Home remedies do not replace a veterinarian

Dr. Jeff NicholQ: What is your point of view of cat grass?

Dr. Nichol: I have never used cat grass. I do not eat it, I do not smoke it, I do not grow it or cut it. On the other hand, the two cats of the Nichol family, Tony and Gaston, are quite diabolical, almost like catnip. But they are adults, so I take care of my own business.

From a scientific perspective, not much is known about cat grass. The ingested plant material tends to alkalize the body, but veterinarians internists and nutritionists do not believe that most cats eat enough to predispose them to urinary disorders such as bladder crystals and stones. Eating catgrass is most likely a rarity of innocent feline behavior.

The most interesting question may be why a predator forced like a cat would be interested in a vegetarian accompaniment in the first place. Throughout my many years in veterinary practice, I have met many cats who have experienced frequent stomach and intestinal disorders. Not everyone vomits, but eating grass seems to help many to feel better.

Home remedies are popular these days, but you should never make assumptions with frequent feline felines, in part because there is a long list of possible causes, some of them outside the gastrointestinal tract. Kidney and liver diseases often result in persistent vomiting. Pancreatic disorders and even brain injuries may be responsible. Your cat trusts you to take care of it.

Be an observer Kittens are too good to hide their diseases. It is not uncommon for foreign materials such as ropes to swallow, causing havoc in the stomach and intestinal tract. I have surgically removed the scrap from many cats that would have died if their humanitarian people had not recognized their anguish before. Instead of offering catgrass to a kitten with a belly ache, you should take it to see your doctor. A precise diagnosis would allow a treatment that could save lives.

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By the way, last week, my wife and I attended a "Cats" performance at Popejoy. Not a single blade of grass was injured in the making of that musical. I've been a closet cat all my life, but that night I ate salad.

Each week, Dr. Jeff Nichol makes a short video, a blog or a Facebook Live to help bring out the best in pets. Register for free at drjeffnichol.com. Dr. Nichol treats behavioral disorders at the Veterinary Specialties and Emergency Centers in Albuquerque and Santa Fe (505-792-5131). You can post questions about pets at facebook.com/drjeffnichol or by mail to 4000 Montgomery NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87109.

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