A cat’s apricot-sized heart is susceptible to several problems. Some develop in young kittens while others may strike at any age.
Cardiomyopathy results from a structural abnormality of the tissue around one or more of the heart’s chambers. It disrupts the heart’s normal
Cat lovers do not like to contemplate the expression “Curiosity killed the cat.” Nonetheless, it is true that cats like to explore and all too often they can encounter serious hazards in their own homes. Cat owners need to assess these dangers so their cats stay safe and happy.
Cat owners are all too familiar with that distinctive sound that cats making when trying to expel a hairball, often in the middle of the night. However, did you know that coughing up hairballs is crucial to your cat? The inability to do so can result in a deadly intestinal blockage.
Anatomy of a Hairball
Cats generally face the same gastrointestinal problems that humans or other animals do. If your cat has frequent diarrhea or episodes of vomiting, or other gastrointestinal (GI) issues, make an appointment with your feline veterinarian immediately. Here are a few common GI problems many cats face.
Fleas and ticks are very common in animals with fur. They hop onto your cat and make their way to the skin of the animal, where they proceed to feed on your pet’s blood. They also find your cat’s warm, soft fur to be the perfect breeding ground.
Fleas can be obtained when cats go outdoors or come
Pancreatitis is rare in cats, but can be very serious. It comes in two forms: chronic and acute, with chronic being more common for cats. The disorder happens when something triggers the pancreas to start destroying its own tissue.
Function of the Pancreas
This V-shaped organ is small—a cat’s pancreas
Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is a retrovirus that, like feline immunodeficiency virus (another retrovirus), produces an enzyme known as reverse transcriptase, which allows the retrovirus to inject duplicates of its own genetic matter into the cells it has corrupted.
Though closely related, because a
Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) is a terminal disease that affects cat. Caused by feline infection peritonitis virus (FIPV), it is a mutation of feline enteric coronavirus (FECV) and is more likely to occur in environments where large groups of cats are together, such as animal shelters.
Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a type of virus that weakens a cat’s immune system and makes it difficult for the cat to fight other infections. This virus affects only felines.
Spread of FIV
Between 1.5 and 3 percent of healthy cats in the United States are infected with FIV. Cats that roam
Diabetes mellitus is a common disease in which a cat’s body does not make enough insulin or has difficulty using it. This hormone is produced in the pancreas. Its job is to help move glucose from the bloodstream into the body’s cells to provide them with a source of energy.
Many cats with diabetes
A diagnosis of anemia means your cat does not have enough red blood cells and/or hemoglobin to carry sufficient oxygen to all of his or her tissues. Each red blood cell lives only 70 to 80 days, so your cat’s body must constantly replenish these. Anemia itself is not a disease; it indicates that some
Cats normally have excellent vision—their eyes are about six times more sensitive to light than a human’s eyes. However, injuries and a variety of diseases can impair a cat’s vision and even cause blindness.
You can help your cat keep its eyes healthy by making sure it has regular check-ups and
It is never easy to say goodbye to a cat that has been part of your life for many years. This is even truer when your veterinarian suggests that you consider euthanasia. However, euthanasia may be the most humane way to care for a beloved best friend that is suffering.
Is It Time to Say Good-bye?
Fungi are spore-generating, parasitic organisms. They are able to survive by taking in food from the hosts on which they grow. Cats can develop fungal infections when fungi spores are ingested, inhaled or enter a cut or wound. Common sources of most fungal infections are soil and bird droppings, making
Many cat owners already know that insecticides and antifreeze are not things their cats should consume. However, many everyday, innocuous-seeming substances are also poisonous to cats. From a beautiful bouquet of lilies to human medications casually left around the house, you never know what you cat
It’s an unfortunate fact that most cats don’t relish a trip to the vet. For this reason, sometimes they need to be sedated—both for their own and the veterinarian’s safety—during even relatively simple procedures. Anything from dental care to a major surgery may require anesthesia. Some especially
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