Healthy cats rely on healthy kidneys. These vital organs manage the cat's blood pressure, produce red blood cells and remove waste from the animal's body. As such, problems like renal (kidney) disease can have severe consequences, especially in older animals. Stay vigilant to the signs of feline kidney disease and look out for any of the following four symptoms in your cat.
Appetite and weight problems
Like many other health issues, kidney disease will often result in a decreased appetite for your cat. If the cat stops eating properly, other problems can quickly follow. For example, if a cat quickly loses weight, he or she may run out of protein. In turn, this can cause fatal liver failure.
While many cats are fussy eaters, any change in dietary habits is a cause for concern. Appetite and weight issues can occur for many reasons, so it's always important to ask the vet to check out your animal's health if you spot this symptom.
Increase in water consumption
Cats with kidney problems generally need to drink more water. This symptom is a natural response by the cat's body, as the kidneys need increasing amounts of fluid to perform vital duties. This condition is called polydipsia.
Keep an eye on the amount of water your cat drinks. You may notice that the water bowl empties more often. Some cats will even start to drink from unusual places to get the water they need. For example, some owners notice that their cats start to drink water from the toilet bowl.
Increase in urination
Unsurprisingly, if the cat starts to consume more water, he or she is likely to urinate more often. Vets refer to this condition as polyuria.
You may not always notice this symptom as easily as polydipsia, especially if your cat normally urinates outside. That aside, in severe cases, the cat may start to urinate unusually indoors. Of course, the first thing you will probably notice is the smell.
Bad breath and mouth ulcers
With chronic cases of feline kidney disease, cats will often suffer from severe bad breath. Realistically, severe bad breath often occurs at a stage when your vet has few treatment options to offer, but some animals also start to suffer from bad breath at an earlier, more treatable time.
This symptom generally occurs because of the high level of toxins in the animal's body. Mouth ulcers may also develop, but vets can often treat these painful problems with special medication, especially if you seek help at an early stage. Ulceration can also contribute to a problem with the animal's appetite because he or she finds it too painful to eat.
Kidney disease is a serious problem that kills many cats. Early treatment can improve your cat's chances of survival, so make sure you look out for any possible symptoms. For more information, or if you have concerns about your cat's health, contact a local vet clinic.
When you have a dog or a cat, they become a treasured part of the family, and you don't want to leave them at any cost. This is true even if you move or travel abroad. Hi, my name is Katie, and I traveled with my dog for nearly 10 years before his passing one year ago. I loved every moment we had together, but I also learned a lot of important things about the type of veterinary care travelling animals need. If you want to learn about veterinary care or tips for travelling animals or just in general, I invite you to explore my blog.