Cat Alerts Family if Diabetic Daughter is in Danger

photo of Mia her cat Pippa

Mia and her wonderful cat Pippa via GoodNews

RSPCA Rescue Cat Makes Sure Diabetic Owner Is Feline Fine

Pippa’s incredible gift came to light when she crept into Mia’s room and woke her up in the middle of the night prompting the schoolgirl to test her blood sugar levels which showed they were dangerously low.

And when Pippa couldn’t get into the schoolgirl’s room to check she was feline fine, the persistent puss woke up her mum, Laura instead.

Mrs Jansa said: “We quickly realised she was warning us. If Mia didn’t wake up, then she would come to my door and miaow. She comes onto the bed, walks onto my pillow and across me until I wake up. She really makes her presence felt, she won’t take no for an answer. She knows it’s important that I get up and help Mia.”

Mia has type one diabetes, an incurable condition, which she manages by regularly testing her blood sugar levels and injecting herself with insulin. She was diagnosed with the condition at the age of 6 when her parents were concerned that she was eating more than before but not putting on weight.

Mia tests her blood sugar levels between four and six times a day. If her blood sugar levels drop dangerously low she can experience a hypoglycemic episode which could lead to a coma.

As the article says dogs have been trained to detect and warn of dangerously low blood sugar, and many other things, but cats have not.

Here are more instances of cats alerting people to dangerous blood sugar levels: Cat Glucose Monitor?, Rare Cat Tests Diabetic for Low Blood Sugar.

I am a cat person, no surprise, but I do find service dogs to be awesome. It would be wonderful if we could get more service cats. Though even with my innate cat bias I must admit I am not so hopeful for a huge increase in the number of service cats.

Some cats are used to make people more comfortable with emotional support which is nice but I think stretches the definition of “service animal” to a point at which it is meaningless. Yes, animals that make people more comfortable are wonderful but calling them service animals is pretty silly.

You might as well call dropping a baby in someone’s lap a couple times a day is a service worker. But it isn’t. It would be helpful for many people and even extremely helpful, but that doesn’t make the act an act of service.

Related: 10 Questions to Ask Your Vet About Cat MedicationsWhy Do Cats Love Boxes?Train Your Cat to Use Your Toilet

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Puzzle Feeders for Cats

Cats evolved to hunt for food. And given how many birds, chipmunks, bunnies, mice etc. outdoor cats catch (and sometimes bring back home) they haven’t lost those instincts. They also sometimes stalk us, thankfully that usually doesn’t result in any serious damage.

It isn’t uncommon, however, for our cats to become too sedentary and put on an unhealthy amount of weight. One way to encourage some activity is with puzzle feeders. These also let you reduce food while also giving some extra food they can get with more effort.

This webcast shows an example of a simple puzzle feeder you can make yourself. There are also many available for purchase including: Trixie Mad Scientist for Cats, Catit Design Senses Treat Maze and Egg Cersizer Interactive Toy and Food Dispenser.

Related: Giving Your Cat Fresh Water from a FountainHow to Give Your Cat a Pillthe Robotic Ball You Control with Your Smart Phone (Sphero)

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Music Specifically Composed for Cats

Cats like music. But, like people, they want music composed for them, not some other species.

You may purchase music for your cats (from the company that made the samples included here).

Our music is based on feline vocal communication and environmental sounds that pique the interest of cats; it is written in a musical language that is uniquely designed to appeal to the domestic cat. All of the music is recorded on traditional instruments and the human voice. No actual cat, mouse, or bird calls are used (although it may sound like it). The songs are written in three different styles – each song style is designed to convey and evoke a particular mood

Kitty ditties are playful and quick

The cat ballad should be restful and pleasing for your kitty.

Feline airs draws sympathetic emotions from the listener based on the sounds of cats purring.

David Teie developed and outlined the first comprehensive theory that attempts to explain the cognitive processes involved in our appreciation of music. Working with Charles T. Snowdon at the University of Wisconsin, they studied the affect of David’s species-specific music on cotton-topped tamarin monkeys, resulting in the first controlled study that demonstrated significant and appropriate responses to music from any species other than human.

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Why Do Cats Love Boxes?

On of YouTube’s most important functions is to illustrate how much cats like boxes. But why do cats love to sit in boxes?

What’s Up With That: Why Do Cats Love Boxes So Much?

Like many other really weird things cats do, science hasn’t fully cracked this particular feline mystery. There’s the obvious predation advantage a box affords: Cats are ambush predators, and boxes provide great hiding places to stalk prey from (and retreat to). But there’s clearly more going on here.

rather than work things out, cats are more inclined to simply run away from their problems or avoid them altogether. A box, in this sense, can often represent a safe zone, a place where sources of anxiety, hostility, and unwanted attention simply disappear.

According to a 2006 study by the National Research Council, the thermoneutral zone for a domestic cat is 86 to 97 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s the range of temperatures in which cats are “comfortable” and don’t have to generate extra heat to keep warm or expend metabolic energy on cooling. That range also happens to be 20 degrees higher than ours,

Cardboard is a great insulator and the small space can warm up above the room temperature.

Of course these explanations don’t answer why cats like to site inside tape outlines on the floor.

Research is wonderful but cats often seem to be so far beyond our beyond our ability to understand we are left to just love them. It is enough to know that your cats will love the boxes you give them and tape outlines you draw on the floor – unless, of course, they don’t.

Related: Why Do Cats Knead Us?How attached cats are to their owners?Train Your Cat to Use Your Toilet

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Domestic Cats Should Have More Food in Winter

The study is interesting but hardly conclusive (15% for example is not at all a proven figure). It was a limited number of cats and limited in other ways but does provide some indication that increase eating during winter, if food is available. If you limit food in order to keep the cat from getting too fat you might want to vary the amount a bit based on the season.

Seasonal Variation in the Voluntary Food Intake of Domesticated Cats

Periods of peak and trough food intake coincided with peaks and troughs in both temperature and daylight length. In conclusion, average food intake in summer is approximately 15% less than food intake during the winter months, and is likely to be due to the effects of outside temperatures and differences in daylight length. This seasonal effect in food intake should be properly considered when estimating daily maintenance energy requirements in cats.

Food intake was greatest during the months of late autumn and winter (e.g. October to February).

In conclusion, a seasonal effect on voluntary food intake exists in domesticated cats, whereby food intake is greater in winter and less in summer. These changes in food intake are likely to be the result of changes in ambient temperature, daylight length, or both, and the fact that they do not cause bodyweight changes suggest that they occur in response to changes in energy requirements. The possible effect of climatic variation on voluntary food intake in pet cats should be considered in companion animals, and may mean that feeding strategies may need to be seasonally adjusted, to ensure that availability meets demand at different times of the year.

Related: Feeding Your CatGiving Your Cat Fresh Water from a FountainHow attached cats are to their owners?

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Boarding Cats and Dogs at a Kennel

One of the challenges with pets is how to care for them if you are away. You might trust a few of your friends with your wonderful pets :-) When that works it is great. Sometimes you can even win over those unfortunate pet-less souls to improve their lives with a wonderful cat. Or maybe even a dog, though that seems to be a step down in my opinion :-)

Sometimes you can find a trustworthy kid to help you out. You can try virtual pet sitting with a remote camera and hopefully robot.

But occasionally that won’t work. There are wonderful pet spas to board you pets, but finding one you trust can be a challenge. Showing their 2nd class nature again :-) some dogs even require daycare even just for a workday. I don’t know of cats that are so needy :-)

Obviously you want to be sure the place is clean and the kennels are safe and comfortable for the pets. But the competence and caring of the staff is critical and it can be a bit difficult to judge. Recommendations from friends are nice, from a vet you trust might be even better (they have the opportunity for so much feedback that if bad things are happening they would likely know). Checking on any required licenses and registrations is also wise (what is available would vary by state in the USA).

Pet spas should allow you to bring in food your pet prefers as well as toys (again needy dogs :-), most likely, but maybe for some cats too). I definitely would make a visit prior to leaving my pet.

The Toureen Pet Resort and Spa offers some suggestions for selecting a boarding facility to trust with your pet. You can also call the

Related: 10 Questions to Ask Your Vet About Cat MedicationsKitten’s Curiosity Gets it Stuck and Mom Comes to Help

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Why Do Cats Knead Us?

This webcast provides an explanation of why cats knead us.

Related: Teaching a Kitten How to Play Nice with PeopleLearn more about feeding your catGetting Your Kitten Started Toward Good Behavior

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How attached cats are to their owners?

Sadly the video link was broken so I removed it.

Daniel Mills, professor of Veterinary Behavioural Medicine at the University of Lincoln (in UK) carried out experiments to study the emotional attachments of cats to their owner in comparison to humans and dogs.

Related: Getting Your Kitten Started Toward Good BehaviorGiving Your Cat Fresh Water from a Fountain

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Overweight Cats

Obesity in pets is a common problem. With ready food, if they don’t have an easy way (and sometimes even if they do) to burn off the calories they will gain weight. Cats will have many of the same problems overweight people have with their health: diabetes, joint pain…

Cats are a bit less likely to suffer from this problem (cats regulate eating better than dogs do, in general). In some cases cats can get significant extra food by hunting when you let them out to play.

ASPSA advice

Is your cat too fat? As a subjective assessment of body condition, you should be able to feel the backbone and palpate the ribs in an animal of healthy weight. If you cannot feel your pet’s ribs without pressing, there is too much fat.

Also, you should see a noticeable “waist” between the back of the rib cage and the hips when looking at your pet from above. Viewed from the side, there should be a “tuck” in the tummy—the abdomen should go up from the bottom of the rib cage to inside the thighs. Cats who fail these simple tests may be overweight.

How to get overweight or obese cats back in shape from Web MD

An estimated 57% of U.S. cats are overweight or obese, according to a 2008 study by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention.

An indoor cat needs planned exercise. The best exercise is object play – playing with your cat with toys. That’s the answer to exercise problems.

Cats are predators, and the way to get them to play is to let them use their hunting talents. Buy toys and then use them to mimic the actions of the animals a cat would normally hunt – a mouse, bird, lizard, rabbit or bug.

Cat owners know they have distinct personalities so you need to discover what works for you and your cat. Passive toys don’t work nearly as well as one you animate for them or self propelled toys, like: . Maybe if you are lucky your cat will use your treadmill :-)

Related: Feeding Your CatSphero, the Robotic Ball You Control with Your Smart PhoneCat Running in Circles

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Getting Your Kitten Started Toward Good Behavior

Kittens are wonderfully curious and playful: occasionally this also includes annoying and even dangerous. Here are some tips to help get your kitten started off right:

video removed :-(

Make sure you provide plenty of health outlets for their boundless curiosity (by the way what kind of crazy language drops the second u in curious when writing curiosity? English). I personally have found great success engaging with kittens and they then seem to want to make you happy as cats, though they still decide to hunt me every once and awhile and jump onto my legs with claws out :-(

Related: Teaching a Kitten How to Play Nice with PeopleTrain Your Cat to Use Your Toilet

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