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We adopted Dexter about a year ago. He is about 10 years old and was dropped off at the shelter with a mangled back foot due to a trap, nearly dead from starvation, full of buckshot, and ears nearly destroyed from mites. He is recovering and is now a diabetic requiring 2 shots a day. Now that he is stronger we are trying to address his coat. He had longer hair (perhaps a ragdoll?) and his back quarters are full of mats. We are slowly cutting them out. Any more suggestions? Also, his back quarters are quite boney and seem painful. Thanks! Cary
 

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Here is some advice I got from felinefanatic :D

The knots that are really bad have to be cut very carefully, but some knots can be combed out or more acurately, , ripped out....
it will leave a bald spot, but it will grow back.
lets see if I can describe this well enough for you to understand:

If you have hold of a comb, normally you would comb the cat by holding the comb in a horizontal fashion, right ?

with the big knots, hold the comb in a VERTICAL position, placing the first few teeth of the comb in the middle on the knot and pull through. Effectively you are ripping the knot in half, keep doing this and it will break up the knot completely, then you can comb horizontally again.....

hope that made sense....
 

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Great advice, kitkat! Another suggestion would be to eliminate having to do the grooming yourself, and find a professional groomer that will cut the mats, shampoo and dry him, and show you the ropes as far as daily maintenance of his coat...there are lots of groomers in my area, and none seem to be overly costly...

Bless you for taking in an old, loving soul! I really have a soft spot for the elderly cats...
 

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Looks like you got some good tips about the mats. What I can say about his back quarters...get them looked at. At ten years old its possible he might have a bit of arthritis -- drjean has talked about something that can alleviate that well so I'd get a hold of her if that's what he has. If he feels bony back there he might be underweight -- could that be it? He could also have an injury. I'd get this looked at, definitely.
 

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I agree with wookie130. I'd take the cat to a professional groomer to have the mats cut out. Matts, especially ones that have been thier for a while, get so tight they start to pull on the cats skin and make it very painful for the cat, so the sooner they're gone the better. I've seen one cat that was so matted that it actually had sores on it's skin from the matts!
 

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I also have a mat problem. My 3 year old DMH cat only gets mats in the winter.

He's a NIGHTMARE to try and brush though. I would really appreciate any advise.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
mats

thanks for all the tips. The mats are GONE with much work and turkey. THANK YOU!! Those darn things must have been soooo uncomfortable because now he is much more willing to be petted. He is a good old soul. I will find out aboout the arthritis supplement. He is under weight and goes to his vet about every two months due to diabetes. I really appreciate this forum.
 

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How long has he been diabetic? I only ask because (and I'm sure everyone here knows) my Sabby is also diabetic. He gets 3 units of Humulin L twice a day. He's overweight, though. Before he became diabetic, he was 19 lbs. Then he lost 7 lbs and was really sick. He was vomiting all the time and was incontinent and didn't play. Mostly he just laid in the kitchen. When he was diagnosed with diabetes, I changed his food and started him on the insulin injections. I took him to the vet once a week for blood glucose testing. After a couple months we got his blood glucose under control. I've switched his food again to Wellness canned and that has helped a lot. Some of you may remember that I had switched him to Hill's i/d. I've since found that switching the flavors of the Wellness takes care of the diarrhea problems he experienced. Since Wellness has very few carbs in it, I don't have to give him so much insulin (at one point, he was getting 5 units twice a day!). I now only have to take him in every six months or so. He's regained all the weight and is back up to 19 lbs. He needs to lose some weight, but I don't know how to go about doing that since he only gets Wellness canned and I play with him as much as he'll allow.

I'm really kind of bad at making my point online, so here's where I spell it out at the end. :)

I guess what I'm saying is, thank you for taking in a diabetic cat. I know a lot of people who have euthanized their cat or just let it die because they figured diabetes was a death sentence. It isn't. And things do get better.
 

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We had Dexter for about a year when we found out he was diabetic. That was about 3 months ago. He is on Science diet m/d both canned and dry. I also feed him boiled ground turkey because he is snubbing his nose at the m/d as of late. He gets 2.5 units 2 times a day and is such a trooper at doing it. I would advise anyone who is faced with this situation that you CAN deal and face it. I was scared to death to give him shots but my vet worked with me and now it is old hat. I love him what can I say :D Again THANKS
 

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heheh

Sabby will remind me when it's time for his shot. Even the 7:30 one where he doesn't get fed. He'll come up to me, sit at my feet and stare. He doesn't mind the shot at all and usually even purrs when I give it to him. Sometimes he wants to play and will try to flip around onto his back while I've got the needle in his neck! Silly cat. :)

Dr. Jean and the folks at the Feline Diabetes Message Board recommended using Ketostix to test blood sugar at home. It's nice to be able to figure out if he's still regulated without taking him to the vet. Although, it is hard to be in the right place at the right time (he has to pee on the stick).
 

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Dexter reminds me too! I will try the Ketostix. He is not a modest kitty, so I think I can get him to pee on a stick!
 
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