Did you know an estimated 40% of all cats are living with arthritis?

Picture of a cat walking down a cat tower with caption, is your cat slowing down?

What is arthritis?

  • There are many different types of arthritis, but the most common is osteoarthritis, essentially the same chronic condition that humans suffer from.
  • Healthy joints are covered by cartilage, a rubbery material that creates a cushion between the bones and provides a smooth surface for movement.
  • When arthritis occurs, this cartilage breaks down, causing swelling, stiffness, movement problems, and increasing pain, which steadily spreads throughout the body.
  • Arthritis is normally found in older cats, although it can affect youngsters too.
  • It’s usually caused by natural wear and tear of the joints, but can also be linked to injuries, as well as joint abnormalities such as hip dysplasia.

How do I spot the symptoms?

Cats are very good at hiding pain, which means they might not whimper or look obviously lame. Because our furry friends are four-legged (unlike us!), they are more adept at redistributing their weight to cope with discomfort. As a result, a limp can be harder to spot.

Nevertheless, there are some signs to look out for:

  • Slowing down
  • Lack of grooming
  • Difficulty climbing up or down stairs
  • Reluctance to jump on and off furniture
  • Sleeping more
  • Difficulty chasing moving objects
  • Difficulty jumping up or down

If you’ve noticed your cat seems to be slowing down or have seen changes in their mobility, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. A simple health check or consultation can advise on any next steps, if necessary.

With proper management, the effects of osteoarthritis can be substantially reduced; enabling cats to live happier and more comfortable lives. Working in partnership with your vet to devise a complete care program can improve the quality of life for your cat and ease the management of feline osteoarthritis.

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