The 4 Most Common Cat Disease Symptoms

A cat disease is often diagnosed by the symptoms presented. Since cats cannot talk, it can be difficult for pet owners to know when a feline is not feeling well. However, there are 4 common symptoms a cat will have that may be signs of a disease.

1. Appetite Loss

When a cat is eating less or not eating at all, he or she could have a problem in the digestive tract, liver, pancreas, kidney and urinary tract, blood, eyes, skin or throat. A cat may also not eat if there is pain in his or her mouth, teeth or jaw.

Loss of appetite is a common, and one of the first, symptoms a cat will have if he or she is not feeling well. If a cat does not eat for 24 consecutive hours, he or she should be seen by a veterinarian. After doing a physical exam, a vet may want to test a cat's blood and conduct a urinalysis. In some cases, a stool sample will be studied or an endoscopy will be performed.

2. Vomiting

Vomiting in a cat that is a cause for concern is when the cat is frequently bringing up more than just hairballs. Vomiting can be an indication that a cat may have a disease of the intestines or stomach. This symptom can also be a sign of cancer, kidney problems or diabetes.

A veterinarian will want to know about a vomiting cat's diet, medications, vaccinations, details of the vomit (color, consistency, etc.), medical history, and any other abnormalities. Blood, stool and urine samples may be collected for testing. An x-ray, ultrasound, endoscopy, or laparotomy may also be done to help confirm a diagnosis.

3. Excessive Urination

Excessive urination may be noticed when a cat uses his or her litter box more often. This symptom can be related to feline diabetes, a urinary tract infection, and incontinence. Other diseases that present with frequent or excessive urination include hyperthyroidism and liver or kidney disease.

A veterinarian should be included in a cat's care if she or he has excessive urination since one of the diseases associated with this symptom can lead to a more serious disease if left untreated.

4. Diarrhea

Diarrhea happens as a result of too much water in a cat's feces. A cat may have diarrhea when he or she has a disease of the intestines.

A cat with diarrhea may be suffering from an intestinal parasite; a bacterial, viral or fungal infection; a disease of the liver or kidney; or tumors.

When a cat has diarrhea, it is important to keep him or her hydrated well so electrolytes can remain balanced. If a cat has diarrhea for more than 48 hours, a vet should be consulted. The vet may want a stool sample to study, a complete blood cell count and a urinalysis.

One symptom can be a sign of several diseases. A veterinarian should be consulted when a common symptom of a disease presents itself so treatment can begin promptly.