When a cat coughs on a fairly regular basis, people often think their pet is trying to throw up hairballs, says Tufts veterinarian Elizabeth Rozanski, DVM. But coughing and throwing up are two separate things. And unless you see actual hairballs vomited up, a coughing cat should be brought to the veterinarian, she advises.
I have fallen in love with a shelter cat that is deaf and would like to adopt it. Should I have any concerns?
My cat needs a $3,000 operation, and I dont have the cash or that much credit available on my credit card. I should have bought pet health insurance, but obviously Im not going to be able to get it now, after the need for a surgery has been found. Do I have any options whatsoever?
Diarrhea is one of the most common health problems cats suffer. Its not surprising when you consider just how many different types of illnesses and situations can cause it. Loose stools can be prompted by everything from a gastrointestinal infection to a sudden change in diet, stress, feline immunodeficiency virus, inflammatory bowel disease, and even certain types of cancer.
Veterinary care via a house call is certainly not a new concept but has been of limited value because the doctor comes with little more than a black bag and a stethoscope.
Cats are wily about concealing their pain. It comes from a genetically encoded instinct for self-protection, never wanting to let potential predators know they may be vulnerable. But if your cat has arthritis, there are frequently telltale signs.
Cats are by nature territorial animals. They work hard in the wild to carve out their own space because, as solitary predators, they rely on their own abilities to catch prey rather than acting in groups. They also try to avoid chance encounters with other cats in order to sidestep fighting and injury. What that means is that even if two cats claim the same territory and forage in the same general vicinity, they dont forage at the same time.
Cats in the throes of kidney failure, leukemia, poisoning, injuries sustained in a car accident, or loss of too much blood during an operation are often aided by blood donations from other cats. Owners volunteer their pets as blood donors knowing that the process involves, at most, minimal discomfort. And besides taking pride in the fact that their pets donation may save lives, they can enjoy the benefits their cat receives in the form of incentives provided by veterinarians. These range from a basic blood examination that may uncover health issues to a free yearly exam.
It is always something of a financial challenge having a diabetic pet, says Orla Mahony, DVM, a veterinarian at Tuftss Foster Hospital for Small Animals. Frequent monitoring of the cats blood sugar at the veterinarians office to be certain it remains in the correct range is in itself a significant but important expense for avoiding organ damage and other complications of diabetes.
If you bring your cat to the veterinarians office because hes vomiting, does the doctor simply perform a clinical exam followed by x-rays and blood work, or does she add in some questions that help her learn the story of the cats life? For instance, a vet might ask, Has anything changed lately? Have you moved, or has someone moved into or out of your household? Has there been a divorce or some other difficult event? That way, the doctor may find out that the cat is stressed, perhaps because he is sensing your own stress, and that is what is making him throw up.
Declawing, the surgical amputation of a cats toes to prevent the regrowth of nails that may scratch people and property, will become illegal in New York State if a bill making its way through the Assembly is passed. The procedure is already prohibited entirely in the U.K., Israel, and Switzerland. And here at home, 10 California cities and Denver have also made declawing against the law.
You might think what bothers cat owners when the vet puts their pet on a weight-management plan is the slow rate of weight loss the doctor sometimes recommends. Indeed, cats who should be thinner for their health can lose weight at a very modest rate - from only 0.5 up to a more aggressive 2 percent of body weight per week. For a 20-pound cat who should lose 5 pounds, that means an eating regimen that could result in as little as one tenth of a pound a week.