What is Distemper in Cats?
Distemper in cats which is also called as feline Panleukopenia, is a contagious disease that affects cats and several other animals. Distemper infection in cats is completely different disease from distemper in dogs and is not contagious to dogs. Kittens are particularly vulnerable to Distemper infection because their weaker immune systems, the kittens may even catch distemper from their mother before they are born. The mature cats have a developed immune system and are therefore less prone, but it is still likely for them to catch the ailment at any age. Distemper is most frequently found in cats that live in the cities during the warmer months. Distemper spreads among cats, when an healthy cat comes in contact with an infected animal or secretions of an infected animal.
Causes of Distemper in cats
Distemper in cats is caused by a parvovirus. While there is an analogous virus that causes distemper in dogs, a dog that has the virus is not contagious for a cat. The distemper virus can be carried by the wind, other animals or on clothing and shoes worn by humans in the house. This means that a cat, even if kept indoors, is in danger for this disease, if an infected cat lives in the vicinity.
Symptoms of Distemper in Cats
An infected animal will quickly fall ill as the virus invades its body. It invades the bone marrow, lymph nodes and the intestines of the cat. While disease is not infectious to humans, humans may pass the disease to the cat if their clothes or hands are infected with the fluids of a cat with symptoms of distemper in cats. Distemper in cats can also be spread by insects and fleas. Cat distemper is resistant to many disinfectants and can continue to exist in the cat’s living area for even up to a year. Cats that have recovered from distemper should still be considered as infectious for a number of months after their recovery from the symptoms of distemper in cats.
Symptoms of distemper in cats classically show up within 10 days of catching the infection. The first symptoms of distemper to come out are typically a loss of appetite, and high fever. Symptoms of distemper in cats can differ; they may also comprise diarrhea, dehydration, and vomiting. This disease can take life very quickly, and is very widespread. Any cat that is behaving strangely or has any Symptoms of distemper should be immediately taken to a vet. While distemper has a high death rate, it can be cured after the cat has been diagnosed with the disease. The most vital thing in saving a cat that has catches the disease is on time medical attention when signs of the disease are suspected. Antibiotics are administered to the cat to help stave off all the secondary infections, Electrolytes help in returning the balance of the body fluids, IV Fluids helps to restore hydration in the cat, Anti-vomiting medication are given to avert dehydration and Blood or serum transfusions are done in a rare circumstance when the cat doesn’t responding to other treatments.