The purpose of putting a cat on a bland diet is to allow the decrease of peristalsis, the contraction of the smooth muscles of the gastrointestinal tract, and allow it to rest and heal before introducing more difficult to digest foods. Your veterinarian may recommend a cat be put on a bland diet after a recent bout of sickness affecting his gastrointestinal tract, has a medical condition which causes nausea, or needs an easily digestible food.
There are a number of possible causes of weight loss or gain in cats, including medical conditions and overfeeding/underfeeding.
As the cause can be caused by a disease or dietary, it is important that you seek the advice of your veterinarian to determine the cause. The vet will do a complete physical examination, obtain a medical history from you, ask questions about diet, what food, how much, how often, and possibly take blood and urine samples for testing.
The immune system is made up of several different cells, organs, and chemicals which protect us from invading organisms. Some people have a weak or absent immune system which may be transient, such as those undergoing treatment (for example, chemotherapy) or maturing (premature babies), or permanent, due to disease. This article looks at some diseases … Read more
At a glance
- Drug Name: Cetirizine HCI
- Common names: Zyrtec, Reactine
- Drug Type: Second-generation antihistamine
- Used For: Pruritis (itching) associated with hives, insect bite reactions, atopic dermatitis and eosinophilic granuloma complex
- Species: Humans, cats, dogs, horses
- Administered: Tablets
What is Zyrtec?
Zyrtec (cetirizine) is a second-generation antihistamine which can treat allergy-related symptoms in cats. Antihistamines work by blocking the effects of histamine on certain cells within the body. When a cat has an allergic response, mast cells and basophils release histamine which binds to cells containing H1 receptors. Four types of receptors have been identified so far.
- H1 – Located in the smooth muscles, lining of blood vessels and airways.
- H2 – Found in the stomach cells and stimulates the secretion of stomach acid.
- H3 – Located in the neurons of the brain, influences neurotransmission.
- H4 – Found in the bone marrow and white blood cells, responsible for immune response.
Kittens knead at their mother’s belly when they feed; this helps to stimulate her milk flow.
When a kitten or cat kneads, they will push rhythmically in and out with alternating paws (kneading is also referred to as making biscuits or milk treading for this very reason). They often appear to be in a trance-like state, with eyes closed, sometimes drooling and purring. They seem to be enjoying the moment, and I view kneading as a sign of a contented cat.
In many cats, this kneading behaviour continues into adulthood. Cats can often be found kneading a soft or furry blanket, and some will even knead on humans. I have a cat who will also lie on his side and knead into thin air.
What is miliary dermatitis?
Also called miliary eczema, papulocrusting dermatitis or scabby cat disease, miliary dermatitis is a collection of crusty skin lesions around the head, neck and back along with intense itching. It isn’t a specific disease but a disease complex.
The term miliary refers to the millet-like papules on the skin which feels similar to millet seeds.
A cat’s claws are an amazing part of the anatomy which performs several important functions. Located at the end of each toe, the claws help the cat climb, balance, grip prey, defend against attacks from other animals and protect the toes (digits).
The claws are continually growing, with the outermost layer sloughing off every few weeks to make way for a newer, sharper claw.
At a glance
About: Dirofilaria immitis are a parasitic worm which lives in the pulmonary arteries, lungs and heart of affected cats.
Transmission: Infection occurs via the mosquito who passes on the microfilaria (baby heartworms) when they feed on the cat.
Symptoms: Include difficulty breathing, coughing, gagging, exercise intolerance, loss of appetite and weight loss.
Treatment: There is no safe treatment to kill heartworms in cats. Most veterinarians monitor your cat closely and offer supportive care. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the worms.
What are antihistamines?
Antihistamines are a class of drugs which block the effects of histamine, a chemical produced by the mast cells and basophils in response to a real (bacteria/virus/fungus) or perceived (allergen such as dust) invasion.
Cat beds come in a vast array of colours, shapes, sizes and styles. You are only limited by budget and taste. Cats spend around 15 hours a day sleeping, so a cat bed is going to be a well-used purchase.