Yochabel’s Wisdom: The Food Connection
Written by Casey Hersch, MSW, LCSW
July 24, 2019
I am thrilled to have this opportunity to share my precious Yochabel's story as a guest author for www.consciouscat.net, with Ingrid King. This is the third of a series of blog posts over the next few months. In this series I discuss what it is like to live with a chronically ill cat, the stress, the joys, and the heartache of loss. I also talk about how Yochabel helped me live with my own chronic illness and ways she helped me cope and gain resiliency. My philosophies about integrative healing apply to Yochabel's treatment as does the use of my healing wheel.
Excerpts taken from consciouscat.com. For link to full article see below.
My Girl is a Foodie
In this section I discuss how food is Yochabel's passion; therefore, it must be incorporated as part of the healing regimen. Our passions heal us!
"...She obviously wanted something…
"...And then it happened. I poured a scoop of kibble into a bowl. She scooted herself out of the bed, tumbling around with her roly-poly body, and butt sliding her way to the kibble bowl. As she plopped onto her stomach, she spread her legs flat on the floor, cradling her bowl, doing nothing less than a face plant..."
"...To accommodate her love for the kitchen, we built a special “pedestal,” (a carpet covered platform 6 inches off the floor so she could watch me without straining her arthritic neck). She sat, safe from spills from a hot stove, and waited for her yummies..."
Notice your cat’s passion and joy, and use them for healing
"I took note of Yochabel’s passion for food from day one. This information was essential as I cared for her, especially when she developed transitional cell carcinoma (bladder cancer)."
"...Just like when my mother gave me chicken soup when I was sick with the flu, I needed to find Yochabel’s version of chicken soup to help her eat through the difficult times."
"Yochabel taught me a series of lessons that improved her health, made her comfortable and able to enjoy her passion – food – through her very last day. As mentioned in Yochabel’s Wisdom: Securing the Bond, the Healing Wheel includes passion as one critical component of healing."
Change can be harder for cat parents than for the cat
"Through the years, I developed beliefs about feline nutrition that negatively affected my good intentions to support my cats’ health. I erroneously believed cats are finicky, should only be fed one brand of food, dry kibble is best, cats should never eat people food, and my veterinarian knows best what to feed my cat."
Meal time evolved as an art of attunement and observation of her responses to food.
"I had to be willing to put effort into providing appropriate nutrition for her, instead of simply pouring kibble into a bowl to suit my busy schedule."
Diet should reflect changing individual needs
"...My life has been consumed with nutrition and diet regimens due to the complexities of having Crohn’s Disease, an autoimmune condition that affects the small intestine..."
Read full article to see how I applied my understanding of diet and nutrition to Yochabel's unique needs.
Changing Yochabel’s diet for kidney disease
"Yochabel’s progressive kidney disease required major dietary changes....With diet change alone, her kidney function markedly improved. Our bond deepened as I became Yochabel’s personal chef, trying new combinations of meats, vegetables and fruit, offering them to her and observing her reactions..."
Changing Yochabel’s diet for tooth resorption
"...Sure enough, the veterinarian confirmed she had a painful dental condition called feline tooth resorption. She wasn’t eating because it hurt. I imagined what it felt like to chew on an exposed nerve root from a tooth, Ouch! While the only recommendation to alleviate her condition was tooth extraction, Yochabel’s age and compromised kidney function placed her at high risk for surgery..."
Read full article to see how I addressed and reversed Yochabel's feline tooth resorption through diet and Hope Science's Dentapet.
Changing one's approach to fit each new circumstance is key!
Yochabel's Wisdom: Securing the Bond
Yochabel’s Wisdom: Coping with Cancer
Yochabel's Wisdom: Hospice at Home
Yochabel's Wisdom: Emotional Turmoil
Yochabel's Wisdom: The Last Day
Read full article here:
Ingrid King's award winning website, www.consciouscat.net, and her heartfelt books, including Buckley's Story and Purrs of Wisdom, expand our loving and soulful connections with our cat companions while offering practical information to enhance our lives. For more information and an abundance of resources, please visit her website.
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