Unusual discharge from the nose, eyes or other body openings
An increase or decrease in appetite that lasting more than a few days
Excessive head shaking, scratching or licking
Swelling or abnormal lumps
Limping or difficulty getting up or lying down
Obvious injury or illness
Foul breath or excessive deposits on teeth
Persistent vomiting or diarrhea
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Prevention is Protection
Serious infectious cat diseases can be controlled by vaccination. With so many feral cats, your cat is quite likely to come in contact with an infectious disease sooner or later.
Indoor cats are exposed to viral diseases carried in on shoes, the air, dust or clothing. Vaccination is cost effective protection against expensive treatment, or premature death caused by disease.
Once your cat is past primary kitten vaccines, regular physical exams are the most important health care priority to detect and prevent health problems early.
Getting Your Cat to the Vet
Click for tips to get finicky felines into their carriers, in a low stress way, so you can safely bring them here for care.
Feline Urinary or Defecation Issues
Common reasons cats and kittens stop using litter boxes:
The cat is suffering from a medical problem involving the urinary tract.
The brand, scent or litter type changed.
Litter is too perfumed or dusty for cat’s preference.
The box is as clean as the cat would like.
Cat inadvertently is locked out of litter box reach.
Too many cats and not enough litter boxes.
House is too large for just one litter box. (important for kittens and senior cats).
Litter box cleaned with harsh or smelly cleaning product.
Location of box is not private enough for cat.
Cat is creeped out by covered litter box.
Cat has out grown litter box.
Cat suffered from bout of geriatric constipation.
Location of the litter box changed to often.
The litter box has been changed.
The cat is kept from using the litter box by another pet in the house.
Thoo many cats and not enough territory.
Stray cats seen out window or smelled through a screen near territory.
Un-neutered male cat maturing and marking territory.
Un-spayed female is in heat and advertising for suitors.
Over time, the cat has developed an aversion to the texture of the litter.
The cat was never properly trained to use the litter box in the first place.
The cat is stressed by a change in routine or environment, including a new baby, new furniture, work schedule changes, vacations, overnight guests, or a move.
Forest mending two broken rear legs
If your cat is eliminating outside the litter box, and you ruled out the reasons above, your next step is to call Advanced Care Pet Hospital for care and advice.
Feline Infectious Diseases
Avoid many of the viral and bacterial diseases listed here with proactive, preventative health and wellness care for your cat. Bring your cat to Advanced Care and we will help you address concerns about proper vaccines, parasites, fleas and treatment to help keep your cat healthy and happy.
Feline Respiratory Diseases
Respiratory diseases include: Rhinotracheitis, Calici Virus and Chlamydia Sneezing, etc. All are easily spread upper respiratory infections.
All are highly contagious and widespread. High death rates occur in young cats and “old” cats.
Symptoms include sneezing, fever, nasal discharges, runny nose, coughing, Conjunctivitis (eyelid infections), mouth ulcers, and general depression.
Even stray cats that seem healthy may be a “carrier” infecting your cat, even through a screen window. Protection from these diseases come in the form of a vaccine. Immunity is built up by a series of injections increasing the cat's antibody protection over time. Viral and bacterial disease can and do mutate in the wild.
Feline Leukemia Virus
Feline leukemia virus is transmitted through saliva, urine, respiratory secretions, and through the blood or milk of pregnant or nursing queens. It has not, however, been found to be contagious to humans.
In outdoor and free-roaming cats, infection rates may reach as high as 30%.
Leukemia is just one manifestation of disease which can result. Once the virus replicates inside your cat's blood cells, it diminishes your pet's resistance to other illnesses.
Virus or bacterial infections causing mild symptoms in an uninfected cat become chronic, recurrent, and sometimes life-threatening in a leukemia virus infected cat.
Respiratory infections, abortion, infertility problems, chronic gum infections, or fatalities due to bone marrow diseases, feline infectious peritonitis, or tumor-forming cancers are some added illnesses which can plague your cat once infected with an immuno-suppressive virus.
Causes malignant tumors and anemia
Suppresses immune system, leaving cats vulnerable to disease
Cats can appear healthy while infected
Transmission: Virus transmitted in saliva. Young kittens are especially susceptible
Signs: Acute early stage is rarely detected
Treatment: Almost always ineffective
Prognosis: Can survive for years if no secondary diseases or lymphoma
Vaccination: For indoor/outdoor cats, in breeding facilities, multi-cat households, and shelter cats.
Feline herpes virus is the most common cause of upper respiratory disease in cats, it is more common in kittens, cats in stressed/overcrowded environments such as animal shelters and multi cat households. Kittens and older cats are more at risk than healthy adults, and are also at greater risk of dying. Once your cat becomes infected with the feline herpes virus he will have it for life.
Causes nearly half of all upper respiratory disease infections in cats
Transmission: Transmitted by coughing and sneezing from infected cat, or by a handler
Signs: Sneezing, runny nose, watery eyes and fever
Treatment: Supportive treatment with antibiotics for secondary bacterial infections
Prognosis: Good, except for young kittens and aged cats
Vaccination: Recommended for all cats
There are several strains of calicivirus which infect cats, and symptoms differ depending on the virulence of the particular virus causing infection. Some strains may cause mild symptoms only, others severe.
In healthy adult cats, mortality rates are fairly low, however kittens and older cats are at greater risk.
Sick, acutely infected or carrier cats shed FCV in oro-nasal and conjunctival secretions. Infection occurs mainly through direct contact.
Major cause of upper respiratory infections, often in tandem with feline viral rhinotracheitis
Transmission: Transmitted by droplets coughed and sneezed from an infected cat, or by handler