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Cats – Page 2

Arthritis (Osteoarthritis)

• “Arthritis” is the medical term for inflammation of the joints; “osteoarthritis” is a form of joint inflammation (arthritis) characterized by long-term (chronic) deterioration or degeneration of the joint cartilage
• Progressive and permanent deterioration of joint cartilage
• Also known as “degenerative joint disease” or DJD

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Urinary Incontinence

• Loss of voluntary control of urination, usually observed as involuntary urine leakage
• Medium- to large-breed dogs most often affected
• Most common in middle-aged to old, spayed female dogs
• Obesity may increase the risk of urinary incontinence in spayed female dogs
• Urinary tract infection is a possible complication of urinary incontinence

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Separation Anxiety Syndrome

~ A distress response of dogs (occasionally cats) separated from the person or persons to whom they are most attached
~ The separation may be real (the person is gone from the home environment) or perceived (the pet is just located away from the person, as being in a different room)
~ The resulting may lead to episodes of destruction, vocalization, and elimination
~ Separation anxiety is a subset of separation-related problems that may have different underlying motivations, including fear, anxiety, over attachment to the person(s), and lack of appropriate stimulation or interactions

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Periodontal Disease

• Periodontal disease is the most common infectious disease in dogs and cats
• Periodontal disease can lead to infection in other areas of the body and may cause heart, liver, and or kidney disease
• Professional dental cleaning and home care are essential for prevention of periodontal disease
• Your pet’s veterinarian will discuss home care and available products and will provide instructions for their use

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Housesoiling—Cats

• Urinating, defecating, or marking territory in a location that the owner considers inappropriate
• Early identification and treatment of housesoiling problems improve treatment success
• Cats do not housesoil to be spiteful or vindictive
• Avoid scolding or punishing the cat, as such actions will cause the cat to avoid the owner
• Understanding the underlying motivation for the housesoiling behavior is critical for treatment success
• Create a harmonious, predictable environment to decrease anxiety and arousal that may contribute to housesoiling
• Client expectations must be realistic—immediate control of a long-standing problem of housesoiling is unlikely; the goal is gradual improvement over time

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Compulsive Disorders—Cats

~ Any cat may develop repetitive, exaggerated behavior patterns that apparently have no reason or function
~ Ignore the behavior as much as possible and avoid rewarding the behavior
~ Abnormal behavior should be evaluated by your veterinarian as soon as possible to determine if a physical cause exists
~ Treatment may include behavioral modification and psychologically active drugs, if no physical cause is identified
~ Realistic expectations must be understood; changing a behavior that has become a habit is very challenging
Immediate treatment improves the prognosis, since the outcome is impacted negatively by prolonged problem duration

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Bad Breath

• Bad breath or halitosis is a sign; it is an offensive odor coming from the mouth
• Bad breath (halitosis) generally indicates an unhealthy mouth
• Once the specific cause of the bad breath (halitosis) is known, direct therapy at correcting the underlying cause
• Ensure good oral health by professional and home dental care (such as brushing teeth) to decrease bad breath (halitosis)

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Addison’s Disease

* A hormonal disorder resulting from decreased production of hormones (glucocorticoids and/or mineralocorticoids) by the adrenal glands.
* Lifelong glucocorticoid and/or mineralocorticoid replacement therapy is required
* Increased dosages of glucocorticoids or steroids are required during periods of stress (such as travel, hospitalization, and surgery), as directed by your pet’s veterinarian

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