Mycoplasma in Cats

Mycoplasma is a bacterial responsible for infectious disease in cats, humans, other animals, and even insects and plants. Mycoplasma infection can affect cats in a multitude of different ways. Read on to learn more about how your cat can suffer from infection with this bacterial organism.

Mycoplasma Infection Explained

Mycoplasma is a bacteria that can cause infection in cats of any age, breed or gender. Mycoplasma can also infect humans, dogs, other animals, plants and insects. Mycoplasma can infect almost any organ in the body, and can cause all kinds of symptoms. Often, the symptoms of mycoplasma infection are similar to the symptoms of other infectious bacterial and viral diseases of cats.

Cats who are under a great deal of stress, who are already sick, or who have low-functioning immune systems, may be at a higher risk for mycoplasma infection. Cat with cancer are more vulnerable to mycoplasma infection.

Symptoms of Mycoplasma Infection in Cats

If your cat becomes infected with mycoplasma bacteria, he could exhibit some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Coughing, sniffling and sneezing
  • Spontaneous miscarriage or infertility
  • Frequent urination or problems evacuating the bladder
  • Bloody urine
  • Colitis, which causes mucoid or bloody diarrhea
  • Lethargy, weakness, depression and fatigue
  • Loss of appetite and weight loss
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Lesions or abscesses on the skin

Diagnosing Mycoplasma Infection in Cats

Because your cat's symptoms could be caused by a wide range of other bacterial, viral or fungal diseases, your vet will need to run several tests to confirm the presence of mycoplasma bacteria in your cat's body. A complete physical exam, including blood, stool and urine tests, may need needed, as well as X-rays. Provide your cat's complete medical history, or as much of his medical history as you possibly can, to aid in diagnosis.

Treating Mycoplasma Infection in Cats

Most mycoplasma infections in cats can be treated with antibiotics. Your cat may need to be hospitalized if his symptoms are severe. In severe cases, supportive therapy, including IV fluids, may be needed to stabilize your cat's condition. In less severe cases, your cat may be able to recover at home with the help of antibiotics. 

The prognosis for mycoplasma infection is usually good if the cat is otherwise healthy. If your cat is suffering from a concurrent disease, his prognosis may be poorer. In either case, your cat may need one or more follow-up visits with the vet to keep tabs on his recovery progress. 

Keep a close eye on your cat while he is recovering from mycoplasma infection. His symptoms may not begin to get better right away. Your vet will need to know about the type and severity of any symptoms your cat is still experiencing after he enters treatment. Make notes of your cat's general behavior, energy level and appetite; an improvement in these areas can indicate that your cat is recovering well from the infection.

There is no vaccine to prevent mycoplasma infection. Disinfectant soaps can kill mycoplasma bacteria on surfaces in the home.