Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Carmine: Arthritis & Cosequin

Approximately six weeks ago, I took my kitty Carmine to the vet. My kitty had lost 10 ounces over the past year and I was very concerned about him. After doing blood tests, a urinalysis, an x-ray, and getting exams, Carmine's vet decided that his weight loss was due to stress. Thankfully, he has maintained his weight over several weeks and has not lost any more. In fact, I've noticed that he's recently started to eat more kibbles, which is definitely a positive sign! :)

However, Carmine's x-ray revealed that he has mild arthritis in one of his hips, which none of us were expecting seeing as he is only six years old. I had noticed that he was laying around and sleeping more than he used to. I just figured that this was typical because he is middle-aged now.

After discovering the arthritis, Carmine's vet suggested I put him on a joint supplement called Cosequin. It's available in powder form - you get it in capsules, which you can open and sprinkle onto wet or dry food. I give Carmine his Cosequin on his wet food because I have another cat who shares Carmine's dry food bowl.

Within the past few days, I've noticed Carmine runs around - up and down the hall - like he used to do as a kitten! He also jumps more. He's more active, the way I've always known him to be.

I was reminded how much cats truly hide their pain from us. It is a cat's instinct to hide their pain and illnesses from everyone. Even though many cats have loving, safe homes, like my kitties do, cats have learned to appear healthy to keep themselves safe from prey.

That's why it's so important for us, as caregivers of these precious creatures, to pay close attention to our cats' behavior. Knowing your cats' behavior and typical routine will help you spot changes in behavior, which is often a sign that a cat is sick or in pain.

I'm so glad we found out that Carmine has arthritis early. This will give us the chance to make sure he is not suffering in pain and that he can live a comfortable and happy life. The Cosequin has really helped him a lot, and it makes me happy seeing him more active, in less pain, and content. He is my angel. :)

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