Healthy Felines

Recognizing Common Cat Health Problems

Cats are generally healthy creatures. But they aren’t the best at letting us know if they are experiencing pain or discomfort. And when you do notice something is obviously wrong, sometimes a problem has been going on a lot longer than you may think.
In fact, sometimes they literally hide when they are in pain. So if your kitty is out of sight, you’ll want to check up on them and watch for telltale signs that something might be wrong.
For example, if you see that there’s a spot of vomit or pee/poop outside the litter pan, your cat might have a health issue.
Because many common cat health problems are preventable or easily addressed by veterinarians, it’s always a good idea to catch health issues early before they get worse.
If you are living with a companion cat (or several), what are some signs that your cat might be experiencing a health problem?
Signs Your Cat Might Need to See a Vet
Lumps or bumps you haven’t noticed before
Excessive or frequent scratching of ears or other body parts
Changes in their energy level
Limping or changes in how they walk
Peeing and/or pooping where they're not supposed to (when they used to know)
Drinking more or less water than they usually do
Eating things they shouldn't eat (See our previous blog post on toxic foods for dogs and cats)
Skin problems/hair loss
Bad breath (see our post on pet dental health)
Breathing funny
Excessive grooming
Unusual noises
Changes in body shape or weight
If you notice any of these things, contact your veterinary care team and make an appointment. If you’re in doubt, call. They might tell you to come in as soon as possible, or they might recommend that it can wait until the next routine visit, depending on the details you provide.
Cat‑Friendly Veterinary Practices
Few cats enjoy going to the vet, but getting regular checkups at least once a year and staying up‑to‑date on vaccinations and parasite control is key to a long, healthy life.
Some veterinarians go the extra mile to make cats comfortable going to the vet. Cat Friendly Homes is a site that certifies veterinarians as having “cat‑friendly practices.” They try to minimize stress by using Feline Friendly Handling Guidelines, having cat‑only waiting rooms, and being alert to signs of feline stress.
With some planning and loving care, your cat will be able to live healthily and happily for all 9 lives.
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