Friday, November 21, 2014

Feline Upper Respiratory Infection

A feline's upper respiratory tract consists of its nose, sinus area, and throat.  It's not uncommon for cats to suffer from an upper respiratory infection (URI) at some point in their life.  Knowing the signs of a URI can help you get your kitty prompt treatment when it's needed.


Upper respiratory infections can be caused by viruses or bacteria.  The most common viruses responsible for URIs in cats are feline herpesvirus and feline calcivirus.  WebMD asserts that 80 to 90 percent of all contagious URIs are caused by herpesvirus or calcivirus.  Kitties may develop bacterial infections secondary to these viral infections as well.  

Other URIs are primarily caused by bacteria.  The most common bacteria that cause URIs in felines are Chlamydophila felis and Bordetella bronchiseptica.  

The viruses and bacteria that most commonly cause URIs in cats are easily found in shelters, catteries, and multi-cat homes.  Thus, cats in these situations are most at risk of developing upper respiratory infections.  


A cat suffering from an upper respiratory infection may experience any of the following symptoms:
  • Nasal congestion.
  • Runny nose.
  • Sneezing.
  • Nasal discharge (clear or colored).
  • Coughing.
  • Drooling or gagging.
  • Oral or nasal ulcers.
  • Eye discharge.
  • Decreased or loss of appetite.
  • Squinting.
  • Fever.
  • Lethargy.
  • Depression. 
  • Difficulty breathing - in severe cases.
How Does a Cat Get an Upper Respiratory Infection?

The bacteria and viruses that most commonly cause URIs in cats are very contagious.  An infected cat sheds the infection through its saliva and through nasal and eye secretions.  A susceptible cat may contract a URI from direct contact with an infected cat or through environmental exposure to things that have been contaminated with infectious secretions.  For example, a susceptible kitty can contract a URI by sharing food and water bowls, cat toys, litter boxes, or blankets with an infected cat.  Once infected with herpesvirus or calcivirus, a cat may become a lifelong carrier.  While he or she may not exhibit any symptoms, he or she can still transmit the virus to other cats.  Stress may cause reactivation of viral URI symptoms.  

Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosis is typically made based upon clinical symptoms.  Cell samples or eye or nasal discharge may be used to test for the specific bacterial cause of the URI, if necessary.  

A veterinarian may prescribe antibiotics, eye ointment or drops, and/or fluid therapy for a cat with a URI.  Kitties with nasal congestion may benefit from humidification.  You can accomplish this by purchasing a humidifier or taking your cat into the bathroom with a steamy shower running for 10-15 minutes.  

Cats often have a difficult time smelling their food when they have a URI.  Therefore, feeding your cat very palatable food may encourage him or her to continue eating.  In some cases, your veterinarian may prescribe an appetite stimulant.  

Please visit your veterinarian if you think your cat has an upper respiratory infection.  Left untreated, URIs can lead to serious complications, such as pneumonia, blindness, or chronic breathing difficulties.  


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Jewel's Journeys

Jewel loved napping in this nice, big, soft, blue chair!  In this photo, Jewel has a PS3 controller.  She used to watch her former owner play his video games a lot.  She loved being close to the people she owned.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Opt to Adopt Cairo

Opt to Adopt: Cairo

Cat Care Society, Lakewood Colorado

Our sweet friend Cairo from Cat Care Society is still seeking her forever home.  She is a beautiful black senior panther who loves to be brushed and petted.  She's friendly and affectionate and would really like a quiet home.  

Cairo is 14 years young.  Because of her status as a senior cat, she is part of Cat Care's Perpet-U-Care program, which will pay for a portion of her veterinary care for the rest of her life.  

Cairo came to the shelter when her human passed away.  She misses her human but has a lot of love to give to another companion.  She would really like to find another human to own. 

She is spayed, up-to-date on vaccinations, and has bested negative for FIV and FeLV.

You can find this beautiful kitty hanging out in the upstairs hallway at Cat Care Society, located at 5787 W. 6th Avenue in Lakewood, CO.  She will be looking forward to your visit!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Mancat Monday

Hi everyone, Carmine here.  Last week, mes was being all crazy and got on top of the cabinets so the Mom got out that darn flasy box to capture it.  

Mes has not been feeling very well latelys.  Mes has sneezed a few times, and the humans say mes has a "weepy eye."  The Mom thinks mes has not been very excited about mes wet noms because mes is having a hard time smelling it.  Sometimes mes turns up mes nose at the wet noms, and the Mom comes over and puts a little dab of it on mes nose.  Then mes realizes that mes actually likes the noms and eats it, MOL.  

The Mom says mes will has to go back to the stabby place sooner than mes was supposed to nows.  Mes does not like the sound of that at all!  Mes is going to go hide nows...  If the Mom can't find mes, hers can't take mes!

The Mom here.  We will be calling the vet on Tuesday morning to see if we can get Carmine in Tuesday afternoon for an appointment (our vet isn't open on Mondays).  Hopefully they can see him the same day.  The poor baby just can't seem to catch a break!

I also have an exciting announcement.  As many of you already know, I've been working with Cat Care Society on an unofficial basis to feature their kitties on my blog on Tuesdays and to socialize them whenever I'm at the shelter.

About a month or so ago, I ran across a post saying they needed help with PR/communications, so I responded and expressed interest.  To make a long story short, I am now an "official" Cat Care volunteer!  I will be working on their blog!

It is funny how things work out.  I have been wanting to volunteer to help the shelter for many years, but the transportation aspect is always difficult for me.  I guess God wanted me to wait for this opportunity.  It is a perfect fit :)

Friday, November 14, 2014

Tiki Cat Food Review

The awesome people at Chewy sent us some Tiki Cat Koolina Luau Chicken with Egg in Chicken Consomme canned food to try this month.

Tiki Cat Gourmet Whole Food Koolina Luau contains no soy, wheat, corn, or gluten.  It's also grain-free.  This food is good for adult cats in all stages of life.

Milita was the sole food taste-tester for this review.  Carmine eats a prescription diet for his Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease and cannot eat any fish, and Koolina Luau contains a little tuna fish oil.  Sorry, Carmine.

So, how did Milita like the food?

I think it's safe to say, she's enjoying it!

Carmine wishes he could try some, too.  The food definitely has a strong smell that's very appealing to kitties.

Carmine got some special treats in compensation for him not being able to try these noms.

We would definitely recommend Tiki Cat food to our friends.  Tiki Cat canned food comes in a variety of flavor combinations.

Thank you for the opportunity to review these tasty noms, Chewy!

FTC Disclosure: We received 12 2.8-ounce cans of Tiki Cat Koolina Luau Chicken with Egg in Chicken Consomme Canned Cat Food in exchange for our honest review.  This did not affect our opinions in any way.