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Prevention of Hepatic Lipidosis

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Maybe I am worried over nothing but I would like to think about the possibility of future problems and the fact that this month I am extremely tight with money. So avoidance is a good thing. So I would like to know if there are ways to prevent Hepatic Lipidosis. Yes I have been reading up on it. The cat I am talking about is in this thread. This cat is already overweight. Apparently just maybe 5-6 lbs. He is a big boned cat and has a very large body. After shaving his belly clumps off he really doesn't have a ton of chub hanging down there. It is mostly just hair!

The reason I am worried is that he isn't eating a ton (I have been having trouble with this, even tried feeding him tuna like he used to eat) and he threw up a couple times maybe from change in diet. I know he is stressed AND I also know that stress is a trigger factor of H.L. He is rather lazy and lounges around a lot, maybe he isn't feeling well or maybe he is just a lazy older chubby cat. Hard to say. I am going to call the old owners tomorrow and try to find out more about his personality and exactly what kind and brand of foods they fed him. I can at least start him out on the same thing and wean him off.

Also there is no jaundice that I see, which happens when the liver is damaged or there are liver problems, which is the basis of H.L., the liver builds up fat and doesn't function correctly.

So, I read multiple times that you can use nutritional suppliments to prevent H.L. in a cat who fits the criteria of it. I would like to take this approach first. Anyone have some suggestions? And I read that you can offer a high protein, calorie dense food (like what?) I am going to ask my teacher for help tomorrow too. She is great at this stuff since she worked many years in vet clinics as a tech and teaches and she is great with alternative medicines and solutions. I know this is a possibility in cats who stop eating and I want to help him before serious problems start.

Thanks!
post #2 of 16
Thread Starter 
I am reading about Carnitine or L-Carnitine. Anyone hear of this? It supposedly is a suppliment helpful in transporting fats. Many sites I found about Hepatic Lipidosis mention this as a possible preventative.
post #3 of 16
Best ways to avoid this issue:
Feed many small meals to monitor how much food is being eaten (and to ensure they are infact eating).

To answer your question about suppliments, I'd reccomend Wysong AddLife added to the food, or if you're really concerned you can use Wysong's PDG as a meal replacement or superfood supplimentation if they're not eating enough. I've had a lot of luck with Wysong suppliments.

As for food, highest protein would be Innova EVO or another grain free formula, but as long as you're feeding a high quality food, free from by-products and other fillers, you should be just fine.
post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen View Post
I am reading about Carnitine or L-Carnitine. Anyone hear of this? It supposedly is a suppliment helpful in transporting fats. Many sites I found about Hepatic Lipidosis mention this as a possible preventative.
l carnitine is an amino acid that helps in building of lean muscle mass and helping turn fat into energy .... I is often in LIGHT food ...

Are you assist feeding??? the basic meat or I use leval two ( check for onions and garlic) in a 30cc or bigger seringe( no watering down needed) ... SD a/d is a great one ...

I wouldnt without consulting the vet go over bourd with protein as it may do more harm than good
post #5 of 16
I know you're talking about that big beautiful fluffy cat you showed a pic of. What I am wondering is why did they decide to get rid of the cat? Were their any health issues where he had gone off his food a bit?
Have you weighed him to determine if he really is overweight? That might be a good thing to do to keep track of whether he is eating enough or not.
post #6 of 16
I wouldn't put him on a high protein, calorie dense food if he is overweight - weight can be a factor with HL, so if he is indeed overweight, and it isn't just his fur, helping him to lose a bit of weight will help more.
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by booktigger View Post
I wouldn't put him on a high protein, calorie dense food if he is overweight - weight can be a factor with HL, so if he is indeed overweight, and it isn't just his fur, helping him to lose a bit of weight will help more.
I'm wondering how over weight is a factor in HL when a cat gets it when he hasn't been eating? I just hadn't heard of that so I thought I'd ask you. I agree though, that putting an over weight cat on a hig protein diet could be a wrong move.

Jen, I'd keep track of his weight and talk to the vet about it. Maybe he's just not eating as much because of the change in homes? But he could still be eating enough to support himself. It's hard to tell without tracking the actual weight though.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
First off they got rid of him because they were two elderly women and their landlord found out about him and decided either he goes or they all do. I think they just were too old to up and move suddenly. I mean, it's sad, but a bit more understandable then normal situations when cats are rehomed because the landlord said so. they lived in this apartment for a very long time.

About his food, I believe they said he only ate tuna and people food, but she didn't get into specifics. So that is why I am going to call them today and see. I will also ask how much he normally eats everyday. If that is all he ate, then a high quality cat food might for sure make him puke. I offered him Authority dry and for a change up Meow Mix dry. I figured getting him eatting the crappy brand of food is better then nothing. I also offered an actual can of tuna which he just drank the juice (not oil) and then he puked. AND I offered Whiskas canned which he did alright with but barely ate any of.

I took him to class with me and had my teacher exam him. He is fine otherwise, even his coat is pretty clean, very little flakes. No fleas. He weighs 23 lbs. My teacher thinks he only needs to lose about 5 or 6 lbs to be more normal weight. He is such a big cat and with all that hair, it makes him look seriously overweight. She said if he got down to maybe 17lbs that would be perfect. And like I said, he doesn't have a ton of belly hanging down, just a little bit.

I am not assist feeding. He is eating a little. I know the realy worry is when he stops altogether. I really need to call the woman who owned him and find out if he was just a snacker with the junk food they fed him or if he ate like a pig. I also need to know if he was ever fed cat food or just people food.
post #9 of 16
Personally I wouldn't worry about his weight right this second. I would be more concerned about him eating regularly, at least a little - to sustain himself and avoid the possible HL, as Jen mentioned.

I have also had great success with SD a/d. It's very yummy and slightly runny. Well I haven't tasted it but it smells a little like vienna sausages.

If he likes tuna, IIRC there are some 9 lives flavors that look and smell a lot like human tuna. Not the best quality food, but he just needs to eat.
post #10 of 16
Another good sub for people tuna is the Solidgold tuna in the can or pouch. But if he's throwing up the people tuna you gave him it may just be that his tummy is upset from all the changes in his life and food. There are some products on the market like the Eagle Pack Holistic Solution (and there are others too) that may help the transition from whatever the old ladies were feeding him to something better. The Eagle Pack product contains enzymes and beneficial bacteria that can help him transition. Maybe he's not eating much because it upsets his tummy?
post #11 of 16
Mzjazz2u - the reason why it is more common in overweight cats that stop eating is that they have more fat reserves - when they stop eating, the body sends this reserve to the liver, but the liver can't deal with it. It does happen in normal and underweight cats, but the main risk is overweight cats who suffer some stress and stop eating - I personally wont let a cat miss more than one day's worth of meals cos it is something I am aware of. I always have a/d in, and haven't found a cat yet that didn't like it, and sometimes just one tin of it can be enough to kickstart their appetite. IT is going to be tricky if he has had a poor diet though, you will have to be very careful not to introduce too many things into his system - I hadn't realised the background when I posted yesterday.
post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 
I am worried about messing up his system since he ate such crap his whole life. I am going in a few minutes to pick up some A/D. My teacher also suggested I/D which is just a bland mushy food but it would be easier on his system if I put a little tuna juice on top. She also suggested a tiny bit of mineral oil to coat his stomach and intestines and help him poop.
post #13 of 16
We have helped Scully go from over 30lbs down to 21lbs (and a little less than that when he was ill). He also went from eating whatever to being fed 'proper cat food'.

I would strongly recommend that you find a vet that holds 'fat cat clinics' for weightloss. We had Scully weighed very regularly and monitored the whole time, it is really important when dealing with cats that big.

We fed him EVO and he did lose weight on it, you just have to be careful not to over feed him and try to get him to indulge in some playtime. But every cat is different
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by booktigger View Post
Mzjazz2u - the reason why it is more common in overweight cats that stop eating is that they have more fat reserves - when they stop eating, the body sends this reserve to the liver, but the liver can't deal with it. It does happen in normal and underweight cats, but the main risk is overweight cats who suffer some stress and stop eating - I personally wont let a cat miss more than one day's worth of meals cos it is something I am aware of. I always have a/d in, and haven't found a cat yet that didn't like it, and sometimes just one tin of it can be enough to kickstart their appetite. IT is going to be tricky if he has had a poor diet though, you will have to be very careful not to introduce too many things into his system - I hadn't realised the background when I posted yesterday.
Cool, thanks! I'm fairly familiar with it since Jake had it bad back in October (Although Jake was never even close to being overweight). The way it was originally said it sounded like you were saying they get it just because they are overweight.

Sounds like this cat might be not liking the diet change! Even so, it is pretty important to get him eating. I wouldn't use A/D on him because he is overweight. I'd call and consult your vet about it. Hopefully he/she can suggest something. You may have to mix tuna with some canned food and slowly cut the tuna out as he gets used to the taste of regular cat food. But I would definately consult the vet.
post #15 of 16
Hi Jen,

I lost my beloved Tucker to Hepatic Lipidosis a year ago (if you search my posts, you will find one or two threads regarding my experiences). I understand your concerns. I have 7 cats now, so this is a concern for me, I really don't want to have any cat go through this again. Obviously, sometimes this type of stuff happens and cannot be prevented, I wish I knew about this disease before my Tucker became sick. He literally went from running around like normal to gone in a weeks time. I think it is excellent that you want to do what is possible to prevent this. Some thoughts:

1) Feed the best quality food you can afford.

2) I do use a gravity feeder for dry food, but every day they are fed a mixture of canned/pouch food so that I can tell that they are all eating (that they have a good appetite) The only reason I use a gravity feeder at all is because I have two underweight cats who will not eat enough without it. I am attempting to wean them off of it, but haven't had much success yet, LOL. It's a struggle when you have some cats who are sort of finicky and two that are overweight. If I had only one or two cats, I would not use a gravity feeder at all.

3) Always, always get them to the vet if they refuse food over a period of 24 hours. Do not wait it out to see if their appetite improves.

4) Always get them to the vet if they seem 'not right' In the vast majority of treatable illnesses, early intervention is key to recovery.

5) I have two cats that are overweight and I am trying to get them to lose weight gradually, through less calorie food and exercise. The key is gradual weight loss.

6) Signs of jaundice means the cat is already in liver failure...obviously, you want to intervene before that late in the game.

7) Keep the stress level as minimal as possible.

8) Annual vet visits when they are well. Obviously, there are many benefits to your vet knowing what 'normal' is for your cat.

9) Make sure their teeth are healthy, one reason some cats will stop eating is because they have tooth/gum pain.

That is all I can think of right now. As far as I know, there is no magic supplement or pill to prevent this. Keeping them at a healthy weight and taking care of illnesses quickly seems to be the best way to prevent this awful disease.

Good luck to you in your quest to keep your cat healthy, he sure is a beauty!
post #16 of 16
Oops - sorry!! Not got a lot of time on the PC this week!!
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