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February 25th 06, 03:53 PM
Subject feline is a grey neutered male long-haired domestic. He's
almost fourteen and is heavy, weighing in at 21 pounds.

The problem is that for the past few months he has developed a problem
with litter getting stuck in his rear paws and on the lower part of
his legs. The litter seems to clump to the long fur in these places.
He doesn't or won't clean them himself; one possible reason for this
is that an x-ray showed that he has arthritis all through his rib
cage, which would make it painful to bend that much. He won't let me
mess with the litter either. Even through I try to gently remove it
with my fingers, it must be painful to remove because he mrows; if I
persist, he bites!

This clumping problem occurs even if the litter is dry and fresh - he
still comes out of the box with it on his rear paws - never on the
front ones.

Anyone have any suggestions??? Should I just ignore it?

Thanks,

--
My cat and I are very much alike: we're both gray, we're both fat,
and we both dig in his litter box.

February 25th 06, 07:13 PM
wrote:
> Subject feline is a grey neutered male long-haired domestic. He's
> almost fourteen and is heavy, weighing in at 21 pounds.
>
> The problem is that for the past few months he has developed a problem
> with litter getting stuck in his rear paws and on the lower part of
> his legs. The litter seems to clump to the long fur in these places.
> He doesn't or won't clean them himself; one possible reason for this
> is that an x-ray showed that he has arthritis all through his rib
> cage, which would make it painful to bend that much. He won't let me
> mess with the litter either. Even through I try to gently remove it
> with my fingers, it must be painful to remove because he mrows; if I
> persist, he bites!
>
> This clumping problem occurs even if the litter is dry and fresh - he
> still comes out of the box with it on his rear paws - never on the
> front ones.
>
> Anyone have any suggestions??? Should I just ignore it?
>
> Thanks,
>
> --
> My cat and I are very much alike: we're both gray, we're both fat,
> and we both dig in his litter box.

Most likely this is an indication that your buddy here is too fat and
unhealthy and like the fat lady before the TV soap opera, can't be
bothered to clean himself other than the front paw markings. I probably
am GUESSING TOO MUCH, but start him on a diet. That will help his
arthritis and prevent diabetes which is probably coming next. It's
hard, easy for me to say, but today I would like to pick up a special
scale, My Weigh Ultraship Ultra 75#, I ordered, and it's cheap, $30 or
so with a detachable front plate so I can put her carry box on it and
weigh her easily. In theory I'm set to go. In practice, ask me next
week :) It will weigh my cat to 10 grams or 0.02 pounds. She will lose
1% of her weight per week, at most, around 0.1 pounds. So my scale will
be, if it works right, 5 times more accurate than it needs to be to
track a 0.1 pounds or 1/10th pound loss per week. NIST recommends twice
as accurate at least - that's the USA body that tracks weights and
measurements. In your case, the cat should lose 0.21 pounds per week at
most, that's almost a 1/4 of a pound!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! okay 1/5th
pound.

Are you feeding any wet food? Probably you are.

A couple of ideas although a local cat group or even a store might have
some more ideas or things to sell you.

I put the litter box on a throw rug so the cat has something to wipe
with if so inclined. Generally she also uses only her front paws,
mainly to mark the walls or the territory. But she leaves no marks, so
it's harmless in my case. She can clean her feet, usually sucks on
them, gets rid of the outer nails, so it's not a problem. She does have
a belly which she needs to lose. I put her on Purina Weight Management
Formula and wet food of Science Diet and the few good Purina varieties.
A vet would probably recommend Science Diet/Prescription Diet r/d or
the other reducing diets that might be better. I liked SD Light but she
sheds too much fur on just that so I don't trust that particular SD dry
food, the others seem okay but the Oral Care is too fatty for more than
a few kibbles per day for her teethies.

I use ShweatScoop litter. Maybe that's overkill but it's wheat so if it
gets anywhere, it is a human type product. Well, clay is human too,
probably bentonite or thereabouts, and a little bit is fine, even sold
for human use as a detoxicant for the colon. Technically bentonite can
swell and be dangerous without enough water for humans. I doubt if a
cat could eat enough bentonite to clog the colon. But clay is cheap.
But the wheat product makes me feel as though I am doing something
$pecial for my feline.