• Overview   Urinary obstruction is an acute obstruction of the urinary tract.  In cats, urinary obstruction is usually caused by a plug of inflammatory debris and crystals, which is part of the common syndrome called feline idiopathic cystitis. Although this disease can affect any pet, it is most common in males. Urinary obstruction can quickly become life-threatening and should be [...]

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    Overview   Feline upper respiratory infection refers to infections in the area of the nose, throat and sinus area, much like the common cold in humans.  In cats, these infections are quite common and very contagious and commonly caused by one or multiple organisms. The two primary viruses involved are feline herpesvirus-1 and feline calicivirus and the bacterial organisms involved can be [...]

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    Overview   Feline hyperthyroidism is caused by an unregulated overproduction of thyroid hormone by the thyroid glands, which is usually related to a benign enlargement (growth or tumor) of one or both thyroid lobes. The cause of the enlargement is unknown. The thyroid gland acts as the thermostat for the metabolic rate of the body, controlling how fast or slow the body functions. [...]

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    Overview   Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is a retroviral disease that impairs immune system function and causes anemia and some types of cancer. FeLV is transmitted by prolonged close contact with an infected cat. Kittens can be born with FeLV or acquire the virus through their mother’s milk. The average age of infection is 3 years and male cats may have a higher prevalence of infection[...]

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    Overview   Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) is a viral infection that attacks the immune system of cats. It is a retrovirus similar to Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), and a syndrome similar to AIDS occurs in cats. Affected cats may have a variety of symptoms including infections caused by a poorly functioning immune system, anemia and low blood-cell counts, infections of the gums and[...]

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    Overview   Feline idiopathic cystitis (FIC) is an inflammation of the urinary bladder. This condition is also known as feline idiopathic lower urinary tract disease (FiLUTD) or feline urologic syndrome (FUS). FIC has been estimated to affect up to 1% of the cat population. Despite many years of research, the cause of FIC remains unknown. Factors that may play a role in the development of[...]

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    Overview   Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic condition in which a deficiency of the hormone insulin impairs the body’s ability to metabolize sugar. It is one of the most common endocrine (hormonal) diseases of cats. There are two types of diabetes mellitus. Type I DM occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin. This can be the result of destruction of the cells in the [...]

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    Overview   Chronic renal (kidney) failure (CRF) is a common problem in cats. The digestion of food produces waste products, which are carried by blood to the kidneys to be filtered and excreted in the form of urine. When the kidneys fail, they are no longer able to remove these waste products, and toxins build up in the blood producing clinical signs of kidney disease. All breeds of any [...]

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    Asthma

    8 Jun 2012

    Overview   Asthma is a lung condition associated with airway obstruction caused by sudden narrowing of the bronchial tubes. Typical symptoms include difficult breathing, coughing and/or wheezing. These symptoms are caused by the spasmodic constriction of the bronchial tubes and increased production of secretions from the bronchial tree. The cause of asthma in cats is not yet completely [...]

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    Overview   Urolithiasis refers to the formation of stones in the urinary tract. Stones can be found anywhere in the urinary tract, in the kidneys, the ureter or the bladder, but are most common in the bladder. Several factors can contribute to development of urolithiasis. These include genetic factors, diet, breed, metabolic diseases, congenital problems and bacterial urinary tract [...]

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    Overview   Feline upper respiratory infection refers to infections in the area of the nose, throat and sinus area, much like the common cold in humans.  In cats, these infections are quite common and very contagious and commonly caused by one or multiple organisms. The two primary viruses involved are feline herpesvirus-1 and feline calicivirus and the bacterial organisms involved can be [...]

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    Overview   Sarcoptic mange (also known as scabies) is a highly contagious parasitic disease caused by a microscopic mite called Sarcoptes scabiei that affects animals and people. The hallmark of the disease is intense itchiness. There may also be small red bumps located on the margins of the ears, elbows, hocks (ankles), chest and abdomen. These lesions may become generalized. Other [...]

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    Ringworm

    8 Jun 2012

    Overview   Ringworm is a contagious fungal infection of the skin, caused by Microsporum canis. It is spread from person to person, from animal to person, or indirectly from contaminated objects.  Ringworm is typically seen in young cats, long-haired cats, and cats with pre-existing skin disease or trauma. Diseases or medications that suppress the immune system generally render cats more [...]

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    Pyometra

    8 Jun 2012

    Overview   Pyometra is the medical term used to describe an infected uterus. This infection can be open (draining pus from the vagina) or closed (pus contained in the uterus by a closed cervix). Pyometra can be a life threatening infection and may require emergency surgery. A closed pyometra is more of an emergency than an open pyometra, since there is no drainage of pus in a closed [...]

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    Pneumonia

    8 Jun 2012

    Overview   Pneumonia is an inflammation of the lungs and the bronchi, usually related to a bacterial infection. The route of infection is typically inhalation but sometimes the bacteria can be spread by the blood stream from an infection in other parts of the body. Pneumonia can occur in dogs and cats, but is more common in dogs. Sporting dogs, hounds, working dogs and mixed breed dogs [...]

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    Overview   Periodontitis is the inflammation of the structures that support teeth and gums. It is one of the most common infectious diseases in the world in pets and is caused by bacteria that make up plaque. Periodontitis causes tooth and bone loss, which can even lead to jaw fracture. It can be seen at almost any age and affects over 80 percent of pets over three years of age. [...]

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    Overview   Mast cell tumors arise most commonly in the skin. They develop from a normal component of body tissues called the mast cell that play a role in the process of tissue repair by releasing inflammatory mediators. Mast cell tumors in the skin of cats rarely spread to other organs (metastasize). If metastasis occurs, the intestines or spleen may be affected. The cause of mast cell [...]

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    Overview   Mammary gland tumors are a type of cancer that arises from breast tissues. About 50 percent of these tumors are malignant, which means they can spread, and 50 percent are benign and do not spread. The cause of mammary tumors is not well understood. Hormones such as estrogen and progesterone play an elusive role in the development and progression of these tumors. Mammary gland [...]

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    Overview   Lymphosarcoma (lymphoma) is a malignant cancer that involves the lymphoid system. In a healthy animal, the lymphoid system is an important part of the body’s defense against infectious agents such as viruses and bacteria. Lymphoid tissue normally is found in many different parts of the body including lymph nodes, liver, spleen, gastrointestinal tract and skin. Lymphosarcoma is [...]

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    Overview   A parasite is a plant or animal that lives upon or within another living organism. They can be either internal or external parasites – living primarily on the skin (fleas), in the respiratory tract (lungworms), in the gastrointestinal tract (roundworms) or in the blood vessels and heart (heartworms). Some gastrointestinal parasites are very small and the only way to diagnose[...]

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