Ask Elizabeth: June 2015

I recently adopted a beautiful kitty named Annie, and she has won my heart. Unfortunately after bringing Annie home, I discovered that she had some real neurological issues. She rocks back and forth and falls constantly when moving from room to room. Her veterinarian says that she has idiopathic [undetermined origin] vestibular syndrome. I do not think that she is going to get any better. Can you shed some light on this condition?

Should They Regularly Feed Their Adult Cat Cows Milk?

I have a 12-year-old calico kitty who eats a regular diet of commercial fish cat food and some assorted cat food pates. She also loves whole milk, and we give it to her after her meals on a daily basis. A friend of mine told me that I should not give her milk, as this can be harmful. Is this true?

Ask Elizabeth: April 2015

I recently fostered a rescue dog I was told had eaten the feces of a feral cat while being housed in another foster home. This cat subsequently had his stool tested, and it came back positive for toxoplasma gondii. The dog unfortunately defecated in my car while I was transporting him and I am concerned that I may have been exposed to toxoplasma while cleaning up the mess in my car. Do I need to worry about this?

Ask Elizabeth: March 2015

Q. Ive been feeding a neutered male outdoor cat for the past few weeks, and he is aggressively friendly. On two occasions, he attacked my legs with his claws when I was walking to his food bowl to fill it. I began taking a spray bottle with me and squirted him when he got too close but stopped that because I thought it would only confuse him. Lately, he has not attacked me but is still very persistent in rubbing against me to the point of almost causing me to trip. Is there anything I can do to calm him down before mealtime?

Ask Elizabeth: February 2015

Q. I have a 13-year-old domestic shorthaired cat who has recently developed an annoying habit over the past six months. He has begun meowing incessantly to the extent that he is driving our family crazy. We cant tell if he is unhappy or sick, although he does not appear to be outwardly ill. This behavior keeps us up at night sometimes, and his daytime meowing has become hard to handle. Do you have any ideas about what may be going on?

Ask Elizabeth: January 2015

My 12-year-old cat has hyperthyroidism. She cannot tolerate methimazole, and I have tried special food (she didnt like it), homeopathic treatments, dietary additives and even consulted an animal psychic. Nothing has an effect, and I dont want to put her through surgery or radioactive iodine therapy. They both sound horrible and also too expensive. Have we run out of options?

Ask Elizabeth: December 2014

Q. I have two cats, a 15-year-old, 6-pound domestic calico with mid-length hair and a 7-year-old, 8-pound part-Himalayan, also with mid-length hair. Both have developed matted hair on both sides of their hindquarters. I was able to shave the calicos off and the hair grew back OK. The big cat wont let me shave him. What causes these mats?

Ask Elizabeth: November 2014

Q. Our year-old male cat, found at a county animal shelter seven months ago, has been diagnosed with eosinophilic granuloma complex (EGC). His symptoms are incessant scratching, puffy gums, blistering mouth, swollen front paw, lameness, limping. Our veterinarian has prescribed steroids for him, and these have been somewhat helpful, but can you explain this disease so that we can better understand what is going on? …