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How to Tell if Your Cat is Sick: Signs & Symptoms

How to Tell if Your Cat is Sick: Signs & Symptoms

Cats can be stoic creatures that often succeed at hiding their discomfort when they are sick. Our Farmington Hills vets list some signs and symptoms that indicate your feline friend may be feeling ill. 

Symptoms of a Sick Cat

Like many others, cats are highly skilled at hiding their discomfort when they are sick. In fact, your cat may not show signs of illness until he or she is feeling very unwell. That's why it's critical to visit your vet in Farmington Hills as soon as possible if you notice any of these signs or symptoms:

  • Sudden change in mood 
  • No inclination to play or appearing lethargic
  • Constricted or dilated pupils
  • Much less or much more vocal than usual 
  • Rapid breathing or shortness of breath
  • Noticeable weight loss or gain
  • Sudden changes in appetite, drinking, or eating habits 
  • Vomiting or diarrhea 
  • Neglecting grooming or over-grooming
  • Hiding 
  • Improper use of litter box 
  • Hair loss or skin irritation
  • Bad breath
  • Discharge from eyes or nose 
  • Wounds or swelling 
  • Limping or injuries 

Knowing When Your Cat is Sick

You know your cat better than anyone else. Watch your pet for subtle changes in behavior that others may not notice and monitor any changes in your cat's usual demeanor or body language. If something doesn't seem right, schedule your cat for an examination, even if you don't see any of the symptoms listed above. 

Common Causes of Illness in Cats 

Now that you know some signs that your cat may be sick, here are a few common illnesses that can develop in cats: 

  • Is your cat drinking far more water than is typical? This could be a sign of kidney disease, diabetes or thyroid issues. 
  • Bad breath can indicate your cat is suffering from tooth pain or periodontal disease. Left untreated, dental disease in cats can lead to more serious problems such as heart, kidney and liver conditions. 
  • A sudden increased appetite can be a sign of inflammatory bowel disease, intestinal cancer, hyperthyroidism or diabetes. 
  • Have you noticed your cat is suddenly experiencing litter box issues? This could be a sign of anything from a urinary tract infection to kidney disease or bladder stones. 
  • Breathing problems and reduced enthusiasm for play or activities can indicate an upper respiratory infection. 
  • Arthritis or injuries can lead to a drop-off in your cat's acrobatic activities. 

What You Can Do If Your Cat is Sick

Your vet at Angel Animal Hospital is here to provide diagnosis and treatment if your cat is exhibiting any unusual behaviors. Early detection and treatment of illnesses can help to prevent conditions from worsening or becoming life-threatening. 

Cat illnesses or injuries often need urgent medical attention, surgery or even emergency care. It is essential to seek professional veterinary advice as soon as possible. The sooner treatment begins, the sooner your furry friend will be acting more like themselves again.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Is your cat feeling sick? Contact our veterinary team at Angel Animal Hospital today to book an appointment. Our vets are experienced in diagnosing a range of illnesses and conditions.

Looking for a veterinarian in Farmington Hills?

(248) 615-6500