EMERGENCY CARE

Dear Doctor: Breathing difficulties

Our Persian kitten still has a few more months to go before turning one year old, but she is already having breathing difficulties. What could be the matter?
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Joint Disorders in Cats

A healthy cats impressive physical traits - strength, agility and lightning-fast responses to external stimuli - are essentially attributable to the structure and versatility of her musculoskeletal system. However, this system is also subject to a variety of disorders that can seriously compromise a cats quality of life and agility. Even worse, such disorders often defy prompt recognition and treatment.

Possible Cancer Breakthrough?

Feline injection site sarcoma (FISS) is an aggressive form of cancer in cats associated with the administration of vaccines and injectable medications, affecting about one in 1,000 vaccinated cats. This cancer was once thought to be a rare side-effect of rabies vaccines, but experts now believe it can occur following any kind of injection -even microchipping.

Limb Amputation in Cats

Consider this frightening occurrence: A cat darts into the street near his home and is struck by a car. One or more of the bones in one leg are severely broken, and a quick trip to the nearest veterinary clinic yields some very upsetting news. The fractured limb is beyond surgical repair, and the cats owners are faced with a limited set of options as explained by the veterinarian: Either the injured cat should be euthanized, or the fractured limb should be amputated.

Coping With Feline Herpesvirus

Most cats are likely to contract an upper respiratory disease at some point during their lives. Although a wide range of viral and bacterial agents may be responsible for these common disorders, perhaps the most frequently diagnosed is infection with the feline herpesvirus (FHV).

Taking Care of a Diabetic Cat

Diabetes mellitus is a frequently diagnosed disease of the feline pancreas, a relatively small, thin organ nestled in the front portion of a cats abdomen.

Dear Doctor: A Chronic Weeping Eye

I have a cat that has a problem with a weeping eye (at the nose), a condition she has had for several years.

When Your Cat Vomits (A Lot)

Digestive system disorders are among the most frequently observed health problems in cats. Many of these disorders may be directly associated with organs such as the liver, pancreas and gall bladder, all of which play a crucial role in the digestive process. Many others, however, may arise in the alimentary canal, the long tube leading from a cats mouth and extending the full length of the animals body. A signal that something has gone wrong somewhere within this passageway often takes the form of a process scientifically termed emesis - but most commonly referred to as vomiting.

Curbing Pet Overpopulation

Theres an abundance of kittens right now. Go visit the local shelter and have a look. Or peruse Craigslist or other Internet sites and see how many unwanted litters are out there.

The Ability to Detect a Single Cancer Cell During Surgery

When removing a malignant tumor, a surgeon cant see a single cancer cell left behind with the naked eye - or even 10,000 cancer cells. Thats a microscopic amount, which is why excised tumors currently get sent to pathologists. They can look at a few small sections of an excised tumor under the microscope and get an idea of whether the cancer was removed in its entirety. But what if a method was developed that allowed cancer surgeons to see right in the operating room, before the patient was closed back up, whether any cancer cells remained?

Dear Doctor: What does bunting mean?

My son recently adopted an adult cat from a shelter, and I notice that Tigger likes to rub his cheeks repeatedly on the legs of the furniture. In fact, he started to do the same thing to my face when I was petting him on the couch!

Dear Doctor: Falls and concussions

We live in a rural community, and have a couple of indoor-only cats, in addition to a few barn cats out back (we tried to bring them inside when they were kittens, but they were very unhappy with that lifestyle).