A Piece of Twine, Preferably Natural
I can still remember the exact moment when I first set eyes on my cat, Trig. It was a Sunday afternoon in July 2011 and I was looking out the window when I spotted my son, David and his wife, Nessa coming towards the front door. Nessa was carrying a blanket with a little black head sticking out of it. I could see a white upper lip, chin and chest and a gorgeous pair of white whiskers. The white on the upper lip was higher on one side than another, giving her a very cheeky look and her eyes were a striking clear green colour.
“Oh no!” I thought. “I’m not ready for this!” You see, our much loved cat, Smig, had been put asleep only two days before because she had cancer and was in a lot of pain. I hadn’t much time to think about this now, though, because the next thing this very agile kitten jumped out of Nessa’s arms and ran under the bushes at the front of the house. This was the first indication we had that this little kitten had the brains of Einstein, the agility of Nadia Comaneci and the speed of Usain Bolt. For the next hour, we chased and cajoled, pish-wished and crawled under bushes, but to no avail. This little bundle of fur literally rang rings around us.
We were at our wits’ end when my husband Padraig, the font of all knowledge on animals arrived. “Will you give us a hand to catch this cat?” asked David. “Ok.” said Padraig. “Will you go into the house and get a piece of twine, preferably natural.” “Yeah and the cat will know the difference.” said David sarcastically. As it happened the cat did know the difference(apparently most animals prefer organic substances) and Padraig had her caught in five minutes, using the wriggling piece of twine as bait.
This demonstration of speed, determination and spirit was repeated many times over during the next sixteen months and Trig proved to be a cat who was truly full of life.
That is why it was so devastating when Trig gradually started to develop cystitis and over a couple of months turned into a miserable, frightened cat who was in pain a lot of the time. She peed outside the litter, squatted for long periods of time without producing any urine, peed blood, cried when she peed and was generally restless and off form.
I had come to really love Trig by this stage and I vowed I would find something to make her better. Luckily I have a degree in Biochemistry and a good deal of experience in research. I investigated cystitis in cats for months and used Trig, I suppose, as a feline guinea pig. Eventually my work paid off and I found three different dietary supplements which reduced the symptoms of cystitis and got rid of them in a few days. Two of these are different forms of Glucosamine which can be used to help arthritis in humans and dogs and the third is a type of sugar which is converted into Glucosamine in the body.
I also developed a diet for Trig which prevented cystitis. I was so delighted with my results that I wrote up my findings in an i-book called “Care and Prevention of Urinary Problems in Cats” so that other cat owners could help their cats with cystitis. This book is now available from my website www.susanmcgovern.ie