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If the urine has soaked the pad and the floor below that, it will be difficult to remove the odor regardless of what you use.
To find spots if you're not sure where they are, get a UV lamp that has the filter built in (to eliminate any remnant visible light). Urine fluoresces in "black light." You can get them at hardware stores. There are also UV lamps in hobby stores and places that cater to spelunkers and rockhounds, but they're more expensive. The UV source is safe as long as you use the longwave lamp and not the shortwave lamp used for tanning.
When using enzymatic products, it is important to use freshly diluted enzymes, let it soak in as deeply as the urine has penetrated, and *keep the area warm and wet for 24 hours*. Chemical reactions, including enzymatic reactions, go faster at higher temperatures. Unfortunately, most enzymatic reactions don't do well much over 102F (38-39C)-- so not too hot. Try covering the area with towels soaked in plain water after applying the enzyme, then a shower curtain or other plastic over that to make sure the area stays moist.
The enzymes in laundry products are the same as those in the expensive odor-killing products, but they cost less than 1/3 as much. They work just as well. Biz is one product. You'll find it in your grocery laundry section with the pre-soak laundry stuff. Remember, you have to soak the area and then cover it to keep it from drying out. The smelly area must be wet with the enzyme for 24 hours or more.
You can find wild catnip plants in most weedy areas, and harvest the seed. Or you can buy seed from companies like Burpees or Parks or Northrup King -- most garden centers have catnip seed this time of year -- check the "herb" section. Or even seed racks in the grocery and discount stores.
Catnip is easy to grow. You will need to keep the plant itself out of the reach of the cats as catnip-lovers will quickly destroy it. The best strategy is to get some growing, and then pinch and prune it regularly and give the harvested leaves to your cat. Keep it in its own pot, as it will spread rapidly. Cats will tend to dig up transplanted catnip and eat it roots and all, but are much gentler on plants started from seed. The leaves have to be bruised to release the odor, and transplanting seems to be enough bruising...
Nepeta cataria is the common catnip; other Nepeta species have varying amounts of "active ingredient". A good one is Nepeta mussini, a miniature-leaved catnip that makes a good rockgarden plant. Nepeta is a genus of the Lamiaceae (=Labiatae), the mint family. There are about 250 species of catnip, plus a bunch of hybrids between species. Only about 10 are available in this country, though.
You can order seeds from Burpee (215-674-9633)
Nepeta cataria B61424 $1.25; N. mussinii B38828 $1.45
Valerian root is an herb with effects very similar to catnip and generally makes cats a bit nuts. It is however not as readily available as catnip and perhaps a bit more potent than catnip.
Catnip and Valerian both act as sedatives on humans.
Most cats, whether or not they like to get wet, will be fascinated with watching water drip out of faucets or drain out of tubs, sinks, and toilets.
Reports of cats drinking from the bottom of the shower, from the sink and other unlikely places are common. Some cats can be fussy about water; they seem to like it as fresh as possible, preferably still moving. You may be able to stop some of this behavior by changing the cat's water every day and moving it some distance away from the food dish. In general this habit will not hurt your cat, however unpleasant it may look to you. Toilet water drinking *should* be discouraged, but this is easily done by leaving the lid down.
Assertions have been widely made that the roaring cats above are not able to purr, assertions that have now been disproven. George B. Schaller reports purring in the lion, tiger, and leopard, as well as in the cheetah, but remarks that in the lion the sound is produced only during exhalation and appears to be a much less common vocalization than in the domestic cat . Snow leopards purr, like the house cat, during both exhalation and inhalation . Others have reported that tame, young adult tigers, leopards, jaguars, and cheetahs purr in response to petting. Finally, purring has even been reported in five species of viverrids, as well as suckling black bear cubs and nursing spotted hyenas . These observations are interesting when compared with Gustave Peters' comment that there is still some question about the occurrence of purring, in a strictly defined sense, in the wild cats . He questions whether the noise identified as a purr from the big cats is pthe same in detail and manner of production as the purr of a domestic cat. Of the seven large cats he studied (he did not consider the cheetah), he observed true purring only in the puma, but considered it probable that snow leopards and clouoded leopards also purr. Thus there is still some doubt about the distribution of the ability to purr among the wild cats.
 Ewer, R. F. 1973. THE CARNIVORES. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
 Hemmer, H. 1972. UNCIA UNCIA. MAMMALIAN SPECIES No. 20, 5 pp.
 Schaller, G. B. 1972. THE SERENGETI LION. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
 Stuart-Fox, D. T. 1979. MACAN: THE BALINESE TIGER. Bali Post (English edition) July 23, 1979, pp. 12-13.
If you have the overwhelming urge to be around wild animals, your best bet is your local zoo. Many zoos have volunteer docent programs and you will not only be able to spend time with the various animals, but also learn a lot about them and have the opportunity to educate the public while conducting tours or participating in other public relations programs.
Red in cats is a sex-linked color, carried on the X gene. Therefore, a male cat whose X carries red will be a red tabby. A female cat who carries one red and one non-red X will be a patched tabby, a tortoiseshell, or a calico (if she also has the dominant gene for white markings). A female cat who is homozygous for red (has it on both X genes) will be a red tabby. This is why you see more male red tabbies than females. This is also why male calicos are so rare: you have to have two X genes to be a calico. Male calicos have genetic aberrations of various sorts, of which XXY is most common. While they are most commonly sterile, there *are* documented cases of fertile male calicos. However, the generalization that "all calicos/torties are female" is true 99.999 percent of the time.
The reason red females are "uncommon" is that, statistically, the number of red males is equal to the number of tortoiseshell/calico, patched tabby, and red females. Red males and tortie/calico/patched tabby females can be produced when only one parent has the red gene, but to produce a red female, you must cross a red male with a red/tortie/calico/patched tabby female. That is why red females are uncommon. But not "impossible", in the sense that a male calico is "impossible."
A "solid red" cat will always display the tabby pattern (although it may be very slight or even undetectable without brushing the fur back to check). There's another gene at work which controls "agoutiness" (whether individual hairs are banded or solid). Cats who are non-agouti will not generally display the tabby pattern, except in red areas. The non-agouti gene does not affect phaeomelanin, the red pigment, so red cats always show their tabby pattern.
The red gene "overrides" the solid gene, making the tabby pattern visible again. (And on other solid colors, you can sometimes notice the underlying stripes, especially in strong light.) Solid red cats at cat shows may or may not be genetically solid--they are (generally longhairs) bred for the "blurring" of the tabby pattern, producing a cat that doesn't have dramatic markings.
Solid Tabby ----- ----- black brown tabby blue blue tabby red red tabby cream cream tabby chocolate chocolate tabby cinnamon cinnamon tabby fawn fawn tabby
The colors a calico will produce depend on the color of the sire. But at minimum, she can produce red and non-red sons, and patched tabby/tortoiseshell/calico daughters, as well as non-red daughters. Whether she will produce tabbies or not depends on the genetic makeup of the sire. And *any* of the kittens could have white markings, or not.
Basic cat colors:
Color Dilute form ----- ----------- black blue (a grey color) chocolate lilac (a pale pinkish-grey) (chocolate is a recessive gene which changes black to brown) cinnamon fawn (a very pale pinkish-tan) (a light reddish brown, found mostly in Siamese and Abyssinians) red cream (ranges from yellowish to tannish or buff) (red and cream are sex-linked, on the X gene, and mask the previous colors. Actually, there's a separate shade of red/cream to match each of the previous colors, but it's hard to tell them apart, unless you're dealing with a tortoiseshell or patched tabby, which has the non-red areas to give you a hint.) white (Here we refer to the dominant form, which is masking over the previous colors. It has no dilution.)
Everything else is a modifier!
Modifier Dominant/Recessive -------- ------------------ white spotting (paws, etc) dominant polydactyly (extra toes) dominant manx (taillessness) dominant silver (inhibits hair color at roots) dominant white locketing (small spots on chest and/or groin) recessive dilution (black->blue) recessive chocolate dilution recessive cinnamon dilution recessive bobtail (partial taillessness) recessive solid (no tabby markings) recessive long hair recessive
Some genes are incompletely dominant to each other, and are part of a series. For example, the siamese/burmese genes, from most to least colored:
Burmese/Siamese/blue-eyed white/pink-eyed white (albino)
The coloring of the Burmese and the points of the Siamese is temperature sensitive. The cooler extremities of the Siamese are darker; a Burmese that has had a fever may grow in lighter fur for a while! Such changes are usually temporary, but may take some time to grow out.
All cats (even those homozygous for solid) have a tabby pattern. There are different tabby patterns, from most to least dominant:
Mackerel/Classic/Ticked. The spotted tabby pattern is thought to be a var`qiant of the Mackerel pattern, not genetically distinct, but the jury is not yet in.
Smokes and Chinchillas. This is the combination of the expression of the silver gene (a dominant), and the gene for solid color (a recessive). Other modifiers account for whether the cat is a referred to as a smoke, a shaded, or a chinchilla. From most to least colored: a "smoke" has white roots, a "shaded" has about half and half white and color along the length of the hair, and a "chinchilla" has color only on the very tips of the hair. If the cat is a tabby instead of a solid color, that is a silver tabby. And if the base color is not black, that would be added to the name as well: blue-cream smoke, red silver tabby, etc.
Some people invest in humidifiers for the house, and that reduces the static in a cat's fur as well.
Yield: 800 kcal metabolizable energy; 30% protein, %ME. (1.3% calcium, 1.1% phosphorus, 0.5% potassium, 0.45% sodium, 0.15% magnesium, calculated on a dry matter basis)
To reduce fat levels, substitute one of the following for the 70 g (2.5 oz)of 80% lean hamburger:
100 g (3.5 oz) 90% lean meat 10% fat 120 g (4.3 oz) egg 12% fat 180 g (6.3 oz) heart 4% fat 230 g (8.2 oz) cottage cheese 1% fat 400 g (14.4 oz) egg white, COOKED 0% fatSubstitute 1 tsp safflower oil for 2 tsp corn oil. In extreme cases, reduce safflower oil to 1/2 tsp., or substitute MCT (medium chain triglyceride)
If the bran is too irritating to the intestines, replace all or part of the bran with alpha cellulose (e.g. Solka Floc, from Brown & Co, Berlin, New Hampshire, USA). This will greatly decrease the available calories also.
I tried the recipes above on my 6 cats (not picky eaters!) They eagerly accepted the basic diet, but were not especially fond of the reducing diet... adding a tsp of instant minced onion seemed to improve the acceptance, as did a little catnip mixed in.
Most cats should do well with the basic diet. If you make major changes (such as the low fat or reducing versions), you may also want to make up some basic diet and gradually shift the cat from basic to special diet.
Some people are simply allergic to new cats. This kind of allergy means that it will diminish with repeated exposure. Thus you will not be allergic to cats that you are exposed to regularly; and actually become allergic to your own cat if you're away from it for some time. Washing hands frequently helps with this type of allergy.
Other people are allergic to the saliva on the cat's fur. A remedy for this is to bathe the cat once a month. No soap is needed, merely soak the cat thoroughly. Done on a monthly basis, it seems to keep the saliva levels down to a tolerable level. This was reported in a scientific journal somewhere; Cat Fancy covered it a few years ago. [exact reference?]
You may be allergic to cat hair, in which case you may want to get one of the breeds of cats with short, little, or no hair. There is a hairless cat, the Sphynx, and there are breeds of cat which are entirely lacking in the kind of hair (cats have four kinds of hair) most people are allergic to. These are the Cornish Rex or Devon Rex breeds, and their fur is short and curly.
You could go to an allergy specialist and get shots to help you with specific allergies. This can be expensive, but worth it, especially if you have other allergies as well. They'll test you for the things you're allergic to, and then give you periodic shots to help you develop an appropriate immunity to them. Be sure to find a specialist familiar with cat allergies: many will simply recommend you get rid of pets. Also, don't expect miracles. They can do a lot for you to reduce your allergies, but sometimes they can't track down a particular one, and sometimes it takes more than "just shots" to deal with an allergy.
The magazine New Woman (October 1992) has an interesting article about a cat-allergy vaccine. Catvax is being developed by the Immulogic Pharmaceutical Corporation (I.P.C.) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and is now being tested on humans at Johns Hopkins University. Tests on animals indicate that Catvax is different from traditional cat-allergy shots in two ways. First, unlike conventional allergy therapy, which involves biweekly or weekly injections for up to a year, the vaccine may be able to completely prevent allergic reactions after just a few injections. Second, studies suggest that the vaccine will not produce allergic side effects, such as asthma, that traditional shots often do. I.P.C. hopes to complete its human studies and have the vaccine on the market by 1996 or 1997.
There is an informative article "When Humans Have Allergies: Ways to Tolerate Cat Allergies," in Cats Magazine, April 1992. The August 1992 issue of Cat Fancy contains an informative article; the September 1992 issue has a survey of people's experiences with allergies and what worked for them.
In theory, you can catch it by cleaning the litter box or by working in a garden used as a litter box. Most commonly, people catch it by handling raw meat or eating undercooked meat. Many cat-exposed people have had toxoplasmosis; the symptoms are similar to a mild cold.
The problem occurs when pregnant women contract toxoplasmosis. This will severely damage the fetus. Simple precautions will prevent this problem; unfortunately many doctors still recommend getting rid of cats when the woman is pregnant. A good idea is to get tested for toxoplasmosis *before* you get pregnant; once you've had it, you will not get it again.
You should note that there has yet to be a proven case of human toxoplasmosis contracted from a cat -- the most common sources of toxoplasmosis are the eating or preparing of contaminated raw meat.
To prevent human contraction of toxoplasmosis:
An article in Cats Magazine (January, 1994) mentions toxo. To quote:
...transmission of the disease between cats and humans is highly unlikely. In fact, Karen D. Brooks, DVM, states that 'although the possibility of transmission from cats to humans exists, there has never been a documented case of prenatal toxoplasma infection in a human that was caused by a cat' (Veterinary Technician, September, 1992). Experts believe the real culprits of toxoplasmosis transmission are probably contaminated soil and infected meat.If you have had toxoplasmosis in the past, you can't get it again. You can be tested to determine if you already have the antibodies, indicating that you have had the disease in the past and would not contract it again. Even if you do carry the antibodies, it would be wise to take all the same precautions, but that simple test could help ease your mind about the risk.
The only way cats can transmit toxoplasmosis is through their feces, so simply having another family member change the litter box or wearing gloves and washing thoroughly afterward eliminates the risk. A pregnant woman should also wear gloves when gardening to avoid any contact with feces that may have been buried by outdoor cats. If other children in the family have a sandbox, it should be covered to prevent cats from using it as a litter box. It must be stressed that it is not possible to contract toxoplasmosis by petting, being licked by, or otherwise handling a cat.
Re: toxoplasmosis: This is a short summary from the chapter on zoonoses (animal/human shared diseases) by Gary D. Nosworthy (pp. 577-582) in Nosworthy, G D (ed.) 1993. Feline Practice. JB Lippincott, Philadephia. ISBN 0 397 51204 X
Approximately 80% of the cats in the US show evidence of prior infection with Toxoplasma gondii, the causative organism. However, cats are able to release the stage (oocyst) that can infect humans only once during the cat's lifetime, and then, only for a maximum of two weeks. Oocysts remain infective for about 5 days maximum.
About 1/3 of the US population has been infected with T. gondii; once you are infected, you are immune. The only time that T. gondii causes more of a problem than a mild flu-ish illness is if you are immunosuppressed (AIDS, organ transplant recipient, etc.) or you become infected while you are pregnant. About 20-50% of the fetuses exposed to their mother's new T. gondii infection will become infected. Current US estimates of infection are that 1 of 1000 babies (0.1%) are infected. If you have a previous infection with T. gondii, you can handle infected materials with impunity during pregnancy... you and your baby are protected by your antibodies.
Cats are probably not the largest source of infection of T. gondii in the US: Having a pet cat, direct contact with cats around the house, working in a vet hospital do not increase the likelihood of contracting toxoplasmosis.
The best way to prevent the problems of toxoplasmosis contracted during pregnancy may be to contract it BEFORE pregnancy... The most common mode of transmission in the US is contact with uncooked or undercooked meat, esp. pork.
Other modes of transmission in the US (much rarer) include transfusions of blood cells or platelets, or organ transplants.
There is also an experimental vaccine for T. gondii in cats. It is not commercially available.
Vets and physicians can have blood samples tested for T. gondii antibodies. T. gondii antibodies during pregnancy do not mean that the woman has just been infected... they probably reflect an old infection. Only rising antibody titers during pregnancy are a cause for concern.
Good cooking and handwashing practices will reduce the likelihood of infection of a previously uninfected pregnant woman to nearly nil. [an error occurred while processing this directive]