When adopting a new kitten from an animal shelter or buying one from a pet shop, one of the most important thing that we should check is the kitten’s overall health. Naturally, we want to have a pet which does not have any health or medical issues because once we take them home, they become our responsibility. Additionally, we would not want to risk our health and that of our families by exposing them to an unhealthy pet. However, there are also cases when we bring a perfectly healthy kitten home but after a while, it may have start to have some health issues because of unhealthy diet, environment, and other factors. Still, no matter how careful you look after your kitten’s well-being, there is always the possibility of it contracting or having some illness and below are just some of the most common that you should watch for.
Fleas. These little buggers are common among furry animals like dogs and cats and they get it from the environment. They infest cats of all ages but can be more troublesome for the kittens because of their smaller size. If left untreated, it can lead to blood loss and eventually anemia. If you see even just a single flea on your kitten, start treating it using over the counter or prescription topical medications specific for cats.
Ear Mites. Kittens can acquire ear mites the same way they can acquire fleas so a clean environment is always necessary to avoid fleas and mites from making a host out of your kitten. Ear mites are very small but can be seen if you look carefully. Usually, kittens with ear mites scratch their ears a lot and shake their heads due to itchiness. Treatment usuallyinvolves using liquid drops in the ear and the recovery timeusually takes one to two weeks after the treatment.
Intestinal Worms or Parasites. If your kitten has been having diarrhea and noticeable weight loss, you may want to have it checked for intestinal parasites. Better yet, have it routinely dewormed by your vet beginning as early as eight weeks old.
Upper Respiratory Infection. This is one of the most fatal illness that a kitten may have because bacteria and viruses related to respiratory infection can be kitten killers especially if not treated by a vet immediately. This is contagious and kittens with upper respiratory infection often sneeze and may develop discharge from their eyes and have runny nose as well. You can tell if a kitten has a more serious condition if it refuses to eat or if it experiences difficulty in breathing.
Diarrhea. A lot of things may cause diarrhea among kittens and the most common is its food intake. If a kitten had a change in its diet or if it ingested too much of something, especially human food such as milk, it may suffer from diarrhea and even vomiting. This can be harmful for the kitten because they may become dehydrated from frequent elimination so it should not be ignored.
There are other illnesses or diseases that kittens are prone to aside from those mentioned above. If you notice anything unusual with your kitty, consult your vet before it worsens. But still, prevention is always better than cure so make sure that you take care of your kitten the way that it needs to be cared for.