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Feature April 2014 Issue

Step-by-Step Tips to Take Your Cat’s Pulse

To take your cat’s pulse, lay your cat down on her right side or allow her to stand. Then follow these four steps:

Gently lift her upper hind leg away from the lower hind leg.

Place your two fingers as high up as possible on the inside of either leg, just where the leg meets the body wall.

Feel for a recess in the middle of the leg, about halfway between the front and back. This is where blood vessels run, making it easiest to find the pulse.

Count the number of pulses in 10 seconds and multiply that number by six to give you the beats per minute. In a healthy cat, normal heart rate is between 160 to 220 beats per minute and a normal breathing rate is between 20 to 30 breaths per minute.

“If you are unsure on how to do this, ask your veterinarian or vet technician to show you on your cat the next time you are in for a regular visit,” emphasizes Dr. Mandell.

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