C17: Day 123 – Sorry, Grabbity

by Suw on May 3, 2017


Last summer, we noticed that Grabbity was having a problem with her waterworks. She was peeing blood, peeing outside the box, washing herself a lot and had little to no control over the bladder. We whipped her off to the vet, who did a urine analysis and discovered she had a slight infection and crystals in her bladder. This isn’t a hugely unusual problem, and we managed to deal with it after two rounds of antibiotics, some painkillers and a special diet to help dissolve the crystals.

A few weeks ago, Grabbity decided that she no longer wanted to eat the special food, and Kevin was away so I couldn’t get a new bag from the vet, so back on to normal food she went for a week. When Kevin got home, we went and got another type of urinary food, but within 3 days, we had a new and different problem: Grabbity was, not to put too fine a point on it, wetting her pantaloons. For reasons we still haven’t worked out, when she went for a pee she was managing to get it all down her leg, from about mid-thigh downwards. I’d have to pin her down and clean her up, which wasn’t huge amounts of fun for either of us. I took her off the new food, worried that it was making her drink so much that it was overwhelming her system, and made another vet appointment.

This time, there was no infection, nor was she suffering from diabetes, which was my main worry given her apparently unquenchable thirst and the amount she was peeing. But she did have more crystal fragments in her urine – not a good sign.

We went back to her original food, which she’s now decided she likes again, and the problem seems to be clearing itself up. We’ve only had one wet pantaloon incident in the last week, and hopefully that is now the end of it.

So what was the problem? We don’t really know, but my theory is that she had bits of crystal in her plumbing that were either getting in the way and making her less neat than normal, or causing her discomfort and altering how she squatted. The vet wasn’t able to give us a diagnosis, so that’s our best guess (though it is just a guess).

I do feel a bit bad though – the correlation between the wet pantaloons and the second type of urinary food was just that, a correlation, it was almost certainly not causation. And maybe had I not stopped her from eating it, her problem might have cleared up sooner. It’s also unfortunate that we weren’t able to get a vet’s appointment faster.

So, if your cat is getting their fur wet when they pee, take her straight to the vet and ask for a urine analysis, and ask whether a urinary diet is appropriate. I was aware of the signs of a urinary tract infection – the bum-washing, the blood, the peeing outside of the box, and the loss of bladder control – even though cats do a damn good job of hiding it when they are poorly. But I had never come across this problem, where urine gets on the cat’s own leg fur. So I hereby add it to the list of reasons to seek your vet’s advice if it happens to your cat. Don’t let your cat suffer with a soggy bottom.

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Happy Birthday!

by Suw on May 12, 2011

It’s not only Kevin’s birthday today, but also that of Grabbity, Sir Izacat Mewton and their siblings Emo, Davina, Bob, Loki, Pancho & Mowgli, who are two years old. Hare to believe we’ve had so many years of wonderful furry purry madness, and that’s just Kevin!

Still, happy birthday to all three other lifeforms in this flat!

Grabbity doesn’t need a book to win her arguments. She uses pure kyewt instead.



Mewton doesn’t entirely fit in the hat, but is giving it a damn good try!



My wonderful husband at the House of Trembling Madness in York, shortly before trying the Brewdog Tactical Nuclear Penguin weaponised stout (but that’s a whole different story).

Happy birthday all!!

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Cat lift

by Suw on March 4, 2010

The entire ensemble is operated by the cat, via sensors:

I am sure Grabbity and Mewton would love one of these!

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An almost lethal dose of cute

by Suw on November 27, 2009

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First introduction to the Kitten Wheel

by Suw on November 10, 2009

My Dad made us a cat wheel so that Mewton and Grabbity can burn off a little energy – energy that they would otherwise burn off at 2am by jumping up and down on our heads. This is a prototype, made of steel, hardened woven kevlar and, yes, duct tape. The wheel is whisper quiet and spins incredibly smoothly (possibly a bit too smoothly!).

I picked the wheel up from Dorset yesterday and we unpacked it and pretty much left the kittens to just get used to it being around. They don’t seem overly bothered by its presence, so we tried to introduce them to the idea of running on it today, using the age old tactic of bribery and corruption. Our attempts met with a modicum of success, but I think it might take a while for them to build up the confidence that they can just jump on, run for a bit, and then jump off again, but I’m pretty sure they’ll get there!

The next prototype will be prettier and if anyone wants one, we’ll sell it at cost plus a wee bit for labour. (This one cost udner £150.) Just get in touch if you’re interested.

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Cat perch

by Suw on October 21, 2009

I hope Grabbity doesn’t see this – she might get ideas.

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Grabbity’s double fangs

by Suw on October 4, 2009

I’ve had cats all my life, including some kittens, and I’ve never caught one in the act of getting their adult teeth. Usually kittens teethe, swallow their milk teeth and the new ones are there to fill in behind so there’s nothing much to spot. But I was surprised to see Grabbity – who has been chewing on everything in the flat she can wrap her teeth around – has two sets of fangs in her upper jaw.

Grabbity's double fangs

I first spotted them on Friday, so I’m going to keep an eye on them and if the deciduous teeth (that’s milk teeth to you and me – I had no idea that deciduous applied to anything other than trees! does that make her permanent teeth ‘evergreen’?) don’t fall out within the next week I’ll be talking to the vet to see if they need pulling.

Meantime, they do look rather impressive!

Grabbity's double fangs

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