DogTime Blogs

Monday, August 3, 2009

When is my cat a senior?

Like people, cats age at a different rate depending on breed, history and environment. Cats are considered ‘middle-aged’ when they reach 7 years. From 10+ years they are considered ‘senior’.

It’s from the middle-aged years that we should become more vigilant for early changes. Diseases can begin during these years and it often not until their senior years that the disease progresses to a point where the condition can become life threatening. Early detection is important.

Common conditions:

1. Hyperthyroidism

Thyroid gland overworks

Clinical signs include irritability, increased appetite, weight loss, poor coat, drinking more.

2. Chronic Kidney Disease

Kidneys do not function as well

Clinical signs: drinking more, urinating more, sudden weight loss, vomiting, off-food

3. Hypertension

High blood pressure

Can cause seizures, behavioral changes, strokes, blindness

4. Arthritis

Inflammation of the joints

Clinical signs: decreased grooming, less mobility, sleeping more, off-food, lameness

5. Obesity

Can cause other health issues such as diabetes, arthritis, urinary problems, respiratory and heart problems.


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