|It is devastating to be told your cat has renal failure. I have lost several good friends to this ailment and about 1 year ago, another good friend developed this problem. However, I ran across some new research about treating kidney failure in humans and applied this to my buddy. He's been on the treatment regimen for about 1 year and he is doing fine – even though he is 17 years old, symptoms are gone, quality if life is excellent, and I don't see an expiration date for him anymore.
In this article I am going to share Pumpkin's story and detail how you can manage this ailment and possibly save your friend's life. The treatment is not expensive but does require time commitment and changes in how you think about cat health. You will also have to possibly deal with very negative comments and opinions from your cat's vet – they will tell you what you are doing is wrong and will not work. However, I have waited about a year before writing this just to be sure that Pumpkin's recovery wasn't some fluke. It was not. Even if your cat friend is healthy today, read this because it will show you how to keep kitty healthy. And if your cat is sick, your vets advice will end in death; your cat has nothing to lose at this point so try this treatment – I have seen it work multiple times now on cats given the death sentence and they are still here! And purring!
Cats in my experience rarely just suddenly get kidney disease. Usually kidneys start to fail from some other cause, hyperactive thyroid and diabetes being two of the most common. Problem become apparent usually when weight lose is noticed and/or cat will not eat. If you see either of these symptoms, immediately go to the vet! Though in the long run the vet might not be that helpful, intravenous fluids if needed are helpful and can be considered part of the “Pumpkin Treatment”. (named this regime after him)
The best thing is to prevent either hyperthyroid or diabetes. This is done by a change in diet. Cats have 0 (that's zero) need for carbohydrates. They need meat (muscle and organ). And they need raw – not cooked meat. Dry kibble food is high in carbs and probably contains bromated grain. High carbs lead to glucose intolerance (diabetes) and the bromide displaces iodine in the thyroid which results in hyperactive thyroid. If you do not want to give you cat a raw diet, then at a minimum supplement either dry kibble or wet food (most contain grain) with a chromium supplement – NOW brand GTF Chromium is a good choice. Chromium supplements will prevent diabetes; I do not know of any brand of cat food that includes this vital nutrient. To help counter bromide, supplement cat's food with some type of ocean kelp supplement. I do not know if this will prevent hyperactive thyroid, but it will certainly postpone it, and sea kelp has a broad spectrum of really good nutrients.
So you didn't know about the preceding information and now you have a sick friend, who may not be eating. The following should help.
First, get some raw chicken or turkey liver – preferably organic but hopefully at least the type without hormones or antibiotics. Cut into small pieces and offer to cat. If cat licks and eats it that's great. Offer only small amounts initially. If cat yucks up, it's due to overeating, and reduce amount you give. Some cats like to lick up their food – you might try pulverizing the liver in a blender. Eventually you will have to add bulk/fiber to aide elimination. I use ground flaxseed – buy the type that's kept in cooler at the store then keep in frig at home. Try using only a little at first – cats don’t really care for flaxseed.
If your cat won't eat the raw liver, don't panic. Pumpkin was a carb addicted cat and he would not eat raw liver. Go to local pet/feed store and purchase small animal feeder syringes. Pulverize raw liver with a bit of flaxseed in blender so it is liquid enough to suck up with the syringe – add small amount of water if needed. I have syringe fed several sick cats and it is easier to do than you think. I have never had a cat fight me while doing this – they might raise their paw a bit, but no real resistance. Using the thumb of one hand open cats mouth by gently pushing thumb into side of their mouth. With syringe hand, place tip of syringe just past front teeth and squirt a SMALL amount of mix into mouth. Do NOT jam syringe down throat! Let cat munch on and swallow and repeat. Go slow, and just in case have moistened towels to wipe kitties mouth. For sick cat care you really need to be able to do this – if you are not comfortable to cold turkey this process, this is one area where your vet can be a real help. See the vet and have them walk you thru the process of syringe feeding.
As much as some cats would like to be on a raw liver diet forever, they need additional nutrients, especially taurine. The initial raw liver diet is very healing, but after 1-2 weeks you'll need to switch to a healing maintenance diet. The formula I use is listed later on. I complied the formulation by melding from a number of sources on cat raw food formulations. Turkey is the meat used since it is known to be the most compatible with all cats. Formula includes antioxidants and special adjustments for kidney healing. The formula can be either administered by syringe or simply put in a bowl for cat to lap up. NOTE: though very healthy, this formula will cause plague on their teeth – BRUSH CATS TEETH AFTER EVERY FEEDING. I use hydrogen peroxide when I brush my cats teeth. Plague is the only negative with Pumpkin's Treatment; this treatment is really meant to provide healing nutrients at the expense of being wild cat archetype correct where teeth are naturally cleaned by chewing on bones/fur.
Pumpkin developed kidney disease as a result of hyperactive thyroid. He had typical symptoms of excessive thirst and urination. He no longer has these symptoms, and his thyroid meds been greatly reduced – turns out how you treat kidney problems is also good for thyroid.
So how do you reverse kidney failure: high fat diet. Yeah. Here are some links of this news:
http ://www.aarp.org/health/conditions-treatments/info-04-2011/reversing- kidney-failure.html
Basically kidneys heal in a low glucose, but high ketone metabolism. When carbs are replaced by fats, cells get their energy more from ketone than glucose. And very interestingly, cancer cells thrive on glucose but unlike healthy cells, can't use ketone for energy so they die. It does work. Kelly proved it.
Kelly is Pumpkin's sister. About 6 months ago she developed a strangling size tumor around her neck. Vet said she had less that 24 hours to live; she had trouble breathing – we made plans to help her make the transition later that day at home in her favorite beddy. While waiting for the vet, we noticed she was getting better. We canceled the vet visit. Kelly did not eat for one week (kinda OK, she was way overweight) – I made sure she got enough fluids using the syringe method. The tumor started to shrink and she finally started to eat – yes you guessed it – pulverized raw liver. She is now on the same raw diet as her brother. And she is doing well. I especially like calling the vet monthly and telling them Kelly is just fine. They don't really seem to care.
The big question someone would have about this treatment is “what type of fat, and how much?” Coincidentally I had just finished researching healthy saturated fats, and from that research, it was obvious that saturated fat was the correct choice. I use 3 types:
MCT oil (medium chain triglycerides)
Cod liver oil
All three are in my formulation. However, you might want to increase the amount of fat by giving these oils alone in addition to Pumpkin's formulation, or reduce Pumpkin's formulation and increase fat percentage. From what I can tell, the kidney treatment diet could be as much as 80% fat. I have no way of knowing fat percentage in what I gave – what I go by is stool examination. If cat has loose stools, that is too much fat. Both Pumpkin and Kelly have gotten the fat in the formulation plus approx 2ml extra per day with no problems.
To give oils alone you'll need to get some 1ml oral dispensing syringes – easily found on the internet. Give no more that .5ml at a time – cat might yuck up at 1ml dose. Coconut oil might have to be warmed to turn into liquid.
I use Nutiva organic coconut oil, NOW brand MCT oil, and Twinlab Cod liver oil – all easily found on internet. A special note about the cod liver oil. The Twinlab cod liver oil contains vitamins A & D naturally – do NOT give extra cod liver oil more than twice a week.
Here's the formulation I use. It includes the necessary nutrient taurine at a 25-50mg daily dose. The mix is prepared in a heavy duty blender. Start by adding 1 cup water and the flaxseed and any hard pills like the astaxanthin – let soak for about 1/2 hour. Add spinach and liquify. Add rest of ingredients and liquify. Store in frig – can be frozen. Use organic if possible; meats at least hopefully w/o hormones/antibiotics. Coconut oil can make it thick – might have to warm up a bit for syringe feeder to be able to pull up the mix.
1lb turkey/chicken (muscle meat)
1/2 lb liver/heart (organs)
2 egg yolks
4 tbl brewer yeast – 100mg B complex (Twinlab Super Rich Yeast)
1/2 tsp kelp powder
2 tsp bonemeal
10000 IU A – 2500 IU D
400 IU E – D type (not DL)
3000 mg taurine
10 drops trace minerals
1 tbl cod liver oil
1 tbl coconut oil
1 tbl MCT oil
Call of Wild by Wysong- probiotic
1-2 cups fresh spinach
Green Tea Extract 1500mg
GTF Chromium 100mg (optional)
Selenium .5mg (optional)
4 tbl Ground Flax Seed
4 tbl Pectin – pure w/o dextrose or other sugars
B50/B100 complex (optional)
4 mg Copper (optional)
The optional items I add in rotation, and sometimes even skip; the Twinlab Super Rich Yeast is an excellent supplement that contains chromium, selenium and other nutrients.
To make this a kidney treatment formulation, simply increase the amount of coconut and MCT oil. You can easily double, quadruple, maybe even more the amount of these oils. DO NOT increase the amount of the fish oil. If you want to add fish oil, salmon oil is usually a good choice – make sure there is no vitamin A or D in the added fish oil.
Now that Pumpkin and Kelly are doing better they do get other food also. They get organic raw ground beef, raw chicken liver, and Wysong Archetype cold process dried food. Wysong Archetype is a whole meat, grain free food. It is expensive but worth it. My only concern is that it might be somewhat high in sugar as it contains things like apples and blueberries.
That's it. I hope this will help those who need it – if you do this for your sick cat you'll probably start to see results within a week. If you have questions email me at email@example.com – I will be posting this to many cat blogs so I might not see your response/question.
Written in loving memory of Tuesday, Socks, Purrito, MrKitty, Prissey, and Meequa.
Edited by author Wed Feb 29, '12 12:12pm PST