May 2019

5 Things to Know About Feline Hypertension

Blood pressure in cats is measured as in humans, with the systolic (upper) value representing the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart is contracting and the diastolic (lower) value representing the pressure in the blood vessels when the heart relaxes.

Cats Are Larger

Modern domestic cats are at least 16 percent bigger than their Viking-Age ancestors (793–1066 AD), according to a Danish study shared by The Winn Foundation. Researchers excavated the remains of adult domestic cats at archaeological sites in Denmark as well as modern skeletal remains.

Choosing a Board-Certified Veterinarian

If your cat has been diagnosed with a complex or serious illness or needs specialty surgery, your regular veterinarian may recommend a referral to a board-certified specialist, a veterinarian who has put in extra training in a certain field, much like a human oncologist or cardiologist.

Tiny Antiviral Molecule Offers Hope

Feline infectious peritonitis (FIP) is a devastating disease of cats for which there are currently no effective therapies available. Occurring in two forms—a wet form in which fluid accumulates in body cavities and a dry form in which affected cats develop neurological signs—the current prognosis for cats with FIP is grave. FIP develops in approximately 5 percent of cats infected with the ubiquitous (and usually well-tolerated) feline enteric coronavirus.

Poor Prognosis: Restrictive Cardiomyopathy

A recent study out of Italy looked at survival and prognostic factors for cats with restrictive cardiomyopathy. The researchers looked at 90 cats who had been diagnosed with this cardiac condition via echocardiography between 1997 and 2015. There were 53 more males than females in the study.

How Your Kitty Uses “Radar”

Subscribers Only - Your cat has several rows of whiskers, usually 12 arranged in rows, and a few over her eyes. You may also see them along her jawline, near her ears, and on the back of her front legs. All these whiskers, or “vibrissae,” are stiff tactile hairs that help your cat learn about her environment.

Your Guide to Pain in Cats

Subscribers Only - Cats hide injuries and pain by instinct, a behavior that is important for survival in the wild. This forces us to be detectives when our cats are ill.

A Crystal Ball in Your Cat’s Urine

Subscribers Only - Finding crystals in a urine sample can be a warning that painful urinary stones and/or deadly blockages may be forming. Persian and Himalayan cats have an increased risk for urinary crystals and stone formation.

Accidents and Injuries Happen

Subscribers Only - We round up our series on when to use an emergency clinic with a look at common feline injuries. Believe it or not, cats have their own set of accidents to which they are prone. In this article, we discuss some of the more common problems seen in veterinary emergency clinics. Obviously, not every possible emergency scenario is listed here, so if you’re not sure, always err on the side of caution and take your cat to the ER if your cat has been injured.

New Hope for FIP

I recently lost a cat to feline infectious peritonitis (FIP), and this was a dreadful experience. No matter what we did, he continued to accumulate fluid in his chest and abdomen, and my veterinarian told me that there is no cure for this condition. All we could do was repeatedly remove the fluid until his quality of life became so poor that we decided to have him euthanized. Are you aware of any research that is being done that may improve this situation for other cats afflicted with FIP?

Happening now…

Pet Week - May is a big month for our feline friends. The 35th Annual National Pet Week is May 6–11.

Download the Full May 2019 Issue PDF

Subscribers Only - Download the Full May 2019 Issue PDF