Pain in cats
We love our pets so much and we only want the best for them. We all strive to give them the best food, lots of cuddles, and a great life. In doing this, they bring us so much joy in return. But how do we know when they are unhappy? If they are in pain?
In this newsletter, we are going to go through a few symptoms that cats display when they are not feeling so good. Hopefully, this will assist you in noticing the signs and avoid their suffering, to help you continue to provide them with the best quality of life.
As living beings, cats do not deserve to be in pain. So, as their guardians, we need to do our part to ensure they are pain-free. Though they cannot communicate verbally with us and let us know if something is wrong, it is usually possible to detect this through their actions and body language. Any abnormal behaviour in your cat can indicate something is wrong and can help you identify an issue.
Here are a few changes in behaviour you should pay close attention to:
- Decrease in appetite
- Decrease in activity levels
- Decrease in friendliness towards people
- Decrease in playfulness
- Increased hostility
- Straying away from bright areas
- Hiding in secluded areas or away from people that they are normally very comfortable with
- Keeping their eyes closed
- Abnormality in their walking
- Sitting still and hunched up
- Excessive meowing or growling
- Change, or complete absence in grooming habits
- Pooing outside of the litter box in places it has never done previously
- Restlessness, or on the contrary, reluctance to move
It may be hard to notice these symptoms at first, since cats are experts at hiding their emotions, even if it means they are suffering. This is done deliberately, because in nature, it can be dangerous for cats to show any weakness to predators. Particularly with smaller cats, if they showed signs of weakness, it could not only make them a target for larger prey, but it can even lead to abandonment from their own family members / group.
This is why it is critical to monitor their habits and behaviours. Once you notice any of these symptoms/changes, or several at the same time, it is best to act quickly. Depending on the severity of pain they are experiencing, it could be a result of something very serious or an underlying health issue.
There are endless reasons your cat may be suffering. We have compiled a list of the more common ones, for you to keep in mind when their behaviour changes:
- Ingrown claws
- Dental Infection
- Ear Infection
- Systemic Infection
- Urinary Tract Infection
- Digestive Issues
- Recovering from minor or major surgeries
- Exposure to extreme heat or cold
- Eye Conditions
There are so many reasons as to why your cat could be in pain. However, one of the best things you can do to try & prevent your cat from suffering, is to start with a species appropriate diet, so that its health begins from within. Providing your cat with a natural and nutritious diet should help alleviate many medical conditions and enable it to live a long, happy life.
Maintaining its hygiene is also important to avoid your cat getting ill. Ensuring they have proper scratching poles, cutting their nails regularly, and constantly cleaning their litter box is very essential and necessary. All of these details that may appear minor, are actually huge methods of prevention, that you can do on a daily basis to protect your fur baby.
In addition, all of the external reasons can be avoided, by providing your cat with a safe and healthy environment, as much as possible. For example, ensuring your garden doesn’t contain plants that are dangerous to cats, not using pest control and weed killers etc.
However, if your cat does appear in any sort of pain, hopefully you may be able to identify the cause and if necessary, take it to a veterinary professional, preferably a homeopathic/holistic vet, for treatment / medication, if required. A natural solution is always our preferred method of pain relief, where possible. In the same way that raw food is more beneficial to a cat’s health, natural remedies are also favourable. However, if the cause is not an underlying health condition that requires medication, modifying its surroundings and/or diet, to maintain a healthy, pain-free lifestyle, is more than likely all it will need to remain happy!