CAT HEALTH & MEDICINE

Breathing Problems for Cats with Flat Noses

Does your cat have noisy breathing, snoring, and difficulty sleeping? There’s a reasonable chance it’s a Persian, Himalayan, or Burmese, or at least a cat who has one or more of those types of cats in her genetic makeup. Such breeds often have faces with a pushed-in look, and that could be a sign that […]

The Clinical Exam You Can Give Yourself

Your cat’s veterinary exams occur only once or twice a year. But you can give your pet physical exams at home to see if there might be a reason she should be brought to the doctor between scheduled appointments. Take these seven steps to assess your cat’s health, many of which are also recommended by […]
Does she seem to be engaging in less activity these days?

Is Your Cat Becoming Frail?

Frailty is a syndrome, according to the American Academy of Feline Practitioners (AAFP). It means a cat has a diminished functional reserve that leads to both physiologic and cognitive declines and thus a greater risk for adverse medical outcomes. Age in itself is not a risk factor for frailty, the association says, but it does […]
You might feel a lump by accident as you stroke your pet. They frequently make themselves known by touch rather than by sight.

You Found a Lump On Your Cat. Now What?

After the lymphatic system, a cat’s skin is the most common site for tumors, cysts, and other abnormal growths that manifest themselves as lumps. But it’s often the most alarming site to cat owners. Many people’s minds jump right from “lump” to “cancer.” Pet owners find lumps so troubling that while they may avoid bringing […]
A very scared cat might do better at the veterinarian’s office if she gets a dose of gabapentin beforehand.

A Drug to Keep Cats Calm During Vet Visits?

You try everything to keep your cat calm and agreeable during her trips to the vet. You leave out her travel carrier all the time so she’s used to it, and you keep soft blankets, toys, and treats in there so she won’t freak out when it’s time to bring her to the car. You […]

Generic Version of Common Drug Approved

The Food and Drug Administration has approved a generic version of the brand-name drug Clavamox, used to treat infections of the skin, soft tissue, and urinary tract in cats. The drug contains the antibiotic amoxicillin, which kills infection-causing bacteria. It also contains clavulanate potassium to inhibit an enzyme that can destroy the amoxicillin. Clavamox generally […]
These days, more veterinarians are asking people to wait in the car while they examine their pets.

Curbside Care on the Uptick

Curbside care for cats — taking your cat from the car and examining her in the office while you wait outside — became more commonplace for veterinary practices during the pandemic. Some vets now feel the practice is working so well for them that they plan to continue it post-COVID, says the American Veterinary Medical […]

Cytology Versus Biopsy

You notice a lump on your cat’s flank, and the vet says she wants to examine it with cytology but may have to proceed to biopsy. What exactly are cytology and biopsy, and what’s involved? Cytology is an examination of cells under a microscope. They are collected via fine needle aspirate. That means the vet […]
Roundworms can easily be transmitted from mother to kitten during nursing.

The Most Common Worms in Cats

First the scary news. Roundworms infect many cats in the United States. One possible route of infestation is through mother’s milk, which is why it is recommended that all kittens be administered medication at four different intervals to kill any of the worms that might be lurking in their small intestine; roundworms put very young […]
Veterinary technician Brandy Tabor with her own cat, Kitty Gumball. He’s clearly not in pain in this photo.

The Fifth Vital Sign

In 1996, pain began to be considered the fifth vital sign in human medicine, needing to be assessed along with temperature, pulse, respiratory rate, and blood pressure. The same is true for cats, says a recent article in Veterinary Practice News, particularly in the emergency room or critical care setting. It makes sense. At least […]

Dear Doctor: When the diagnosis is mast cell tumors

Q. During a routine check-up, my cat was diagnosed with mast cell tumors on her skin. How worried should I be? Danielle Castellani Hoboken, New Jersey A. Dear Ms. Castellani, While a diagnosis of mast cell tumors on the skin is of concern, it’s not super-high on the list of physical ailments to worry about. […]
When’s the last time your cat gave a luxurious stretch and yawn?

Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome

Aging cats often start vocalizing a lot more, change how and even whether they interact with people, and start soiling the house. The shifts can come gradually and seem like responses to aches and pains, so people frequently assume they are just signs of a cat growing old. But, says the American Association of Feline […]