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cat health problem

10 Common Cat Health Problems

It is cat health month! As much as we love our cats, we might not know what is going on in their lives. Our cat’s actions can tell us a very serious ailment that may be caused by a minor condition or could be an effect of a serious problem. To prepare for possible problems that may need tending to in the future, here is a list of the 10 common cat health problems that you need to be aware of. 

Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD)

This condition affects the bladder and urethra. It is a very common cat health problem. Cats may experience difficulty peeing, blood in their urine, constant urination, or accidental urination. A veterinarian will be able to diagnose this condition.  

Diabetes

If cats are unable to produce insulin or respond to it, they may be diabetic. Left untreated can cause major damage to their health. Fortunately, it is manageable and can be tamed with the right regime. With a proper health plan, cats can go into remission. 

When looking into diabetes, look for these symptoms:

  • Weight loss
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Dehydration
  • Appetite change

Pancreatitis 

This problem develops in cats when their pancreas becomes inflamed. For cats, their liver and intestines may also suffer. The pancreas is vital for all living creatures as it helps with the digestion process. 

If you notice these signs in your cat, make a visit with their veterinarian. 

  • Vomiting
  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain 
  • Decreased appetite
  • Diarrhea 

Dental Disease

Approximately 50-90 percent of cats over the age of four have some type of dental disease. The 3 most common diseases are gingivitis, periodontitis, and tooth resorption. Fortunately, most diseases can be treated and prevented given the right care. If this is left untreated, the quality of life for your cat will diminish and cause major discomfort for them. This could lead to a lack of nutrition and exercise due to extreme pain. 

Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)

This disease affects a cat’s immune system. With the compromise, they are left vulnerable to infections and illnesses. A common way cats contract this is through bite wounds from fellow cats. To find out if your cat had contracted FIV, they will need to have bloodwork done. Unfortunately, there is no cure for this disease, but cats with FIV can have a relatively normal life when watched over carefully and managed well. 

Although, with age, cats may suffer from:

  • Gingivitis
  • Loss of appetite
  • Poor coat health 
  • Fevers
  • Recurring infections

Cancer

Sometimes cancers can go unnoticed but can be detected with regular veterinary check-ups. Keep in mind that cats with FIV or FeLV are at higher risk to develop cancer. A poor diet, genetics, and smoking are also common indicators of cancer development. Lymphoma is a common cancer that is found in cats. The symptoms of the cancer are:

  • Weight loss
  • Anorexia 
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting 

Broken Bones

It is easy for cats to break a bone just like humans. If there is too much pressure or stress on their limbs and body, chances are their bones will break. Cat-like reflexes are true but that does not mean they still cannot get hurt. High-rise Syndrome refers to a cat’s ability to land on their feet but may suffer from an injury. Bring your pet to the vet as soon as you suspect they have broken a bone, fractured their teeth, or developed any other serious injury.

Kidney Disease

The kidney’s function is important. It acts as a filtrations system that filters waste and regulates blood and water levels. If there is a malfunction of the kidneys, cats can suffer from acute renal failure or chronic kidney disease. These diseases are dangerous and a common cat health problem, but if detected early, cats can have a fairly normal life. Keep in mind that kittens can be born with kidney disease. To diagnose a cat they need bloodwork and urinalysis tests done. Cats can contract kidney disease through:

  • Infections
  • Tramua
  • Blackages
  • Poison 
  • Signs to look out for are:
  • Frequent urination
  • Weight loss
  • Drinking a lot of water
  • A dry coat
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Bloody or cloudy urine

Eye Problems 

If detected early enough, eye problems can be treated. A routine vet check-up could come up with results. What you need to look out for in your cat’s eyes is a cloudy film that covers their eye lens. A cat’s eye fluid can cause pressure on the retina and damage their cells. If the retinal tissue breaks down, cats can suffer from permanent blindness

Common problems cats can develop are:

  • Cataracts
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Uveitis
  • Glaucoma
  • progressive retinal atrophy

Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV)

This is a cancer-causing retrovirus. It is commonly spread through a cats’ saliva, blood, feces or urine. Infected mothers may possibly give their kittens FeLV at birth, but most cats can contract the cancer from other cats with grooming. FeLV can weaken the immune system and cause anemia, leukemia, lymphoma and infertility. Unfortunately, there is no cure for FeLV. But with the right treatment, cats can have a fairly normal life. 

Symptoms on FeLV include:

  • Seizures or neurological disorders
  • Various eye conditions
  • Persistent diarrhea
  • Persistent fever
  • Skin, urinary or respiratory infections
  • Weight loss
  • Loss of appetite

Thanks for reading, from the Fire Hydrant Team!

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