Overview of Diarrhea Treatments

[From Tufts January 2012 Issue]

Diarrhea is one of the most common health problems seen in cats and can present a diagnostic and treatment challenge because of its wide variety of possible causes. Infectious diseases, toxins, dietary changes and even emotional upset can result in diarrhea, and determining the cause is often a process of elimination.

The most likely causes of diarrhea in a given cat depend on his age and lifestyle, says Michael Stone, DVM, DACVIM, an internal medicine specialist and clinical assistant professor at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University. Intestinal parasites such as roundworms typically cause diarrhea in kittens. …

How Do You Know If Your Cat Is Sick?

Your cat depends on you for his health and comfort. Cats don't really have nine lives, so it's up to you and your veterinarian to be responsible for his health and welfare.

Become familiar with your cat's normal routine. Notice how much water he usually drinks. This will be important information because an increase or decrease in water consumption can be a symptom of certain diseases. Are you familar with your cat's litter box habits? If so, you may be able to detect diarrhea, constipation, and potential urinary tract problems early. Become familar with his usual volume of urine or feces, as well as its color.

How to Recognize an Emergency

Cats are masters at hiding pain and illness, which can make it difficult for their owners to recognize that something is amiss. However, owners should become concerned when they observe persistent subtle changes in their cats behavior such as eating less, sleeping or hiding more than usual or reduced interest in playing ...

The Vet Techs Role for your cat

Officially, theres no such thing as a veterinary nurse. The people who act in that capacity are termed veterinary technicians. But its confusing. Why arent veterinary technicians just called veterinary nurses? Good question - and its one that the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) has been asking itself. In fact, that organization, which represents vet techs, as they are called colloquially, has begun having conversations with state, national and even international organizations about…

Clues on whether to rush a cat to the hospital


[From Tufts April 2012 Issue]

It's Sunday night. Your veterinarian's office is closed, but your cat has vomited a few times in pretty short order. Do you:
a. Take her to the nearest veterinary emergency room?
b. Give her some fresh water to settle her stomach?
c. Wait and see how she's doing the next day?

Your cat has come in from outside with some puncture wounds on her back but otherwise seems okay. Is the right course of action to:
a. Jump in the car and have her x-rayed right away for internal injuries?
b. Keep a close :…

Intervertebral Disc Disease in Cats

The force and volume of the herniated disc material can damage and compress the spinal cord, with the degree of damage from an acute herniation varying from mild inflammation to irreversible destruction. This will determine the clinical signs when the cat presents for examination. Some cats with IVDD present with serious neurologic dysfunction, such as partial or total paralysis, mainly in the rear limbs.

Hospital Stays: Frequently Asked Questions for cats

Q Is it okay to bring my cats favorite toy or blanket or a piece of clothing with my scent on it to comfort her? A Some hospitals permit toys and blankets, but its not a good idea to bring them, according to John Berg, DVM, surgical specialist at Cummings. We discourage owners from taking anything along that your cat loves because it can easily get lost, he explains. The cleaning staff picks…

Hospitalizing Your Cat

Having a sick or injured cat is very stressful, especially when the problem lies beyond the scope of your regular veterinarian. Add the need to hospitalize your pet and your anxiety level likely goes through the roof. John Berg, DVM, surgical specialist at the Foster Hospital for Small Animals at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, acknowledges that anxiety. Primary care veterinarians can handle the majority of diseases that cats get, so by definition,…

Whats That Note on My Cats Cage?

Along with high-tech monitoring equipment and medical charts that are passed along to the doctors on the next shift, there is a far more informal way that members of the Foster Hospital staff communicate with each other about patients. They rely on white boards that hang outside each pets cage. These signs serve a variety of purposes, from noting that a cat is a rescue who needs a home to indicating that the cage contains…

The X-Ray: Very Useful for cats

The history of veterinary radiology - the use of photograph-like images to diagnose an internal physical abnormality that is otherwise invisible to a practitioners eye - can be traced back to a specific day in 1895. While working in his laboratory, a German physicist named Wilhelm Roentgen witnessed a phenomenon that until then had never been observed. …

Cat Bites: Serious Business

The most common victims of cat bites are women, the elderly and children. Almost all cat bites occur when a cat is trapped, cornered, startled or restrained. 75 percent of cat bites involve the face, hands or arms. (Kids tend to get facial bites.) However, even with estimates ranging from 400,000 to 750,000 bites per year, cat bites account for only a small fraction of all mammalian bites in the US. …

When to Get Help

Now that September has officially sprung, and weve said goodbye to the dog days of summer, its easy to get caught up in the back-to-school (and back to work) routine. But that doesnt mean we should ignore some of signs that our cats may send us when they need immediate veterinary attention. Following are the major alarms that signal our cat needs help, fast. Be sure to have access to an emergency veterinary facility. …