The plague of cats. Causes, symptoms, methods of treatment
Many people believe that cats are very tenacious and do not have serious diseases. But it is not so. Panleukopenia (or distemper) is a serious viral disease that, if treated poorly, can result in the death of an animal.
Plague in cats is caused by a virus similar to those that cause enteritis in minks and dogs. The disease is very contagious, it is transmitted by contact (with a sick animal, through objects), and is dangerous for members of the feline and marten family. The virus for a long time (up to one year) saves vital parameters, being in the external environment, resistant to high temperatures and most disinfectants.
Infection is possible in utero. After cure, the virus is able to remain in the animal's body for up to one year (in a kitten), contributing to the infection of other pets. Sick animals receive immunity to panleukopenia for life.
Disease in cats: symptoms
The incubation period can last up to 10 days, and the acute period of the disease - 1-10 days. The first to be hit are the myocardium, the bone marrow (this causes a decrease in the number of leukocytes, the so-called panolemia in cats), the intestines, lymphoid tissues, the placenta and the fetus (in cases of pregnancy). Mortality from this disease is very high - from 25% to 90%.
Symptoms of distemper in cats manifest as apathy, fever (temperature rises to 41 ° C and more), lack of appetite, and rejection of water. Approximately on the third day after the appearance of the first symptoms, the animal begins to have watery diarrhea (with a strong bad smell), numerous vomiting with fragments of white foam, which causes dehydration of the body. There are pains in the gastrointestinal tract, in the abdominal area lymph nodes increase. Wool cover deteriorates.
Natural secretions of the animal contain impurities of blood, gradually dry out the mucous membranes of the oral cavity, dyed in a bluish color. If there is a decrease in temperature with the same symptoms, it is likely that the disease will end in death.
Depending on the immunity and age of the individual, certain symptoms may be added: pulmonary edema and wheezing in older cats, convulsions, or a comatose state.The animal will try to hide in a dark and cool place.
Cat's cage: treatment
Unfortunately, veterinarians have not yet found the optimal way to cure panleukopenia. Therefore, do not try to cure the animal at home, so as not to start the disease. After all, this is a long process and will cost you and your pet many physical and moral strengths.
At an early stage, the animal is injected with hyperimmune serum. For the suppression of secondary bacterial infections give broad-spectrum antibiotics, also give 5% glucose solution and salt (electrolyte) solutions.
In order to avoid dehydration, antiemetic drugs are given, and vitamins (in the form of injections) are prescribed to strengthen the immune system. Corticosteroids will be needed if a cat develops shock.
Cat's cage: prevention
Any infection can be prevented! To do this, you need to be vaccinated in time. For the first time, 8-week-old kittens are vaccinated, after four weeks they are re-vaccinated (revaccination), after which the pet must be vaccinated every year. Now, the vaccines for panleukopenia are part of many complex vaccines.
Due to the persistence of the virus, it is necessary to limit the contacts of the kitten with the street (especially with street cats) and shoes. If you buy a kitten in a large cattery or with hands, first go to the veterinary clinic.
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