Early Symptoms of Cancer in Cats

Cancer in cats begins with the development of a tumor, or mast growth of cells, which start to multiply in an unmanageable fashion. Due to the progress of modern medicine, most cancers can be held at bay for a long period of time if they are caught early enough. The key to fighting cancer effectively is to know when to be suspicious of cancer in your cat. By becoming familiar with the early symptoms of cancer, your pet will have a better chance at living and fighting cancer.

Abnormal Growths

In most cases, cancer will begin as an abnormal growth somewhere in your cat’s body. A tumor can develop on the breast, the neck, the limbs or any other part of the body. Over time, these growths will get larger and become more obvious. Although it may not be something that you notice initially if the growth is small, it will become known shortly because cancer does not stop growing on its own.

When you notice a growth or lump on your cat, you should check the consistency of it. Cancerous tumors are typically hard and do not have much give. If the tumor is squishy in consistency, it doesn't mean that it's not cancerous, but it does mean that it is much less likely to be cancerous.

Decreased Appetite and Extreme Weight Loss

In most cases of cancer, your cat's appetite will taper off a little bit. However, when you begin to notice a rather rapid and excessive weight loss in your cat, you should begin to be concerned. Cancer is a cell invading organism and it will continue to spread unless something stops it from spreading. That being said, when cancer invades the cells of your cat, it zaps all of the energy and ability of your cat to maintain his normal functions, including weight management and appetite.

Irreparable Wounds

Your cat can get wounds or skin lesions from just about anything. The simple act of scratching too hard during grooming can lead to bleeding sores. However, in cases of cancer, because the immune system is being severely attacked, it cannot function as efficiently as it normally would.

When you see sores or wounds on your cat that do not heal as they normally would, it's cause for major concern. Don't mistake the inability of these sores to heal as signs of the normal aging process. The risk of cancer is much too big to overlook anything.

General Fatigue

Fatigue occurs in cats with cancer, again, because of the weakened immune system. When cancer is present in the body, the immune system is in overdrive trying to fight it off. Although the intentions of the immune system are well meant and instinctive, there is no way that the immune system can handle the masses of cancer.

When your cat has cancer, all of his energy level and stamina is taken away. Cancer is a very tiring process, because it attacks virtually everything in the body that can be an essential part of life. If you notice that your cat no longer has the desire to get up off of the couch, you should be very alarmed.