A fever is an autoimmune response to infection that occurs in both humans and cats. There are several signs that your cat may be suffering from a fever. They may act lethargic and appear to be off their food. The tips of their ears may also be warm to the touch, but this does not happen in every case. You may also notice that they are shivering, but again this does not happen all the time.
Pets WebMd advises that the only way to confirm your cat has a fever is to take their temperature. This is because there are so many different symptoms of fever in a cat, it can be hard to know for certain whether they have one or not. A rectal temperature will give the most accurate results, but it is not always easy to take this on your own. You may want to ask the help of a friend or family member to comfort the cat while you take their temperature.
It is important that you get your cat checked over by a vet if you suspect that they may have a fever, or if you have confirmed this by taking their temperature. They will be able to determine if the underlying illness or infection which has caused the fever still needs treating. They can also prescribe any medications that your cat may need.
The vet may be able to give you something that reduces the cats fever, but there are also some home remedies you can try as well. Some of these are described in more detail below.
Keep Them In A Warm Room
Your cat should be kept in a room that is warm and dry, and is not prone to sudden temperature changes. If you have a room with a tiled floor, then your cat may be comfortable lying here because it will help to reduce their body temperature. It is important for your cat to be comfortable and so you may want to move their bed into the room that they are resting in. You should try and keep your cat as calm as possible and so you should keep the room they are in as quiet as possible.
Place A Wet Towel Over Their Body
Placing a wet towel over your cat’s body can help to keep them cool. Rubbing certain areas of their body with a wet towel has also been shown to be effective, namely their armpits, groin and abdomen. After doing this for around half an hour you can check their temperature again to see if it has gone down. After you have used the wet towel you should make sure that all the parts of the cats body that got wet have been dried off completely.
Keep Everything They Need Close By
Care.com points out that your cat won’t want to move around much when they are suffering from a fever. Move their food and drink bowls near to where they are resting, and also make sure that their litter tray is within easy reach. They are also likely to want to stay near you so be prepared to give a lot of cuddles.
Give Them A Short Cool Bath
Not all cats like baths, but if your cat does then you can give them a cool bath. The water should be tepid rather than freezing cold. It is important that you do not keep them in the bath for too long and that they are dried off completely as soon as they are taken out of the bath. If your cat resists getting into the bath, then you can spritz them with some water as an alternative.
Keep Your Cat Hydrated
Dehydration can also be the cause of a fever, so it is important that your cat has plenty of fluids. Water is the best choice and milk should be avoided altogether. This is because most cats are lactose intolerant and drinking milk can actually make them even more dehydrated. Milk can also create other health problems such as stomach cramps. It is really important that your cat gets enough water and so you may have to make sure that they are drinking, even if they do not feel like it. You can use a syringe which is used to give children medicine to give your cat fluids if they do not want to drink from their bowl.
Make Sure They Have Enough To Eat
When a cat has fever it is common for them to lose their appetite. If they are left to their own devices, then they may not eat much at all. However, it is important that they get enough to eat as this will help them to keep their strength up. Offering a small amount of food more frequently is likely to be better than trying to get them to eat a big meal in one go. They may need some encouragement from you to eat the food that is placed in front of them. If they seem to be really off their food then you may want to try and tempt them with some chicken broth. The other advantage of this is that it also helps the cat to increase their fluid intake.
Try A Herbal Recipe
One How To suggests sage and echinacea as the most effective herbs to treat a fever in a cat. This is available as homeopathic drops which can be given to your cat twice a day. You should check the packaging of the drops for the recommended dose. If your cat still has a fever after 24 hours, then you should take them back to the vet immediately. This may be a sign that the medication that the vet prescribed is not working, or that the original issue that caused the fever has worsened. In most cases a fever is nothing to worry about, and it may break on its own, but it is always better to be on the safe side and get your cat checked over.