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How to Tell if Your Cat is Ill
January 1, 2017

Our feline friends are good at hiding their discomfort. Since most of us aren’t trained veterinarians, how do you tell when your cat isn’t feeling up to par? Below, a Gresham, OR vet tells you about five signs of illness in cats.

Behavior Indicators

Have you noticed dramatic changes in your cat’s behavior recently? Perhaps she’s hiding constantly when she’s usually much more outgoing, or she’s acting out aggressively when she’s normally friendly. Anomalies like these could indicate disease, stress and anxiety, injury, and other problems, so it’s best to have a veterinarian examine your cat to be sure.

Outward Appearance

Did you know that your cat’s coat quality is a good indicator of her internal health? If you’ve noticed your feline friend’s fur looking dry and lackluster, if you’ve noticed a substantial increase in shedding, or if there are visible bald spots on your cat’s coat, it’s time to see the vet. Parasitic infestation, skin issues, and much more could be the root cause! Set up an appointment to see your vet if your cat’s coat isn’t looking up to snuff.

Bad Breath

Try to get a whiff of your cat’s breath every now and then. Although it’s not likely to smell perfectly pleasant, it shouldn’t be horribly offensive, either. Rotten or particularly offensive breath could indicate periodontitis, rotting teeth, or even more serious problems like kidney or liver failure. Bad breath could also just mean that your cat’s teeth need a good brushing! Either way, it’s best to check with your veterinarian to make sure your cat’s health is in peak condition.

Waste Changes

Take note of your cat’s stools when cleaning out the litter box. If it seems like your cat’s waste has changed dramatically in terms of frequency, size, smell, or color, something could be amiss. Another likely indicator of a health issue is frequent accidents outside of the litter box—this might mean your cat is suffering from an injury or an ailment like a urinary tract infection.

Food and Water Consumption

Have you noticed your cat eating and drinking more or less than normal? Has she seemingly no interest in food at all? Health concerns could be to blame, so it’s important that you check with your veterinarian to be safe.

We’re here to help with all of your cat’s care needs. If your pet needs veterinary attention, call your Gresham, OR animal hospital.

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