Inflammation of the pancreas — pancreatitis — rarely occurs in cats. But if you do not pay proper attention to the animal and do not start treatment, the disease will progress, which will lead to serious health problems and may cause the death of a pet.
One attack will not lead to tragic consequences, but regular repetition will cause serious violations of organ functions and will trigger the appearance of other diseases of the digestive system. They will negatively affect the well-being and longevity of the pet.
Causes of the disease
There are many reasons why cats develop pancreatitis:
- Eating disorders. This is the main reason. The disease can provoke overfeeding of the cat, leading to the development of obesity and the appearance of many health problems, poor — quality food, and most often-just a desire to please the pet with “your” food. But smoked, spicy, fried and fatty human food with a lot of salt and artificial additives can only cause the disease.
- Heredity. Some cat breeds are more susceptible to this disease than others due to a genetic predisposition caused by numerous breeding interventions.
- Intoxication of various types, from stale food to alcohol, household chemicals, pesticides, fertilizers, and substances containing phosphorus.
- Diseases. The cause of pancreatitis is diabetes mellitus, cholecystitis, liver diseases, especially obesity and cirrhosis, toxoplasmosis and other types of infection with protozoa, peritonitis of an infectious nature and malignant neoplasms.
- Use of medications: antibiotics, especially Tetracycline, diuretics (Furosemide), hormonal and sulfonamides. Also, the use of human medications that are prohibited for use in cats, such as Paracetamol, can be a source of health problems.
In some cases, the cause of pancreatic inflammation cannot be accurately diagnosed.
Which breeds are more susceptible
It is believed that Siamese cats and representatives of Oriental breeds suffer most often from inflammation of the pancreas. But the disease can develop in any animal, from the purest to a simple yard Murka.
The main symptoms
Signs of pancreatitis are pronounced in an acute attack and blurred in the chronic course of the disease. An acute condition is characterized by a sudden onset with the following manifestations:
- Very strong, unbearable pain, from which the animal can fall into a state of shock.
- Vomiting, which develops paroxysmally, can be indomitable even if the cat’s stomach is empty.
- Sluggish state, lack of any reactions. The animal tries to hide in the far corner and avoids people.
- Touching the stomach causes severe pain, the cat may even bite or scratch the owner.
- Diarrhea or complete absence of defecation.
- Yellowing of the mucous membranes during bile spillage.
- Severe dehydration, which causes the animal’s eyes to sink, and the skin gathered in a fold does not straighten.
With a chronic course of inflammation, the cat periodically begins to vomit, digestion is disturbed, there are problems with excretion, diarrhea is mainly observed, there is no appetite or the animal eats very little.
The cat is sluggish and looks untidy because of matted and dull, brittle hair.
Diagnostics in a veterinary clinic
In addition to the external examination and interviewing the owners the veterinarian will send the cat for the following examinations and tests:
- Ultrasound of the abdominal cavity. It will reveal the state of the entire digestive system and detect an increase and inflammation of the pancreas, since in a healthy animal it is almost invisible during such an examination due to its position.
- X-ray examination. It will eliminate the presence of a foreign body in the intestines, fecal blockage, obstruction.
- Blood test. A sample is given for General indicators and biochemistry, as it is necessary to get the maximum amount of data on the health of the cat.
- An exploratory laparotomy. This method is used if other methods fail to obtain conclusions or the treatment undertaken is ineffective. With the help of surgery, it is possible to exclude the presence of a tumor of a benign or malignant nature, a cyst, an abscess, and also to conduct a novocaine blockade. The use of this tool helps to cope with indomitable vomiting.
If the condition of the furry pet is severe, it will be left in the clinic for withdrawal from an acute attack.
Treatment method and prognosis
Complex treatment is always used for pancreatitis:
- Fight against dehydration. To do this, the cat is injected with salt solutions — electrolytes, intravenously, by drip, in a warm form.
- Pain relief. The animal suffers from severe pain, which can lead to other dangerous disorders in the body, so veterinarians use the strongest painkillers available to them. Opiates help well, but they are the exception rather than the rule in most veterinary clinics.
- Introduction of antacids to reduce acidity, since the most common complication of pancreatitis is stomach and intestinal ulcers.
- Fight against vomiting. It is carried out by introducing special medicines — antiemetics.
- Use of antibiotics if necessary.
- Medications to normalize blood glucose levels.
- Specific drugs such as Kontrikala or Gordoks.
Treatment is prescribed only by a veterinarian, since only a specialist can correctly select suitable and combined medications.
What to do at home
The most important thing an owner can do for their pet is to feed it properly. Fasting is very important for the treatment of the pancreas, but only for 1 to 2 days. Further fasting will lead to pathological changes in the liver.
Food is given to the animal often and little by little. Food should be of high quality, lean, easily digestible. It is best to start with liquid food. Suitable for boiled ground beef mixed with boiled rice, or specialized ready-made food.
The animal is provided with complete rest, a warm and draughty place, and constant access to clean drinking water.
A common complication is the transition of the disease to a chronic state. At the same time, the animal can not be fed foods with a high fat content, and a reduced diet is very important for treatment.
Another dangerous complication is the development of diabetes. If it is diagnosed, it is treated as a separate disease.
Prevention measures (diet)
To avoid a serious illness, the cat needs to be properly fed. Diet plays a huge role not only in preventing the development of pancreatic inflammation, but also in preventing other diseases of the digestive system.
The cat’s diet should be balanced and varied, and in no case should food from the owners ‘ table be used in it. It should not contain chemicals, salt, spices, sugar, as such substances disrupt the normal digestion of the animal. Also, food should not be too fat, as this leads to obesity and the development of many dangerous diseases.
If cat owners choose ready-made food, the food must meet the age of the animal and its condition, be of high quality, nutritious and useful. Owners should consult a veterinarian if they have difficulty choosing a good diet for their pet.