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Even the healthiest of cats can come down with a disease, and most of the time, it’s nothing to worry about. These are the most common pet health problems that parents should know.
You don’t have to be a little scout to live by the “Be Prepared” motto; As a pet owner, it’s best to know what the most common cat illnesses and health problems are, so that you can spot symptoms in your kitty. It can also help you schedule preventive care.
Here are seven of the most common cat-related issues you’ll encounter:
Perhaps the most common health problem in cats is vomiting. My cat is incredibly susceptible to it; If her food bowl was ever empty for more than 5 minutes, she would moan loudly until I filled it up. Then you will eat a lot, and vomit. If your cat vomits once due to an apparent reason (overeating), this is nothing to worry about. If you vomit more than once though, call your vet. Vomiting can quickly leave your cat dehydrated, and may be an indication of a more serious problem.
This is another common health problem that is usually a symptom of something larger. Have you recently changed your cat’s food? Have you been exposed to a new environment? If the diarrhea lasts more than a day, contact your vet, because, like vomiting, it can leave your cat dehydrated.
Related: 5 Feline Skin Conditions You Should Know
Urinary tract diseases are probably the most common feline disease. They occur in the bladder and urethra (the tube leading from the bladder that carries cat urine out of the system) and the most common symptom is blood in the urine. Although seeing red in your litter box is something of a shock, a UTI is not something to panic about. Take the cat to the vet immediately, but with normal prescribed medication and a change in the cat’s diet, the infection should stop within 10 days. Most vets will perform urinalysis to monitor for the presence of the virus, and if this happens more than once, your vet may recommend a special prescription diet and a reduced stress environment.
Both indoor and outdoor cats can get fleas. They’re inconvenient, but easy to spot. If your cat is constantly scratching or licking, they probably have fleas. Fleas look like dirt on a cat’s skin. If you notice this, it is best to contact your vet to help you figure out what is the best treatment for you and your cat.
Related: A short guide to cat eye care
Tapeworms are most common in cats, as they live inside the cat’s intestines. If your cat is losing weight rapidly, has diarrhea, or is vomiting for no reason, it is best to check the bedding area. The tapeworm usually comes out of the anus while it is asleep or relaxed, and as a result the bed is the best place to check it. If her bed contains some small white worms, which look like rice, she most likely has worms. Contact your vet to find out what deworming treatment is best for you. An oral dewormer is always my go-to. Hygiene, flea control, and keeping your cat indoors will help prevent worms from becoming common in your home.
Gingivitis, or inflamed gums, is a common dental problem. It is caused by the same thing in humans and cats. by plaque. The combination of sticky bacteria film and food particles accumulated along the gum line irritates the gums and makes them hypersensitive. In the wild, when cats break up their food, they react enough with their mouthfuls that this doesn’t happen. Indoor cats, however, often have this issue. Most vets recommend cleaning your cat’s teeth to help with this, because gingivitis, left untreated, tartar can cause the gums to separate from the teeth.
- eye problems
The last issue is eye problems. Unless you know the cause of your cat’s eye problem (such as an allergy), you should contact your vet. Eye problems should be considered an emergency, as they can be serious, so make an appointment as soon as possible.