Dedicated to "Bizzy" WHO WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR HAMPTON CATTERY
I. The Cattery
II. Stud Cats
III. Care of Stud Cat
IV. The Breeding Queen
V. Neuter Cats
VI. Mating Season
VII. At Time of Mating
VIII. Care of Queen in Kitten
IX. Queen at Time of Kittening
XL Kittens Aged One to Eight Months
XIII. Daily Care of the Long-haired Cat.
XIV. Care of Ears
XV. Care of Eyes
XX. Skin Diseases
XXII. Preparing for Shows.
XXIII. Medicines to Keep on Hand
ABC Cat Book on Feeding and Care of the Domestic and Long-haired Cat.
CHAPTER I - The Cattery
The owner of one or two cats, if they be queens or neuters, is not confronted with the problem of proper housing; but should you find yourself with two or more males and several queens, it then becomes necessary to give them proper quarters in which to live. The building does not need to be elaborate; but if possible should have a southern exposure, well up from the ground, plenty of windows, as light and air are very essential. Large, roomy quarters for each male, and do not attempt to house two males together.
Each room should be at least four by six feet, with a wood floor, covered with linoleum or any covering that can be scrubbed. Rough wood floors not properly covered spoil the cat's coat and make a good hatching place for flea eggs. Attach to each room by a hole cut in the wall an outside run, as large as space will permit.
I would suggest that this run be roofed as the hot sun plays havoc with the color of most of the long-haired cats. These outside runs are also better if floored and covered, and if protected can be used the entire year. A grass run can be arranged in front of the covered run but only for use on warm, sunny days as dampness is fatal to young stock and does not agree with adult cats.
Each inside room should be fitted with a shelf under the window, a chair if possible, a good box for winter; a heavy box with a strip about six inches wide nailed on the bottom of the front, to hold the bedding in place, which should consist of a good soft pillow or pad ; in fact, I use feather cushions and woolen blankets in extreme cold weather; curtains tacked on the front of the box with an opening left large enough for the cat to enter, makes an ideal sleeping box. In the summer these boxes may be replaced by open baskets and a light pad. Each room should also contain a fair sized granite pan, partly filled with sand or saw dust. I prefer saw dust as it does not hold moisture as long as sand and is free from fleas.
In dividing your cattery building, if you have two or more queens who will live together (most of them like company), screen off a large space where they can be together. If you plan to raise your kittens in the cattery, then a separate room of extra size must be arranged where the mother cat with her kits can be cared for. Many people are of the opinion that cats do not require heat in their houses but our winter shows have proven that the best coated cats have been housed in heated catteries with outside runs for exercise. A cat can stand cold in moderation, but must have a warm, comfortable place to sit when not exercising.
Be sure that your building has at least a six-foot ceiling and a sloping roof. See that it is kept immaculate, the pans changed regularly, for the cat is a clean animal by nature. Keep sleeping boxes clean and if you can add a wash rug to each room in the winter and a pad for each shelf and a toy for amusement, so much the better. If the building can be kept at a temperature of sixty-five degrees in extreme cold weather, during the day and reduced at night, the inmates should be very comfortable. Do not let the cats have the freedom of the outside runs at night. Sudden weather changes and dampness may cause troubles; close all windows at night. A ventilator in an upper corner of the building will give plenty of ventilation and the cats are much safer and your mind at rest. Remember that to have healthy cats, they must have plenty of room for exercise. Too many cats kept in close confinement will cause sickness and trouble.
CHAPTER II - Stud Cats
Great care should be taken in selecting a male for stud purposes. He should be as near perfection as can be obtained. Never undersized or of mixed color breeding. To the novice I would suggest that you go to the most reliable breeder in your vicinity; if there are none near at hand, write to the office of a good cat magazine and the information will be gladly sent to you.
Select your favorite color or decide the color you wish to breed. It is best to start with one color and if successful take up other colors later. Next, become familiar with the different strains of cats that have been winning at sanctioned shows; be sure and see the full pedigree of the cat you think of purchasing. Every animal has a pedigree, but be sure to have the pedigree show the color of all the ancestors and if registered stock, have the registration numbers attached. If buying from a reliable breeder or cattery, this information will be gladly given together with other valuable suggestions.
A young male is best to start with but sometimes an older stud may be considered if he is a proven sire and has a good show record. But usually a stud of this kind is not for sale and the novice might do better to buy the best in a young litter and raise their own stud. In this way the cat, if properly trained, by this I mean kindly treated, is more easily handled for stud purposes. Registered stock is the only stock to breed from if you wish to keep your stock pure and have a reliable record of the breeding
CHAPTER III - Care of Stud Cat
Never allow the stud cat to run at large, but give him a large comfortable room with an out-door run attached. Be sure that it has windows and light. The room should be at least six by six feet or it may be four feet by eight or ten feet. If you have more than one male, do not have their rooms adjoining, let them be at opposite ends of the building, for sooner or later they will become quarrelsome and injure each other even through the wire partition. It is a splendid idea to keep the room next to the stud vacant for visiting queens. In this way she can recover from her journey, become acquainted with the male, who no doubt will talk to her through the wire partition. I find one-inch mesh chicken wire the best for dividing the rooms, with a one-foot board at the bottom.
The male should not be bred from until at least a year old, although some are very keen under this age. Never let him have more than one queen a week until he is fully developed. It may be well to add that the male is rarely fully developed until three years old but will sire at an early age, but not to all queens, therefore if you desire a vigorous stud, do not use him too often while young. Make a pet of your male, win his confidence, spend as much time with him as you can and you will have far better results. The stud cat, whose owner lets rough it and looks upon him as a machine, is not to the cat you wish to breed your queen to at any price.
I have known of studs being used until they refuse to look at a queen; this is not done by reliable breeders but more often by dealers who think more of the financial end than the breeding of good animals.
CHAPTER IV - The Breeding Queen
Great care should be used in selecting a queen for breeding. If it is worth the time and trouble to raise cats, it is far more satisfying both from a show point view as well as financially, to breed them on scientific principles. Therefore, be sure the queen's pedigree is of the best, for this is of more importance than her looks although we like to possess both. Select the color you prefer and be sure her ancestors have been this color for at least five generations. To the novice I would suggest starting with a good queen; if you can buy a queen who has already had a litter of kits so much the better, as sometimes the young queen is nervous and may not have nurse for her babies and to the novice these things, while not common, might prove discouraging to the beginner. In keeping one queen, she may be given the freedom of the house and trained to go out for a walk in the garden or grounds with you. Never let her out alone or at some future date she may present you with a strange family of kits. Provide a basket or box for her sleeping place and train her to sleep in this at night. It is better to confine her to one room at night. A good healthy female usually weighs about six pounds at eight months to a year. Few weigh over eight pounds at maturity.
CHAPTER V - Neuter Cats
A male cat neutered, is by far the most successful to have as a pet; they grow much larger than the female or male, are as a rule in good coat and also quieter than the male; can be kept in the house as there is no odor attached to them. They should be neutered between the age of six to ten months, if increased size is the object. For stay-at-home purposes and inoffensiveness, it can be performed at any period. The female is sometimes neutered, but as I consider this operation (except when necessary by disease) inhuman and extremely cruel, I do not recommend it. The neutered cat can be exhibited at shows, but of course can not compete for championships. Some of our most beautiful specimens in our shows are the Neuters, as they are usually in good coat and are of great size.
Neuters are inclined to be a little lazy after they are full grown, so care should be taken in their feeding. No cereals or fattening foods, and after the age of three years, very small meals, only once or twice a day should be given. The neuter will attain greater age if not overfed.
CHAPTER VI - Mating Season
The first signs of wanting to breed sometimes occur when the queen is eight or ten months old; unusual affection will be shown, mewing, sometimes loud cries and often rolling over on the floor. It is best to put off mating till a year old, but if the cat does not eat well and becomes thin and continues calling for more than a week, it is then best to mate her. sometimes holding a queen over too long makes an indifferent mother and quite often a poor breeder. We will assume that you have had in mind the male you wish to breed your queen with. If your queen is very young, mate her to an older male ; if she is old choose a young male ; if she is in her prime, that is from two to six years, she can be bred to a male her own age. If the male resides at a distance and it is necessary to ship your queen, provide a comfortable box or shipping case, take to the train yourself and wire the owner of the stud what time your queen may be expected.
CHAPTER VII - At Time of Mating
If the queen has been shipped when she first shows signs of being in season, on arrival at the strange cattery she should be put in a room next to the stud and left to herself till she becomes accustomed to her new surroundings. Never put her with the male at once; some queens are very cross at this time and may injure your stud. If the queen arrived in the evening, the next morning put her with the stud for an hour or until there have been one or two matings then remove the stud until evening; return her for the same length of time but do not leave him with the queen over night. It is exhausting to both and injurious to the male. Usually these two matings will be sufficient, but if the queen has come a long distance and you are not sure, she may be put with the stud once more in the morning. Usually the male will refuse to mate after thirty-six hours. It has been my experience that it is necessary for the queen to remain from three to five days, as on arrival she is strange and nervous. Very often she will not eat and some studs will refuse to eat at this time. Do not feed them before mating but later give them extra feed. Have fresh water where the visiting queen can have access to at all times. When you feel sure of a successful mating, rest her and return to her owner. It is advisable to examine all queens shipped to you for skin troubles, fleas, or disease of any kind. I might also add that it is best to take as few visiting queens as possible; it is better to keep your male cat for your own queens.
CHAPTER VIII - Care of Queen in Kitten
When the queen returns from her visit to the male, after a few days she will settle down to her usual habits and if bred sleep much more than before. Give her good nourishing food, see that she is not handled and do not allow her to jump from high places. Jumping is one of the causes of miscarriage. Some queens will begin house hunting at once but others not for a few weeks before the kittens are due. Nine weeks or sixty-three days from the day of mating the kits may be expected, but if the queen is well and they do not arrive for a few days or even a week, do not be alarmed, unless the queen shows signs of sickness, does not eat, and has a discharge. In a case of this kind, call a good veterinarian as the cat has either been injured or something is wrong.
CHAPTER IX - Queens at time of Kittening
A comfortable bed should be provided several weeks before the family is expected. A strong wooden box, about 18 x 18 x 25 inches, lined or painted inside, with a strip of wood about six inches wide nailed on the front at the bottom to keep the bedding in place and the babies from rolling out. Curtains of dark material tacked across the front of the box with just enough space for the cat to go in and out. For several days before the kits are due keep a number of thicknesses of newspaper on the bottom of the box. The cat will tear these papers to shreds many times in making her bed to suit her and they can be replaced by fresh ones. When the day comes for the kits to arrive have a soft cushion in the box covered with an old bath towel or bedspread. If the cat has been well cared for during the nine weeks, and not fed starchy, fattening foods, she should have an easy time. However if she is in labour long and in pain, give about ten drops of Humphrey's Vet. G. G. in a few drops of water, every half hour till all the kits have been delivered. If it is the first litter, the cat may want you near her, and it is often best to plan accordingly.
If the litter is large it is advisable to have a hot-water bottle ready. Wrap this in a cloth and as the mother takes care of each kit, remove it to the hot-water bottle out of her way. After you are sure all the kits have arrived, remove the soiled bedding and give her the babies. Should the mother seem exhausted before all the kits arrive give her a saucer of evaporated milk diluted with warm water. If the kittens arrive head first, you will very likely have no trouble and aside from remaining near and giving clean, dry bedding, the cat will require no extra attention. Do not feed the mother heavy meals for the first two days; let her have plenty of fresh water and good raw minced beef; do not handle the kittens; protect them from the light. It may be your queen will not like a box for her bed and insist on finding her own place. In this case it is sometimes best to humor her till the kits arrive and then give her the bed you wish her to use. Sometimes a basket in a bed-room closet is a favorite place till the kits are old enough to get about.
HAPTER X - Kittens
The first four weeks of the kittens' life should be left to the mother, providing the mother is a healthy normal cat with plenty of nurse. Soon as the kits are born and the mother has cared for them, see that each one is getting nourishment. If they are satisfied, they will soon cuddle up and spend most of the time for the first two weeks sleeping and wiggling about the mother. If they cry continually, the mother may not have enough milk and it may be necessary to procure a foster mother, or to feed with a medicine dropper equal parts of warm water and evaporated milk, every hour, about two droppers' full at a feeding. A fostermother is best, but the average queen should be able to nurse her own kits, unless it is an unusually large litter. It is then advisable to pick out the weaklings or poorer specimens and humanely put them to sleep.
I consider five kittens as large a litter as one cat can mother; no more than one litter should be taken from a queen in a year. There are many cases of queens being bred for two and even three times a year, but poor stock is the result or the queen leaves off breeding while young, or she is never in good condition or coat. With highly bred cats one litter a year is by far the best, unless the cat is strong and healthy and has only had a litter of one or two. Some fanciers think nature decides this and that if the queen calls, she must be mated. This is a sad mistake and one good spring litter is far more profitable than two litters. Unless you have a warm, comfortable place to raise late kittens, a late fall litter is never advisable. As your breeding queens grow older the number of kittens in a litter decreases. The average queen is at her best from two to six years. We have cases of queens raising families at the age of ten and twelve years, but as a rule there is only one or two in the litter and quite often weaklings.
CHAPTER XI - Kittens Aged One to Eight Months
At about four weeks the kittens will try to get out of their box or bed; arrange a pad or incline so they may get in and out without falling. They love to run back and forth and this strengthens their legs. Do not let them have too much space at first, they will get lost and worry the mother. Have a pan with sawdust in it or paper spread where they can use it, whichever you wish to train them to use; in a short time, with a little patience and watching, you will find them house-broke. As they grow older increase their space for exercising but beware of dampness or draughts. Do not put them on the ground or on damp floors. Let them have light and sunshine.
In a litter of four or five, start feeding at four weeks. Eskey's Baby Food is excellent and Robinson's Patent Barley is used by many of the best fanciers, made as follows: Put a pint of water in a double broiler and bring to a boil, add one tablespoon of the Patent Barley, stirred to a paste in a little cold water with a pinch of salt and one tablespoon of sugar; let simmer, not boil, for forty-five minutes. Set away to cool, and when wanted for use, add enough evaporated milk to a saucer of the Barley to make the color of milk, a little lime water and give to the kits just warm enough to drink. Some of the kits will lap it readily, others it may be necessary to teach by putting their noses into it or putting some on their mouths but as a rule they soon learn. Give them this three times a day and if the mother cat has scant nurse, let her also have the barley. At five weeks, a pinch of raw scraped beef, moistened with lime water, can be given once a day to each kit. About as much as the tip of the finger and do not let them swallow it all at one time. See that each kit gets its portion.
At six weeks add a little of Spratt's pepsinated puppy meal to the meat with a speck of salt and bonemeal. Old Trusty puppy meal makes a splendid food for kits. For a litter of four, take a tablespoon of the meal, moisten with hot water, add the meat, salt and bonemeal, mix well and divide into equal parts and see that each kit gets an equal share. Some are greedy and may take more than one share. At first feed this once a day with three feedings of the Barley. In a week or ten days as the kits grow, feed twice a day with two feedings of Barley. Increase the amount as the kits grow, but do not start vegetables too soon, but a little cream of wheat may be added to the Barley three of four times a week, at the age of two months.
At the age of four or five months, a little green cooked vegetable may be added to one of the meat meals. Such as spinach chopped fine, beets, cabbage, carrots are fine, asparagus, in fact any but starchy foods like potato. At this age two feedings of solid food, with Barley or evaporated milk and water given at night, and several times a week some good raw beef-bones for. the kits to work on to assist teething, should make a healthy diet. Have the bones large enough so they can not be swallowed and never use sharp bones or those that will splint. Shin bone or shoulder bones are best.
CHAPTER XII - Feeding
Much has been said about the feeding of cats. It has been a common idea for years that the chief food for "puss" was milk. It is quite true that many cats on farms live chiefly on cow's milk, but it must also be taken into consideration that these cats have their liberty and hunt for game which takes the place of the raw meat provided for the pedigreed cat. If you are breeding pedigreed animals you will find feeding as well as breeding counts and the best results are obtained from a diet of raw beef. The diet should vary, but a percentage of raw beef should form part of each meal. The adult cat only requires two meals a day. A mother cat with kittens three meals, with a feeding of diluted evaporated milk. Feeding of kittens can be found in a previous chapter.
For the first meal, one-third of Old Trusty puppy or Spratt's puppy biscuit, a pinch of salt, a sprinkling of bone-meal, (unless it be a cat in kitten, when the bone-meal should be omitted), enough hot water to moisten and soften the meal ; into this two-thirds of good raw beef. I advise the buying of the cheaper cuts of beef (neck and shin) in preference to ''hamburger"; also leave a small percent of fat on the meat as animals require a percentage of fat in their diet. By buying these cheaper cuts and grinding the meat, the bones may be relished by both the adult cats and also used for the kittens. To this first meal may be added a cooked vegetable, cooked and chopped fine, well mixed with the meat and biscuit; a different vegetable each day will vary the diet and be much relished by the cat. For the second meal, the raw meat and biscuit without the vegetable. In warm weather cooked fish, boiled and boned, may be used once a week in place of meat, but if it does not agree with the cat or loosens the bowel, it is well to omit. Never use canned salmon; there is no nourishment in salmon. A sardine in oil is sometimes relished as a treat.
In the fall when the cats are putting on coat, boiled rice may take the place of a vegetable, and about once a month corn-meal mush. Lentils may also be used and are fine for coat growing. Avoid wet feeding and cow's milk; this produces dysentery, so fatal to kittens. Feed only as much as will be eaten quickly; never leave food in dishes. Also have fresh grass accessible, or sprouted oats, plenty of fresh water and once or twice a month catnip for a treat. By planning a day ahead a change of menu may be given the cat and it will be greatly appreciated. Lamb may be cooked with rice or fed raw once a week and is very nourishing.
In the summer months feed smaller meals and in. extreme hot weather, straight raw beef, just enough to satisfy. The stud, if being used frequently, must be fed a larger proportion of meat. The neuter, after attaining full growth, sometimes does better on one meal a day, as overfeeding and lack of exercise will shorten the life of most any animal.
CHAPTER XIII - Daily Care of the Long-haired Cat
A well groomed cat is an object of beauty and is often admired by those who do not like cats, but the cat whose coat is a mass of tangles and dirt is not pleasant to the touch or eye. First secure a good brush and two combs. Spratt's imported grooming brush made of bristles is the best. The combs should both be of steel. Spratt's are the best on the market. Have one with large, coarse teeth for combing out all snarls. Have one very fine small comb, about number eight, for combing fleas. Comb lightly in the fall, when the new coat is first coming; just enough to prevent tangles, then brush the hair forward - never flat down. In the spring when the coat is being shed, more vigorous combing can be done. The daily use of the flea comb will soon get any fleas that may be around unless the cat's surroundings are such that the fleas abound in large quantities, when some other means will have to be employed. Start combing kittens at an early age and they will become accustomed to it and be much more easily handled later on. Five minutes a day will keep a cat in good condition, if done each day. A properly kept cat, with clean surroundings, well fed, combed every day, needs very little extra grooming at show time.
Do not wash the cat. Cats as a rule dislike water, and washing only tends to make them neglect themselves. Light colored cats may be dry-cleaned by first rubbing them lightly with a cloth wet with alcohol; then powdered with cornstarch or talcum; be sure that the powder is all brushed out, which will require several brushings, as powder found on a cat in a show, is the means of disqualifying the entry. For any reason if it becomes absolutely necessary to wash the animal, be sure that a pure soap free from strong acids is used. See that the soap does not get in the eyes, and after rinsing, wrap in a bath towel or sheet, rub gently until nearly dry and then place in a covered basket, over a heater or in front of a fire-place. Be sure the animal is dry and protected from draughts for several hours after bathing.
CHAPTER XIV - Care of Ears
All cats, especially long-haired, are subject to ear troubles, the commonest form being ear-mites. These resemble a brown, hard wax, almost scaly, which if put under a magnifying glass, will prove to be live insects. Young kittens five or six weeks old may have these and they are highly contagious. This ear-mite if not cared for develops into ear-canker. A simple treatment for ear-mite is as follows:
First cleanse the ear with a soft cloth or piece of cotton, moistened with a warm solution of Borac Acid. Use the blunt end of a small wire hair pin, and when all wax and dirt have been removed and the ear thoroughly dry, drop in dry Borac and Iodoform; one part Iodoform to three of the borac. See that it goes inside the ear and does not get on the fur as it is very offensive to the animal. Repeat in a few days, and quite often one treatment will cure, but the ears must be kept clean. The ears should be cleaned once a week. In cases where ear canker has developed, I advise the services of a good veterinarian. Ear trouble can be easily detected by the constant scratching of the ears and shaking of the head. Watch the kitten's ears and see that they are kept clean, also the older cats; look them over once a week and a great deal of trouble and more serious ailments will be spared the cat.
CHAPTER XV - Care of Eyes
Kittens when first born and for two weeks, should be kept from the direct rays of the light; in fact for three weeks it is best to keep them in semi-darkness. The kitten's eyes should open on the ninth day and if not, the eye should be carefully examined and if found to be rough, bathe with warm milk and hold for the mother to wash. Should they continue to be sore after first open, a little vaseline may be applied.
A sore eye caused by a cold or exposure to the wind, or something in the eye, may be bathed with the following solution : To a pint of boiling water, add one teaspoon Borac Acid, one-quarter teaspoon salt, bathe the eye with the warm solution, using fresh absorbent cotton each time. If the eye does not yield to this treatment, one drop or 20 per cent solution of Argyrol may be dropped in the eye, night and morning. In cases of ulceration of the eye or a bad scratch, it is always best to consult a reliable veterinarian.
One of the main causes of eye trouble, is worms. To have clear, bright eyes, the cat must be kept free from worms. Also living in damp, draughty places, or sitting in strong winds, will cause sore eyes; and the use of strong disinfectants is very harmful to eyes.
CHAPTER XVI - Teeth
Between the age of three and eight months, the kitten cuts the permanent teeth, thirty in number. It may be the animal will refuse to eat, or works at the mouth. On examination, a loose tooth will be found and can easily be removed.
In the adult cat, tartar may form on the teeth, which must be removed and the gums well washed with Listerine. Always see that decayed or loose teeth are removed. If good raw bones are given to kittens at the teething period, much trouble can be avoided.
CHAPTER XVII - Worms
It is doubtful if the owners and breeders of cats are aware of the many troubles caused by worms. No animal with worms can be at its best. Dysentery, chronic catarrh, sore eyes, poor coat, loss of appetite then again ravenous appetite, are some of the signs that the animal has worms.
The round-worm and the tape-worm are the most common kind found among cats. Many claim the tape-worm is caused by fleas, the flea eggs being taken into the stomach with hair when the cat washes. Some claim too much meat causes worms, but whatever the cause and we are not at all sure of the cause, the worms must be removed.
There are a number of good worm medicines on the market. Be sure to follow directions closely and be sure it is a remedy you can feel safe to give. The ''Cat Courier" published in Detroit, Michigan, address to Henry Clay Hotel, handles very reliable cat remedies, and Dr. Woodruff, of Brainard & Woodruff, Cleveland, Ohio, also puts up a good worm medicine.
All cats should be wormed at intervals of about six weeks to two months, whether they show signs of worms or not, as it will keep them free from hair and worms. Hair in the stomach from washing, if not removed, causes hairballs, and these are very bad for the cat. All cats except a cat in kitten, or kitten under two months, should be wormed at least four or five times a year. Do not worm your cat immediately after an illness, as an animal already in a weakened condition can not stand worming. If in doubt about the trouble with your cat, call a good veterinary but do not wait to see if the cat will first recover and then call him and expect him to perform a miracle by curing an animal that is past help.
CHAPTER XVIII - Vomiting
Vomiting may result from an overloaded stomach, particularly if the cat has not been fed for a great length of time ; or it may indicate stomach trouble, indigestion, or very often, worms. When it occurs in a cat in good health, it need not cause much alarm unless it continues and the cat shows other signs of illness, such as loose bowels and extreme thirst. If the vomiting occurs from an overloaded stomach or a hair-ball is brought up, no medicine is necessary. If from some other cause, try one teaspoon of pure witch-hazel with the same amount of water, given as one dose. Use a medicine dropper. Repeat in one hour; follow with treatment of Humphrey's Vet. J. K. given as directed for small animals. I can not speak too highly of the Humphrey's remedies, as they should be in every cattery. Keep the animal on a scraped raw beef diet; if food is refused, use discretion about force feeding which is seldom successful. Bismuth Subnitrate, in number four capsules, given three times a day, while the bowels are loose, is also very good.
CHAPTER XIX - Dysentery
Dysentery has many causes. Improper feeding, colds, worms, stomach trouble and indigestion. If from worms, use a good worm medicine; if improper feeding, change the diet; if from a cold or indigestion, a dose of castor oil followed by Arsenicum 3X one every hour; in a severe case, one every half hour; when the patient shows signs of improvement give three times a day. If the bowels become slightly constipated, open the cat's mouth and put a generous piece of butter or vaseline on the roof of the mouth two or three times a day or until results are obtained.
In kittens, dysentery often occurs at teething time or from tainted foods or sour milk. The following treatment has been given to us by a fancier who has used it with good results. One-quarter teaspoon ginger, one-quarter teaspoon baking soda, one cup real warm water, stir and then let settle and pour off the clear liquid. Give one teaspoon every hour at first, later every two or three hours as needed. In some cases a dose of oil an hour before the ginger remedy is advisable. Always use a medicine dropper when giving liquid medicines. A number four capsule of Bismuth, three times a day while the bowels are bad is very good in all cases.
CHAPTER XX - Skin Diseases
There are many forms of skin diseases found among cats. Some are contagious and some infectious. The idea that all skin troubles of the cat are mange is a great mistake as few cases of mange are ever found. Eczema is often found; caused by feeding cereals and not enough meat; sometimes caused by climatic conditions; sometimes the animal is anaemic. First correct the diet, and if all fat has been omitted add this to the diet by the use of a good cod-liver oil, given once or twice a day. Be sure that the oil does not upset the stomach or it will have to be omitted. Feed good raw beef. The following ointment will be found free from poisons and not injurious to the cat: Sulphur, 8 grains; Zinc Oxide, 19 grains; Borac Acid, 8 grains; Salicylic Acid, 6 grains; about six ounces of Petrolatum, just enough to give it a thick consistency. Apply to sores once a day. The above ointment can be used in all skin eruptions. Humphrey's also have a medicine, their Vet. I. I. which is good for skin troubles caused by the blood or stomach. Humphrey's remedies are a standard remedy and for sale by most druggists.
CHAPTER XXI - Distemper
There is perhaps no other ailment as common or as fatal to cats as distemper. It is highly contagious and can even be carried on the clothes of the one handling the sick animal. Catteries where this disease has existed can not be too carefully fumigated, as the germs have been known to remain in a building over a year. The word distemper does not mean a disease but ''the symptoms of a disease."
There are three forms. The catarrhal, effecting the eyes, nose and throat. This form is the slowest to cure but the least fatal. The first symptoms are usually those of a cold, sneezing, watery eyes, nose discharging, loss of appetite, very often vomiting of white froth. A fever usually accompanies all cat ills. Humphrey's Vet. A. A. is the best fever reducer. Salina Cold Cure, given every hour with vaseline smeared on the roof of the mouth several times a day; the cat must be kept dry and warm and free from draughts. Keep the nose clean of all discharge and well greased with vaseline; if the eyes are inflamed, use a 20 per cent solution of Argyrol, one drop night and morning. Keep all bedding clean and destroy all clothes used in caring for the sick animal. The best diet is raw, scraped beef and when the patient is improving, a little boiled fresh fish, or sometimes a sardine in oil will tempt the cat to eat. It is always advisable to have on hand the Salina Cold Cure and at the first symptoms of a cold, use at once. This may be the means of preventing complications. Pabalum is another splendid remedy to have ready. This can be given once a day in capsules and is a tonic and usually keeps the animal eating, which is one of the main helps to a cure. The head and nose discharge may last for some time, but if the cat eats well and is kept clean and dry this should clear up.
Winter distemper is slower to cure than distemper contracted in the spring as the cat is sometimes left in a weakened condition and warm sunny weather does much to help a cure. The throat form of distemper very often develops into pneumonia. In the first stages the animal has difficulty in swallowing, often a harsh cough, and refuses all food. Use generously of vaseline, with Humphrey's Vet. A. A. and their C. C. given alternately; but should pneumonia develop, continue the above treatment and clip the hair on throat and chest and first apply hot pads or hot cloths and then a generous application of Vick's Vapor Rub. Cut holes in piece of Canton-flannel and put the front legs through and bring up over the back and pin. Keep the cat in the room about sixty-five degrees and out of draughts. It is best to have a cage to keep the animal in until the danger is past. When the fever leaves great care must be taken or a chill may cause a relapse. As the patient improves great care must be taken in the diet and the most nourishing food given. A one grain capsule of quinine given twice a day for twelve days is an excellent tonic for a cat recovering from distemper. Sometimes after an attack of distemper the bowels will become constipated. Castor oil or cathartics are too severe at this time. A mild enema of warm water given with an ear syringe or using the smallest tube of a fountain syringe. This will give relief at once. Be sure the patient is kept quiet and out of draught and only fed nourishing food such as raw scraped beef, juice from raw beef, milk and egg beaten together, a little boiled fresh fish, or a sardine in oil to tempt the appetite. When the animal is again eating, the regular diet can be resumed.
The last form of distemper and the most fatal, is the gastric form. This form is also highly contagious and usually fatal in a few hours. No real cure has been found for an advanced form of this disease, as the cat does not show illness until too far advanced to cure. If the animal's temperature is taken, a high fever will be found. Right here I wish to say that it is an easy matter to take the cat's temperature by rectum. Normal temperature should be about 101 to 101 &: 1/4 or 101 &: 1/2 This form of distemper most resembles typhoid. It is accompanied by frequent vomiting, bowels alternately constipated of offensive diarrhoea, often of a dirty green color; great prostration, high temperature, tenderness of the abdomen, intensive thirst, and the animal usually refuses to move and lies stretched out on the side.
I can recommend the following treatment but if the cat has not been a meat fed animal and has been fed cereals and ''slop feeding" I can not vouch for the results. First the vomiting must be checked; use the witch-hazel and water as given in Chapter XVIII, and follow with Humphrey's Vet. A. A. and J. K., alternating every hour. For the bowels if loose, Arsenicum 3X every half hour; if constipated, the mild enema. Then the Humphrey's Vet. A. A. and J. K. faithfully. Do not reduce the fever too suddenly, and when the temperature is normal, stop the A. A. and continue the J. K. till the patient is again eating. Once a day give a No. 1 capsule of Pabulum. Be sure the patient is kept in a clean, comfortable place. It is best to isolate and a cage such as is used for show purposes is the best for this purpose for if left in a large space, the animal is liable to crawl away into some cold corner.
If forced feeding becomes necessary, only liquids such as juice from beef, milk and egg or in extreme cases, a small quantity of brandy. Use a medicine dropper. In severe case of gastric trouble it is best not to force food the first thirty-six hours. If the patient recovers, the most careful attention must be given to the diet, as an overfeeding, may upset the cat and cause instant death. Feed small portions and several times a day. When the cat is out of danger regular feeding may be continued. I strongly avocate the inoculation of all young stock with serum for distemper prevention. If it is contracted after inoculation, it is usually only in a mild form. A reliable veterinarian should be consulted for this purpose.
CHAPTER XXII - Preparing for Shows
The cat that has been properly fed and cared for will require very little extra attention at show time. If the old hair has been combed out in the spring and the fleas gotten rid of, the new coat should be coming along nicely about October. Comb carefully with a large steel comb, just enough to not have knots form and then brush once or twice a day with a good bristle brush ; be sure and brush forward toward the head. Also see that the ears are clean.
If you own a stud cat, see that the oil is cleaned from the upper part of the tail; this is often called "stud oil" and sometimes discolors the tail. Soap and water is as good as anything for this. Do not send or take your cat to a show in poor condition ; fleas, dirt, knots in the coat, dirty ears, all count against the animal when judging. If a light colored cat, it may be necessary to wash the animal before showing. This should be done a few days before show time and the cat thoroughly dried and then brushed well. Some cats if not too soiled can be cleaned by rubbing with alcohol and then powdering with corn-starch of talcum. This powder must all be brushed out before the show or the judge may disqualify the entry.
Last and by no means least, ship your cat in a good carrier or box, well protected from the weather. A lined box is best, as it protects the long hair. It is advisable to accompany your cat when possible. If a little time each day has been given to the care of the ears and combing, very little remains to be done for show time. Conditioning can not he done in one or two weeks. It is the daily care that shows and brings results.
MEDICINES TO HAVE ON HAND
Humphrey's Vet. Remedies
A. A. - For fever and lung congestion.
C. C. - For head colds, discharge from nose.
D. D. - For worms.
E. E. - Coughs, hard breathing.
F. F. - Dysentery.
G. G. - Prevents miscarriages, arrests hemorrhages and throws off afterbirth. Splendid at time of kittening when cat has difficult time. Ten drops every fifteen minutes till delivery. Will also bring dead kittens.
H. H. - For bladder and kidney trouble.
I. I. - For skin eruptions.
J. K. - for indigestion, gastric troubles, out of condition.
The above remedies are standard and can be procured from any reliable druggist. They are Homoeopathic.
Wilson's Worm Medicine, (imported) - Sold by the Cat Courier, Henry Clay Hotel, Detroit, Michigan.
Dr. Woodruff's Worm Medicine - Brainard & Woodruff, Cleveland, Ohio.
The following remedies are all Homoeopathic and can only be procured from a Homoeopathic druggist. They all come 3X strength.
Arsenicum - bowel troubles.
Bryonia - Bronchitis.
Nux Vomica - One of the best remedies for indigestion, effects liver and bowels.
Rhus Tox - Used externally with sulphur, for skin troubles. Internally for ring-worm.
Cimicifuga - For pregnant queen two weeks before kittening, three times a day.
Phosphorus - Useful in bronchitis, excellent for kits in distemper.
Sallna Cold Remedies - On sale by Cat Courier, also many of the above.
Pabulum - A real conditioner and tonic. For sale by the Standard Drug Co., Cleveland,
Bottle of Vaseline.
Bottle of Vick's Vapor Rub.
Murine - For the eyes.
Argyrol - For the eyes and nose, should be bought in small quantities, as it loses its strength.
Witch-Hazel - Sure that it is for internal use.
Bismuth - For stomach and bowel.
Quinine Capsules - One gr. for colds and tonic.
Pine-Tar - To burn as a disinfectant, one of the best after illness.
Mineral Oil - As a mild laxative.
Last but not least, Columbia Healing Powder - For all cuts and scratches. Handled by the ''Courier."
The following description has been donated as a cure for piles. This has become a common complaint among cats, and is caused by constipation. The symptoms are lameness in hind legs, sometimes constant washing of hind parts, loss of appetite. Straining at stool. On examination of the rectum, sores or ulcers will be found and must be opened. If found to be high in the rectum, a veterinary should be called.
Pile Cure 1/2 oz. vaseline,, have druggist mix with one-tenth amount of calomel. Bathe the parts with good pure soap and warm water and apply salve night and morning. In all cases of injury a good veterinary should be consulted and if the animal can not be helped, humanely destroyed.
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