Dear Readers: We love our cats and want to keep them healthy. What are some “people foods” that they should not eat?
Here are some of those foods, and the reasons why:
Tuna: Cats love seafood, right? Well, tuna fish for people doesn’t have the nutrition cats need. And too much tuna? Too much mercury, which can be poisonous. Tuna specially made for cats is available — look for it.
A saucer of milk: We’ve all seen this familiar and ordinary device in comic strips, on TV, etc., but many cats cannot digest milk, which can lead to tummy trouble and diarrhea.
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Meat fat and bones: Fat can cause upset tummies, and bones can splinter, which could get stuck in the intestines.
Raw eggs: Loaded with bacteria, raw eggs are a bad idea, and the egg whites can disrupt vitamin B absorption in cats.
Dog food: A small amount occasionally is not harmful, but don’t substitute dog food for cat food — the nutritional needs of the cat will not be met.
Treats: Too many can lead to a fat cat.
Keep the number of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at your fingertips in case your cat ingests something it shouldn’t. The number is 888-426-4435. This line is staffed with veterinarians and is answered live 24 hours a day.
Check with your veterinarian about recommendations for healthy cat foods.
Dear Heloise: Here’s my method for packing a duffel bag for a weekend getaway:
First, I lay two pairs of heavier jeans or pants in the bottom of the bag to form a base, and to give the bag some shape.
Next, I roll a couple of sweaters, a nightgown and a few T-shirts and yoga pants for relaxing and tuck them in and around the sides of the bag.
Then a handful of underwear and socks goes in the middle. I lay a pair of heels and a pair of flats wrapped in newspaper sleeves next.
Finally, my makeup and toiletry bag go in. A lot can fit in a duffel bag if it is packed correctly.
T.W., via email
Dear Heloise: I use those 40-pound bags that wild birdseed comes in to make a dropcloth or tarp for small projects around the house, with easy cleanup.
I cut the bottom seam off the bags and cut them down the middle, open them and duct-tape them together.
Tracy K., Frenchville, Pa.
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