10/30/16

Heart Disease in Cats

Heart disease in cats occurs in more commonly than most think. It is sometimes hard to diagnose the earliest stages because there are not always symptoms that are obvious. Heart disease in cats can strike any breed or age of cat, the risk is the same for all cats. Let’s look closer at the most common forms of heart disease for cats.

For cats, there exist three primary kinds of heart disease. The cat could get restrictive, feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (FHCM), or dilative heart disease. The restrictive kind is the rarest of the three and happens as the wall of the heart are replaced repeatedly with scar tissue. With the FHCM, the walls get firmer and thicker. The heart’s muscular walls weaken and get thinner in the dilative kind of heart disease.

Heart disease in cats can turn serious and even fatal quickly because symptoms do not appear that early in the disease. As the symptoms do show they are often hard to see. The most usual symptoms are vomiting, a hard time breathing, little or no appetite, or opening the mouth to breathe. When the disease progresses the symptoms could be fainting, paralysis, and dying suddenly.

It takes an exam by a vet to usually find a problem with the cat’s heart. The vet could hear a heart murmur, which could be a sign that the cat is having a heart problem. A battery of test can be done that could include echocardiograms, chest x-rays, and electrocardiograms. The vets usually find that the electrocardiograms give them the most useful results.

If the heart problem is caught in time, treatment can be successful. In the event the heart of the cat is not yet failing their condition could be brought under control. Diuretics are sometimes prescribed to get rid of excess fluid and make it easier for the heart to work. In the event that the cat is suffering from the feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, the vet will prescribe calcium channel blockers for making the walls of the heart less stiff.

Vasodilators are used to get the cat’s blood pressure lower. These can also lessen the heart’s workload, which is vital with any heart problem. The cat could need aspirin and betablockers as well when fighting this condition.

Heart disease can also be split into two classifications as far as congenital meaning that the cat is born with the problem, and acquired which means the cat develops later on in its life.

When the heart won’t work right, there can be a few things that might be the cause. The heart’s valves, the duties of which are to regulate the blood flow in the heart’s chambers could leak or not be able to open all the way. The muscle walls can have holes, which can even affect the major vessels and the chambers. These walls can also change or get damaged for a variety of reasons. All of this can make more or less blood be circulated through the heart and into the body, and if the problem gets bad enough the symptoms will start showing up, as in the problems breathing or even the cat fainting.

So if you suspect that you cat is having problems consult a vet immediately, because time is valuable in treating the problem of heart disease in cats.

09/28/15

Mt Pleasant Kennel Cat Acne

If you thought that you had the worst of it when you got a rash of acne at 16, you’ll certainly understand how your cute little Mt Pleasant kennel cat might feel. Except of course, your cat won’t have his friends making fun of him (hopefully). Cat acne around the Mount Pleasant, SC area comes up in cats for different reasons.  No matter what causes it, it almost always appears as bumps around the mouth or the chin. It is a good thing that acne in cat isn’t usually painful or anything, and that there are lots of simple home remedies that you could tap to help your little furry friend. More info at: http://pets.webmd.com/cats/

What does cat acne actually look like? Usually, you’ll notice what looks like whiteheads or delicate-looking pimples around the lower part of your cat’s face. The worse the attack is, the more pimples you’ll see. Sometimes, in a severe attack of acne, your cat’s pimples may begin to ooze, swell, or crust over. The worst part of it is, that your cat will begin to scratch itself around those pimples, and get it all raw and prone to infection. In such a case, you’ll probably need to seek help from the veterinarian for quick relief. You don’t want to wait for slow home remedies to work when your cat’s problem seems to be a bit severe. Also, to the lay pet owner, there is no real way to tell acne apart from an infection or a rash. Before you actually apply any of these home remedies below, you’ll probably want to take your cat to the veterinarian  for a positive diagnosis.

So how you take care of cat acne at home? To begin with, just as with people, you want to make sure that your Mt Pleasant cat’s face is all clean. Once a day, make sure that you wipe your cat’s face down with a clean washcloth dipped in warm water. A clean face helps with a cat acne breakout. If you want to use soap washing the cat’s face, make sure that you use pet-safe soap that you can get with your veterinarian. While you wash your cat’s face, holding a warm towel to the critter’s face for a while helps unclog itspores. It helps the skin lose its bacteria a bit more efficiently.

Sometimes, cats in the Mount Pleasant, SC area get their attack of acne through unclean food- or water-bowls. You need to be sure that your cat’s dishes are completely and thoroughly washed with soap and water everyday. And while you’re at it, be sure to get china or metal cat dishes. They are far better staying bacteria-free than plastic is. And finally, you don’t want to be using your own acne cream to help your cat. Cats have smaller and more delicate bodies. Human-strength medicines simply won’t be safe for such a little animal. And whatever you do, make sure you don’t squeeze any pimple. It will only drive the infection in deeper.

09/28/14

Mt Pleasant Vet Clinic Cat Food Debate

The debate at dog boarding kennels and other veterinarians and cat owners in general over what kind of food to feed cats is just as heated as the long standing debate over whether cats should be raised indoors or outdoors. It’s generally agreed that cats are carnivores and that they should be fed some sort of meat product, but the form that that meat takes is hotly contested. This is why there are all sorts of cat food products on the market and sitting on the shelves of your local pet store. There are different factors that contribute to the type of cat food that cat owners ultimately buy for their pets.

cat foodSome cat owners don’t even shop at the pet store or their favorite boarding kennel. They are convinced that cats should be fed raw meat only. It’s argued that this is the natural order and that cats should eat the raw flesh of prey as they would in the wild. The advantage to feeding your cat raw meat is that it is the most “natural” product you can feed your cat, but the downside is that this is very expensive. Imagine stopping by the meat aisle to pick up steak for the family dinner, and then an additional steak for the cat. After a while, those pounds and dollars are going to add up and put a damper on your funds.

Other cat owners opt for canned wet cat food. This is a cheaper alternative to raw meat and it manages to provide sustenance that is as close to its natural form as you can get at a more convenient price and packaging. It’s a lower grade quality than meat sold for human consumption, but suitable for cats to eat. Wet cat food is a solid middle option, and it is a popular choice.

Finally, there are cat owners who feed their cats dry cat food. This is the cheapest means of feeding your cat, and it is also the cleanest. Dry food leaves less mess than wet food and raw meat, and also gives off less of an odor. Dry cat food is also a very popular choice of cat food on par with wet cat food. There are some cat owners who believe that dry cat food is detrimental because it’s the furthest from what they are used to eating in nature. Dry cat food sometimes contains grains that are not originally part of the feline diet. Still, it is much cheaper than wet food or cat food, and most cats do fine on a dry food diet. Many animal shelters feed their cats with dry food.

In the end, which cat food you choose to buy depends on your beliefs and how much you have available to spend on your feline friend. As long as you feed your cat regularly with products on the market deemed suitable for cats to consume, the choice shouldn’t matter too much. Whether you choose to feed your cat with raw meat, wet food or dry food, your cat will be happy as long as its bowl is filled.