Caring for Your Cat

We at Noble Veterinary Clinic understand how important it is to avoid problems before they take hold. Below, we’ve covered some basic medical information that is important to be aware of throughout your pet’s life.

Kittens


To get a head start in life, your kitty is going to need a fair amount of attention. With routine examinations, your vet will be tasked with inspecting your kitten’s eyes, ears, lungs, teeth, heart, joints and bones. It’s a good idea to get your kitten tested for Feline Leukemia (FeLV) as well as Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) before you bring them into a household. Particularly if you’ve got another cat living there. FeLV and FIV are the two biggest causes of illness in cats, so it’s vital they be detected early if they are to be managed. Fortunately, the tests can be conducted quickly and efficiently in our lab. There is no cure for FeLV and FIV, but your pet can live a long, comfortable life if properly managed after early detection. Internal and external parasite examinations are essential for your kitten, and we’ll help you decide on the best course of action when it comes to keeping your little one free of parasites.




Rabies


Rabies is one of the oldest, most dangerous, infectious diseases. Affecting the central nervous system of almost all warm-blooded animals, this viral disease is always fatal and can also be transmitted to humans. While rabies in cats is rare, it has been known to happen. So the state dictates that vaccination for rabies is required by law.




Panleukopenia


Known as ‘feline distemper’, panleukopenia will afflict your cat with upper respiratory problems as well as diarrhea, vomiting and in many cases death. While cats of any age can contract panleukopenia, it is more common in unvaccinated kittens and sick cats.




Rhinotracheitis, Herpes and Calicivirus (“Cat Flu”)


‘Cat flu’ is characterised by sneezing, inflammation of the nasal passages, trachea, coupled with fever and eye infection. With 80 to 90 per cent of the cases being caused by the feline herpes virus and calcivirus, other conditions such as chlamydia, reovirus, bordetella pasteurella and mycoplasma can also be associated.




Feline Leukemia (FeLV)


Feline Leukemia can exhibit symptoms ranging from anemia to chronic infections and cancer. This virus is the cause of more deaths in cats than any other organism. The infection can be transmitted in a number of ways, from the saliva and blood of infected cats, or from the mother to her fetuses during pregnancy. Roughly 85 per cent of cats with FeLV die within three years of being diagnosed. A vaccination is recommended if your cat is to be outdoors during any point of its life.




Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)


Responsible for causing AIDS in cats, this disease is non-transferrable to humans. Transmission occurs via bite wounds, mating and poorly-screen blood transfusions. With a long asymptomatic period before AIDS actually occurs, it’s best to screen for FIV infections from tests in the clinic. Average life expectancy from diagnosis for FIV is five years.




Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)


FIP, caused by an infection with the feline coronavirus, results in an inflammatory infiltration of the organs. The result is global inflammation as well as fevers which are unresponsive to antibiotics. ‘Wet’ FIP includes the production of thick, yellow fluids in the chest and/or abdomen, whereas ‘dry’ FIP will lead to death over a period of years. While the disease cannot be passed to dogs or humans, both forms of FIP come with a 100 per cent mortality rates for cats.




Adult Cats


Vaccinations for your cat will depend on whether or not the cat is spending any time outdoors. With age, it’s recommended that your cat goes in for more frequent health check-ups, in an effort to stamp out any issues before they become serious. Even if your cat is not showing symptoms, regular blood tests for Feline Leukemia, Feline Immunodeficiency Virus and Feline Infectious Peritonitis are recommended.




Elderly Cats


As your cat enters its elderly years, regular health checks are an essential part of ensuring a long and happy life. Your cat will require regular vaccinations and examinations, as well as routine blood tests for hyperthyroidism - which serves as a common health condition in senior cats. Procedures such as x-rays, ultrasound and echocardiography will become more common for your cat in order to identify and tackle any irregularities before they become an issue.





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