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connection between diet and going in heat

lolans
June 18th, 2008, 11:10 AM
I have a 3 year old female cat who is not spayed. She has seizures and is on 15mg of phenobartital twice a day. Getting her spayed could kill her, and her life expectancy isn't very long as it is.

She used to go into heat once every 3 to 5 weeks...3 to 4 days before she went into heat she would eat 7 to 8 cans of fancy feast grilled tuna a day(she was fed whenever she was hungry). 3 months ago I started feeding her 4 times a day(1 full can each time).

She hasn't gone into heat for almost 4 months.


There are times...like right now, when she really wants more to eat but I don't give it to her.

There has to be a connection between diet and hormonal changes, or maybe she just needs the extra calories to go into heat.

Any thought anyone? Has anyone ever noticed anything simular?

badger
June 18th, 2008, 11:35 AM
You should avoid tuna except in emergencies or sparingly in treats. Some brands - and I wouldn't be surprised if that included most tuna cat food - contain high levels of toxins from the environment. Cats can get really hung up on tuna, I'm not sure why, maybe we could have a definitive answer on this.
Try to feed her a variety of flavours at regular times instead of letting her pig out. She sounds like she's got you well trained ;)!
I don't know the connection between food and heat occurrence but I guess anything is possible. Could it be a side effect of the pheno?
I would check with your vet about the now total absence of heats, it may be absolutely normal or it may be a sign of something else.
How does she behave on the meds?
Too bad she can't be spayed, it would make both your lives a lot easier! I wonder if there is some kind of hormonal block that would 'shut her down'. But that would mean more meds so it's a tough choice.

lolans
June 18th, 2008, 12:36 PM
She will eat this tuna cat food ONLY. If you give her anything else she will not eat it. She will follow me around waiting for her tuna, and if she doesn't get it she will sleep...(she sleeps a lot more than the other cats, a phenobarb side effect). When she wakes up after missing a feeding she will eat some of the the other cats' food-purina rx diabetic, and purina indoor formula hard, BUT she will only eat the diabetic food if it is room temperature, and if she eats too much hard food she vomits, because she doesn't chew it!! - So it's the grilled tuna feast from fancy feast for us, lol

I hope to find someone with a cat simular to this one. Anything to help me understand her more. She goes to the vet once every three months (more if she gets sick), so she is due soon. I will ask about the absense of heat, but the vet is just as baffled with Sparky as I am!

sugarcatmom
June 18th, 2008, 06:36 PM
Cats can get really hung up on tuna, I'm not sure why, maybe we could have a definitive answer on this.

Tuna tends to have a stronger smell than most other meats, and since cat's food preferences are largely based on smell, it doesn't take much to get them addicted to it.


She will eat this tuna cat food ONLY. If you give her anything else she will not eat it.

I agree with badger that a steady diet of tuna is not ideal. Have you tried mixing other non-fish flavours in with the tuna one? You can start with a miniscule amount (a tsp or less) and slowly increase the proportion until you're feeding less and less tuna. Some info on how fishy diets aren't good for cats:
http://catnutrition.wordpress.com/2007/09/22/eight-strikes-against-fishy-feeding-for-cats/
http://groups.msn.com/FDLibrary/dietnutrition.msnw?action=get_message&mview=0&ID_Message=164
http://www.gorbzilla.com/all_about_tuna.htm

badger
June 18th, 2008, 08:01 PM
You can't get away with less phenobarbitol, eh?