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My Cat needs help

July 12th, 2009, 08:44 PM
My cat is 13 years old and has always been very healthy - with the exception of her teath, I have brushed and cleaned them and now use the liquid you put into her water.
She has bad tarter and has lost a few teeth, but has always seemed to be ok,
She has had her teeth cleaned twice.
Now that I am retired and on a small pension I can not affort the 5oo it costs to have more cleaning done.
She also has a problem with constipation she sometimes gets a bit of fresh blood with here bowl movement.
Our Vet said it was a rectal fisher, but he is concerned that her teeth will cause renal failure, and wants to do massive testing..
can anyone give me advice on this.... I don't see how teeth can cause renal failure.
Thanks in advance,

July 12th, 2009, 09:38 PM
It's true, there is a link between dental disease and renal insufficiency, although the jury is out on how they relate. Here is some info from this site:

The Dental Connection

It is a good idea to have a mouth, teeth, and gum examination done during each annual examination. Just as in people, removal of tartar, teeth cleaning, etc. can be beneficial in keeping a cat healthy. The bacteria present in the mouth resulting from dental problems can certainly contribute to CRF. A significant percentage of the letters we've received from visitors to the Web site mention that CRF was diagnosed either just prior to or just after routine teeth cleaning or dental surgery.

The connection between dental procedures and the diagnosis of CRF may be the result of a number of factors.

The routine blood work done prior to or after dental surgery may reveal CRF that has been present in the patient for some time.

The anesthesia used during oral surgery could exacerbate existing CRF and cause the sudden appearance of symptoms. Be sure to request that any anesthesia be a type that does not tax the kidneys.

The oral surgery itself may endanger the kidneys by causing the release of bacteria and their toxins during the procedure. Talk to your vet about administering antibiotics for a time prior to dental work.

At 13, your cat should be having routine blood work and a senior wellness exam done yearly to make sure there aren't some serious medical issues brewing, such as CRF. Unfortunately in Canada there aren't as many organizations providing financial aid to pet owners as there are in the U.S., but maybe these links can help:

In the meantime, what are you feeding your kitty? I'm concerned about the constipation, which could indicate dehydration (one of the symptoms of CRF). If you feed only dry food, I highly recommend switching to wet (either canned or raw). This will help keep your cat hydrated and believe it or not, might actually help with her teeth as well. The high amount of starchy carbohydrates in most dry foods can be a contributing factor to dental disease. Wet food tends to be higher in protein and much lower in carbs. Preferably you'll want to feed something with little to no grains, like Wellness, Innova Evo 95% meat, Nature's Variety Instinct, Merrick, Natural Balance...... If there's no way you can afford any of these higher end foods, then there are some flavours of Friskies and Fancy Feast that would be acceptable (not all, some are still too high in carbs and phosphorus). If you have the inclination, making your own balanced raw food is the cheapest and healthiest. More info on feline nutrition:

July 12th, 2009, 09:42 PM
Hi owlwoman, welcome to the forum.:)

he is concerned that her teeth will cause renal failure, and wants to do massive testing..
can anyone give me advice on this.... I don't see how teeth can cause renal failure.

The tarter on the teeth trap bacteria, even more so if there is an abcessed tooth. When the bacteria and the toxins created by it is swallowed it enters the body & is absorbed into the bloodstream. The kidneys filter everything in the blood, trap & remove waste to be excreted into the urine. The cat's body then tries to build antibodies against the toxins which may be left behind in the kidneys and may eventually cause damage.

The test for renal failure is a geriatric blood panel and urinalysis, given the age of your cat it really should be done at minimum once per year if there are no health concerns and at least every six months if there is a problem. The cost for the lab tests should be around $150 (depends on vet/area/lab) plus a vet exam, blood collection fee and urine collection fee.

If your cat doesn't mind the brushing too much I would continue with that as well as what you've put in the water.

The rectal fissure is likely caused by constipation/large sized poops. As for the constipation, is your cat on a canned food diet or mostly eating dry food? Does she drink very much water?

If she is eating dryfood you can add some canned food to her diet thereby giving her more moisture in her food or even better switch her to completely canned food. If she is already eating canned food you can add a teaspoon of water to her meals mix it up well.