Why looking into your cat’s eyes can be an early warning on health problems

Guest editor Alison has another great story for you! It’s about why looking into your cat’s eyes, observing changes, and seeing the vet once a year is vital to your cat’s health and well being. We think you’ll enjoy this story and learn a few new things too.


CATS DON’T WEAR SUNGLASSES

I went to the local shelter looking for a black and white male kitten, but the only one there had already been chosen. There were SO many kittens in need of homes I couldn’t just leave. I sat on a chair inside the glassed in kitten room while all the furry bundles of energy ran and played around me. Soon a small black female climbed into my lap, grabbed the metal tab and unzipped my jacket. I could hear laughter from outside the enclosure and smiled. I knew I had been chosen. Tommy Lee Jones (Cat in Black) came home with me that day.

Many kittens leave shelters either recovering from, or incubating an upper respiratory infection (URI). Of course, I took Tommy to my vet right away for a checkup and she received a clean bill of health. However, I also kept her isolated from my other cats until I felt sure she wasn’t harboring a latent infection that could harm them.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) cats are less likely than dogs to have annual physical exams. In fact, overall veterinary visits for cats decreased 13.5% from 2006 to 2011, while visits for dogs increased 9.2% during the same time period. (https://www.avma.org/news/pressroom/pages/Dog-veterinary-care.aspx) Although there are many possible explanations for the decline, a likely reason is a cat’s natural ability to hide symptoms of ill health. In fact, we may not realize our cats are sick until a disease has progressed significantly. Although there is no substitute for a thorough veterinary exam we can help cats achieve longer healthier lives by becoming more observant as we interact with our feline companions. Even subtle changes could be significant.

These include:

  1. changes in food or water consumption
  2. weight gain or loss
  3. skin flakes, itchiness and/or hair loss
  4. changes in the eyes

Who can resist marveling over the beauty of a cat’s eyes? But how often do we look for subtle signs of disease in these windows to their souls?

Over the years I started noticing some brown flecks of color in the light green iris of Tommy’s left eye. At first I thought the change was my imagination. Had the flecks always been there? Then a small amount of ocular discharge appeared. She didn’t act as if the eye was painful or irritated, but a visit to the veterinary clinic was definitely in order. Fortunately it was nothing serious. The overall condition was diagnosed as iris melanosis. If the spots had been raised, rather than flat, she might have lost an eye to cancer. He suspected that part of her problem was a herpes virus (not contagious to humans) most likely acquired from an upper respiratory infection (URI) as a young kitten. Herpes virus can remain latent until stress or illness trigger the recurrence of clinical signs.

Tommy’s eyes are now examined regularly to be sure the pigmented areas do not become raised. She is also taking an amino acid supplement, L-lysine, to reduce the likelihood of herpes flare ups and potential corneal ulcers. However, I still can’t convince her to wear sunglasses.

Alison W. Certified Veterinary Technician, Reiki Master

It’s Hard Work Being a Cute Kitten on Cat Heaven Island

It’s very hard work being a couple of cute Japanese kittens on Cat Heaven Island. Time for a short power nap.

It's Hard Work Being a Cute Kitten on Cat Heaven Island - CatFaeries.com

(Click image to see larger)

(This is on Cat Heaven Island, the Japanese fishing island where cats roam free and there are more cats than people. You can see other posts of pictures on our blog via . (We’ve posted pictures and links to more pictures before – see them here. These pictures come from the blog of Fubirai, a photographer who has been documenting the cats of Tashiro-jima Island since 2007.)

Reach Out and Touch a Kitty on Cat Heaven Island

A quiz! Do you remember which ad slogan said “reach out and touch someone?” No peeking on Google!

Picture from Cat Heaven Island on CatFaeries.com

(Click image to see larger)

(This is on Cat Heaven Island, the Japanese fishing island where cats roam free and there are more cats than people. You can see other posts of pictures on our blog via . (We’ve posted pictures and links to more pictures before – see them here. These pictures come from the blog of Fubirai, a photographer who has been documenting the cats of Tashiro-jima Island since 2007.)

Cat Waiting for His Yacht on Cat Heaven Island

What cats do while waiting for the yacht to be ready…

Cat Waiting for His Yacht on Cat Heaven Island

(Click image to see larger)

(This is on Cat Heaven Island, the Japanese fishing island where cats roam free and there are more cats than people. You can see other posts of pictures on our blog via . (We’ve posted pictures and links to more pictures before – see them here. These pictures come from the blog of Fubirai, a photographer who has been documenting the cats of Tashiro-jima Island since 2007.)

Norman Reedus is a new spokesperson for banning animal testing for cosmetics. The cat in the photo is pretty cute too!

Big news! We just learned that “The Walking Dead” star Norman Reedus has joined Cruelty Free International to call for a ban on animal tests for cosmetics in the U.S. and around the world.

Norman says: ‘Scores of countries around the world are beating the U.S. to become cruelty-free by banning cosmetics tests on animals. Nobody wants rabbits or guinea-pigs to suffer for our vanity, least of all the animals. Let’s stop their suffering right here, right now. Join me in supporting the Cruelty Free International call to Congress and the FDA to bring an end to animal testing for
cosmetics in the U.S.’ — at Photo by Leslie Hassler in New York City.

Norman Reedus and cat - for cruelty free cosmetics



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England’s first “cat café”

We’ve shown you “cat cafes” in Asia which you’ve loved. And many of you said that we need them here in the US. Well, it’s getting closer. Now there’s one in England!

Wouldn’t you love to have to create a cat cafe in your community? What a service this would be to the health and well being of the human visitors. It would give cats “jobs” and a safe place to live. Talk about meaningful work!

A cat café is the perfect mix of work and play, and service to cats and other people. Win-Win!

http://www.express.co.uk/news/weird/416380/Purrfect-Britain-s-first-cat-cafe-opens-in-England-s-Narnia

Sass Brown, a favorite person of Madame Cat Faerie, is the assistant Dean at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology) Department of Art and Design in New York City. Currently she’s in Korea for FIT’s Summer Program.

Here she is having some feline fun and a cooling refreshment at the Cat Café in Songdo, Korea.

Eco Fashion author Sass Brown at a cat cafe in Korea


Eco Fashion author Sass Brown at a cat cafe in Korea


Sass writes extensively about Eco-Fashion on her always fascinating and very inspiring blog: http://www.ecofashiontalk.com/ – be sure to check out her upcoming book “Eco Fashion” which blasts the concept that eco fashion clothes are scratchy, sacky, and ugly. An eco-fashion outfit with splotches of cat fur here and there is green and beautiful and tells the world you love your cat!