Determining when a cat may be sick is not easy. In some cases this is a challenge even for an experienced Vet. Physical changes in sick cats can range from hard to spot to virtually unnoticeable. Cats are masters of hiding signs of illness until disease processes are well advanced. Maintaining general pet wellness in your cat requires paying close attention to their behavior and watching closely and often for potential signs that they may be sick. When in doubt, it is best to consult a Vet.
Here are a few signs to look out for that may indicate that your cat is ill.
- Diarrhea or Vomiting: Vomiting and diarrhea are not necessarily signs of illness if limited to a single instance. However, diarrhea or vomiting that continues is cause for concern. In general, vomiting is more serious than diarrhea. Generally we say that vomiting 3 or more times in an hour, or 8 or more times in 24 hours, constitutes a true medical emergency because it will inevitably lead to dehydration. If you cat demonstrates vomiting or diarrhea once or twice, try withholding food for 24 hours. If the problem persists, contact us or your regular Vet for a checkup. If at any time you see blood in your cat’s waste or vomit, seek veterinary attention immediately.
- Excessive, Scratching, Licking, or Chewing: Though licking and occasional scratching can be part of a cat’s normal grooming routine, scratching, licking, or chewing in an especially intense manner or for long periods of time may be an indication of fleas, ticks or other parasites. Check your cat’s coat and skin routinely for any signs of irritation or problems. Cats can be sneaky, so watch also for missing patches of fur, whether or not associated with any observed licking scratching or chewing. If you cat is experiencing hair loss or scabbing, contact us or your regular Vet for a checkup as soon as possible.
- Pain or Difficulty Moving: Cats can sleep up to 16 hours a day when they are perfectly healthy. What a life, right? If your cat is sleeping more than usual or displays difficulty or reluctance in moving about, it may be an indication of a serious problem. If your cat is stumbling or disoriented when they are walking, please contact us or your regular Vet as soon as possible.
If your cat is need of reliable veterinary service in the Dallas area, call Chastain Veterinary Medical Group at (972) 239-1309 (north Dallas) or 972-529-5033 (McKinney). Chastain Veterinary Medical Group provides a number of veterinary services in Dallas and McKinney including laser therapy, ultrasounds, pet grooming, and pet boarding.