Common Cat Diseases And Symptons
Cats tend to be quite healthy animals, many spending most of their lives with no serious illness that would require a visit to the local vet. However it would be prudent for any cat owner to be aware of the most common diseases that may affect your feline friend. Whilst a visit to the vet is always recommended with any concerns about health, many diseases may have symptoms before any serious illness becomes apparent and knowing what these symptoms are may help to stop the disease before it becomes to serious.
Any odd or unusual behaviour should always be a cause for concern, a visit to your local vets is always recommended if you are concerned in any way about your pet’s health.
Here is a short list of some common complaints with symptoms you may be able to spot:
- Gum Disease – Like humans, cats teeth require regular cleaning to keep both the teeth and gums healthy. If you can’t clean your cat’s teeth there are plenty of dental chews which will help, but if possible, start cleaning your cat’s teeth with a brush when they are a kitten to help them get used to the routine. Swollen or bleeding gums, broken or loose teeth should always be inspected by a vet to stop further infection.
- Vomiting – Cats are prone to vomiting, it can often be confused with regurgitation, many cats regurgitate their food, often when they gulp their food down to quickly, Regurgitating their food is not abnormal for cats and is not normally a sign of ill health. Vomiting can be more serious and could be a symptom of urinary tract disease or diabetes; other obvious causes could be that they have eaten something poisonous or inedible. If symptoms persist always consult your vet, whilst all animals will vomit occasionally, if it persists it can lead to dehydration and early treatment is always recommended.
- Problems with eyes – Conjunctivitis, cataracts, glaucoma, trauma, viruses, inflammation, and retinal disease are all common problems associated with cats eyes. Symptoms include watery eyes or gunk in the corners of their eyes, tear stained fur, reddening of the eyes, pawing the eyes and squinting. If any of these symptoms persist always consult a vet.
- Diarrhoea – Can be common in some cats, always provide plenty of fresh water to prevent dehydration, remove food for 24 hours, and if symptoms persist consult a vet. If you spot blood or your cat appears to be weak and unsteady, consult a vet immediately.
- Tapeworms – These live in cats intestine and can grow up to 2 feet in length, weight loss and vomiting may be a sign that your cat has a tapeworm, You can spot this easily by checking their stools. If you spot what looks like grains of rice or small white worms then your cat has tapeworms. Cats often get tapeworm after swallowing a flea; treat any flea infestation before treating the tapeworm. Treatments include injections and pills taken orally.
- Fleas – Probably the most common problem you will encounter, fleas are easy to spot with various symptoms, these include constant scratching, fur loss, hot spots on the skin, red or irritated skin. They can be seen with the naked eye and look like tiny black dots. Many flea treatments exist; speak to your vet about preventive treatments.
- Feline Lower Urinary Tract Diseases (FLUTD) – Symptoms include bloody urine, straining to urinate, crying when urinating, urinating in unusual places, licking around the urinary area, dehydration, vomiting and loss of appetite.
FLUTD can have many causes and infects both male and female cats. Cats who are overweight or unfit can often suffer from FLUTD. Treatment will depend on which particular strain of the disease your cat has, a visit to the vet will be required as soon as you suspect your cat is suffering from FLUTD
A regular visit to your local vet for immunization and a general health check should be made at least once a year. Feeding your cat a good nutritious diet, regular grooming and checking your cat all over on a regular basis will help spot any early signs of ill health. For a range of cat health care products and cat supplies visit www.LittleBigPet.co.uk