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Cats + Treatment

  • Giving pills to cats can be a challenge, even for the most experienced veterinarian! The easiest way to give your cat a pill is to hide the pill in food. Some cats will always find the pill and spit it out, so you may need to administer it directly into your cat's mouth. This handout provides a step-by-step guide to do this, along with some other options if it is still too difficult.

  • Heartworms are blood-borne parasites that reside in the heart or adjacent large blood vessels of infected animals. There is no drug approved for treating heartworms in cats and surgical removal is generally the best option. Veterinarians now strongly recommend that all cats receive year-round monthly heartworm preventative in areas where mosquitoes are active all year round. Cats that live in colder areas, where mosquitoes are seasonal, should be given monthly preventives for at least six months of the year.

  • Your veterinarian may prescribe rectal medication if your pet is unable to swallow oral medications or if a specific required medication cannot be effectively absorbed with oral delivery. The rectal tissues contain large numbers of blood vessels very close to their surface, which means that medications delivered to this area are rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream. Rectal medication is most commonly used to treat seizures.

  • Medicated shampoos may be prescribed for a variety of skin conditions. These baths should be performed in an area that is comfortably warm, using lukewarm water. Medicated shampoo should be applied to a clean, wet coat, so start out by thoroughly rinsing your cat with lukewarm water. Shampoo should be worked into the coat thoroughly and allowed to sit for 10 minutes prior to rinsing, unless directed otherwise by your veterinarian.

  • Ibuprofen is commonly used to treat fever, pain, and inflammation in humans. Ibuprofen poisoning occurs when a cat ingests a toxic dose of ibuprofen, either through misuse or by accident. Ibuprofen poisoning causes many different clinical signs because many different organ systems can be affected. Most commonly, cats show signs related to kidney problems.

  • Imidocarb dipropionate is an injectable medication that is administered by a veterinarian to treat babesiosis in dogs. It is also used off-label to treat other protozoal infections in dogs, cats, and horses. Most common side effects include mild drooling, tearing, vomiting, or nasal drip. Do not use in pets with exposure to cholinesterase-inhibiting drugs, pesticides, or chemicals. If a negative reaction occurs, please call your veterinary office.

  • Infertility in a queen (an intact female cat) is defined as the inability to give birth to live kittens, despite appropriate breeding with a fertile male. This handout provides an outline of common causes of infertility along with how they are diagnosed and, when possible, treated.

  • Osteoarthritis is a progressive, degenerative disease of the joints. Although dramatically under-recognized, OA is actually one of the most common chronic diseases of cats. In addition to diet modifications, exercise, weight loss, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, management strategies for OA may include a disease-modifying osteoarthritis drug such as PSGAG. PSGAG is a disease modifying agent that slows cartilage destruction, promotes cartilage healing, and helps lubricate the joints. It is given as a series of injections that can be given by an owner at home. A positive response is expected at the end of the first course of treatment. Injections are typically used long-term as PSGAG is well-tolerated by most cats.

  • The lacrimal duct is part of the nasolacrimal system, a series of narrow tubes that allow tears to drain from the eye into the nose and mouth. This duct can sometimes become blocked or fail to develop properly, resulting in tears overflowing and potentially staining the face below the eye. The clinical signs, diagnosis, and treatment options for the condition are explained in this handout.

  • Meloxicam is given by mouth or injection and is used to treat general and surgical pain, inflammation, fever, and osteoarthritis. Side effects are uncommon but may include upset stomach, changes in urination, or yellowing of the skin. Do not use in pets that are sensitive to NSAIDs, have kidney or liver disease, are dehydrated or anorexic, or are currently taking other steroids or NSAIDs. If a negative reaction occurs, contact your veterinarian.