Cat Heart Worm Disease – An Overview

August 30, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Diseases

Heartworm disease is more common in dogs than in cats but still it is extremely dangerous to the cats. The symptoms of cat heart worm disease may range from mild to severe. The disease will be fatal if cardiac and respiratory complications set in. The male cats are more prone to heart worm infestation than the female cats as they roam about more. The cats that spend their most of the time out doors and the cats that live in mosquito infested area are at high risk,

Life cycle of the parasite

Cat Heart worm is a parasite and the size of the same will not be more than a piece of spaghetti. This parasite can survive in the right side of the heart as well as the blood vessels. The adult worm produces young ones and keeps growing in size.

In cats, these heart worms can live for 2 years. These worms will b freely floating in the blood of the right ventricle of the heart. The pulmonary blood vessels are connected to the right ventricle of the heart and play a major role in the respiration. These parasites will disturb the function of the pulmonary blood vessels and as the result the oxygen supply will be reduced. This reduced level of oxygen will result in breathing difficulty.

If the number of worms is more they can even completely block the pulmonary blood vessel. The parasites can migrate into the other parts of the body thus disturbing their function too.

Symptoms

Acute

The symptoms of the cat heart worm infestation can be chronic or acute in nature. In acute condition there can be nervous or pulmonary problems. The cat may be coughing consistently all of a sudden. There can be vomiting and anorexia and the cat will lose weight gradually. The cat will be very weak and will have severe depression. The depression will be so severe that the cat will have sudden mood swings and in some worst case the cat may die all of a sudden.

Chronic

In chronic cases, there can be pulmonary disorders of episodic nature. Gastrointestinal problems can also be noticed at times. There can also be congestive heart failure. The affected cats must be attended to as early as possible because the disease may take the life out of the cat. In case of breathing difficulty, the cat needs to be rushed to the nearby vet hospital.

Diagnosis

The heart worm disease of cats can be diagnosed by heart worm antigen test, called as knotts test. This test will detect the specific protein released by the sexually mature female heart worm. The test is good but it may miss to detect the protein if only few female parasites are present. The affected cat’s blood is drawn and treated with few chemicals and the blood cells are broken and centrifuged. The sediment is examined for the presence of parasite particles and protein to confirm the heart worm infestation.

Treatment

The treatment for this cat heart worm infestation is very controversial and hence the veterinarian should be approached for help if the symptoms suggest the cat heart worm infestation.

Vestibular Disease in Cats

August 28, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Diseases

Vestibular disease in cats is yet another mysterious disease like military dermatitis of cat as the actual cause is not known. The disease will get cured on its own in few weeks time in most of the cases. In few cases the cat may have live all through its life with its head tilted. As this condition is not life threatening, most of the cats will adjust itself to the permanent discomfort.

The vestibular system of the cat, keeps the head and body of the cat in proper balance. This vestibular system will alert the cat’s brain while the cat sits stands or lie down. The same vestibular system is responsible for the cat to land properly on its feet when fall from a height. You may be aware the cats will only land on its feet in whatever direction it falls from a tree or wall etc.

Vestibular system consists of nerves that originate from the brain and runs through the body of the cat and finally ends in inner ear. There are sensors located in the inner ear and these sensors will alert the brain about the cat’s movement. The malfunction of this vestibular system is referred as vestibular syndrome.

There are two types of vestibular disease, they are central and peripheral.

Peripheral

Vestibular disease though not life threatening causes much discomfort to the cat as well as the cat owners. The cat will fall for no apparent reason. They will start walking as if they are drunk. The head may be tilted to one side and the cat may start moving in circles. The uncontrolled eye movement of the cat will literally scare the pet owner very much. The face of the will be paralyzed partially and as the result the one side of the cats face will be drooped. Many may mistake this with stroke, but it is not so as the symptom may disappear on its own after some time.

Central

The central form of vestibular disease produces more symptoms than the peripheral form. The cats will have head tremors and the jaws will become very weak. The cats would have lost complete control of their feet and at times will not know where they are located. The cats will walk like a drunkard as the feels can not be position in proper relation and will fall frequently. The cat’s eye will move in all directions, vertical, horizontal and can move in all directions. The cat will be completely disoriented.

Treatment

Vestibular disease in cat is basically a condition where in there is complete or partial loss of balance and communication. The treatment is basically aimed at improving the balance and preventing the nausea [nausea is very commonly associated with loss of balance]. If the cats is eating and drinking normally in general no treatment is attempted and one can wait, hoping for the recovery on its own. If the cat is not eating then meclizine or diphenhydramine is administered. In case of the central form of the disease, the cat needs to undergo several tests because at times the underlying cause may be brain tumor.

Understanding Feline Miliary Dermatitis

August 27, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Diseases

Feline miliary dermatitis as many think is not at all a specific disease. It is a disease complex means that this disease is caused by myriad  factors.  The causative factor may be genetic, environmental or diet. This disease has so many names and few that are worth mentioning are feline eczema, military eczema, scabby cat disease and blotch in cat.

The affected cats suffer very much as this is a very serious skin problem.  The affected portion of the skin becomes red and crusty rash.  The skin around the back, head and neck of the cat is affected very much. The lesion thus formed on the skin will look like millet which is why this condition is called as military dermatitis.   

Causes

As discussed earlier the underlying cause is so many and this poses great challenge for the treatrment. the causes could be food allergy, pollen grain allergy, bacterial infection,  viral infection or yeast infection. The external parasites such as mites and lices can cause the military dermatitis. This condition could also be due to the hyper sensitivity reaction to the internal parasite of the cat. The causes don’t stop here, one should remember. Hormonal abnormality, auto immune diseases, nutritional disorders, ring worms etc also can cause military dermatitis.   

Symptoms

Though the causes are numerous, the symptoms are just the same. Small crusty bumps appear on the skin which resembles the grain millet. The lesion can be confined to one part of the skin or can be seen all over the body.  The bumps will be itchy. As the lesion grows all over the body, the itching also will be severe. The cats will start scratching which will result in further inflammation, infection and hair loss. 

Diagnosis

The diagnosis of the feline military dermatitis is very important for the proper treatment. As the causes are many, one has to rule out the causes one by one to pin point the right one. Location of the lesion will give an idea. If the rash is located near the tail or near the back of the cat, then it could be because of flea bite. If the location of the rash is near the head and the possible cause could be mite trouble. It is advisable to take the cat to the vet. The vet will find out the flea trouble with the help of flea comb. The vet will examine the hair of the cat and the stool to find out the possible cause, whether it is mite or parasite. If these are not the cause then it could be either diet deficiency or food allergy. 

Treatment

The treatment will depend of the cause which is for sure, but the exact cause needs to be ascertained. The shampoos will be used if the cause is mite, or flea or lice. If the lesions are very severe, then serious of dips should be tried. Rings worms can be treated with either tropical or oral medications. Antifungal treatment will be attempted for fungal infection and antibiotics will be tried for bacterial infection. For allergic reactions, steroid or antihistaminic treatment will be attempted.

Zoonosis- 5 Facts you should know about Cat Disease

August 25, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Diseases

Zoonosis is not a disease, but a tern that means the transmission of disease from animal to humans. In general the disease that affects the man is different from the one that the cats get. But there are certain diseases that are transmitted to human beings through the animals; such diseases are called zoonotic diseases. There is no need for one to get panic. Most of the zoonotic diseases are easily preventable. The zoonotic diseases are not as prevalent as the diseases that are transmitted from human to human.

High risk individuals

The pet lovers are more prone to the zoonotic diseases, there is no doubt. There are so many others who too are at the risk of getting affected by zoonottic diseases. Let’s know who they are. The people who have weak immune system are more prone to zoonotic diseases. The old people, babies, and people suffering from AIDS fall under this category. The people who are undergoing chemotherapy are at great risk. The cancer patients are treated with chemotherapy. The people working in animal shelters, animal care takers and veterinary staff are at high risk of communicating zoonotic diseases.

Mode of transmission of cat diseases

The cat’s diseases are transmitted through various means. One should know the mode of transmission of the cat disease to be wary of the same. The cat disease can spread through contaminated water and food. The contaminated cat’s urine, faces, saliva etc can spread the disease. The parasites like ticks and cat fleas can transmit the cat disease to human through the bite.

Common cat diseases that is transmissible to human beings

Fungal infections – ring worm is the fungal infection of the skin which can be transmitted to human beings.

Protozoan infections

Toxoplasmosis is a protozoan disease of cat which cat affects the human beings especially the pregnant women. Such people should avoid handling the litter boxes of the cat. Giardia is the yet another protozoan disease that gets transmitted through contaminated faces of the cat and the affected person will have diarrhea.

Viral infections

Rabies is a deadly dangerous disease that gets transmitted from dogs and cats to the human beings. The infected cat’s bite will result in the entry of the virus to the human beings.

Parasitic infections

Yersinia pestis is caused to human beings through flea bite. The round worm, tape worm and hook worms can be transmitted to children who play with the cats.

Bacterial infections

Salmonella is present in the faces of the cats and the same bacteria can infect human beings and cause vomiting and diarrhea. Pasturella is the yet another bacteria that can infect both human and cat. Streptococcus can be transmitted to humans from cats and can cause sore throat. 

Simple precautions

The direct contact with the urine faces and saliva of the cat should be avoided. While changing the litter box one should wear gloves. The cats should never be allowed to the place where food is prepared. The hands should be washed properly after handling of the animal. The vaccination and the dewarming of the cats should never be missed. The cat’s bed material should be washed periodically.

Cat and Kitten Diseases

August 19, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Diseases

Are you having kittens? If so, it is mandatory to get to know about cat and kitten diseases in order to maintain perfect cat health care. There are far too many cat and kitten diseases. Lets us touch upon some of the common illness that the cat faces more often than not. 

Pneumonitis

This disease caused by the virus that causes common cold in human beings. The symptoms too are much like the one you see in human beings. Though this disease is not fatal, the cat and the care taker will be put in to lot of distress. The disease can be troubling the cats for 6 weeks or even more. In general the vet will prescribe some antibiotic, antihistamine and eye ointment. Of course, there is a vaccine for this in the market but that can give protection for only 6 months and is generally administered to the cat in case of nearby outbreak. 

Urinary infection

Urinary infections are very common in cats just like the human beings. Urinary infections are very painful condition. The cat will have strain while urinating. At times blood can be noticed in urine. If the cats are vomiting and the abdomen is bloated, then it is clear indication of urine blockage. The vet needs to be contacted immediately. The urinary infection at times turns fatal, hence as soon as any of the symptoms mentioned above, the same needs to be intimated to the vet at once. 

Infected or swollen anal glands

If one notices the cat sliding along the floor, the reason for the same can be nothing but tapeworm infection or swollen or infected anal glands. The anal glands are noticed inside on the either side of the anus. As swollen anal glands needs to be emptied as there is no other way out. There are only two ways. You can empty the anal glands on your own which is not practical. The other option is nothing but taking the cat to veterinary hospital. 

Constipation

This problem is noticed in cats just as noticed in human beings. Lack of exercise, poor diet and hair ball ingestion are the causes for the constipation in cat. If the cat is found to be roaming around with bloated tummy and has not had bowel movement for the past few days, then it can be construed that the cat suffers from constipation. All one has to do is reporting the same to the veterinary doctor. The doctor may prescribe a medicine over the phone or may ask you to bring the cat to his place for further examination. 

Diarrhea

Diarrhea is just the opposite of above discussed constipation. Poor diet, infection, change in the food timings, food allergy etc are the reasons for the same. Soft bowels or loose stools are not necessarily diarrhea in general. In cat watery stool is only considered as diarrhea. The cat will be come very weak. The cat will prefer lie at one place rather than moving about or playing as it would be dehydrated by then. At times blood can be noticed in the stool of the cat. If that is the case, then waste no time in taking the lovely pet to the vet as it could be life threatening problem for the cat. Feeding cottage cheese or cat food mixed with cooked rice can control the diarrhea in cat. 

If you want to maintain perfect cat health care, you should know about these diseases, not only for treating, but atleast you can go tothe vet to treat your beloved cat.

Cat’s Rippling Skin Disease

August 18, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Uncategorized

Cats rippling skin disease is mysterious disease condition for sure. Experts call this disease as feline epilepsy, twitchy cat disease, self mutilation etc and some experts call this as a phenomenon. There are so many causes for this disease. Most commonly this disease is called as feline hyperesthesia syndrome. The cats affected show very wide range of conditions such as seizures, chest pain, brain damage, mild depression etc. the cat affected will look like the one that has gone crazy.

Cats rippling skin disease is more common in Siamese breed of cat. The breeds that are closely related to Siamese breed too are equally prone. As mentioned earlier the cats that suffers from cats rippling skin disease look like the one that had gone crazy for some reason.

Most of the cats will show this kind of abnormal behavior for short period of time especially the young cats. The young cats will start chasing their lines or will do something like this when are in playful mood. But the cat that is suffering from feline hyperesthesia syndrome is in absolute distress. Some thing seems to be disturbing the cats and the cat can not handle that disturbance or pain. No one has actually understood this disease clearly. Whether it is physical problem or psychological problem, no body knows. Whether it is an obsessive disorder or compulsive disorder no body knows. No body knows whether it is a form of epileptic seizure.

Symptoms

Rippling skin is the first sign to be noted. The skin on the lower back of the cat will ripple. The moment the lower back of the affected cat is touched, the cat will start scratching or biting the lower back closer to the tail very aggressively. The cat will then start meowing for no apparent reason. The cat will actually be crying. This excessive meowing will be more pronounced during the late evening or night. The cat will start moving in circles or will start running back and forth. There won’t be any direction or meaning in the movement of the cat. The pupil in the eye of the cat will be very much dilated. The cat will look at something for long time.

Causes

Nobody knows what causes this rippling skin disease of cat. But the veterinarian needs to rule out few causes. Severe allergic reaction to flea dips, flea collors, aerosol sprays, toxins, hair sprays, smoke, scented candles could be the reason for the pain that troubles the cat. Flea allergy is the next thing that needs to be ruled out. Flea bite can result in symptoms that are similar to rippling skin disease. Tumors, infection of the brain etc can cause seizures which need to be ruled out.

Treatment

As there is no clear treatment solution for the disease as such, symptomatic treatment is the best option. In case the cats have seizures anti convulsing medication can be administered. The stress on the cat must be attended to provide a kind of temporary relief to the cat.

Cat Diseases- What to Look Out for?

August 17, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Behavior

People just love their pets in the house and are willing to do whatever possible for the better heath of those lovely creatures. The cost involved doesn’t matter for many. Pets are not treated like animals and are treated as family members by most of the pet lovers. for some, the pets are more than their kids. Just like any other creature on earth the cats do get many health problems. This being the case the pet owner must know what to look for to find out that the cat is having health problem. The owner must know when to contact the veterinarian or take the animal to the hospital. If the cat not attended immediately, the situation may get worse soon.  

Some people have opinion that once the cat gets disease, soon the other family members will get the health problems. Most of the diseases of the cat do not get transmitted to the human beings. But the tick and the flea infestation can trouble the children and other family members, hence that should be attended to very quickly. There are no tell-tale sings that can be noticed when the cats are ill. Cats are very strong minded animals and they won’t show any signs until the situation gets really unmanageable. This makes the reading complicated.

The pet owner must observe the cats very closely. Any change in the behavior should be spotted immediately. In case if you are having a female cat, never ignore the change in the behavior as mood swings. The cats that are very pugnacious may become very friendly all of a sudden or vice versa. The personality of the cat should never change, hence please do not ignore if any such thing is noticed in cat.

The change in appearance of the cat needs to be looked in to. The cat may put on weight or may loose weight suddenly. If there is no drastic change in the feed, then this kind of change in weight should not happen. The cat may lose its hair and if the same can not be attributed to old age and then there is cause for concern.

The change in eating habit can also indicate the health problem of the cat. At times the cat can over eat or may reduce their intake. Cats are very picky about their food. Unless the food was changed completely, there is no reason for the cat to refuse food. For any kind of the health problem, the food habit will be disturbed. Hence close observation of the food habit of the cat will help to find out the heath issue quickly.

Likewise the stool of the cat will give hell a lot of information about the health of the cat. The texture and consistency of the stool may give an indication about the health of the cat. The stool may be watery or hard. The color of the stool also needs to be watched to find out the disease problem if there is any. 

Feline Leukaemia – An Overview

August 15, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Diseases

Cats are lovely animals and many are fond of cats and which is the reason for more and more people go in for cats to have them as pet. Just like human beings and other animals, the cats are also prone for many health problems. There are numerous health problems our lovely pet cat face, one such disease is feline leukaemia. 

Feline leukaemia is deadly disease of cat.  feline leukaemia is caused by a highly infectious virus that causes cancer in the cat. This virus can only affect the cats and the same virus can not cause cancer in human beings or the dogs. One or two percent of the cats affected by the feline leukemia. The male cats are more prone than the female cats. The cats that remain in doors most of the time are less likely to be infected than the cats that roam around the house most of the time.

The virus can spread from one cat to the other through contaminated saliva, food bowl, water bowl, bites and nose to nose touch etc. the virus can spread through the contaminated stool and urine and hence common litter box is an absolute threat. The virus can spread to the kittens through infected pregnant mother.

This feline leukaemia is very difficult to diagnose. The infected cats remain normal for the first four weeks of time. The infected can generally don’t show any symptoms however there can be lethargy, fever, swollen lymph nodes, diarrhea etc can be noticed in few. As these symptoms are not only specific to feline leukemia and can be noticed in numerous health problems one can not conclude that the cats are suffering because of feline leukaemia.

The presence of virus can be confirmed in the blood of the infected cats post 4 weeks after the infection. The cats that have strong immune system will less likely to be a sufferer. The cats whose immunity is suppressed due to varied reason are highly prone to this feline leukaemia infection. Few cats remain as a carrier to this feline leukaemia and can be seen discharging the virus continuously and thus spreading the infection to the other cats all through their life time. 

The cats that are infected with feline leukaemia will get other diseases in due course even if they recover from feline leukaemia because this virus infection results in immunodeficiency. Hence diagnosis of feline leukaemia is like tip of an ice berg and is just an indication of so many other diseases to follow. Hence as the universal proverb prevention is better than cure as far as feline leukaemia is concerned.

There are vaccines available for the protection of the cats from this deadly dangerous feline leukaemia and the cat owner should buy the same and administer it to the cat every year. The vaccines for feline leukaemia are not 100 % protective and hence the owner can not relax by just administering the vaccine. The owner should take proper care of the cat so that the lovely pet does not get exposed to the virus.

Interactive cat toy for a happier pet and owners

August 14, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - cat toys

Interactive cat toy brings about immense joy, both to the pet owners as well as the cat. This toy helps in improving the physical health of the cat besides alleviating the depression and the boredom of the cat. The cat owner and the cat can have good fun time together.

It is proved beyond doubt that the cats too have feeling like human beings and all other animals. The cats get depressed when chips are down for them. The change in behaviour of the cat will help us know that the cat is depressed. There are many reasons for depression. Lose of companion, change of environment, arrival of new animal and boredom is few to mention.

Besides the cats are very sensitive and can be disturbed greatly even by the slight change behaviour of the pet owners. The cats can be very well aware of the time at which the owners leave and come home. For example if the pet owner goes on tour and does not come home at usual time, the cat will be very restless. The will keep going to the door to look for him. They will rush to the very sound of the door bell. In the absence of owners for long time, the cat will slowly loose its appetite, restrict playing , become nervous , get excited very easily etc. This change in behaviour is nothing but depression signs
This depression can happen in case the pet owner brings in yet another animal, be it fellow cat or any other animal. The cat will get jealous of the new animal as the attention of the pet owner gets deviated or at least shared.  The reduction is play time with the owner will push the cat to boredom and soon depression follows.

Once it is confirmed that the cat is depressed, only way to bring the cat to normal is by increasing the play time. Interactive play is what is required to cajole the cat faster. Caressing the fur by the owners helps a great deal.

Cats are natural predators and they love hunting. Toy mouse is one of the best toys available to help the cause. The cats can be seen enjoying its mock chasing the toy mouse. The toy mouse is operated by a remote control unit with joy stick. The pet owner can manoeuvre the mouse with the help of the joy stick thus making the cat’s chase difficult and more enjoyable.

The cat that is made active this way will come out depression soon. Besides, the cat will remain healthy, eat well but will not put on more weight that required. The heart, lung, stomach etc are kept in good condition. There will be very less possibility for disease problems and to some extend the ageing process can be delayed.   

EFFECTIVE TREATMENT FOR CAT’S CONSTIPATION

August 13, 2011 :: Posted by - kittyluver :: Category - Uncategorized

Cats are wonderful pets and they deserve best care, attention and best disease prevention program. Constipation is very common among the cats. The reasons are plenty such as hair ball ingestion, poor diet, dehydration, obstruction in the intestine etc. Nothing to worry; there are remedies available to alleviate this discomfort of the cat. But, before attempting the treatment, the pet owner must confirm constipation. It is worth while consulting a veterinarian who is familiar with the cat’s history. For this, the owner should be aware of signs of constipation.

There are several clues to identify the constipation. The clue may be change in the demeanour of the cat or the change in the bowel movement. The cat’s abdomen will be tense to touch. The cat will be straining while passing the tools. These are just the indication that the cat is suffering from constipation. Besides the cat’s tool will be very hard and try. At times the cat suffering from constipation may pass very loose motion. This should not be mistaken for diarrhoea and the same must be ruled out. The cat will also loose its appetite and will be lethargic.  These can be due to constipation or many other reasons, but one should confirm constipation before attempting treatment.    
Metamucil – this is also used as human dietary supplement. This product has psyllium husk in it. This product need to be mixed in canned food but the quantity should not be more than I teaspoon at a time. Psyllium is a laxative which takes the intestinal moisture and swells thus initiating the bowel movement. One has to make sure sufficient quantity of water is provided along with this product.

High fibre diet- the cat must be given high fibre diet. High fibre diets initiates bowel movements thus allowing easier evacuation of the bowel contents. For this one should spend quality time in selecting the food for the cat. He or she need to visit the store personally and read the food label completely and compare the food with one another before buying one.

Unseasoned pumpkin helps in treating constipation. Pure breed pumpkin can be mixed in cat food, not more than two teaspoons at a time. This will bring in the water to the bowel thus aiding free passage of bowel contents. The cats love the taste of pumpkin, which is an added advantage, is it not?