December 2011 Newsletter - Long Island Veterinary Specialists

December 2011 Newsletter - Long Island Veterinary Specialists

Now Available at LIVS...Radiation TherapyEvening and Weekend Appointments516-501-1700Leading Experts...Dr. Joshua LachowiczMedical/Radiation OncologyThe Most Comprehensive Teamin Veterinary OncologyDr. Neal MauldinRadiation OncologyDr. Brian GrossbardSurgical OncologyDr. Dominic MarinoSurgical OncologyA Note fromtheEditorLast month, a Transportation Security Administration CanineTeam (TSA K-9) at the invitation of the Dr. Marino, an executiveboard member of the Police Surgeons Benevolent Association, offereda vivid demonstration of the ability of their dog sniffing teamto detect explosives; a quite impressive display. LIVS providesspecialized care for these uniquely trained dogs which the TSAgraciously acknowledged.During this month of festivities, we are pleased to haveDr. Mar Fortuny from Mallorca, Spain again visit LIVS andobserve the activities of Dr. John Sapienza and the Ophthalmologydepartment. LIVS is also happy to welcome Eli NathanielRuff to the LIVS family. Eli is Joseph Ruff’s newborn,5 pound, 10 ounce, 18 inch long son, born on October 3.LIVS is participating in project “TOY” sponsored by theFamily Service League of Long Island and the gifts havebeen filling our box with articles that will surely makesome less fortunate children smile at holiday time.On December 31st, many of our Team LIVS runners willparticipate in the Emerald Nuts run starting at Central Park.It is again sponsored by the New York Road Runners Club.Running enthusiasm is never missing at LIVS.We wish everyone a peaceful holiday season and hope thatall share with loved ones the promises of life and a muchbrighter 2012.Again, we welcome your comments e-mailed tolmarino@livs.orgLeonard J.Marino, MD, FAAPDr. Jacqueline CarverSurgical OncologyDr. Catherine LoughinSurgical OncologyMr. Lee O’DonnellRadiation TherapyMr Kenneth SatchwillRadiation TherapyLeading Experts,Revolutionary Technology, Unparalled Services,Cutting Edge Research2www.livs.orgwww.livs.org3

Feline House Soiling Part I: Inappropriate Elimination➤ Continued from Front CoverFeline House Soiling Part I: Inappropriate Elimination➤ Continued from Page 8Figure 2: A cat sniffing the litter before depositing urine in the box.Figure 3: Squatting position during the deposition of urine.United States. To be more precise, we defineit as inappropriate elimination when the cateliminates normal amounts of urine in differentspots all over the house, usually whilesquatting, while urine marking describes acat directing a stream of urine on a verticalsurface. To make things more complicated,cats may mark on horizontal surfaces as wellas while standing. To make a correct diagnosiswe should ask the owner if the cat isdepositing large (inappropriate elimination) orsmall amounts (marking) of urine. This paperwill focus on inappropriate elimination, urinemarking will be discussed in a future paper.Even if inappropriate elimination is not a problemthat would have negative consequenceson anybody living in the household with theculprit, it could affect the cat’s future permanencein that household. Cats that are responsiblefor unwanted elimination are most timesdispatched to shelters or worse, euthanized,and this is heart breaking as they are otherwisereally nice pets.Any medical reason affecting the urinaryor the GI tract, or any endocrine disorder characterizedby the emergency/need to urinate ordefecate may be responsible for the problem.Joints, muscle, and nerve conditions may createsome discomfort so that the cat is noteasily able to climb out of the box because itis too painful. Therefore patients that presentfor inappropriate elimination should undergoa thorough physical exam and basic diagnosticssuch as blood work, urinalysis, and fecalexams routinely to rule out any disease. It isimportant to note that a medical cause maystart the problem, and once resolved or curedthe cat would misbehave anyway, because,for example s/he could have developed a substratepreference as the litter box was recentlyassociated with a painful experience.Owners of cats showing inappropriateelimination should be asked very detailedquestions about the litter box (its size, itslocation, if covered or uncovered, its cleanliness,how many are available for the cat, etc.),and the litter (what brand, what type, howmany times a day it is scooped, etc.). Thepresence of other pets in the household and/or children harassing the cat at the litter boxmay be relevant to the onset of the problem.Even changes in the cat's environment (ownersnew work schedule, new furniture), orrecent acquisitions (a spouse, a new baby, theintroduction of a new pet), or losses (such assomeone moving out or the death of anotherpet or person), may all be contributing factors.Cats that urinate on owners' beds or belongingscould suffer from separation anxiety orbe at odds with someone in the household.Another aspect to be considered is the cat'sbehavior at the litter box (Fig. 1, 2, and 3.)If house calls are not an option, ownersshould sketch a map of the house highlightingwhere the soiled areas, the litter boxes, thefeeding/drinking stations, the perching sites,and the scratching posts are. This would be aprecious tool to understand the cat's motivationthat triggers the inappropriate elimination.The goals of the treatment plan are:1. Make the litter box extremely attractive2. Make the soiled spot/s not accessible orunattractiveThe number of the boxes should equal thenumber of the cats plus one. Therefore, if twocats are living in the same household, threeboxes should be available. The boxes shouldbe placed in different rooms to avoid ambushes,and on different levels if the cats are livingin a multiple story house to make them moreaccessible. They should not be put in noisy orcongested areas that could scare the cat andforce him/her to look for a more quiet placeto eliminate. The cat's age influences the boxchoice as well, the height of the sides and thesize of the pan would be different for a kitten,an adult, or a senior cat.The box’s cleanliness is another basic aspectto consider, especially when dealing withContinued on Page 9 ➤patients affected by inappropriate elimination. The littershould be scooped at least twice a day and changed completelyonce a week if it is clumping or even more if it of clay.The boxes should be washed with warm soapy water and letto air dry, preferably in the sun. When a cat has developed alitter aversion s/he should be offered different types of litteror substrates to identify the one that is acceptable for him/her. This is easily achieved if the cat is confined in a roomwhere different types of boxes and litters are offered (“littercafeteria”). It seems that cats usually prefer clumping ,unscented, fine granule litters, but there will always be anexception to the rule.With regard to the soiled areas, these should be cleanedwith enzymatic cleaners and not with ammonia or chlorinethat would instead attract the cat back to these spots. Foodand water bowls could be placed on those areas becauseusually cats do not eliminate where they eat or drink. Aluminumor plastic foils, plastic runners with the nubs up,lemon/orange scented potpourri are just some examples ofitems that would make those areas unattractive to cats. Alitter box may be put on that spot and gradually moved to amore desired area. Cats should never be punished becausethe problem could worsen. It would be preferable to rewardthe cat with a treat or the owner's attention whenever s/heuses the box correctly.Medication is usually not required in cases of inappropriateelimination unless anxiety is involved. Antidepressantsand/or pheromone diffusers may be prescribed, but alwaysin combination with a behavior modification plan. If youhave questions about inappropriate elimination, markingor any other unusual behavior manifestations, please do nothesitate to call me.If you would like to receive afree subscription toLIVS in PlainViewcall 516-501-1700 ext. 243 oremail with yourname, address, phone and fax number.Please put “LIVS in PlainView FreeSubscription” in the subject line.Improve mobility in 21 daysBacked by more studies and recommendedfor thousands of dogs, Hill’s ® Prescription Diet ®j/d is the first to introducebreakthrough nutrigenomicstechnology with clinically provenfood to reduce pain, repaircartilage and reduce the needfor NSAIDs in dogs with arthritis.Clinical Nutrition to Improve Quality of Life For more information, call Hill’s VeterinaryConsultation Service at 1-800-548-VETS (8387) or visit®/ Trademarks owned by Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Inc. ©2009 Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Inc.8www.livs.orgwww.livs.org9

A Calendar ofUpcomingEventsJanuary 2012Continuing Education On the Web Date(s) LocationTechnician Symposium and Technician Boot Camp(20 CE hrs) 1/28-1/31/12 North Grafton, MAFebruary 2012Continuing Education On the Web Date(s) LocationNeurology for the Practitioner (6 CE hrs) 02/26/12 North Grafton, MAVeterinary Continuing Education for theProgressive Small Animal Practitioner (16 CE hrs) 02/02-02/03/12 Miami,FLMARCH 2012Continuing Education On the Web Date(s) LocationAnimal Care Conference (21 CE hrs) 3/3-3/6/12 Garden Grove, CAJust Stallion Handling Short Course (16 CE hrs) 3/15-3/16/12 Kennett Square, PAPractical Dentistry & Radiology for the VeterinaryTechnician (7 CE hrs) 3/18/12 Maitland, FLHorse Behavior Short Course (16 CE hrs) 3/22-3/23/12 Kennett Square, PAWhole Cat Workshop (6 CE hrs) 3/25/12 North Grafton, MAIs it Physical or Psychological or Both?Equine Short Course (16 CE hrs) 3/29-3/30/12 Kennett Square, PAChronic Pain Symposium (12 CE hrs) 3/31-4/1/12 North Grafton, MAIf you would like to receive afree subscription toLIVS in PlainViewcall 516-501-1700 ext. 243 oremail with yourname, address, phone and fax number.Please put “LIVS in PlainView FreeSubscription” in the subject line.10www.livs.orgwww.livs.org11

Long IslandVeterinary Specialists163 South Service RoadPlainview, New York

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