A Quick Guide to Common Cat Illnesses
Although many people have cats, few know very much about cat illnesses. If you become informed about the common ailments that cats suffer, not only will you know what to look for and how to treat the illness, you will not suffer as much anxiety over the welfare of your pet.
If you know how to recognize the symptoms of common cat illnesses, you can ensure that your pet receives treatment as soon as possible. This will reduce the severity of most illnesses, as well as the stress on your pet.
One of the common cat illnesses is urinary tract infection; though the symptoms of this illness will vary with each cat there are some common symptoms to look for. If your cat develops urinary tract infection, he or she may yelp when using the litter box; you might also notice some blood in the urine when emptying the litter box. Frequent trips to the litter box are another sign of this illness; in addition your cat might begin to have accidents, even though they have been making frequent trips to the litter box.
Urinary tract infection in cats is common enough that your cat might get a mild case, and it will clear up on its own before you notice the symptoms. If you are noticing symptoms, the infection is more severe and you will want to take your pet to the vet; the vet will likely treat with antibiotics, which will cure the infection fairly quickly.
Repertory infection is another of the common cat illnesses and it is very similar to the human cold. Cats can transmit this infection to each other so if you have an indoor cat the chances of him or her getting a repertory infection are greatly reduce. If your cat develops this illness you will notice that they are sneezing and coughing, plus they could develop a runny nose and a fever. This illness will usually resolve without intervention, so you won’t need to take your pet to the vet.
If your cat does have a repertory infection and shows signs that they are lethargic, or if they refuse to eat and drink, it is probably time to take your cat to the vet. Although this is a virus, the vet will still order antibiotics to treat any possible secondary infections.
One of the most serious of the common cat illnesses is Feline Distemper; kittens are most at risk for contracting this virus, though any cat can actually get it. This virus is most commonly spread through litter boxes, as well as any food and water source that happens to be contaminated.
If your cat develops Feline Distemper you will be able to spot it fairly easily because they will stop eating and drinking, plus they will have severe diarrhea and become listless. The cat may also begin vomiting. If your cat starts to display a combination of these symptoms and you believe they may have Feline Distemper, you will want to take him or her to the vet as soon as possible. Although there is no known cure for Distemper, prompt treatment with antibiotics can prevent secondary infection, plus it is extremely important that your pet be treated for dehydration, which can cause death.
It is important to understand that most cats will die quickly once they develop distemper, even if they receive treatment, but there is something you can do to prevent your pet from developing this disease, as there is a vaccine available.
These common cat illnesses can be worrisome, but the more informed you are the better you’ll be able to recognize illness in your pet, and provide the appropriate treatment.