Is your cat sick? learn your cat’s behavior, so you can recognize it
Just like humans, every cat has its distinct personality. However, proper appetite, grooming, litter use, etc., are some of the behaviors that remain consistent in all felines. Abrupt changes in any of these behaviors can indicate an underlying health problem. This article provides comprehensive information about feline behaviors you must watch out for.
Loss Of Interest In Food
- A sudden change in appetite or loss of interest in food should be taken seriously. Felines weigh between 8 to 12 pounds on average. Changes in food consumption can lead to a loss of weight that your feline cannot afford. The best time to act is before your feline loses any weight.
Changes in appetite can result from several issues, including poor oral health, pancreatitis, kidney disease, and hyperparathyroidism. Consult your vet if your cat shows profound or prolonged disinterest in food. Veterinarians have the proper tools to diagnose the problem and suggest treatment accordingly.
Sudden Change In Grooming Habits
Felines are enthusiastic self-groomers. Therefore, a change in your feline’s self-grooming routine indicates a problem. The underlying causes of improper grooming include:
Overweight and obesity
- Felines with excess weight face problems reaching their full bodies when they groom.
- Arthritis is a condition that causes inflammation and stiffness in the joints. As a result, inflamed and painful joints can make it difficult for felines to move. This makes them less likely to groom hard-to-reach areas.
Oral Health Issues
- Toothache, gum infection, or other oral health issues that cause mouth discomfort can make it hard for felines to groom appropriately.
- Underlying medical issues can make cats lose interest in daily activities such as grooming. Book an appointment with your vet if your cat stops grooming itself correctly or if you observe any changes in the usual grooming behavior. It’s better to have the problem checked before it gets severe.
Changes in Litter Box Use
- A healthy cat has proper litter box habits. The inability to use the litter pan or defecate outside the pan could indicate potential health problems. If your cat is going outside the litter pan, it could be from blockage or infection in the urinary tract.
Difficulty passing urine, excess thirst without any urinary output, signs of lethargy, or vocalizing when urinating are some of the red flags that require you to see your vet immediately. Urinary tract infections can become worse if left untreated.
Reclusiveness or Aggression
- Reclusiveness and aggression are other indicators of trouble. Felines may become reclusive or aggressive when they are in pain. Researchers associate aggression with hyperparathyroidism, epilepsy, oral disease, rabies, and trauma.
In addition, cognitive deficits in older cats are also linked to aggression. Some cats shun usual human contact when they are not in a good mood. This could be a warning sign of discomfort or pain. If your cat shows any of these signs, have it checked by the vet.
- Cats are adept at regulating their water intake. A cat overdrinking can suffer from diabetes, hyperparathyroidism, and chronic kidney disease. On the other hand, exposure to heat can lead to dehydration, causing excessive thirst in felines. Ensure that your cat has ample water and a cool place to rest if it gets exposed to heat daily.
Unlike humans, cats do not sweat to regulate their body heat. Instead, they rely on panting and hydration to keep their body temperature normal. If your cat shows signs of excessive thirst, have it examined by your vet to rule out potential health issues.
Autumn Trails and Veterinary Center offers the most convenient and comprehensive care for your pets. We provide regular checkups, dental, and urgent care services for all pets. We are located in Charlottesville, VA. for more information, call us at 434-971-9800.