When your cat
is first diagnosed, you won't know what supplies you need. However,
having certain items in stock can be very helpful, especially when
your cat has a bad day.
gives recommendations on what to buy and keep in stock.
It also gives
tips on where to buy your supplies.
What To Buy
recommend that everybody buys the following items. If funds are tight,
which is often the case upon diagnosis because you've just been hit with
(often unexpected) vet bills, then at least buy the baby food, vitamin B
(especially methylcobalamin, vitamin B12), slippery elm bark, and Pill
Pockets and gelatin capsules if your cat is hard to pill.
Supermarket: Food Items
Since most CKD
cats have a poor appetite at initial diagnosis, I would aim to have items
in stock to help encourage your cat to eat. If you are in the USA, pop out
to your local supermarket and buy the following (which are all discussed
in more detail on the
Cat to Eat page):
2 baby food
(the Classic pate style foods are very high in phosphorus but appeal to
A variety of
cat foods that your cat might eat
(low sodium, no broth containing onions)
(available in Whole Foods)
on the page that you think your cat might like
If you are in
other countries, it may not be so easy to find suitable baby food, but
Persuading Your Cat to Eat for alternatives.
Pharmacy: Items to Help
Your Cat Feel Better
You may not
need all these items immediately, but it is worth having them in stock,
though of course do not use them without your vet's knowledge and
complement antibiotics in the case of urinary tract infections
If you are not
in a hurry, you can buy almost all you need online. This saves you time
(which you can spend with your cat) and effort hunting down what you need,
and it may also be cheaper. The following are usually easier to find
a convalescent food that appeals to most cats
(should also be available from your vet)
to encourage your cat to drink more. Most cats really like these once they
have got used to them.
monitor. These used to be really expensive, but I have found this one
that costs around US$50, and which is available in the USA, UK and Europe
(and possibly in other countries), making this a much more affordable and
extremely useful purchase.
You can use
local pharmacies, pet shops, supermarkets and health food stores. I do
like the concept of supporting local businesses wherever possible. In
particular, it often makes sense to obtain subcutaneous fluids supplies
locally in order to avoid the high shipping costs of these heavy items.
If you are in
the USA, it is always
worth going to
to check local prices of the items you are looking for. Also look into
discount cards in the USA, which can save you money.
Many people do
find it easier to buy their supplies online, particularly if they can do
one-stop shopping and then place repeat orders quickly.
Here are some
suppliers which members of Tanya's CKD Support Group use. Please also
Obtaining Supplies Cheaply for other suppliers in the USA, UK and
Amazon is a
treasure trove of supplies, and can be particularly useful if you have
Prime, because you will get fast, free shipping on items sold by Amazon
UK will often ship to other European countries.
Chewy in the
USA has an
amazing reputation for customer service. I have only ever heard good
things about this company. Chewy was bought by PetSmart in 2017, so this may change, but at
the moment Chewy continues to run independently and to have a good
reputation, though do not trust any dry matter analysis data they give
you, it is usually wrong.
Chewy has a
wide variety of goods at good prices, free shipping on orders over US$49
and an excellent returns policy. Since it is owned by PetSmart, branches
of PetSmart will also match Chewy's prices.
An online animal-focused pharmacy that has been running for over ten
years, Thriving Pets
stocks many of the supplies you need to care for a CKD cat, so you can do
one-stop shopping. They will ship to certain other countries,
though you will have to pay a US$10 Customs Paperwork
Fee plus shipping. Free ground shipping is available for orders
over US$49 within the USA.
If you enter
"tanya" (without the ") in the discount code box, you will receive a 10%
discount on orders over US$100. Items that need to be shipped chilled do
not count towards this promotion.
I get mixed
reports about Thriving Pets. They do have some fans who have used them for
years with no problems. However, some
of their prices are not too good, they go through phases of being very
slow to respond to enquiries, and they sometimes take a while to tell you
a product is out of stock, which is not helpful if you need it urgently. I
would recommend calling and checking availability before you order in such cases.
Some people live in disaster-prone areas. Even if you don't, you never
know what might happen. One Sunday afternoon, when I was alone in our
apartment, a firefighter knocked on the door and told me to get ready to
evacuate. You can imagine my reaction when I realised I was expected to
single-handedly carry three cats
down from the 42nd floor! Fortunately they were able to control the
fire, but I
gave serious thought to this matter after that.
If you are
likely to have to get your cats out of your home in a hurry, have clean pillow cases to hand, one per cat. You put your cat inside
one and knot the top. Not ideal, but this would have been the only way I
could have carried three cats down 42 flights of narrow emergency steps by
myself. Otherwise you need a soft-sided carrier per cat.
TREATING YOUR CAT WITHOUT VETERINARY ADVICE CAN BE
tried very hard to ensure that the information provided in this website is
accurate, but I am NOT a vet, just an ordinary person who has lived
through CKD with three cats. This website is for educational purposes
only, and is not intended to be used to diagnose or treat any cat. Before
trying any of the treatments described herein, you MUST consult a
qualified veterinarian and obtain professional advice on the correct
regimen for your cat and his or her particular requirements; and you
should only use any treatments described here with the full knowledge and
approval of your vet. No responsibility can be accepted.
If your cat
appears to be in pain or distress, do not waste time on the internet,
contact your vet immediately.
This site was
created using Microsoft software, and therefore it is best viewed in
Internet Explorer. I know it doesn't always display too well in other
browsers, but I'm not an IT expert so I'm afraid I don't know how to
change that. I would love it to display perfectly everywhere, but my focus
is on making the information available. When I get time, I'll try to
improve how it displays in other browsers.
This site is a labour of love, from which I do not make
a penny. Please do not steal from me by taking credit for my work.
If you wish to
link to this site, please feel free to do so. Please make it clear that
this is a link and not your own work. I would appreciate being informed of