Right now his daily diet consists of unlimited timothy hay, 1/8th of a cup of Oxbow pellets (which he rarely finishes), 2 mouthfuls of endive, 1 leaf of red lettuce, a tiny slice of both english cucumber and red pepper. He's been on this diet for approx 3 years now and has had no issues with sludge or stones since. Even the slightest change to his diet - such as giving him a tiny treat of fruit, brings on the sludge.
I feel guilty because sometimes it seems like I'm depriving him of so much food wise, but deep down I know it is for his own good. It's a darn good thing he's so cute, because he stresses me out more then my kids do!
- You can quote me
We have one that gets pellets softened in water mixed with carrot baby food twice a day, plus a big helping of greens along with. It's helped a little. He's still losing weight. I got him in May, 2006 and he was an adult then so he is minimum 7 1/2 years old, probably more like 8+. He behaves, however, like he's about 15 months old. (Our vet calls him Steven Tyler.)
Bony butt, the whole 9 yards. My only guess is that, like some humans, the food processing system becomes less efficient and they simply cannot eat enough to maintain their weight, because their bodies are not using the food as efficiently.
Strange thing is, I have done nothing yet to his diet and he gained 13 grams yesterday!? He wasn't quite as active as normal, so maybe that has something to do with it? I would prefer it I guess him being a bit skinny and active, then lazy and chunky which isn't good for his heart or hips.
- You can quote me
He sleeps a lot, deeply; his eyes roll up in his head and he twitches, but when he's active he's REAL active and REAL hungry. It's almost as if he can't get enough food to maintain his weight.
He's on a fairly low dose of heart med, but if I give him more than that he becomes listless and inactive, as if it's lowering his blood pressure too much.
Taylor's weight will fluctuate like that. I'd be willing to bet those 13 g may just have been some feces needing to come out and once they did, he was back to the previous weight. Less activity could also account for it.
He will pop corn the odd time, but he gets laughed at because it's more funny then any cartoon!
With his xray, his bladder was very clear which even surprised his vet. No sludge or anything, which for stone boy is amazing!
One thing I have noticed lately is his "tail" has finally grown back. Before he got this abscess, he had a patch of hair on his backside that would be a few inches longer then the rest of his hair. When he got sick it all fell out and stayed the same length as his hair. Now it is back and is approx 4-5 inches long and drags behind him. He also sheds a lot more though, but no bald spots or anything.
So it sounds from what you're saying, is this weight issue is quite common for seniors, which is a relief for me because I'm not anywhere near ready to lose him yet.
- Supporter in '15
Best of luck to your Timmy! (Pictures of his tail are needed for proof! :) )