Five Symptoms of Liver Disease in Cats

Cat

The liver is one of the most important organs in the body of both human and animals.  This internal organ has a big role in the detoxification process of the body.  It is important to maintain the liver’s health to prevent liver disease.  Knowing the symptoms of liver disease will also help you get your pet the medical attention it needs. So today we will talk a little bit about liver disease in cats and its symptoms.

Liver disease also affects animals such as cats.  The five common symptoms of liver disease in cats are weight loss, lethargic, dehydration, loss of appetite, vomiting or diarrhea.  If the liver disease is severe cats may also show more severe symptoms such as high fever, dark urine, seizures and swelling of the stomach.  If your cat are showing any of these symptoms together with yellowing of the eyes, skin, gums and tongue, it’s a sign that your feline friend may have liver issues.

So what are the common liver diseases in cats?  Hepatic Lipidosis is the most common liver disease in cats, followed by cholangiohepatitis and infectious disease in the liver such as toxoplasmosis.

Hepatic Lipidosis is unique to cats.  The cause of this illness is unknown but it is believed to be a type of anorexia.  It usually happens when the cat experience loss of appetite and eventually stop eating.  When the feline starve, the amount of fat in the liver will increase.  As a result, the liver will become greasy, yellow and enlarge, which can lead to liver failure.

The vet will conduct test such as ultrasound and X-rays on the cat to determine how severe the disease is and its treatment.  Felines that are treated right away will have a better chance of surviving the disease.

Cholangiohepatitis is an inflammation of the liver and the bile ducts.  This type of liver infection is often related to pancreatitis or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).  Cats suffering from this illness will have weight loss, depression and some will become very sick.

The vet usually treats this disease with antibiotics and nutritional support.  The cat maybe put on antibiotics for three to six months.

So if you notice your feline friend showing any signs of liver disease contact your vet and have your cat checked.

Image via Tambako the Jaguar at Flickr.com

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