I pondered quite a bit about what to write for this Saturday's Pet Blogger's Blog Hop.
Then a friend told me about Bella, the senior kitty owned by actor Chris Pratt, who stars in the movie Moneyball that just recently came out in theatres.
In a (failed) attempt to add a little comic relief to his troubles with his cat Bella, Pratt posted on his blog asking if anyone knew the best way to kill a cat.
Like I said, HUMOR: FAIL.
I'm not going to play the blame game here; Pratt is a comedian and was probably just trying to get a laugh. Thanks to public outcry he now knows not to E-V-E-R do that again. It takes a real act of stupidity to get that much bad press.
Can anyone say PR: FAIL?
From his description, Bella - a 12 year old white Persian - was beginning to have incontinence issues. In the end, Pratt was able to place Bella in a home where she's the only pet.
Since part of the problem may have been the stress of an elderly cat having to coexist with two energetic pug dogs, this is a happy ending for Bella.
But the entire brouhaha brought to light another issue: Bella falls solidly into the demographic of the Senior Cat. And as senior cats age, they often develop illnesses and chronic conditions that owners may not be prepared to deal with.
According to VetMed Team, more cats are living into old age than ever before, and with that comes a greater need for education on how to care for senior pets.
Here's what they had to say about it:
"Many, if not most, geriatric cats have multiple medical conditions, and managing them is where the art and science of veterinary practice meet. Challenging it may be, but also incredibly rewarding when the veterinary team and owner working together see the tremendous impact on the cat's life.
Many cats live for years with good management of multiple chronic medical conditions."
They're currenty offering a free online course on the care of Senior Cats to anyone who has joined their community. Membership is open to all veterinarians, their employees, veterinary students and animal shelter workers.
Please encourage your vet - and especially your local shelters - to take advantage of this free resource!