Toxoplasmosis, cats and pregnant women. Is your doctor giving you bad advice?

We cringe every time we hear that another cat has lost a home because of bad and incorrect warnings from doctors directed at pregnant women.

We finally found a really good article that clears the air about cats, toxoplasmosis and pregnant or nursing women.

Far too many obstetricians attempting to sound smart have given women bad and very wrong advice: “Get rid of your cat to protect your child.”

If your cat stays inside and has never eaten a rodent the chances of your cat carrying this parasite are remote. Concerned about your cat? Have the cat tested!

From the article we’ve linked to below:

Question: Do I have to give up my cat if I’m pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant?

Answer: No. You should follow these helpful tips to reduce your risk of environmental exposure to Toxoplasma.

  • Avoid changing cat litter if possible. If no one else can perform the task, wear disposable gloves and wash your hands with soap and warm water afterwards.
  • Ensure that the cat litter box is changed daily. The Toxoplasma parasite does not become infectious until 1 to 5 days after it is shed in a cat’s feces.
  • Feed your cat commercial dry or canned food, not raw or undercooked meats.
  • Keep cats indoors.
  • Avoid stray cats, especially kittens. Do not get a new cat while you are pregnant.
  • Keep outdoor sandboxes covered.
  • Wear gloves when gardening and during contact with soil or sand because it might be contaminated with cat feces that contain Toxoplasma. Wash hands with soap and warm water after gardening or contact with soil or sand.

Read the entire article: http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/toxoplasmosis/gen_info/pregnant.html

The ASPCA has a good page about Toxoplasmosis and cats. Here’s something they say:

If you suspect your cat is carrying the parasite that causes toxoplasmosis, it’s time to get him tested by your veterinarian. If he tests positive, it means he has been exposed to the disease but is unlikely to be shedding oocysts after an initial two-week period. If he tests negative, it means he has not been exposed and could still become infected and shed oocysts — but again only for two weeks.

Read more from the ASPCA: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cat-care/toxoplasmosis

From a new mother’s forum, moms and a vet student speak:

http://www.babycenter.com/400_chances-of-toxoplasmosis-with-an-indoor-cat_1505321_868.bc

Dr. Cheryl Schwartz DVM on helping your Diabetic cat




When Dr. Cheryl Schwartz wanted to learn about veterinary acupuncture she found that a book on the subject did not exist – even in China where acupuncture originated. She turned to the text books for human doctors, and took courses in human acupuncture knowing she could transfer what she learned for people to animals. After years of treating patients with 4 feet and a tail she wrote her book “Four Paws, Five Directions, Traditional Chinese Medicine for Cats and Dogs” which is now a text book in China.




Here is a Cat Faeries exclusive Q and A with Dr. Cheryl Schwartz DVM:

1) I know that for my own diabetes (type 2) the ideal diet is very low carb, moderate protein, and high fat. It’s worked wonders. Would you say that a similar diet for cats who have diabetes or for people who don’t want their cat to get diabetes is a good idea? And what about for cats with kidney failure? It seems to me that both ways of feeding a cat is ideal.

Dr. Schwartz: Great ideas and questions! Low carb, moderate protein and high fat are beneficial for cats with diabetes and kidney failure

2) I’m eating a lot of organ meats (also known as offal). In particular, lamb sweetbreads*. Which by the way, my cats love (recipe to follow). How do you feel about organ meats vs muscle meat for cats with diabetes or kidney failure?

Dr Schwartz: I prefer small amounts of organ meat mixed with muscle meat, because higher amounts seem to create constipation and stagnation in cats.

* Cat Faeries Note: See below for two recipies for lamb sweetbreads – one for cats, one for people.

3) My MD has me on 70 grams of protein a day and I’m surprised that I’m liking eating less protein and more fat. What might you recommend for an average sized cat of about 11 pounds? What ratio of meat to fat to vegetable do you like?

Dr. Schwartz: I don’t usually break it down between fat and protein. I use more TCM therapy. I recommend the fatty meats like lamb, chicken, beef. Some cats with diabetes do well on stewed or boiled pork loin or butt. It is important to make sure the cat does not also have pancreatitis where fat metabolism/absorption can create more inflammation, so each cat seems to be unique. Ratio between meat and vegetables would be 2/3 meat to 1/3 veggies, including some sweet potato.

4) I no longer cook my own meats at a high heat because the high heat creates “advanced glycation” which happens inside the body when charred, grilled, or fried meat is consumed. I understand that this means it turns to sugar when it’s eaten and this is one of the reason diabetes is has become practically an epidemic for people, and also our cats and dogs. I steam, stew, boil, simmer, or poach my meats now and eat them pretty rare. Would you recommend those techniques for a cat’s meat? Do you have anything to say about advanced glycation and how to prevent it?

Dr Schwartz: High heat is present in dry food and it does increase the sugar content. I recommend stewing or poaching, or hot pot as best ways to prepare. If the cat can tolerate and like it, I would recommend raw food.

5) There has been a lot of talk lately about resistant starch and safe starches for people – basically steamed potatoes and white rice, severed with something acidic (like lemon juice), fat and served cold. For people it can be healing to the gut and it gives people some carbs which do not jack their blood sugar. Any value in this theory for cats?

Dr. Schwartz: I like steamed sweet potato or pumpkin for cats.

6) Are there safe carbs for a cat? Any safe grains?

Dr. Schwartz: It depends on the cat. I really like the sweet potato, pumpkin. Another alternative is mashed cooked lentils or garbanzo beans with cooked white rice. Adding a small piece of pickle* is sometimes tolerated by some cats. Either the cat likes it or not.

* Cat Faeries Note: Coming up in another newsletter, how to properly lacto ferment vegetables suitable for you and your cats.

7) Which fats are good for cats? For people ideal fats are saturated and those include: coconut oil, MCT oil, lard, grass fed butter.

Dr Schwartz: Cat Faeries fish oil mainly. Grass fed butter*, olive oil, small amounts coconut oil.

* Cat Faeries Note: www.mcclellandsdairy.com/ or www.pureindianfoods.com are who we buy our grass fed butter or ghee.

8) Which flower essences help cats with either or both conditions?

Dr. Schwartz: Kidney Kitty is good. It would also be helpful for diabetes cats

9) You are big on color therapy. Would you recommend shining a colored light on a cat?

Dr Schwartz: For the kidneys use blue light. Shine the light around the kidney area in lumbar vertebrae. For diabetes use yellow or green light and shine it at the end of the ribs (Thoracic V) and beginning of the lumbar as well as Spleen 6.

10) Any other therapies that a person might employ?

Dr. Schwartz: Other great modalities might be sound therapy with tuning forks.

11) What acupressure points are good for diabetic cats and cats with some form of renal failure?



For diabetes



For renal failure

(Photos from “Four Paws, Five Directions, Traditional Chinese Medicine for Cats and Dogs” used with permission of Dr. Cheryl Schwartz)



Your Cat Faeries’ Lamb Sweetbreads Recipie

Lamb sweetbreads are the pancreas and thymus of young sheep and they are one of the most nutrient dense foods there is. You only want to buy them from organic/pastured sources. To find them in your state: www.eatwild.com

  • Soak a pound or so of sweet breads in cold water for two hours
  • You might rinse them a few times during their soak
  • Strain in a colander in the sink
  • You want to pull off the big chunky fat pieces – the reason is that this fat isn’t delicious, it can be bitter, and the tough texture clashes with the dumpling like texture of the sweet breads
  • Try to remove some of the membrane without tearing or compromising the shape of the sweet breads
  • Cut them into uniform sizes so that they cook evenly. About 1 and a half inch pieces.
  • Par boil in gently boiling water for 5 minutes and drain

IF SERVING TO CATS – STOP HERE! The seasonings which are good and healthful to us are not good for cats (onion especially)

Continue on only for people…

  • Melt a lot of butter in a pan
  • Add some white wine and stir vigorously to make a slight reduction
  • Seasonings can include salt and pepper, a pinch of cumin powder, onion powder (organic and delicious onion powder can be bought at Azure Farms online)
  • Add the sweet breads
  • Simmer for 20 to 25 minutes. Interestingly, they do not dry out, yet if they are undercooked the texture isn’t very nice.
    At this point you can remove them and do a thicker white wine and butter deduction sauce by adding more of both, and stirring vigorously
  • You could even put some heavy cream in at this point or a bit of soft goat cheese
  • Put the sweetbreads back in the pan so the flavors marry with the sauce
  • Some people fry up the fat bits and have them separately
  • Leftovers are so good that they are even good cold!
  • You might experiment with adding cooked sausage and mushrooms

Reversing Diabetes World Summit 2014 – FREE and it’s happening NOW!

12 Days: May 5 to May 16, 2014

50 Presentations by truly groundbreaking individuals

Dr. Brian Mowll has put together one of the most impressive lineups of health experts you’ll ever see in one place for the Reversing Diabetes World Summit 2014. Included in the lineup are scientists, world-renown doctors, New York Times best-selling authors, popular web bloggers and writers, fitness trainers, and dietitians. We are especially excited to hear: Jimmy Moore, Mark Sisson, Izabella Wentz (who will talk about the thyroid – diabetes connection), David Perlmutter MD, and Mike Adams. We probably won’t miss a single lecture!

None of the speakers are veterinarians, but the information is going to be helpful to you anyway. The more we all learn about diabetes in any species the better we’ll all be. Perhaps next year there will be a vet on the roster!

This ground breaking FREE summit is a 12 day education on how to prevent, control, and reverse diabetes for you and those your love. The information that these experts have to share will benefit your health in countless ways even if you don’t have diabetes or are predisposed to it. Did you know that Alzheimer’s is being called Type 3 Diabetes? Sugar and carbs are not our friends!

FREE registration, click here: http://thediabetessummit.com/

Don’t procrastinate! Start listening to these podcasts right now because each day’s presentation is only available for 24 hours.

For the speakers and schedule click here: http://thediabetessummit.com/schedule/

A very special “Friend of Cat Faeries” is the wonderful (and Daddy to two cats) Jimmy Moore who will give his presentation May 9th on the Ketogenic diet. Jimmy is the creator of Livin’ La Vida Low Carb, and the author of “Cholesterol Clarity.” Read his books and blog and don’t miss his talk on the 9th.

You did NOT eat your way to Diabetes

We like this article because it brings up an important point about why diabetes is so prevalent and predicted to get much worse. Toxins and changes in our environment for many individuals might be the root cause, less so that the cause is genetic or “reckless eating.” This article is geared for people, but we think it’s obvious that if these toxins are causing insulin resistance or Diabetes for people then it makes sense that cats are just as vulnerable.

http://www.phlaunt.com/diabetes/14046739.php

Comb your cat – green uses for cat hair!

cat-and-fur

Spring is here and our furry 4 footed friends are shedding their fur, or in the case of Winston our bunny – it’s an outright molting!

When you brush of comb your cat (or dog or rabbit) don’t throw away the fur. Use it in creative green ways:

  • Bird nests: Grab a basket you don’t use and put the fur inside along with twigs, strips of bark, pine needles, and wood shavings. The birds will grab the bits and pieces which they want to build a nest. Cat fur will add some warmth to the nest
  • Compost: The nitrogen in fur and hair is wonderful for your compost bin. But since it takes a while for fur or hair to break down cut it into 1/8 inch bits, you could also toss it around your garden or let it the breeze take it to add nitrogen to your soil.
  • Pesky Critter Repellent: Putting wads of combed out cat fur around the garden near special plants can deter snails and slugs. Wads of cat fur put down a gopher hole could scare off the critter. It can also keep squirrels, hares, chipmunks, and deer away.

For these projects to do effective and safe, don’t use cat or other animal fur that was treated for fleas as the chemicals could kill or harm birds, and you would be adding poison to your compost.

Film maker Morgan Spurlock spends a week at an animal shelter!

Film maker Morgan Spurlock spends a week at an animal shelter!

Didn’t you just love Morgan Spurlock’s film Super Size Me? Currently he has a series on CNN called Inside Man. Just like in Super Size Me he physically dives into the week’s topic. In the episode which just aired called “Pets in America” he works for one week at The Animal Rescue League of Berks County in Reading, PA so he can firsthand experience everything that happens. He nurses a 3 day old kitten who was not expected to live (but did!) to cleaning kennels and witnessing euthanasia.

“Where I worked in Reading, PA is one of thousands of these types of shelters across the country. You see these animals who are so sweet and so nice and a lot of them who won’t get adopted and will end up getting killed. That’s the sad side of the story. But the fact that there are people who every day make them first in their lives is phenomenal.” -Morgan Spurlock

In this short interview Morgan gets interviewed about this episode of “Inside Man” and what he learned about cat and dog over population.

We tried to find a copy of the episode online for those of you who missed it, but we couldn’t find one. If CNN releases it for online viewers we’ll let you know. It will be repeated on CNN so if you have a DVR you’ll find repeats of this show.