Akira’s case of eating contaminated cockroaches (Part 2)

This is a follow-up to today’s crazy day where Akira had a fever and was down and out.

The vet says it is most likely a gastrointestinal problem and the only thing I could think of is that the Blondies are keen hunters and they are so attracted to the drainhole and cockroaches. Initially, they were just playing with the cockroaches, but in the past few days, I saw dead and partially eaten cockroaches, so I’m quite sure Akira had got sick because she had eaten cockroaches.

But a quick check over at the internet says that “contrary to popular belief, cockroaches can actually be very clean and tasty insects, especially if they are fed on fresh fruits and vegetables”. And we know that in certain countries, cockroaches are a delicacy and often eaten as a source of protein too.

But the cockroaches that the Blondies play with come from one particular drainhole which leads to the sewage tank, so these cannot possibly be “clean” cockroaches. Also, the World Health Organisation classifies cockroaches as “unhygienic scavengers of humans settlements”.

My bigger worry is what if these cockroaches have ingested toxic insecticide and survived, knowing how hardy they can be. They have a very tough exoskeleton and are known to even survive being burnt. Many people love using insecticides to kill cockroaches not knowing that (1) they might not work or worse, (2) these insecticides may not be biodegradable and will remain in the ecosystem and bite us back eventually (yes, poison us).

So I was actually worried that Akira might have ingested contaminated cockroaches (contaminated with insecticide?). I am quite sure that if wild cats were to eat insects in the jungle, they would not get sick. So what made Akira so sick?

By evening, Akira was still not willing to eat. She was already a bit more active, but still not eating. I texted the vet and she said I should force feed her in order to get some nutrition into her and also so that I could give her her antibiotics which is to be taken after meals.

Before that, I had already given her Mirtazapine, the appetite stimulant.

The vet said it would be better to give cooked or canned food so that it’s more easily digestible. I tried. I offered canned chicken, Cindy’s baby food, canned tuna and sardines, but she turned away from all of them and even scratched beside the bowl. This is probably a sign of nausea.

I waited a bit longer and tried again, to give the Mirtazapine time to do its magic.

So I offered canned chicken again. Akira sniffed at the bowl, but turned her nose up. But the rest of them came to eat. Indra ate. Kai ate. Samantha ate.

Finally, seeing how everyone was eating…

…Akira shared Kai’s bowl!

Phew…what a relief, she’s eating on her own now.

Not eating is always, always a bad sign.

She ate quite a tidy amount of canned chicken.

This is good.

Then later, when I fed the Super Seniors their raw food…

Akira actually wanted raw food. I offered canned chicken but she did not want any of it. She wanted to eat raw.

The vet had said it would be better to put her on cooked food until full recovery, but Akira made her choice.

I decided to let Akira decide for herself. After all, animals are definitely smarter than us. They have their natural instincts intact and they should know what’s good for them (except when it comes to cockroaches!).

Akira is able to jump up to the platforms to play again, so I’m not so worried now.

If she goes back to her normal active self, that’s a very good sign. But we are not out of the woods yet. The vet says that if she is lethargic and still not eating tomorrow, I am not bring her back for a revisit. As of this evening, the signs are promising.

This is the drainhole from where the cockroaches come out.

I also throw all the cat litter into his drainhole as it leads directly to the sewage tank. Pine litter is totally flushable.

 The Blondies always wait for by this drainhole all the time, probably waiting for cockroaches to come out.

As for today, I’ve poured some Cocorex into the drainhole. I don’t want to kill the cockroaches, just hoping that the smell of Cocorex would drive them away and they won’t come through this drainhole anymore. Cocorex is a non-chlorine and oxygen bleach (I cannot smell anything, actually!), so it’s quite mild and isn’t as potent or strong-smelling as Chlorox, but we all know that nowadays even Chlorox isn’t as potent as it was before. I just want a deterrent for the cockroaches. I’m also going to put a pail of water on this drainhole but am not sure if that would help as I’ve seen cockroaches squeeze out through the narrowest gaps.

If you have any suggestions or methods that can deter cockroaches from coming out of this drainhole, I’d be truly grateful for your sharing, please.

For our kitchen, I use pandan leaves to ward off cockroaches. But this method isn’t going to work for this drainhole.

I was actually going to use sodium bicarbonate, and luckily I did not, because I just checked on the internet and sodium bicarbonate will kill cockroaches in a very brutal and horrible way. I cannot bring myself to do that, as much as I want to get rid of the cockroaches. No, killing isn’t the way to solve problems. Surely there are other ways to ward them off.

The internet says that Chlorox, on the other hand, may or may not kill cockroaches. The smell might just ward them off as “cleanliness and filth don’t mix” so the smell of Chlorox would drive them far away without killing them. Chlorox would only kill them if they ingest/drink it. Hopefully, they won’t.