The Pet Tree House - Where Pets Are Family Too : The Mystery of the Wasting House-Cats

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The Mystery of the Wasting House-Cats

Forty years ago, feline hyperthyroidism was virtually nonexistent. Now it’s an epidemic — and some scientists think a class of everyday chemicals might be to blame.

Most days, the back room of the Animal Endocrine Clinic in Manhattan is home to half a dozen cats convalescing in feline luxury. They lounge in their own individual “condos,” each equipped with a plush bed, a raised perch and a cozy box for hiding. Classical music plinks softly from speakers overhead. A television plays cat-friendly videos — birds chirping, squirrels scampering. Patients can also tune in to the live version: A seed-stuffed bird feeder hangs directly outside each window.

One afternoon in April, a jet-black cat named Nubi assumed a predatory crouch in his condo as a brawny pigeon landed on a feeder. Dr. Mark Peterson, the soft-spoken veterinarian who runs the clinic, opened the door to Nubi’s condo and greeted the 12-year-old tom in a lilting, high-pitched voice. “How are you?” Peterson asked, reaching in to scratch his patient’s soft chin. Nubi, who typically is so temperamental that his owner jokes about needing a priest to perform an exorcism, gently acquiesced,

To read more on this story, click here: The Mystery of the Wasting House-Cats

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