Cat diseases and treatments
Ragdolls cats are large in size and are known for their relaxed nature and beauty. They have long thick fur, long body and clear blue emerald eyes . They are very loyal, easily trainable and they often love to spend their time near your feet or on your lap. They have no known genetic disease and have very little health problems when compared to other breeds. However, vitamin rich food diet, timely check up and well grooming is recommended for ragdoll cats. Common health problems include allergies, diabetes respiratory and digestive tract ailments and common symptoms are weight loss, diarrhea, vomiting, coughing, fever and behavioral changes.
Some of the common diseases identified in Ragdoll cats and their treatments are:
(All drugs mentioned here can be used only under the recommendation of a vet.)
Cardiomyopathy is a disease related to cardio muscles and is classified into three:
- HCM (Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy)
This condition occurs when the heart muscles tend to become thick and stiff thereby reducing the amount of blood pumped out of the heart. This affects the blood circulation and oxygen consumption by other cells leading to cell death. Excess fluid in heart leads to difficulties in breathing and cats with HCM may develop blood clots in arteries. This develops in very young ages leading to premature deaths.
- DCM (Dilated Cardiomyopathy)
DCM occurs when the heart muscles tend to dilate like a balloon leading to thinning of the walls. These thin muscles become incapable of pumping blood. Occurrence of DCM is due to diet deficiency and modern diet has made it quite uncommon.
- RCM (Restrictive Cardiomyopathy)
A more serious form, RCM, occurs as the heart muscles tend to lose its elasticity due to inflammation or when scar tissues replace normal tissues. This leaves the cat in a condition that restricts even its movements and can lead to partial paralysis.
Rapid and difficult breathing, appetite and weight loss, cough and back leg paralysis.
Taurine is a recommended medicine. Other treatments include oxygen therapy and surgery.
2. Diarrhea / Celiac disease
Diarrhea and constipation can be caused due to digestive tract obstruction. This occurs due to dilation of colon, a part of large intestine which absorbs and solidifies moisture content from food and prepares for elimination. Causes of diarrhea or constipation can be bacteria, drugs, parasites, food poison, clumping of hair balls or due to eating grass.
Celiac disease, another kind of digestive tract ailment is known to develop due to inflammatory autoimmune reaction in the digestive tract.
Frequent constipation, vomiting, loss of appetite, depression
Mild laxatives such as Psyllium and Lactose, wet food diet, surgical removal of colon.
3. Hip dysplasia
Hip dysplasia is abnormal growth of hip tissue leading to deformity. This can also occur due to shallow femur (thigh bone) sockets or irregularity in femur. This is more common in dogs and is believed to be hereditary or genetic disorder. Ragdolls tend to develop this due to the bulk size and weight distribution. Dysplasia symptoms can be noticed at very young ages.
Difficulty to walk or perhaps lameness, struggling to get up and lie down.
Glucosamine chondroitin supplements to correct laming. Weight loss program is also recommended.
4. Gum/Dental diseases
Dental problems occur due to infrequent cleaning of teeth as food particles and bacteria in the mouth tend to harden around the teeth which results in premature loss of teeth. Gum diseases like periodontitis if not identified in an early stage may lead to heart and kidney diseases. A regular brushing and feeding dry foods at times can help keep your cat’s teeth and mouth clean and well.
Inflamed gums, difficulty in chewing and eating, bad breath, broken tooth, exposed roots.
Antibiotics like Clavamox, Cefa tabs and drops, Antirobe, Professional dental cleaning, surgery and tooth extraction at advanced stages.