Friday, November 7, 2008

Thirst Increase in cats

Photo by: Home Photography

By: James Gosling

Those of you who have cats need to be aware of all the pet health related problems that may affect your cat within their lifetime. One of the most common of these problems might be an increase in thirst. This is a pet health issue that shouldn’t be taken lightly and will need immediate attention.

One of the most severe pet health problems is CRF or chronic renal failure and one of the most common symptoms is an increased thirst for water accompanied by excessive urination. You can find more information regarding this disease from your vet. It is very important to have your pet health questions answered by your vet because the more knowledge you have, the more easily you will be able to recognize the symptoms and take action.

Chronic renal failure is a severe pet health problem that will induce changes your cat’s overall appetite and increase his thirst. The appetite can vary from one cat to another but mostly is on the decreasing side. You might even find your cat acting finicky and it will be tough to guess what they really want. In such a condition, the stool will most often be dry and firm but there will be an increase in urination.

This can lead to dehydration and make their coat quality poor. Their faces will bear a pinched look and the body temperature might be lower than normal. If you feel their kidneys then it will have a lump feel. The best way to confirm renal problems is through urinalysis and blood tests. Based on the analysis, the vet will be able to guide you towards proper pet health care and restrictions in diet.

Chronic kidney failure, otherwise known as Chronic Renal Failure (CRF) or Chronic Renal Insufficiency (CRI), is a progressive deterioration of kidney function over a relatively long period of time (typically months to years). Acquired kidney diseases are the cause of most cases of kidney failure in cats, and tend to manifest in middle to old age and is a regular pet health question. 

Some of the more common diseases are listed below. 

Chronic tubulo-interstitial nephritis is the most commonly identified problem in cats suffering from CRF. It is often the end-stage of many causes of kidney disease, where damaged nephrons (the functional unit of kidney tissue) are replaced with fibrous tissue. Typically affected kidneys will be small and scarred. 

Glomerulonephritis is a disease in which the glomeruli (which help filter urine from the blood), are damaged by inflammation. 

Pyelonephritis is the name for a bacterial infection of the kidneys. 

Amyloidosis is a disorder by which insoluble protein fibres are deposited in various organs of the body. When it occurs in the kidneys, their function is impaired and chronic renal failure can result. Amyloidosis can be seen as an inherited condition in Abyssinian cats. 

Hydronephrosis is an excessive accumulation of urine in the kidney caused by an obstruction or blockage in the ureter - the tube linking the kidney to the bladder. 

Renal lymphoma
is a cancer of white blood cells affecting the kidney. Typically both kidneys will be very enlarged if this condition is present.

Normally, the creatine and BUN levels will be highly elevated during the test analysis apart from Amylase and phosphorous levels. Potassium will be on the lower side. The treatment of such pet health condition will be directed mostly at supporting the body and other organs keeping in mind that one of the organs might fail. This is a progressive pet health condition and the amount of support required will be determined only after clinical tests and laboratory findings have been confirmed.

Normally your cat will go through extensive dehydration and will require more and more water to keep him going. As a result of this, you will see a remarkable increase in his thirst and however high the amount of water intake be, he will still be feeling thirsty. The best thing to do in such a scenario is to visit the vet immediately for a diagnosis and get him into a pet health care program as soon as possible.

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