Dehydration in cats
Learn the causes, diagnosis and treatment of dehydration in cats
Many breeders observe the cat being lethargic and calm during times of illness, which is often accompanied by dehydration in cats.
What is the meaning of dehydration in cats?? \\ What is the amount of water needed by the cat’s body daily?? \\ What are the reasons that lead to the occurrence of dehydration in cats?? \\ What are the symptoms of dehydration?? \\ How to treat dehydration in cats?? How do I prevent dehydration in cats?? \\ Is the recurrence of dehydration in cats an indication of kidney disease?
This is what we will discuss in detail in this article
What is the meaning of dehydration in cats??
The body of the living organism consists of 80% of water, which is of great importance to maintain the balance of vital processes inside the body such as blood circulation, digestion and even disposal of harmful substances in the excretory processes
Dehydration occurs in cats when there is a lack of water in the body or an imbalance between the amount of mineral salts such as sodium, potassium and chloride, as well as vitamins with the amount of water in the body
A decrease in the amount of water in the body occurs as a result of losing body fluids in the excretory processes, such as urine and stools, or during breathing, as well as sweating.
Also, a large percentage of the lack of body fluids is associated with vomiting, diarrhea, or high body temperature, all of which are common symptoms in cats that lead to dehydration in cats.
It should be noted that restoring the natural balance of the percentage of water contained in the body of cats is often one of the most important factors that accompany the improvement of the health condition and contribute to treatment diseases greatly.
How much water does the cat’s body need daily to prevent dehydration in cats??
In order to maintain the ideal moisture level for the cat’s body and prevent dehydration from occurring in cats, it is necessary to determine the amount of water that must be ingested daily.
The percentage of water varies from one cat to another, due to several factors:
1- Different cat species, as there are species that prefer to consume large quantities of water and others need less quantities
2- The difference in the environmental condition like temperature and humidity
3- The difference in physical activity that the cat performs on a daily basis, as cats with higher physical activity burn a higher number of calories, which in turn needs higher amounts of water and also is exposed to a higher loss of water in the form of sweat, and therefore needs a higher proportion of water to compensate What is lost from the total body fluid content
4- The difference in the physical state of the cat for example, the percentage of water that a pregnant cat must consume is different from a nursing cat than a cat in the absence of pregnancy.
5- Difference in cat body weight
6- The difference in the type of food provided to the cat, as there are some types of food, such as dry food, that contain a very small or negligible percentage of the water. In this case, the lack of water in the food must be compensated for by taking the water separately.
- There are other types of food that contain a higher proportion of fluid and that of course contain water
- Also, it is necessary to mention that types of food that contain a high percentage of mineral or salts with which the body needs large amounts of water to get rid of the excess amount of salts through the processes of excretion in the body such as urine, faeces and sweat.
- In general, the adult cat must obtain a quantity of water equal to the number of calories it consumes from food on a daily basis in order to avoid a decrease in the level of the internal content of the body fluids and not subject to the occurrence of dehydration in cats
What are the causes that cause dehydration in cats??
Initially, it should be known that dehydration in cats is a symptom of another disease and not a disease in itself, which in turn can lead to a worse disease or a deteriorating health condition for cats.
The cause of dehydration in cats can be physiological or pathological, which we will explain in the next few lines.
Physiological causes of dehydration in cats:
1- Failure to continuously supply clean fresh water for cats
2- Using unclean pots to provide water for the cats
3- The breeder’s dependence mainly on dried meals that contain very little water, which in turn leads to dehydration in cats
4- High temperatures, which leads to increased rates of sweating and evaporation of body fluids
5- Increasing kinetic activity rates for cats, and hence increasing burning rates for calories, which requires a large percentage of water.
As for the pathogens that lead to dehydration in cats:
1- Diseases associated with vomiting or diarrhea for a long time
2- Diseases accompanied by a high body temperature
3- Exposure to a bleeding, injury or bruising
4- Diabetes in cats
5- Chronic kidney disease in cats
Common symptoms associated with dehydration in cats??
Symptoms of dehydration in cats can be easily identified, as they are often accompanied by a change in the vital signs of cats.
Such as: decreased motor activity, weakness and lack of appetite, general weakness in the body, sunken eyes, dry skin
We can also confirm the occurrence of dehydration in cats or not by means of some quick tests:
1- Skin elasticity test: pull a piece of skin behind the neck or between the shoulders for a few seconds, release it and record the note
- In normal condition, the skin returns to normal once the skin is left
- In cases of dehydration in cats, we notice that the skin remains in the same position of attraction for a period that may last for 5-6 seconds
2- Test for capillaries refilling time of the gum: click on the gums of the cat using the fingers and then edit and record the note
- In the event that the cat is normal in terms of moisture levels in the body with fluids, the gum returns to a natural pink color within two seconds
- In the event of dehydration in cats, a white mark is observed at the pressure site that may continue for a longer period
3- Test the aassess of the gums’ moistness: raise the cat’s lips using your finger and test the extent of the gum’s moisture to the cat
- In the case of a well-hydrated cat, you will notice the gums moist
- In case of exposure to dehydration in cats, you will notice an increase in the viscosity and drying of the gums
- When performing this test, some points should be taken into consideration:
- Your cat’s gums become dry after being exposed to air after raising her upper lip, so you should immediately check how wet she is.
- If your cat’s gums are dry and sticky, or if you cannot determine this, you should check with your cat for a doctor to help check the cat’s dehydration.
4- Test the paws: a symptom of a cat getting dehydrated is a cold paw when touching it, which may indicate moderate or severe dryness. To evaluate this, gently carry your cat. Hold her palm in your hand and notice his heat. If her paws feel cold, this may indicate severe dryness and the vet should be visited as soon as possible.
What to do when cat dehydration occurs?
The occurrence of dehydration in cats is one of the emergency situations that require first aid, including:
- In the event that the cat is still conscious and can drink water, display an abundant amount of clean cold water in a clean container
The cat’s ability to drink water can be increased by adding drops of fluids in fish cans such as tuna or salmon
- In the case of a cat that is not able to drink water, you should go to the nearest veterinary clinic or hospital and ask for help immediately, as cat droughts are considered an emergency that must be dealt with quickly and effectively to avoid problems or complications in the cat’s health condition
How is cat dehydration treated?
In the event that your cat is exposed to dehydration in cats, and after resorting to the veterinarian’s clinic, he will in turn perform a physical examination of the cat and confirm the pathological history, and he may also need to perform some laboratory analysis to confirm the dehydration in cats and to determine the degree of dehydration in cats
Often the plan includes optimal treatment for dehydration in cats, including treatment with intravenous fluids, and treatment should also include reaching the main cause of dehydration in cats, which can pose a risk to the cat’s life and deterioration of the cat’s health quickly.
How to prevent dehydration in cats??
Here are 10 important tips to keep your cat’s body wet and contain enough fluids and prevent dehydration in cats. You should do the following:
1- You must provide abundant amounts of clean water constantly for your pet
2- The utensils used to provide water for cats must be kept clean, as soiled or dirty utensils can be the reason for cats to avoid drinking water and can also cause pathological problems and make the water a source of pollution to the cat’s body as a result of the growth of harmful bacteria and fungi.
3- Take into account changing the water provided for drinking cats periodically
4- You should note the amount of water your cat consumes on a daily basis and ensure that the cat has sufficient water
5- You should consider your pet’s habit of drinking water, as some cats prefer to drink running water, and some prefer tap water or a fountain, which can be obtained from pet supply stores like (amazon).
6- Make sure to provide a sufficient number of water containers in all parts of the cat’s presence
7- The cat’s ability to drink water can be increased by displaying a cube of ice water and allowing it to be ingested or supplied with drinking water from some drops of protein taste gains.
8- In cases of travel or moving from one place to another, periodically display the water to your cat to ensure that it has sufficient hydration, and do not forget that traveling or moving outside the house is like psychological stress on your pet, which may make it show about eating or drinking
9- If you feel that your cat is consuming less water per day than normal, take her to the vet clinic and offer it for consultation, then it may be an indication that your cat may be exposed to a disease or health problem.
10- In cases of persistent vomiting, diarrhea or high temperatures associated with a health problem, treatment should be provided as soon as possible to produce dehydration in cats.
Is the recurrence of dehydration in cats an indication of kidney disease?
When droughts recur in cats and keep following the advice to maintain moisture in the cat’s body and excluding the presence of a clear cause that leads to the loss of body fluids, such as vomiting or diarrhea, you should pay attention to the following steps:
- Requesting help from the veterinarian with an explanation of the medical history of repeated droughts in cats.
- Ask the doctor to perform some advanced tests, which include urinary and kidney functions.
- Also request blood and urine tests to find out the defect points and exclude or confirm the occurrence of kidney disease.
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