Arthritis is a common degenerative disease in humans, but it also affects pets like cats. The causes of arthritis in pets may slightly differ from risk factors associated with the condition in humans, but most remain the same.
If you own a pet like a cat, it is crucial to always pay attention to her behavior and identify any diseases as early as possible. More importantly, you should know the causes and symptoms of common pet diseases and infections.
Before I take you through what causes cat arthritis, let’s look at some of the symptoms.
Symptoms Of Arthritis In Cats
As aforementioned, arthritis is basically a degenerative joint disease that manifests in various symptoms mainly pain in the joints. In cats, you may notice symptoms such as:
– Swelling of joints
– Stiffness/decreased flexibility
– Lethargy and lameness
– Discomfort during petting (when you hold your cat in given positions)
– Behavioral changes such as reduced active periods, hesitation to climb stairs, jump or run
What Causes Cat Arthritis
There are a few known factors identified for what causes cat arthritis. These causes may also be associated with other diseases that directly or indirectly increase the risk of arthritis. Some of the common causes include:
Like in humans, arthritis is more prevalent among older cats. The natural degeneration of joints is part of aging in most (if not all) animals. As your cat gets older, the cartilages which form cushioning between joints continue to deteriorate and become less flexible. While this is a natural irreversible condition, not all old cats suffer from arthritis.
Injury And Dislocation
Injury in joints can result in severe pain, inflammation and reduced flexibility. Serious injuries may cause internal damages or affect the cartilages and their efficiency. Dislocations may also result in pain besides tearing/wearing out the cartilages.
Infection And Diseases
Infections in the joint may result in degeneration that leads to arthritis. The disease can also compromise your cat’s joint health and reduce its functionality. It is advisable to visit a credible experienced vet from time to time if you want to make sure your cat is healthy.
Bones, joints, and cartilages need the right nutrition to stay healthy and meet their functions. Without proper nutrition, your cat may suffer from various disorders and nutrient-deficiency conditions. You should research the right nutrition for your cat to ensure they get all the required minerals, vitamins and nutrients.
Obese cats are more likely to suffer from arthritis than lean cats. This is because the added weight puts extra strain on your cat’s joints and reduces flexibility. This goes back to proper nutrition, weight management, and exercise. Overweight cats with arthritis have been shown to benefit from weight loss.
Experts note that trauma and shock experienced following an accidental fall, injury, surgery or illness can cause arthritis in cats. This can happen in cats of all ages.
There may be other minor factors involved in what causes cat arthritis, but most of them revolve around the above.
If you suspect your cat has arthritis or have witnessed some of the symptoms mentioned above, you should immediately consult a vet. Prescription meds and supplements can be used to reduce the symptoms and pain. You will also learn a few adjustments needed to offer your cat more comfort and allow her to heal.
Contributed by Ammybee