Blog News

July 27, 2017

Peeing blood

We consider blood in a cat's urine to be an emergency. If it is coupled with straining in the litter box like this poor cat, especially in a male cat, you should contact your vet or the emergency centre immediately. Blood in the urine indicates either a medical problem, like a urinary tract infection, or an anxiety problem. Urinary tract infections occur in older cats, particularly older females with kidney disease or constipation problems. The urethras of young male cats sometimes completely block. If your male or desexed male cat is straining and only producing a few drops of urine, and seems distressed do not hesitate to call a vet. They soon become painful and toxic, and can die. The most common cause of blood in the urine is anxiety. Sometimes it is difficult to know why our cats are anxious but usually it is to do with another cat. Neighbourhood cats straying into your yard, too many cats in the household, a new cat, or human visitors can trigger anxiety in cats. Anxiety causes bladder inflammation and pain and a vicious cycle of anxiety - inflammation - pain - more anxiety is set up. Pain relief and allaying the anxiety soon helps these stressed cats. Your vet will tease out the possible causes of the blood in the urine and treat accordingly.
July 19, 2017

Sneezes and runny eyes

Many cats are suffering from cat flu this winter. Mali's runny eye and sneezing are typical of the type we are seeing. He has been picky with his food and inclined to go off on his own instead of playing these last few days too. The swab revealed that he has herpesvirus, a common cause of cat flu and widespread in the cat population. Mali was vaccinated against herpesvirus so he should only have a mild dose of flu of short duration. Vaccination against herpesvirus and calicivirus doesn't necessarily prevent cats from getting some signs but the disease is much less severe and prolonged than if they'd had no vaccination. Severe cat flu in unvaccinated cats can lead to runny nose, chronic sinusitis, mouth ulcers, coughing, pneumonia and even death in young or elderly cats. Confirmed herpesvirus infections respond to a special antiviral which your vet may prescribe. Mycoplasma, chlamydia and other bacteria may complicate the viral disease. Antibiotics help control these infections. Nursing is the most important therapy for cats with flu. To keep their appetite up feed strong smelling foods. If the nose is blocked half an hour in a steamy bathroom helps loosen the secretions up. Wipe mucky eyes and nose with a moist cotton wool or makeup pad. Purr therapy is crucial to recovery! Lots of gentle petting and coddling will help your sad cat through this difficult patch.
July 4, 2017

Weight control

Sadly, over half of our patients are overweight and many of these are clinically obese. As little as an extra 1% of intake over caloric requirements can result in 25% excess bodyweight by middle age. Overweight cats risk developing health issues like diabetes, arthritis, breathing difficulties, bladder problems, liver disease, decreased exercise and heat tolerance, and an overall compromised quality of life. Obesity is caused by overeating and lack of exercise. Indoor cats eat more and exercise less, often through boredom and lack of opportunities to play and hunt. It’s up to their carers to give them an appropriate amount of food, a good quality diet, and mental stimulation. So how can we help our overweight cats to lose weight? ¨ Overweight cats lose weight most reliably on a high protein, low fat diet like Hill’s Metabolic diet ¨ Make sure everyone in the household knows the new feeding regime so that meals are not fed twice and treats are rationed ¨ Weigh the kibble allowance. An extra piece or two every day adds up ¨ Don’t allow free access to kibble ¨ Feed more wet food. A can Hill’s Metabolic is available and palatable ¨ Avoid fatty treats like cheese, liverwurst or pate. Hill’s Metabolic treats help control hunger by keeping you cat feeling full and satisfied between meals ¨ Make sure you overweight cat is not taking your other cats’ food or raiding the neighbours’ dog and cat food bowls! It is vital to increase your cat’s opportunities to exercise. Cat towers, high shelves, window sills and a variety of toys on rotation out of the cupboard are a good start. Tunnels and hideouts made from cardboard boxes are cheap and amusing. You can join in the fun with a fishing rod type toy or a length of ribbon or string, ping pong balls, scrunched up foil, or a laser light. If possible install an outdoor cat enclosure so indoor lounge lizards can have a run and a stretch in the sun, Food puzzle toys are ideal for plump pussy cats. They slow down food consumption, increase movement and mentally stimulate your cat. Please book an appointment with our weight control nurses. They will help your cat achieve safe and effective weight loss. Too rapid weight loss in fat cats may cause liver damage.