Common Health Issues

A comprehensive guide to caring for your cat.

By Elaine Wexler-Mitchell, D.V.M.

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From birth to senior years to common health concerns, Ask the Vet About Cats has the remedies and cat-care tips you are looking for.

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Reprinted from Ask the Vet About Cats © 2003. Permission granted by BowTie Press.

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Common Health Issues

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Reader Comments

CatChannel Editor    Irvine, CA

3/18/2013 12:10:41 PM

Nica -- I'm so sorry about your cat. Cancer is always a tragedy, but in a cat so young the pain is more acute.

Because she was so young, the cancer must have been fast-moving. There might have been little possibility in stopping such an aggressive illness. I hope this is some consolation.

You are right that weight loss can indicate a bigger issue in cat health than just fitness. This is a good indicator for all responsible cat owners.

If you'd like to reach out to other cat owners about this, try posting on our forum at

Nica    Portland, OR

3/16/2013 8:43:58 AM

My cat was only two and a half and last night she could not breathe good, we expected she was choking but the vet did an x ray and her lungs were filled with a ton of fluid rather than choking on something. The doctor then tells us she has either heart disease or cancer. How could she get that so young? I had to put her down as there would be a little chance she would survive the next tests that would diagnose her but they believed little of anything could help her from these diseases even if they diagnosed her, the vet said if it was her cat and it was suffering this much, she would put it to sleep too. She had to stay in oxygen or she struggled to breathe. Can anyone explain why this happened? What could I had done? If I knew earlier when she lost some weight would she be here today? I thought she was simply a picky eater and that store brand wet food made her like that, so I started to buy her the healthy kind and she was getting filled up, eating, I had no clue losing weight was an extreme danger and abnornal for her, especially as I was adjusting her diet and waiting to see if it helped her. She was fluffy so I did not notice as much that she was skinny, very ignorant of me. If I would had known, is there a chance the cancer could had been fixed earlier? She was only two and a half, not 15 or 10. Why did this happen to a baby?

Janet    Bethlehem, PA

9/5/2012 2:47:47 AM

thanks for the info

CatChannelEditor    Irvine, CA

7/24/2012 10:39:53 AM

Ray -- Thank you for taking your cat to the vet to investigate what's going on. It sounds like the vet's treatment didn't stop the problem. Please talk this over with your vet and see if there could be another reason. Sometimes, the pain of entering the litterbox leads cats to urinate elsewhere. See if there is some other discomfort with your cat. Then, you can address this as a behavior problem. Read our cat behaviorist's past articles or contact her directly through the link on her landing page. LINK Good luck

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