Chlamydia in Cats

Chlamydia in cats is a bacterial infection that gives rise to upper respiratory infections. Although there are different strains of the Chlamydia bacteria that infect your pet, Chlamydia psittaci is the most common strain that infects felines. Chlamydia does cause certain respiratory infections in pets but feline calicivirus and feline rhinotracheitis virus are the two major viral infections that cause upper respiratory infections in cats.

There are two types of Chlamydiae bacteria that infect your pet. These include Chlamydia and Chlamydophila.

Signs of Chlamydia Infection

The most common sign of Chlamydia infection is the development of conjunctivitis. Cats suffering from conjunctivitis have thick discharge from the eyes and red swollen eyes that are itchy. Such pets may suffer from impaired vision along with pain and discomfort. Since there are different viruses that cause conjunctivitis in your pet, the vet will have to perform several clinical tests to confirm the diagnosis.

Chlamydia infections can be easily transmitted to other pets. Since the bacteria cannot survive in the environment for a long period of time, it can be easily destroyed with the use of household germicides.

Diagnosis of Chlamydia in Cats

You must take your cat to the vet as soon as you notice any signs of conjunctivitis. The vet will perform a complete physical examination and find out more about your pet’s medical history. If you have lodged your pet at a pet boarding facility in the recent past, you should inform the vet about the same. The vet will also perform a swab test of the conjunctiva to determine which bacteria are present in the eye.

It’s important to confirm the diagnosis promptly so that your pet starts treatment at the earliest. This will prevent the risk of other eye problems and complications.

Treatment of Chlamydia in Cats

Most pets suffering from Chlamydia respond well to tetracycline drugs. The vet may prescribe an ointment that contains tetracycline, or certain oral medications that contain this active ingredient. You will have to clean your pet’s eyes, few times a day so that the thick discharge doesn’t impair his vision. Any cloths that you use to clean your pet’s eyes should also be disposed of in the right manner.

Pet that have weak immune systems may contract Chlamydia soon after they suffer from feline calicivirus or feline rhinotracheitis. Such pets will require additional medications to recover. The Chlamydia infection may also recur in the future. If this happens, you will have to take several precautionary measures to prevent your pet from being exposed to the bacteria.

Tips for Pets Owners:

  • If you have two or more pets living in the same household, make sure your keep your sick pet away from the healthy one.
  • Disinfect your cat’s food and water bowls daily and wash his bedding in warm water to kill the germs that are present.
  • Avoid housing your pet at a boarding facility as this increases your pet’s exposure to viruses and bacterial infections.
  • Vaccinate your cat on time so that his immune system learns to fight back certain viruses.
  • Consider giving your pet nutrient supplements to boost his immune system.

If your pet is suffering from Chlamydia, you must make sure you administer antibiotic medications on time and take him for follow up vet checks to determine his response to treatment.