Animal Doctor

Animal Doctor: Arthritis and Kidney Disease Are Dietary Issues

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Dear Dr. Fox:

My cat Aimee is 16. Except for some arthritis, she was doing very well on a Purina Pro Plan Senior diet (canned and kibble). Her vet said that her blood values looked like those of a 9- or 10-year-old cat when she was 15. She had, at that point, been on Pro Plan kibble for six years.

Aimee's arthritis worsened in the past year, and Cosequin for Cats was no longer enough to give her a good quality of life after she injured herself trying to jump, so she was started on meloxicam, 0.07 milligrams twice a week. She did fine on that for six months. While I was away at Christmas, the friend caring for our two cats misunderstood my instructions and gave Aimee twice the amount of meloxicam. The way Aimee was moving when I got home, she looked five years younger. But Aimee's extra drinking and urination after that made it clear something was wrong, and now her kidneys are damaged.

My vet wants Aimee on Hill's K/D or Purina's kidney diet, both of which I detest for their high corn/carbohydrate content, not to mention that my cats don't like it.

I realize I have to change Aimee's diet to support her kidneys. Is there a better alternative?



Meloxicam is in a class of non-steroidal, anti-inflammatory drugs that can have serious side effects in cats and dogs.

Arthritis is, in part, related to diet, as is kidney disease. Daily supplements such as fish oil and turmeric can work wonders, coupled with massage therapy and acupuncture treatments.

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