by a change in work hours, illness, etc.
  • A neighbor’s cat or a stray in your yard or around the outside of your home
  • Illness of another cat in the home, or a change in the relationship between cats
  • Aggression between cats


Both male and female cats spray, as do both neutered and intact cats. However, neutered cats spray less, and neutering can reduce or eliminate spraying in some cases.

But some cats urine mark on horizontal surfaces, which can make it more difficult to determine whether you have a marking problem or a house soiling problem.

Where your cat marks can provide clues, for example:

  • If he marks under windows or on baseboards, he may perceive a threat from animals outside – usually other cats
  • If he marks on or near furniture or doors inside your home, he might be having problems with other cats in the household
  • If your cat marks personal belongings – clothes, bed linens, a favorite chair or a computer keyboard – he may have some anxiety about the human who owns those things

Tackling Urine Marking

Resolving urine marking involves identifying and addressing the source of your cat’s stress. When did the marking begin, and what was happening in her environment at that time? Just as cats favor certain scratching surfaces, they also return to the same spot to urine mark. Diane’s cat was traumatized when he ran into the basement that was all ripped up due to a water problem (basement was excavated). He took one look at what he considered his safe haven and started spraying on my custom made drapes in my living room. He was a fixed male and this issue did not resolve until we moved!

You’ll need to use an enzyme-based product for clean ups to remove stains and odor.

You might also want to spray a synthetic pheromone called Feliway on kitty’s favorite marking spots. Cats also “mark” by rubbing their cheeks against objects (they do it to you when they rub against you), and Feliway may encourage your cat to mark with his cheeks instead of his urine. Cases of urine marking can be quite difficult to manage, as often the root cause, if determined, can’t be resolved completely. And sometimes despite addressing all possibilities, cats still mark. As I mentioned above, when we moved the situation solved itself.

Litterbox Aversion

A third very common reason for inappropriate elimination in cats is distaste for the litterbox. Kitties who are comfortable with their bathroom arrangement typically approach and jump or climb into the box without hesitation; take a little time to poke around and choose a good spot; dig a hole; turn around and do their business; inspect the result and then cover it up with litter.

Cats who are unhappy with their litterbox may approach it tentatively. They may balance on the side of the box or put only two feet in. They may actually use the litter, but immediately leap from the box when finished. Worst case they may walk to the box, sniff it, turn, walk away … and jump up on your bed to urinate. I have seen this quite a lot in my animal communication business.

Pooping outside the box, but very close to the box, is almost always a litterbox aversion problem. Kitties develop litterbox loathing for a number of reasons. Perhaps your cat’s box isn’t being cleaned frequently, or frequently enough to meet her standards.

Maybe she’s sensitive to a chemical used to clean the box, or perhaps she’s not fond of a box with a hood. The box may be in a noisy or high traffic location, or where another pet in the household can trap kitty in there. Aroma is a deciding factor for many cats. Whether they can smell of the litter itself or another cat in the household has used a specific cat’s perceived box –either way, they chose to not use one particular box anymore.

How to Cure Litterbox Aversioncat using litter box

If you have multiple cats, you may need to add more boxes. The general guideline is one box per cat, and one extra. If your house has more than one floor, you should have at least one box per floor. This has worked in most situations and I find when you put each box on a different floor or location it helps the individual cat know which one they can use.

It could be kitty doesn’t like the type of litter in the box, or it’s not deep enough (four inches is recommended). You can discover your pet’s litter preference by buying the smallest amount available of several kinds of litter (unscented, different particle sizes, and made from different materials), and several inexpensive litterboxes. In my business, I’ve had cats tell me that they didn’t like the pebbles in their toes!


Place the boxes with different litters side by side and see which box gets used most often.  This works very well and allowing the cat to pick their choices. Once you’ve discovered your cat’s litter preference, you can donate the remaining litter and extra boxes to your local shelter or cat rescue organization.

Find locations for litterboxes that are somewhat out of the way, and away from noisy household machinery and appliances. Choose warm locations in the house rather than the basement or garage. And make sure boxes aren’t close to kitty’s food or water bowls.

Boxes should be kept scrupulously clean. They should be scooped at least once a day and more often if you’re dealing with a potential litterbox aversion situation. Dump all the used litter every two to four weeks (I recommend every two weeks, minimum), sanitize the box with soap and warm water, dry thoroughly and add fresh litter. Watch the cleaning products you use—vinegar and water is probably best to eliminate the likelihood of your kitty to be repulsed by the lingering smell of the cleaner. Just remember –cat’s noses are very sensitive! Plastic litterboxes should be replaced every year or two.

I hope all these ideas serve to keep you and your kitties happy and eliminating in the appropriate place but if not, please call me or another animal communicator to get down to the fundamentals of what is bothering your beloved cat!


Your Aging Kitty

By Dr. Becker and Diane WeinmannPoppy-oldest-cat-main_tcm25-20149

Just like us, our feline companions face physical and mental challenges as they age. At around 10 years, your kitty is considered a senior and will start to slow down a bit. For instance, she might not jump up on high surfaces as often as she once did, or she might settle for a lower perch on the cat tree.


Kitties of all ages do best with a consistent daily routine, but older cats tend to get extra stressed when presented with anything new or different in their environment.

You might also notice Mr. Whiskers doesn’t always run to greet you when you come home as he once did. He may play less and sleep more. Many cats also tend to become more vocal as they age, and more easily startled by strange or loud noises.

In addition, aging cats can suffer from many of the same health problems older humans face, including arthritis, diabetes, thyroid problems, and kidney disease. That’s why it’s important to bring your pet for twice-yearly wellness visits with your veterinarian.


At veterinary visits, be sure to mention any behavior changes you’ve noticed in your cat, no matter how minor, as these can provide important clues about health problems that may be brewing under the surface. It’s also important to monitor your cat’s weight to ensure she isn’t becoming too heavy or too thin. It is Diane’s opinion that a senior cat who does not go outside should not require any vaccinations. I feel that vaccinations stress your cat’s system. If your cat is not subjected to being outside they should not encounter any diseases that would threaten their life.

A Cat at 16 is Comparable to an 80 Year-Old Human

Your senior kitty may also be experiencing some vision and hearing loss, less tolerance for the cold and mental confusion. Cats can and do develop age-related dementia, which means even the smallest change in your kitty’s routine can cause stress.

Your senior cat may become a little cranky and easily irritated. If there are young children or a playful dog at home, it’s important that all family members approach your kitty in a quiet, non-aggressive manner. It’s also important to protect an aging cat from potential bullying by younger or more active pets.

During those twice-yearly veterinary visits I mentioned earlier, your vet will perform a senior wellness checkup, including a physical exam and blood (including thyroid levels), urine, and stool sample tests. The results will provide a snapshot of how well your cat’s organs are functioning, and point to any potential problems.


As a point of reference, a cat at 16 is the approximate equivalent of an 80-year-old human. If your kitty is seeing the vet at least twice a year and between visits you’re keeping an eye out for significant or sudden behavior or health changes, you’re on the right track.

However, as he ages, try to avoid becoming a “helicopter pet parent” who constantly hovers over kitty. He’s still a cat after all, and prefers attention on his own terms!

Do make every effort to keep him comfortable, secure and relaxed by maintaining a consistent daily routine and providing him with a quiet, cozy hideaway with comfy bedding and a favorite toy or two.

How to Provide an Excellent Quality of Life for Your Aging Cat

  1. Feed balanced, antioxidant rich, species-appropriate nutrition. Your cat’s diet should include omega-3 essential fats, such as krill oil.

Moisture is a cat’s best friend, so encourage hydration by offering kitty a variety of water bowls around the house or a drinking fountain, in addition to minimizing or (preferably) eliminating dry food. You can even put some broth or tuna water into their drinking dish to encourage hydration.

If your cat is addicted to a poor-quality processed diet, consider adding a supplement such as Feline Whole Body Support.


  1. Keep your pet’s body and mind active with regular exercise appropriate for her age and physical condition, and mental stimulation (puzzles and treat-release toys can be beneficial).

Think of creative ways to enrich your cat’s indoor environment and if kitty never touches the earth’s surface directly (many indoor cats don’t), consider a grounding pad.

  1. Provide your cat with a SAMe (S-adenosylmethionine) supplement as a safe and effective way to stall or improve mental decline, enhance mobility, and assist in liver detoxification.

Periodic detoxification with the herbs milk thistle and dandelion can also be very beneficial, along with super green foods in the form of fresh “cat grass” to nibble on. Chlorophyll, chlorella, or spirulina can also be offered in supplement form to enhance your cat’s detoxification processes.

  1. If your cat seems disoriented, consider limiting her access to certain parts of the house. Keep doors closed so she can’t wander into a closet or any place where she might be unable to get herself out.

Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) have been shown to be safe for cats and can improve brain energy metabolism and decrease the amyloid protein buildup that results in brain lesions in older pets. Coconut oil is a rich source of MCTs and may also reduce hairball issues.


I recommend one-fourth teaspoon for every 10 pounds of body weight twice daily for basic MCT support, if your cat will voluntarily eat it.

  1. Some older cats tend to vocalize loudly and often from cognitive decline. Sometimes all a talkative cat needs to quiet down is to hear her owner’s voice, so try calling your kitty’s name when she starts to vocalize from another room or in the middle of the night.

Calming flower essences, such as Senior Citizen, Bach flower essences or homeopathics, such as low potency Belladonna or Aconitum, depending on your cat’s specific symptoms, may also reduce yowling. If that doesn’t do the trick and the nighttime crying is really a problem for you, consider earplugs. Consult an animal communicator, like Diane Weinmnn, to find out the reason for the howling. Diane can also create a custom Bach flower essence treatment bottle to help your kitty through these emotional changes as they age.


  1. For aging kitties who are on the prowl all night, consider low dose melatonin, which is not only a sedative with a calming effect, but also an antioxidant. I also use rhodiola, chamomile, and l-theanine with good results. Night Owl Solution may also help.

You can also try gently waking him up from naps during the day. The more active you can keep him during daylight hours, the more likely he’ll be to sleep on your schedule.

  1. Set aside time each day to hang out with your cat. Make sure meals are provided on a consistent schedule, along with playtime and petting/lap time. If your cat tolerates being brushed or combed, work that into the daily schedule as well, to help her with grooming chores.
  2. If eliminating outside the litterbox is an issue, try putting additional boxes around the house. Also insure your cat can get into and out of the box easily. Remember that kitties are very adept at hiding arthritis and other aches and pains, which can limit their ability to climb into high-sided boxes, or boxes kept in bathtubs or up a flight of stairs, for example. Again if providing more boxes doesn’t do the trick to help your cat to eliminate in the appropriate place please contact an animal communicator.


Senior cats are a blessing. They bring love and a gentleness into our daily lives. Let’s treat them right, honor their place in our life and ensure their lives are stress free. Don’t forget to kiss the kitty often!


Raising a Long-Lived Cat

By Dr. Becker and comments by Diane Weinmannwoman-cat-1077355

Many kitties today are, thankfully, living into their late teens and early 20s. Just as with dogs, a cat’s longevity is often quite clearly linked to lifestyle and environment.

Tips for keeping your cat in tip-top shape include:

  • Feed a balanced, antioxidant-rich, and species-appropriate diet that includes omega-3 essential fats, such as krill oil. Moisture is your cat’s best friend, so encourage adequate hydration by offering a variety of water bowls around the house or a drinking fountain, in addition to minimizing dry food. If your cat is addicted to poor quality food, add a whole body supplement such as Standard Process Feline Whole Body Support. When I took my classes to become certified in canine nutrition, I learned about Standard Process products. I can’t say enough good things about the company and the work they do. Please consider what they offer for your pet.


  • Keep your pet’s body and mind active with regular exercise and mental stimulation (for example, puzzles and treat-release toys). Think of creative ways to enrich your cat’s indoor environment and if your kitty never touches the earth’s surface directly (most housecats don’t), consider a grounding pad to help reduce the buildup of EMFs.


  • Refuse or strictly limit vaccinations, veterinary drugs, and chemical pest preventives.


  • Provide your kitty with a SAMe (S-adenosylmethionine) supplement, and offer periodic detoxification with the herbs milk thistle and dandelion, as well as supergreen foods in the form of fresh “cat grass” or sunflower sprouts to nibble on. Chlorophyll, chlorella, or spirulina can also be offered in supplement form to enhance your cat’s detoxification processes.


  • Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) have been shown to be safe for cats and can improve brain energy metabolism and decrease the amyloid protein buildup that results in brain lesions in older pets. Coconut oil is a rich source of MCTs and may also reduce hairball issues. I recommend 1/4 teaspoon for every 10 pounds of body weight twice daily for basic MCT support, if your cat will voluntarily eat it.


  • Set aside time each day to interact with your kitty. Make sure meals are provided on a consistent schedule, along with playtime and petting/lap time. If your cat tolerates being brushed or combed, work that into the daily schedule as well. Cuddle with them, take them out for a walk (even in a special stroller is fun for them), show them new and interesting things like leaves, non-toxic flowers, boxes, tissue paper and bags to enrich their lives. Usually the most mundane things you already have in your household will intrigue your cat—you can consider it a game between the two of you to see what you can find in your house that would be safe for the cat to interact with without spending extra money. It would be a win-win situation!

The good news is that despite their relatively short lifespans, cats live in the moment and know how to make the most of every day. It’s our job as loving guardians to make sure they are given that opportunity.

cat lounging