Monthly Archives: October 2014

Top Cat Health Problems

Most breeds of cat are gradually being bred to be free from the genetic problems that were once found as a result of breeding program but this doesn’t stop a cat from contracting some of the most common health problems. The first step in any possible illness is to seek a vet’s attention but knowing the basics of these illnesses means you may be able to spot a problem earlier and solve it before it becomes too serious.

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Cancer
The most common type of cancer seen in cats is called lymphosarcoma and is a cancer of the lymph system that is connected with feline leukemia virus. It can be in the intestines or in the chest. Another common type is squamous cell carcinoma, which is particularly prevalent in white cats.

Symptoms of cancer can vary but include lumps, swellings, repeated skin infections, weight loss, lethargy, diarrhea and vomiting as well as difficulties in breathing or going to the toilet. Depending on the type of condition, the treatment can vary from chemotherapy to surgery if it is operable and radiation or immunotherapy treatment.

Lower Urinary Tract Disease
Feline lower urinary tract disease, of FLUTD, is actually a number of condition that can affect both the cat’s bladder and urethra. Symptoms can range from straining when going to the toilet to completely avoiding the cat litter tray. Licking of the genitals excessively, blood in the urine or any other similar symptoms may be a sign of a problem and can be of varying seriousness, with a urethral blockage potentially being fatal.

When it comes to treating the condition, establishing exactly what the problem is will be the vet’s first step. After this, the treatment can involve pain medication or antibiotics perhaps sometimes minor surgery if there is a blockage. The cat may also need dietary changes to deal with the problem or to stop it reoccurring.

Infections
The most common type of infection suffered by cats are those of the respiratory tract and some can even be prevented by vaccination. Symptoms of these types of infection range from a runny nose or watering eyes to cough, fever and even mouth sores. Many of these infections are viral in nature so the cat will naturally fight them off but it is always worth checking with the vet, as some of the rarer ones can be fatal if untreated.

Another common infectious condition is called feline panleukopenia. This is a viral infection caused by the feline parvovirus and symptoms include fever, bloody diarrhea, lethargy, dehydration and loss of appetite. There is no medication but watching fluid intake and overall health usually allows the cat to recover on its own, however in kittens under eight weeks it is often fatal.

Kidney Disease
Kidney disease in cats reduces their ability to process waste and can lead to a dangerous build-up of toxins in the bloodstream. It can come from a variety of reasons including kidney stones, infection in the kidney, high blood pressure and even exposure to toxins. It is also common in cats as they get older. Symptoms can include a decreased appetite, loss of weight, vomiting and diarrhea but others don’t have any symptoms at all.

Fleas
While fleas aren’t strictly speaking a health problem, their presence can cause health problems. At the very least, cats will scratch and can overgroom, resulting in bald patches. Fleas and their eggs and excrement can also be spotted on the cat’s fur. Using flea control products for cats is the best way to deal with the problem but if they show any signs of a negative reaction to the product, get in touch with your vet. Also never use a dog flea control as it has different ingredients and can cause an allergic reaction in cats.

Tips For Preventing Cat Hairballs

In real life, you certainly cannot laugh out loud if you see your kitty obviously choking on something. Oftentimes, you will battle between immediately wanting to do a Heimlich manoeuvre and just thwacking the cat on the back. Ideally, this is a bad idea and might also be counter-productive due to the fact that the back of cats will not resist pressure like human backs do.

Well, experts say that your cat regurgitating hairballs must not concern your too much; unless, the balls will continue to become bigger and bigger, if they will be stained with blood, or if your cat will suffer from hairballs a couple of times in a week. You must be aware that it is very important for cats to take such indigestible elements out of their system. But in case the hairballs are stained with blood and the gaggling became somewhat a frequent occurrence for them, it is a smart idea for you to take your cat to your vet. Have your pet be checked by the expert since such situation might actually be more complicated than it may appear.

The Danger Of Cat Hairballs

When cat hairballs will become bigger and bigger, the danger in here is that getting them out can be very painful and hard for the feline. It is actually like constipation in the throat. When not addressed early, you might not be able to remove it; thus, it will result to a very serious health issue. If this will happen, your feline will lose its appetite and will certainly become very weak. To address such concern, your vet might prescribe laxatives or perhaps even a surgical procedure to be carried out in order to relieve the cat from the hairball stuck in its system.

Preventing The Occurrence Of Hairballs

You have to become more proactive when it comes to grooming your cat in order to prevent this hairy condition from happening. For you to reduce the risk of fur that is being licked off by the tongue of your cat, you have to comb the cat’s fur on a regular basis. Apart from that, you have to use a fine steel-toothed brushed as this will comb loose hairs. You must know that this can be very relaxing not just for your cat but also for you.

Other preventive methods that you have to implement will include feeding your cat high-fibre treats, hair-ball preventive, as well as using hairball relief gels that is capable of lubricating the intestinal tract of your cat so the hairball will be eliminated. Indeed, these methods will keep the hairy situation under control.