7 Common Diseases Your Cat May Face

Identifying cat problems, no matter whether it’s major or minor might turn out to be challenging at times. That’s because these tiny cute creatures are independent and mysterious.


Being the owner and parent of a cat, you need to know the basic cat illnesses and diseases. It will help you provide adequate help and relief to your little creature at the right time.


Your cat (i.e., kitten) is at high risk until it has a fully developed immune system. Thus, the chances of diseases are high at this time. In addition to that, every cat and kitten is unique. Hence, consult your vet for knowing the best suitable vaccinations and parasite preventives for your cuddly.  

1. Diabetes

Just like humans, cats also get affected by diabetes due to an imbalance in insulin levels. It’s mainly noticed in obese cats, cats having high carbs diet, and male cats above eight years old.


Diabetes in cats occurs when its body is unable to balance the sugar present in the blood. Like humans, cat diabetes is also of two types: Type I, which occurs due to low insulin production, and Type II, which occurs due to abnormal levels of insulin production.


The symptoms of diabetes in cats are:

– Excessive water consumption

– Increased urination

– Urinary tract infection

– Increase in weight loss

– Appetite loss

– Vomiting

– Dehydration

– Lethargic behavior

– Diagnosis


The vet will conduct various urine, blood, and other tests of your cat. If your cat has a high glucose level in the blood, it’s the condition of hyperglycemia. If your cat has a high glucose level in the urine, it’s known as glucosuria. These tests will also bring forth if your cat has any other underlying problems.


A healthy diet low in carbohydrates and an active lifestyle are the essential points one must focus on. Regular weight checkups are also necessary.


Regular checks of insulin levels are mandatory. Moreover, your cat will also have to face two insulin injections daily.


Monitor your cat regularly for glucose levels and any other diseases. Although both types of diabetes are different, they have a standard treatment procedure.

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Leukemia refers to cancer in the WBCs (White Blood Cells) of your cats. It is caused due to FeLV (Feline Leukemia Virus) present in the saliva and urine of cats.


Detecting FeLV can be difficult because the symptoms are exhibited according to the central body part affected by the virus. (Note: The virus affects one or more body parts. ) The symptoms are untraceable in the initial years. However, their health deteriorates gradually.


This dangerous disease leaves the car at risk of other diseases by weakening its immune system. If your cat is in contact with any other feline species having Leukemia, then it’s at high risk of getting affected with Leukemia.


The symptoms of Leukemia in cats are:

– Diarrhea

– Infertility

– Poor appetite

– Weight loss

– Bladder infection

– Swollen Lymph Nodes

– Unkempt fur

– Seizures

– Skin Disease



If the vet suspects FeLV in your cat, they will conduct any or all tests such as ELISA, IFA, and PCR.


The ELISA test is the first test used to diagnose Leukemia. Some cats can get rid of the disease by themselves. Thus, their test results pop out to be negative.


On the other hand, IFA and PCR Tests are used to know if the disease is progressing and worsening your cat’s body. The result pops out to be positive for cats who fail to get rid of the disease by themselves.


Although there is no proper treatment for the disease, you can take reasonable care to maximize the lifespan of your little creature. Keeping your cat indoors and providing him all the new toys to make indoors exciting is the best way to keep your animal safe.


Infected cats should be kept neutered and separated from others. Chemotherapy may also be prescribed in some cases.

Regular checkups, preferably twice a year, are also necessary.

3.FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus)

FIV in cats is very similar to AIDS in humans. It’s a slow-moving disease that attacks and weakens your cat’s immune system, slowly leaving it vulnerable to other infections.

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The worst fact about the disease is it goes undetected for years. This incubation dormancy may sometimes be as long as six years. The contraction of the disease takes place in two ways, genetically from affected parents and bite from an infected cat.


The symptoms of FIV includes:

– Constant diarrhea

– Recurring fever

– Weight Loss & lack of appetite

– Inflammation in and around the mouth

– Chronic infections in the skin, eyes, and respiratory system

– Behavioral changes

– Symptoms of neurological disorders


At first, your vet would conduct a blood test to determine whether antibodies are present in the cat’s body or not. Then, the PCR test is operated as a confirmatory test to detect FIV.


If your cat is detected FIV- positive, make sure to keep your cat neutered and away from other cats. Provide proper nutrition and do not let him have raw meat or unpasteurized dairy products. It will keep it away from parasites.


Maintain your cat’s healthcare routine well and keep it away from other diseases. In case any other disease appears, diagnosis and treatment should be done at the earliest. Moreover, a minimum of two veterinary checks in a year is mandatory to track your cat’s health.

ArthritisLike humans, cats also have cartilage between the themes of the joint region, which may lose functionality at old age. It is how arthritis arises in cats.


Arthritis may be a risk for cats who are obese or have any congenital abnormalities such as hip dysplasia. They may also get arthritis if they have had any fracture or dislocation in the past.


Arthritis is difficult to be diagnosed because the pain and symptoms are too minor and subtle in the initial days. The symptoms of arthritis in cats are:

– Poor grooming habits

– Behavioral changes, which includes irritation at little things

– Reduction in activities & mobility

– Rare and delayed limping and climbing

– Longer claws



At first, your vet would conduct a physical test of your cat. The vet would look for possible swelling or sensitivity around the bones. Although your cat can get affected due to arthritis on any body part, the most common interest is the lower back.

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After the physical examination, the vet would suggest blood tests to ensure no other underlying diseases. X-rays will also be conducted to confirm the condition and know its severity.


There are no medicines to help your cat get rid of arthritis. However, you can take some preventive measures to reduce pain and help your little creature relax.


Try to control the weight of your cat with proper diet and nutrition. Feed him with medications only prescribed by the doctor. Make sure that the medicines don’t show any side effects such as vomiting, diarrhea. If you find any, contact your vet at the earliest.


Supplements such as glucosamine can maintain the proper bone health of your animal. However, you should consult the doctor before giving any medication.


You can make a bigger house for your cat. Soft pillows and blankets to put those painful aching bones at rest are also helpful. Alternative treatments such as hydrotherapy, massage, acupuncture, laser therapy, and physical therapy will also prove beneficial in reducing pain and swelling.

  1. Upper Respiratory Infection

An upper respiratory infection is no different than an ordinary human cold. It is not weird that cats catch colds, too, when viruses get in contact with them.


There is nothing to worry about if your cat has an upper respiratory infection as it cannot infect you. And neither your common cold is the reason for your cat with an upper respiratory infection.


While having an upper respiratory infection, your cat can suffer from coughing, which is not always a reason for disease; it may be due to some allergic reaction. You have to keep an eye on your cat as they are experts in hiding symptoms.


As an upper respiratory infection is similar to common human colds, the symptoms are also expected to be similar.

The symptoms of viral upper respiratory infections in cats are:

– Coughing

– Sneezing

– Runny nose

– Mild fever

– Mouth ulcers

– Eyes and nose ulcer

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– Difficulty while breathing

– Loss of appetite

– Lethargy


If you spot the symptom, don’t wait for any severe consequences; immediately contact your vat. It can be confirmed after a proper diagnosis as these symptoms may indicate pneumonia and another severe disease.


The vat may check the throat and tongue. If the infection spreads too widely, then the sample can be collected for examination.


The veterinarian may advise you to take antibiotics for your cat. Although antibiotics are incapable of curing a viral infection, it helps prevent the chances of bacterial infection during these conditions.


Offer tasty food to keep your cat’s appetite sound. Allow your cat to rest a lot in a warm and comfortable place. Avoid any medication without consulting your veterinarian, and some human cold medicines are hazardous for their health.

  1. Rabies

Rabies can be a severe fatal disease as it can affect the peripheral nervous system of cats. Rabies is so dangerous that it can kill almost all animals infected with it. Interestingly a cat can survive these fatal diseases if the owner takes proper care.


In rabies, you can notice critical behavioral changes in your cat. In the initial stage, it attacks the brain of your feline, and from the prodromal phase, it can lead to the paralytic stage by passing through the mad-dog stage.


The symptoms of rabies in cats are :

– Isolate themselves

– Unexpected changes in mood

– Aggressiveness

– Foaming at the mouth

– muscle spasms

– This leads to Paralysis or coma



If your cat is showing symptoms like rabies in the initial stages, your veterinarian can suggest you keep the cat in quarantine. In quarantine, the cat will be examined for ten days along with the brain evolution.



Immediate treatment is the best treatment for rabies. If you have seen your cat while bitten by an infected animal, consult your veterinarian for timely diagnosis and treatment.


After diagnosis, the result declares that the viruses are away from the nervous system, then an anti-rabies vaccine can act as an effective treatment.

  1. Pneumonia

The inflammation of the lungs, leading to difficulty in breathing, and reduced oxygen level are the problems faced in Pneumonia. Mostly, newly born young kittens, cats with underlying health issues, and old age cats get affected due to Pneumonia.

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Cat pneumonia is of three types, infectious Pneumonia, aspiration pneumonia, and fungal Pneumonia. Infectious Pneumonia occurs due to an infection in the airways and lungs of the cat due to viruses and bacteria.


Aspiration pneumonia happens when the cat breathes in a foreign material which leads to irritation of the lining of the lungs. Fungal Pneumonia occurs when the cat lives in a fungus resulting in an infection.


The symptoms of Pneumonia in cats are:

– Abnormalities in heartbeat

– Deep cough

– Wheezing

– Noisy Breathing

– Fever

– Loss of Appetite

– Severe Tiredness

– Green or yellow colored nasal discharge

– Bluish coloration of lips


After proper analysis of the cat’s medical history, the vet will conduct some physical examination to determine heartbeat. Other diagnostic tests such as blood tests, tracheal wash, and X-rays are also done for confirmation.


Of this, the tracheal test is the most important one. The bacteria present in the cat’s body would be detected according to which the antibiotics can be prescribed accordingly.


The doctor will prescribe some antifungal medications and broad-spectrum antibiotics to your cat. Oxygen therapy and nebulizer treatment will help the cat to overcome breathing issues.


In case your cat has dehydration, intravenous fluid therapy will be beneficial. Proper diet & nutrition are also essential keys to help improve the cat’s health condition.

Some Preventive Measures To Keep Your Cat Disease Free

Being a living being, cats are also at high risk of diseases. However, we can take some preventive steps to keep our cats safe. First of all, cats should go through regular checkups by a vet. It helps in the early detection of underlying diseases.


Quality food, sleep, along with play, and exercise can help maintain the good health of your cat. A stress-free playful environment indoors is equally essential. Vaccinations are the most vital immunity boosters. Hence, regular vaccinations as prescribed are also the key.

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