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March 06, 2005

Well, I'm sure from what I've written so far, it'll be an enormous surprise ...

To find out that Tink's annual vet exam Thursday was a completely uneventful event. Her weight (13.1#) met with the vet's scrutiny (she was up to nearly eighteen pounds a few years ago), her teeth were as near perfect as any seven year old cat's teeth can be expected to be (better than most, I'll wager), and her coat is its usual 'if we could clone her, troglodytes would pay millions for this!' plushness.

Not to mention the fact that she's a real dream to take to the vet. She cries for the five or six minutes she has to be in the crate in the car, between home and the clinic; she shuts up if I take her out of the crate once we get into the clinic. She never fights with me regardless -- into the crate, out of the crate, vet tech takes her into the back room, she has a thermometer shoved up her anus, vet tech brings her back, vet shines a light in her eyes, combs her coat, looks at her ears, sticks a needle in her. Tink doesn't make a sound. She's one of the most confident cats I ever saw.

Of course, she probably knows that if she genuinely felt threatened, those eighteen daggers at the ends of her toes could easily slip the hide off a buffalo without the buffalo breaking stride, so she has no reason in the world to lack confidence. She's the size of a Jack Russell terrier and probably stronger. Though she's fairly peaceful, I dread the day she ever has to do more then bop Max on the nose to keep him in line -- she could really do him some damage, if he got too uppity.

It's easy to ignore Tink, most of the time, because even though she was the first cat we got, once she developed the grudge she seems to carry to this day sometimes, over us going away for our honeymoon, she really didn't want a whole lot of high-volume contact or attention from the humans. Don't get me wrong -- the girl would have some of whatever you're eating or, if you won't offer it, the food you're determined that she eat. I've never had her turn her nose up, if it was something she could reasonably be expected to eat. She's the easiest cat ever, except for the hairballs, and all that requires is a good-quality maintenance food with enough bulk to keep the hair moving out her asshole.

Royal Canin, since you asked. Indoor formula. I think the 'key number' on that formula is 27, but I'm not sure. It's got the same basic stuff the Iams has -- dental plaque removers, bulk-forming hairball movers, lower overall fat and calories than the kitten or young cat/outdoor cat formulae. Unlike the Iams, she hasn't yakked up a hairball for quite a while (about a week after we put her on the RC, for that matter, after a month of weekly pukes for her, and daily regurgitations for Doodle).

Okay, so here goes. I can't fault Iams for their community service -- they genuinely go out of their way, here in Dayton, to donate to animal charities and help out the shelters. Unfortunately, I can't say with great confidence that their food is as good quality as it once was. The one thing you'd think a low-calorie, high-bulk hairball food would accomplish would be to keep cats from puking hairballs up all over the floor. It accomplished this admirably for a long time -- I think we had all four cats on it for the better part of two years, altogether, though we did go back to the regular hairball food for a while.

When the food you pay extra for so it'll keep you from having to clean up gut-slimy cat hair off the floor is no longer preventing you from having to clean up gut-slimy cat hair off the floor, it's time to re-evaluate your loyalty. I did that, and I decided to find something else.

Net result -- everybody happy. No hairballs, no puke, rare regurgitation from Doodle (though she does still yak occasionally, usually if I feed her too big a portion or she eats what she gets too fast), good dental condition, nice coats on everybody.

I still won't talk Iams down, since they do seem to try ... but their shit doesn't smell like candy anymore around here, since the quality is off. Procter and Gamble didn't do them any favors buying them, except to make beaucoup bucks for the people at Iams who received the payoff. Whoop-de-do. I can hardly bring myself to feel good for the people at Iams who raked in an assload of dough when I'm peeling cold, slimy cat puke full of protein matter off the soles of my feet at two in the morning on my way to the pisser.

And that's the way it is.

Posted by Melinda at March 6, 2005 03:35 AM


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