Educational Articles

Cats + Medical Conditions

  • Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is the most common kidney-based disease in cats. Waste products are normally filtered out of the blood by the kidneys and excreted in the urine, but cats with CKD will end up with an accumulation of these waste products in the bloodstream as the filtering process breaks down. CKD occurs on a spectrum, progressing through four stages with each subsequent stage reflecting a more severe phase of the disease than the last.

  • Osteoarthritis (OA) is a progressive, degenerative disease of the joints. It is one of the most common chronic diseases that affect cats. By some estimates, 90% of cats over 10 years of age are affected by OA.

  • Osteoarthritis (OA) is a progressive, degenerative disease of the joints. Although dramatically underrecognized, it is actually one of the most common chronic diseases of cats. One study at a veterinary teaching hospital suggested that more than 90% of cats over 10 years of age have radiographic evidence of OA.

  • Ovarian remnant syndrome is a condition that occurs when ovarian tissue remains inside the body after a female cat is spayed. This tissue can produce estrogen, triggering signs of heat in the cat. Ovarian remnants may be left behind during surgery, or may be caused by the presence of accessory ovarian tissue.

  • The pancreas produces enzymes to assist in food digestion and hormones such as insulin, which regulates blood sugar or glucose metabolism. When the pancreas becomes inflamed, the condition is called pancreatitis. When pancreatitis occurs in cats, it is often accompanied by inflammation of the liver and intestine. This multi-organ inflammatory process is sometimes referred to as “triaditis”.

  • The ductus arteriosus is an arterial shunt between the aorta and the pulmonary artery, the two main blood vessels leading from the heart.It is normally present during fetal development. Patent Ductus Arteriosus, also called( PDA), is a heart defect that occurs when the ductus arteriosus fails to close down at birth.

  • Our culture is experiencing an ongoing evolution of the human-animal bond: the family-pet relationship. We live in increasingly intimate contact with the animals who share our lives, and veterinary care has progressed to a level that supports longer life expectancy in pets than ever before. Pets are now living longer and better because we are able to feed them better and protect them from infectious diseases and parasites. This means we are witnessing a surge in the segment of the pet population that is senior and geriatric. In fact, it is not so rare to see cats 20 years of age and older and small- to medium-breed dogs in their late teens.

  • Pituitary macroadenomas are large, non-cancerous (benign) tumors of the pituitary gland. These tumors may be functional (hormone-secreting) or nonfunctional, and their effects depend on whether the tumor is producing hormones.

  • Pleural effusion refers to an accumulation of fluid within the pleural cavity. This fluid is usually located within the pleural sac which is a serous membrane covering the lungs. The pleural sac can be thought of as a "plastic wrap" around the lungs that can potentially hold fluid or air (a potential space).

  • Polycystic kidney disease is an inherited condition in cats that causes multiple cysts to form in the kidneys. These cysts are present from birth. Initially they are very small but they grow larger over time and may eventually disrupt kidney function resulting in kidney failure.