SENIOR CAT HEALTH CARE
early stages, some of your senior catís problems may not be obvious
and the gradual onset of health problems, in an apparently healthy
cat, often goes unnoticed. Diagnostic tests such as a complete blood panel, complete blood
count, thyroid levels, urinalysis, thoracic and abdominal
radiographs or ultrasound are important means to evaluate your catís
SIGNS OF POSSIBLE PROBLEMS:
Just not acting right
Difficulty climbing stairs or jumping up
Change in sleep patterns
Increased stiffness or limping
Weight change (gain or loss)
Discoloration/tartar on teeth
breath/red or swollen gums
Change in hair coat or skin
lumps or bumps or itching
Loss of housetraining
Less interaction with family
Confusion or disorientation
Behavior changes Ė aggression, fear, or shyness
Cats hide symptoms and pain much more than dogs. So keep a close
watch for changes in your aging cat. If your cat exhibits any
of these conditions please discuss them with your veterinarian.
A SENIOR PET EXAM MAY INCLUDE:
Physical Examination: A thorough examination of the patient
including a complete inspection of the heart, lungs, ears, eyes, and
Profile: An extensive examination series of blood tests that
will evaluate your catís internal organs, including heart, liver,
kidneys and pancreas.
Thyroid Panel: A blood test to measure the level of thyroid
hormones in the blood. If left untreated, thyroid disease can cause
serious health problems.
Radiographs of the Chest and Abdomen: These will show if there
are any major or minor abnormalities in the chest or the abdomen.
Blood Pressure Test: Older cats are subject to high blood
Electrocardiogram (ECG): Monitors heart rate and electrical
rhythms for abnormalities, if needed.
Urinalysis: This checks for abnormal levels, which can indicate
diseases including liver disease, kidney disease and diabetes.
Urine Culture: Detects bacterial infections or any other
Fecal Analysis: A stool check for internal parasites.
Ultrasound Screening: Diagnostic testing to check the heart and
STEPS TO BETTER PET HEALTH
the one who cares for your cat Ė day in and day out Ė and therefore
you may notice subtle changes in your catís behavior or physical
abilities. Take a
few moments to review the signs of possible problems; then discuss
them with your veterinarian. What may look like normal signs of
aging could actually be early signs of a manageable health