Health - Diseases

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FELINE DISTEMPER also called PANLEUKOPENIA, or INFECTIOUS ENTERITIS, viral disease of cats, kittens two to six months old being most susceptible. About 3 to 10 days after exposure to the disease, infected kittens cough and sneeze, have running eyes and nose, are feverish, lose their appetites, vomit, and have diarrhoea. The number of white cells in the blood drops severely. The disease rarely lasts more than a week, but the mortality rate is high. Vaccines offer effective immunity.

FELINE LEUKEMIA also called FELINE LYMPHOSARCOMA, viral disease of cats, one of the most serious diseases affecting small domestic animals. Symptoms include enlargement of the lymph nodes, depression, emaciation, and, frequently, diarrhoea; there is no known treatment, and the outcome is usually fatal. A fluorescent antibody test developed in the 1970's produced evidence that the virus is present in many apparently healthy cats. The disease can spread among animals; however, there is no proved connection with leukemia in humans.

FELINE RESPIRATORY DISEASE a complex of viral contagions of cats (including rhinotracheitis, pneumonitis, and influenza), marked by fever, sneezing, and running eyes and nose. Rhinotracheitis and pneumonitis are the most common and have identical symptoms. Mortality is low, but recovery from severe cases may be difficult and prolonged, with relapses. A vaccine is available against pneumonitis. Treatment is supportive. Antibiotics are used to prevent secondary bacterial infections.

Diseases of the Liver The liver is a very important organ, it breaks down food for absorption by the intestine and it produces Bile which is important for the digestion of fats. Liver disease tend to creep up on you. Look out for loss of weight and appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy. Liver disease can also cause jaundice. If Jaundice is severe the whites of the eyes, the gums and the roof of the mouth become yellow. The liver can also become enlarged. In a healthy cat where liver disease is spotted soon enough, the cat can often make a good recovery, but the chances become less so if liver disease goes unnoticed or unchecked and liver cirrhosis may set in. Cats that have liver disease should be fed a low fat diet that is easily digestible, they should be fed little but often.