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Educational Articles

Cats + Emergency Situations

  • Eclampsia is essentially hypocalcemia in a cat who has recently given birth. It can quickly progress from weakness to tremors, seizures, or paralysis. Treatment involves immediate intravenous injections of calcium and other drugs. Recovery from eclampsia is usually rapid and complete if treated early. Fortunately, it is uncommon in cats.

  • Emergencies arise unexpectedly and it is important to stay calm. After realizing what has occurred, it is important to contact your veterinarian for recommendations in order to provide the best chance for a successful outcome. Once you have received initial instructions, it is important to transport your cat to your veterinarian for a complete examination as soon as possible.

  • Many liquid potpourri products and essential oils, including oil of cinnamon, citrus, pennyroyal, peppermint, pine, sweet birch, tea tree (melaleuca), wintergreen, and ylang ylang, are poisonous to cats. Both ingestion and skin exposure can be toxic.

  • Ethylene glycol, a sweet-tasting, odorless liquid, is the active ingredient in antifreeze. Ethylene glycol can also be found, in lower concentrations, in some windshield de-icing agents, hydraulic brake fluid, motor oils, solvents, paints, film processing solutions, wood stains, inks, printer cartridges, etc.

  • Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD) is an older term used to describe a set of clinical signs associated with abnormal urination in cats. When the condition has no identifiable cause, it is called Feline Idiopathic Cystitis. This condition was previously called Idiopathic Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (iFLUTD) or Pandora Syndrome.

  • Wounds in cats often go undetected, but can cause significant problems the longer they are present. Wounds can be easily prevented by keeping your cat indoors, but if they occur, treatment by your veterinarian is recommended. Certain viral infections can cause wounds to persist and can be transmitted through biting.

  • When it comes to bleeding, what you can't see can be more serious than what you can see. Visible bleeding from a broken nail or cut ear looks scary and makes a terrible mess, but internal bleeding in the chest or abdomen that you can't see is much more dangerous.

  • Emergencies arise unexpectedly and it is important to stay calm. After realizing what has occurred, it is important to contact your veterinarian in order to provide the best chance for a successful outcome. Basic first aid in the meantime can help reduce the chance for complications.

  • Cats are nosy creatures, sniffing at anything of interest. Since felines find insects interesting, they sniff at them, and if they stick their nose where it doesn't belong, they may get a quick reprimand that could be fatal.

  • Frostbite, or congelatio in medical terminology, is the damage that is caused to skin and other tissues due to extreme cold. When the environmental temperature drops below 32°F (0°C), blood vessels close to the skin start to narrow or constrict.