In the previous blog, we introduced some signs of illness in cats, and in this one, we continue to introduce how to determine if your cat has health problems by observing the cat's behaviours.
Abnormal Bowel Movements
Normally, cats have 1-2 bowel movements a day, soft and firm, with brown or dark brown streaks. If the cat passes stools more than 3 times a day, or if the cat suddenly passes stools everywhere and struggles to pass stools during non-estrus, it may have a problem with the urinary or gastrointestinal system and needs a visiting vet. We can also simply determine if a cat has a health problem by observing the cat's stools.
- Granular stools: Inadequate water intake, the cat needs to be directed to drink more clean water.
- Soft stools: Soft stools usually occur during food changes and can be caused by indigestion or gastrointestinal discomfort, and can be improved by feeding your cat probiotics after consulting your vet.
- Watery, foul-smelling stools: Inflammation of the gut or parasites may cause thin, foul-smelling stools, and the cat should seek medical attention.
- Bloody stools: Gastrointestinal bleeding and anal fissures may cause blood in the cat's stools, and immediate medical attention should be sought.
- White rice-shaped stools: If your cat has not been regularly given worming, internal parasites may cause white rice-shaped stools, please take your cat to the vet for further examination.
- Greyish white stools: Liver and pancreatic lesions may cause your cat to pass greyish white stools, please seek medical attention promptly.
Sudden Increase In Water Intake
If your cat suddenly has a significant increase in water intake and your cat urinates frequently, there may be kidney/endocrine disease, salt intolerance or chronic nephritis, please take your cat to visit the vet immediately.
Frequent Licking Of An Area
If your cat is licking or scratching an area frequently and the hair on that area is significantly reduced, you should check immediately for wounds/cat moss. For cat moss, if you have a UV lamp, you can shine it on your cat's body with the light off and if it glows fluorescent green, it indicates the presence of cat moss.
Shortness Of Breath
Excluding exercise and weather, if your cat is breathing too fast (especially panting with the tongue out and fast breathing rhythm), this may be due to respiratory, chest and heart problems.
Adult cats normally sleep between 14 to 16 hours. Sick cats are depressed and lethargic, usually sleeping for more than 18 hours, with a reduced appetite and slow reflexes. If similar symptoms persist for more than 2 days, it is recommended to take the cat to visit the vet.
These are some of the ways we can tell when a cat may have a health problem through observation. Please do not diagnose your cat's illness and treat it on your own. If your cat is not behaving normally, please visit the vet first.
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