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Meow and Purr in Different Languages


Meow and purr in different languages




Afrikaans Mjaullin Purr
Albanian Mjau Kerrmëz
Amharic Meow T’inik’uk’i
Arabic Mawa’ Kharkhara
Azerbaijani Meow Purr
Bangla Meow Purir
Belarusian Miaŭ Varkatać
Bengali Mi’u Garagara ā’ōẏāja
Bosnian Mjau Purr
Bulgarian Myaukane Mŭrkane
Burmese Nyaung Purr
Catalan Meu Purr
Cebuano Meow Purr
Chinese (simplified) Miāo Fāchū hóu yīn
Chinese (traditional) Miāo Fāchū hóu yīn
Corsican Meow Meow
Croatian Mijau Presti
Czech Mňoukat Předení
Danish Meow Meow
Dutch Mauw Spinnen
Esperanto Miaŭ Purr
Estonian Mjäu Purr
Filipino Meow Purr
Finnish Miau Kehrätä
French Miaou Ronronner
Galician Meow Purr
German Miau Schnurren
Greek Niáou Gourgoúrisma
Gujarati Mē’ōva Pura
Haitian Creole Meow Purr
Hausa Meow Purr
Hawaiian ʻO Meow Purr
Hindi Miyaanu Myaoon
Hmong Mauv Purr
Hungarian Miaú Dorombolás
Icelandic Mjá Purr
Igbo Meow Purr
Indonesian Meong Dengung
Italian Miao Fusa
Japanese Nyā
Javanese Meong Purr
Kannada Miyānv Purr
Kazakh Mïyawlaw Purr
Khmer Me​ v Purr
Korean Yaong Puleuleu
Kurdish Meow Purr
Kyrgyz Myau Purr
Lao Meow Purr
Latin Meow Puer
Latvian Mjau Purr
Lithuanian Miau Purr
Luxembourgish Meow Purr
Macedonian Meow Purr
Malay Meow Purr
Malayalam Myāvu Purr
Maltese Mjaw Purr
Marathi Mēva Purāṇa
Mongolian Khööye Purr
Norwegian Mjau Purr
Polish Miau Mruczeć
Portuguese Miau Ronronar
Romanian Miau Tors
Russian Myau Murlykat’
Serbian Mjau Purr
Sinhala Miyāv Purr
Slovak Mňau Pradenie
Slovenian Mijav Malo
Spanish Maullar Ronroneo
Swahili Meow Purr
Swedish Mjau Spinna
Tajik Mijav Pur
Tamil Miyāv Purr
Telugu Mi’av Guraka
Thai H̄emīyw S̄eīyng fī̂ xỳāng mæw
Turkish Miyav mırlamak
Ukranian Myau Purr
Uzbec Myau Purr
Vietnamese Meo Tiếng rít
Welsh Meow Purr
Xhosa i-Meow Purr
Yiddish Meov Purr


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Meow and purr in different languages

Why Do Cats Eat Grass and Is It Safe?


At a glance

  • Grass contains nutrients and micro-nutrients
  • It acts as a laxative
  • It can help them vomit to get rid of irritants or parasites
  • They enjoy it


why do cats eat grass?
Image Jamie McCaffrey, Flickr

Why do cats eat grass?

We don’t know for sure and there is little research on the topic. Eating grass, and other plants occurs more frequently in younger animals. There are several possibilities as to why cats enjoy the occasional nibble of grass.

To help them vomit

We all know what happens after our cats consume grass, they come back inside and vomit all over the floor. Grass acts as an irritant to the stomach, and cats don’t have the ability to digest grass in the way herbivores as they don’t have the necessary enzymes.   This can help the cat to rid the gastrointestinal tract of hairballs, indigestible animal parts such as feathers and beaks, something disagreeable and intestinal parasites.

Help with the passage of hairballs

why do cats eat grass?
Image RedLipstick, Flickr

When cats groom themselves, they inevitably ingest fur which can build up in the stomach. Adding to the vomiting theory,  another possible reason for grass consumption is to assist with the passage of hairballs out of the body either through vomiting or via the feces.

Grass acts as a laxative

The indigestible fibre adds bulk to the feces which makes them easier to pass out of the body which can help speed up the passage of feces.

It contains nutrients and micro nutrients

In particular, cat grass contains folic acid (vitamin B9) an essential vitamin which performs several roles such as helping with the formation of hemaglobin and the synthesis and repair of DNA.

As we know, cats are carnivorous,  they need to consume meat to survive. Dogs and humans can get by without meat. However, when cats hunt, they consume almost all parts of their prey  which includes the stomach and the stomach contents which often contain small amounts of plant matter and the nutrients such as folic acid

It’s enjoyable

It may really be as simple as that. They enjoy the taste of grass. Having spoken to many cat loving friends, it is no longer a surprise to hear of cats eating other types of greenery such as cucumber and broccoli. Read more on human foods cats can eat here.

What kind of grass can cats eat?

cat eating grass

If you want to grow a tub of grass inside for your cat to nibble on, common types include:

  • Wheatgrass
  • Barley
  • Orchard Grass
  • Common oat

How to grow cat grass

Catgrass is easy to grow. Either buy a pot of cat grass or grow from seed. Place in a bright spot and water well. If you have access to seeds, add a teaspoon of seeds to the pot once a week and water well. This will keep your cat in grass indefinitely.

Better still, purchase a seedling tray from your local garden centre, this should not contain individual squares for each seed, rather a large rectangular tray, add potting mix and then seeds. Allow growing in sun. This has the benefit of providing a cat with a grassy spot to sit as well as grass to nibble on, which is especially good for indoor cats or those with access to an outdoor enclosure.

Is there a difference between cat grass and catnip?

Yes, catnip is a member of the mint family. They are completely unrelated. Catnip can also induce a high in some cats, however, cat grass doesn’t have this effect on cats.

Both cat grass and catnip are perfectly safe for your cat to eat but do bear in mind there are a large number of plants that are toxic to cats. It is recommended you don’t have indoor houseplants that are poisonous as they can in some cases lead to death. Click here for a list of plants toxic to cats.

Safety precautions

Take care if the cat eats grass outside which may have been sprayed with chemicals such as weedkillers or fertilisers that are toxic to cats.

Emergency Procedures For Toxin Exposure In Cats


Ocular (eye)   Dermal (skin)   Inhalation   Ingestion

Emergency procedures for toxin exposure in cats

We take a look at some emergency procedures for toxin exposure the cat’s own carer can utilise, before continuing on to the veterinarian.

A cat who has had exposure to a toxin must see a veterinarian even if no symptoms are present. Some toxins can take hours to take effect, others can slowly accumulate in the system over time. If toxin ingestion was recent, the veterinarian has more tools up his or her sleeve to prevent further absorption.

Types of toxicity:

  • Oral ingestion (eating or drinking) – This kind of poisoning can be primary or secondary. Primary occurs when the cat ingests a toxin or a pet-owner feeds a medication that is toxic to cats. Secondary poisoning occurs when a cat eats an animal which has itself ingested a poison such as a rat who has consumed bait.
  • Inhalation – Smoke, fumes from household chemicals such as bleach or ammonia
  • Dermal exposure (on the skin or coat) – Chemicals which come into contact with the skin such as on garage floors, or a cat who sleeps with a dog recently treated with a topical flea product. The danger with dermal exposure is twofold, the direct of absorption through the skin as well as ingestion when the cat grooms.
  • Ocular exposure (in the eyes) – Substances or chemicals which accidentally splash into the eye.

Be prepared

Always have the phone number of your veterinarian as well as an emergency phone number in an easy to access place.

Store cat carriers in an easy to reach location so that you can act quickly in an emergency.

Call the veterinarian or a poison control centre

Call the veterinarian, or an emergency veterinarian to inform them the cat has been exposed to a toxin. They will be able to offer emergency medical advice over the phone, always follow their instructions.

  • Animal Poison Control (888) 426 4435 (USA)
  • Pet Poison Helpline (800)  213-6680 (USA)

Below are some general tips which can help while somebody else contacts the veterinarian.


  • Wipe the inside of the lips and gums with a damp cloth to remove any remaining toxins in the mouth.
  • Rinse the cloth with warm water between wipes.
  • Wear gloves and take care.

If there is any risk that the cat will bite you, skip this step and take the cat immediately to a veterinarian.

Do NOT attempt to induce vomiting unless a veterinarian instructs you to do so. While hydrogen peroxide is safe to use in dogs, it is dangerous to use with cats. It can cause severe hemorrhagic gastritis as well as esophageal, stomach ulcers and aspiration pneumonia. Inducing vomiting in cats must be carried out in a clinical setting, with appropriate medication and under the supervision of a veterinarian.


  • Move the cat to a well-ventilated area, outside if necessary. If there is a risk of the cat escaping, confine in a cat carrier.


  • Bathe in a mild dishwashing liquid and rinse with warm water, repeat again. Ensure all traces of detergent are removed from the coat.
  • Wear protective gloves to prevent exposure.


  • Irrigate the eye with tepid water or distilled water for 20-30 minutes. Rinse from the inside of the eye closest to the nose (medial) to the side to avoid contaminating the other eye.

Root Canal Treatment For Cats – What Is It?


Root canal treatment for cats

Also known as endodontic treatment, a root canal is a dental treatment in which the inside of the tooth (nerve, dentin, and pulp) is removed and replaced with a synthetic filling and the tooth is capped. The procedure can be performed on all teeth but is most often reserved for the large functional canines, pre-molars, and molars.

Tooth anatomy:

The tooth is made up of four layers:

  • Enamel – The hard, outer surface of the tooth.
  • Dentin – Below the tough exterior, dentin is hard dense bony tissue which forms the bulk of a tooth. Dentin is arranged as a collection of tubules which run from the pulp towards the enamel.
  • Pulp – The pulp is the inner portion of the tooth that is made up of connective tissue, nerves and a rich supply of blood vessels. Pulp provides oxygen, nutrients and feeling to the tooth.
  • Cementum – The tough, calcified substance which covers the root of the tooth.
  • Root – Hidden beneath the gums, the tooth root anchors the tooth to the jaw.

The purpose is to save a tooth that has become infected or decayed due to a dental fracture. Unless a fracture is treated within 24-48 hours, bacteria invade the pulp causing irreversible inflammation, infection and eventual necrosis of the tissue.

Symptoms of a fractured tooth:

Cats are very stoic and it is not always obvious that a cat is in pain. Once the pulp is exposed, the tooth will be extremely painful.

  • Reluctance to eat, or favouring one side of the mouth
  • Picking up food and dropping it
  • Reluctance to be touched on the head or face
  • A visible crack or missing portion of a tooth
  • Drooling
  • Withdrawal
  • Hiding
  • Weight loss
  • Irritability
  • Facial swelling, if a dental abscess has developed

Are all cats good candidates for a root canal?

No, there are a number of factors to consider before deciding to go ahead with root canal therapy. Dental X-rays will be necessary to assess the underlying bone and root structures and determine if the root canal is suitable.

Poor candidates include the following:

  • A tooth with severe damage
  • There is a crack in the root
  • There is insufficient bone due to periodontitis

Root canal surgery:

We recommend pre-anesthetic bloodwork to evaluate the overall health of the cat prior to surgery.

  • The cat will fast overnight, as a general anesthetic is required to perform root canal therapy.
  • Once the cat has been anesthetised, the veterinarian makes an opening in the tooth and remove the dead and diseased pulp with endodontic files.
  • The empty root canal is shaped, flushed to remove any remaining debris, sterilised to ensure no bacteria are left and then dried.
  • The hollow root canal is filled with a sealer cement and gutta-percha (a tough plastic substance) and a tough layer of composite (the same material used in human fillings) is placed on the tooth to protect it.

Home care:

A care sheet and antibiotics will be provided on discharge, it is important to follow directions and administer medication as per instructions.

The mouth may be a little sore once the anesthetic has worn off, feed a soft diet for a day or so.

The veterinarian will also schedule a follow-up appointment two weeks post surgery to check the cat’s progress.

Is root canal painful?

As the extraction is performed under general anesthetic, the cat won’t feel any pain during the procedure.

How much does root canal treatment cost?

This will depend on the tooth affected and the complexity of the surgery but can range from $400 to $1000 or more.

What happens if I just leave the tooth?

The mouth is a bacteria-rich environment, once the pulp is exposed to bacterial contamination and inflammation, root canal or extraction are necessary. Teeth don’t repair themselves and require intervention. Left untreated the following will occur:

  • The cat will be in chronic pain.
  • As the body attempts to protect itself, it walls off bacteria to form a dental abscess.
  • Bacteria can enter the bloodstream (bacteremia) which can cause organ damage.

How to avoid dental fractures

Prevention is always better (and cheaper).

  • Never feed a cat cooked bones which are harder and more brittle.
  • If the cat has a fall or a trauma, see a veterinarian immediately who can evaluate the cat for injuries, including to the teeth.
  • Don’t allow your cat to play with hard objects.

Pre-Anesthetic Bloodwork – What Is It & Does My Cat Need It?


Pre-anesthetic bloodwork

What is pre-anesthetic bloodwork?

Pre-anesthetic bloodwork is a blood test which is performed before a cat undergoes general anesthesia. While not compulsory in most veterinary practices, it is recommended because it provides the veterinarian information on the hydration status of the cat, organ function, blood sugar levels, and electrolyte balances.

Bloodwork can reveal a lot that cannot be picked up during a physical examination alone. These tests can provide the veterinarian important information on the overall health of the cat, and how these findings will impact on how the cat will respond to anesthesia and surgery.

Who needs pre-anesthetic bloodwork?

Ideally any cat who is undergoing anesthesia should have pre-anesthetic bloodwork. How detailed these tests are will differ depending on the age and health-status of the cat.

No pet owner or veterinarian wants a cat to hemorrhage on the operating table because of undiagnosed blood clotting disorders or liver disease, or have problems waking up from anesthesia because of impaired kidney or liver function. Cats with kidney disease are at increased risk of dehydration and electrolyte imbalances. All of these will be a factor before, during and after surgery.

When will the cat have pre-anesthetic bloodwork?

The veterinarian will schedule pre-anesthetic bloodwork in the days leading up to, or on the day of the surgery if the cat is in good health and the surgery is routine (such as a healthy adolescent cat undergoing a spay or neuter) or if the cat requires immediate surgery (such as an accident or trauma).  The results will enable the veterinarian to evaluate the following:

  • Can the cat safely handle an anesthetic and which anesthetic protocol is the safest?
  • If surgery is safe to proceed or is it safer to delay?
  • Will it be necessary to address medical conditions prior to surgery?
  • If it is not possible to delay surgery, are additional measures necessary such as IV fluids or have blood or plasma on emergency standby?

What is being tested?

Tests can vary from practice to practice and cat to cat but usually consist of three tests, the biochemical profile, electrolytes, and a complete blood count.  These tests will reveal how the liver and kidneys are functioning as it is their job to metabolise anesthesia as well as electrolyte levels which can be out of balance in cats with kidney disease, blood cell counts, to check for anemia (low red blood cell count), possible blood clotting disorders and infection or inflammation (elevated white blood cell count).

Biochemical profile

  • Alanine transaminase (ALT)
  • Aspartate transaminase (AST)
  • Alkaline phosphatase (ALP)
  • Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN)
  • Calcium (CA)
  • Cholesterol (CHOL)
  • Creatinine
  • Glucose
  • Total protein

Complete blood count

  • Red blood cell count (RBC)
  • Haemoglobin (Hb)
  • White blood cell count (WBC)
  • Platelet (thrombocytes) count


  • Sodium
  • Potassium
  • Chloride

Reasons to delay surgery:

Some findings may lead to the decision to delay surgery, especially for cats undergoing elective procedures which are safe to delay, such as spay/neuter or routine dental work.

  • Elevated white blood count which indicate an infection, antibiotic therapy can be initiated to treat the infection prior to surgery
  • Low blood platelets
  • Poor liver function
  • Severe dehydration

Does the test hurt?

The test is uncomfortable when the veterinarian takes blood from the jugular vein, but it should not hurt.

How much does it cost?

Preanesthetic workup for catsThis will vary from practice to practice as well as the age of the cat. Some practices may not run as many tests on a young cat compared to a middle-aged or senior cat. At the date of publication, pre-anesthetic bloodwork for my dog (who is about to undergo surgery) is $95 Australian dollars.

The small additional cost is worth the peace of mind the tests provide. The results also serve as a useful benchmark for future diagnostics and provide the opportunity to address underlying medical conditions often in their early stages, which provides a better outcome.

9 Common Causes of Limping in Cats and Their Treatment


At a glance

  • Arthritis
  • Abscess
  • Cancer
  • Soft tissue injury
  • Claw injury
  • Cruciate ligament rupture
  • Patellar luxation
  • Broken bone
  • Hip dysplasia


Common causes of limping in catsLimping (also referred to as lameness) is a common symptom which can affect cats of all ages. It can affect one or all four of the cat’s legs. In this article, we look at some of the more common causes of limping in cats.


  • Limbs affected: Front and rear
  • Age of onset: Middle-age to senior

Osteoarthritis (arthritis) is a painful condition where the cartilage which cushions the joints wears down, resulting in bones rubbing on bones. It can affect cats of any age, however, it is more common in middle-aged to senior cats. There are a number of factors which can lead to the development of arthritis which includes obesity, previous trauma to the joint, hip dysplasia and cruciate ligament rupture are all predisposing factors.


  • Limping
  • Reduced mobility which is often put down to the cat just getting old
  • Reluctance to jump or jumping in several steps (ie: jumping onto the sofa and then a shelf instead of leaping onto the shelf from the floor)
  • Stiff gait, particularly first thing in the morning or after waking from a nap
  • Limping
  • Swelling around the joints
  • Loss of muscle mass
  • Pain in specific areas you touch
  • Overgrown claws due to sharpening the claws less
  • Unkempt coat due to difficulty grooming
  • Change to sleeping pattern, trouble settling down and getting comfortable, sleeping more or sleeping less due to pain
  • Urinating and defecating outside the litter tray


It is not possible to reverse damage to the joints. Therefore the goal of treatment is to slow down the progression of the disease and relieve symptoms with lifestyle changes.

Medical management:

  • If the cat is overweight, careful weight loss under veterinary supervision can help to reduce pressure on the joints.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs which relieve pain and increase mobility.
  • Disease-modifying osteoarthritis drugs (DMOAF) to slow down the progression of the disease. Zydax is a medication which is administered once a week for four weeks by injection.

Lifestyle changes:

  • Provide a soft, well-padded, warm bed in a draft-free location.
  • Ensure easy access to litter trays with low sides to make it easy for the cat to climb in and out of.
  • If the cat is having difficulty grooming, a daily brush can help. Trim the claws every 4-6 weeks to prevent them from growing into the paw pad.
  • Add ramps where necessary.


Food or food compounds which have medical benefits.

  • Glucosamine is a sugar produced by the body and a building block of cartilage.  Glucosamine supplements can help to slow the breakdown of cartilage and help damaged cartilage to heal.
  • Chondroitin sulfate is a naturally occurring molecule and vital part of cartilage that is believed may stop cartilage degrading along with drawing water to the joint.
  • Omega 3 fatty acids have natural anti-inflammatory properties and can be added to food.

Bite wound abscess

  • Limbs affected: Front and rear
  • Age of onset: Any age

A walled-off collection of pus under the skin which is usually the result of a bite from another cat. Entire male cats who roam are at greatest risk due to territorial fighting. An abscess can develop on any part of the body, however, they are most common on the front legs, base of the tail, face, and neck.


  • How, swollen and painful lump, there may be hair loss over the affected area
  • Loss of appetite
  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Lameness and reluctance to put weight on the affected limb
  • Foul smelling discharge if the abscess ruptures


The veterinarian will administer a general anesthetic, lance the abscess and drain the pus, and then flush the area with antiseptic. If the abscess is large, a surgical drain will be necessary to remove blood and pus from the area. A course of oral antibiotics will be prescribed.

Hip dysplasia

  • Limbs affected: Rear
  • Age of onset: Any age

Hip dysplasia is an abnormality of the hip joint which is caused by a shallow hip socket which doesn’t fully cover the ball at the end of the femur (thigh bone). This causes the head of the femur to slip out of place (subluxation).

The condition is rare in cats, however, there is an increased incidence in large boned breeds which include Maine CoonsNorwegian Forest CatsPersiansHimalayansExotics and in the smaller Devon Rex.


  • Hind leg lameness
  • Weakness in the hindquarters
  • Reluctance to move or jump
  • Loss of muscle mass (atrophy) around the hip joint
  • Swaying of the affected limb when walking (cow hocks)
  • Difficulty lying down
  • Pain when touched
  • Reluctance to squat when using the litter tray


There are a number of treatment options available for cats with hip dysplasia which are dependant on the age of the cat as well as the severity of the condition. Cats with mild hip dysplasia may require no treatment at all.

Conservative management:

  • Weight loss if the cat is overweight, this reduces pressure on the joints
  • Analgesics and anti-inflammatories to manage pain and reduce inflammation
  • Avoid vigorous exercise such as climbing and jumping

Surgical management: 

Triple pelvic osteotomy (TPO)

This surgery is best for young cats with minimal or no degenerative changes to the hip joint. It involves making three incisions in the rump, groin, and hip, the pelvis is then cut in three places and rotated. A plate and screws secure the pelvis in its new position.

Femoral head and neck excision (FHO)

This involves removing the head and neck of the femur. The muscles that hold the joint in place will continue to do so, without the femoral head rubbing on the socket. This surgery is cheaper than a total hip replacement. One leg may be shorter than the other after this surgery and your cat may possibly have a limp, but this should cause him pain or discomfort and he should have a normal range of motion.

Total hip replacement (THR)

For older cats who have arthritis. A total hip replacement involves replacing the femoral head and socket with a metal and plastic implant.

Soft tissue injury

  • Limbs affected: Front and rear
  • Age of onset: Any age

Muscles, ligaments, and tendons are the soft tissue which connect, support or surround other the bones (and other organs). Soft tissue injuries include tears, strains, contusions and ruptures and are common in cats. They can occur in the front or hind legs.

Common causes of soft tissue damage include landing badly, falls, twisting (such as a sudden change in direction at speed), fights, automobile accidents and due to abuse can all cause damage to the soft tissues.


  • Lameness and/or reluctance to place weight on the affected limb
  • Pain when moving and/or reluctance to move or jump
  • Swelling
  • Stiffness


Most minor soft tissue injuries will heal on their own with rest and anti-inflammatories.

Moderate soft tissue injuries may need a splint, to keep the area still during recovery.

Severe injuries, such as torn tendons or ligament damage will require surgical repair.


  • Limbs affected: Front and rear
  • Age of onset: Middle-age to senior

Cancer is the uncontrolled growth of cells within the body and can affect the soft tissues, joints or bones in the leg. Although cancer can develop in cats of any age, it occurs more often in middle-aged to senior cats.


  • Lameness
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Decrease in activity
  • Reluctance to move, run, jump or climb


Surgery to remove the affected limb. Chemotherapy may be necessary as a follow-up.

Torn claw

  • Limbs affected: Front and rear
  • Age of onset: Any age

Claw injuries are common and extremely painful.

The most common type of claw injury is a torn claw. It may be partially or completely torn off, causing a great deal of pain. Torn claws may occur when the claw becomes snagged on carpet, climbing a tree or fence, fence or more seriously, due to a motor vehicle accident.


Claw injuries are typically acute, with sudden onset of symptoms which include:

  • Lameness
  • Visible tearing or loss of one or more claws
  • Bleeding
  • Pain when touched
  • Reluctance to bear weight on the affected foot


While injuries to the claw are not life-threatening, serious claw injuries require veterinary attention to prevent infection.

Broken bone

  • Limbs affected: Front and rear
  • Age of onset: Any age

Also known as fractures, a broken leg is a crack or a break in one of the legs. Most broken bones in cats are caused by trauma, such as being hit by a car or a fall from a height. Other causes of broken bones in the leg include bone infection, cancer, and hormonal imbalances, all of which weaken the bone.


  • Lameness
  • Inability to bear weight on the affected limb
  • Extreme pain and tenderness
  • Swelling
  • Protrusion of the bone through the skin (open fracture)
  • Limb deformity
  • Hiding


This will depend on how severe the break is, in most cases, it will be necessary to surgically stabilise the bone and re-align the broken parts with the use of pins and screws. Once the cat is well enough to return home, cage rest will be necessary to allow nature to do its work repairing the bone.

How a bone repairs itself:

A blood clot forms and specialist cells remove pathogens and debris from the area and chondroblasts form a soft callus over the broken area. Osteoclasts then form new bone cells and by 4 weeks a hard callus has formed to bind the broken bones together. Over the next few months, the bone begins to remodel until the bone returns to its original shape.

Patellar luxation

  • Limbs affected: Rear
  • Age of onset: Middle-age to senior

Luxating patellar in cats

A patellar luxation (or luxated patellar) occurs when the cat’s kneecap dislocates from the groove it sits in (trochlear groove) and moves to either side of the knee joint in the hind legs. The disease is progressive and can get worse with age.

The most common causes of patellar luxation are trauma or congenital (present at birth) due to rotation and bowing of the femur, tibial tuberosity displaced medially, medial torsion and bowing of the proximal tibia or the trochlear groove is too shallow. 


  • Sudden lameness (traumatic patellar luxation) or intermittent lameness affecting one or both hind legs 
  • Skipping or hopping on the affected leg when the cat walks
  • Reluctance to jump and climb
  • Hind limb stiffness
  • Bowed legged (genu varum)


No treatment is generally necessary for cats with grade 1 or two patellar luxation without lameness. 

Conservative therapy

  • Pain relief
  • Rest
  • Weight loss
  • Physiotherapy or hydrotherapy
  • Chondroprotective agents
  • Monitor twice a year

Surgical therapy

Surgery for grades 3 and 4, preferably before arthritis has developed. There are a number of surgical treatments for patellar luxation, which depend on the type of abnormality present.

Cruciate ligament rupture

cruciate ligament rupture in cats

  • Limbs affected: Rear
  • Age of onset: Any age

A cruciate ligament rupture is a tear in one or both of the X shaped ligaments which are located in the knee joint to keep it stable.

Causes of cruciate ligament rupture include a traumatic event which results in the severe twisting or pivoting of the knee joint or slow degeneration of the joint due to age which causes weakness. When the ligament ruptures, the entire joint becomes unstable and the leg bones can easily move out of place.

Ruptures can be partial or full (complete). A partial rupture means only one of the two cruciate ligaments has been torn. A full rupture occurs when both the cranial and posterior cruciate ligaments tear.


  • Acute or chronic onset of non-weight bearing hind limb limping with the toe pointing in an outward direction
  • Holding the affected leg off the ground
  • Swelling
  • Pain
  • Decreased activity



  • Strict rest for 6-8 weeks
  • Physiotherapy
  • Anti-inflammatories
  • Chondroprotective agents
  • Weight loss (if necessary)


There are a number of methods to stabilise the joint surgically. The meniscus will also be evaluated for tears as this is a common concurrent injury in cats with a cruciate ligament rupture.

Pros of surgery are that the cat returns to normal function faster and there is a reduced progression of arthritis. However, all surgery has its risks and obviously cost more than conservative management.

Culture and Sensitivity Test For Cats – What Is it?



Also known as sensitivity testing, C & S, or antimicrobial susceptibility, a culture and sensitivity is a diagnostic test to determine which antibiotic will be the most effective against a microorganism (bacteria or fungi).


The veterinarian obtains a sample from the infected site which may include:

  • Blood
  • Pus
  • Urine
  • Throat swabs
  • Discharge (sores, eyes, vagina, anus, lesions or wounds etc)
  • Hair
  • Spinal fluid

The sample is sent to a laboratory where it is smeared over petri dish on a special medium (agar). Agar promotes the growth of bacteria or fungi. The petri dish is incubated to allow the microbes to grow and form a lawn.


Choosing the most effective antimicrobial drugs against a bacteria or fungi is important to ensure the pathogens can be quickly killed on or in the host.

Once the bacteria or fungi have been cultured, discs made from filter paper that have been impregnated with antimicrobial drugs are placed on the bacterial or fungal lawn.

When a bacteria or fungi are sensitive to a particular antimicrobial, a plaque or zone of inhibition will form around the disc, where the bacteria or fungus have been killed. This helps to determine which antimicrobials are most effective.

The laboratory will issue a report to the veterinarian with a list of antibiotics and one of the following next to each drug:

  • R (resistant) – The bacteria or fungi can grow and is resistant to a particular microbial.
  • S (sensitive) – This means the bacteria or fungi can’t grow if a particular microbial is present.
  • I (intermediate) – The microbial is partially effective, however, a higher dose is necessary.

Talkative Breeds of Cat – 9 Cat Breeds Who Are Vocal


Talkative cat breeds at a glance

  • Siamese
  • Bengal
  • Oriental
  • Burmese
  • Maine Coon
  • Sphynx
  • Egyptian Mau
  • Himalayan
  • Balinese

Related articles: Best cat breeds for children  Low energy cat breeds  Best indoor cat breeds   Playful cat breeds   Best cat breeds for seniors


Siamese cat

  • Coat: Short
  • Activity: Moderate
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles
  • Cost: $800-1,200

One of the most recognisable of all breeds, the Siamese is known for its stunning blue eyes, ivory coat with dark points and its dog-like personality. Siamese cats will often bond with one person in the household and are almost dog-like in their devotion.

This is a breed who loves to have a conversation with anybody who will listen, they have a distinctive deep-raspy voice that is unique to the breed.


Bengal cat

  • Coat: Short
  • Activity: Moderate to high
  • Suitable for: Families (older children), retirees, singles
  • Cost: $1,000 plus

A domestic cat with a wild look, the stunning Bengal cat is a  hybridization of domestic cats and Asian Leopard Cats (a small wild cat).

Bengals are active, talkative, playful and many have a love of water. They get along well with pets and children, but pet owners must be aware this is a very high-energy breed of cat. The Bengal has a distinctive and somewhat loud meow which often has a chirp-like sound.


Oriental cat

  • Coat: Short
  • Activity: Moderate to high
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles, homes with other pets
  • Cost: $800 – 1,200

Also known as the Foreign Shorthair, the Oriental cat is a man-made breed which was created to produce Siamese type cats with different coat colours and patterns. This was achieved by crossing Siamese cats with the Russian Blue, Abyssinian and domestic shorthairs.

While the Oriental has similar traits to the Siamese, they are generally less intense. Orientals still form a close bond with their human family, and may even have a favourite human, however, they are happy to spend time with other family members also. They can talk, especially when hungry, but their voice is softer than that of the Siamese.


Burmese cat

Image courtesy Michael McIlwraith, Flickr

  • Coat: Short
  • Activity: Moderate
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles, homes with other pets
  • Cost: $800 – 1,200

I make no bones about the fact that the Burmese are my all time favourite cat breed. They make a great companion for almost any household. With a sweet disposition and a laid-back nature, the Burmese get along with just about anybody, from children to seniors and other household pets.

Burmese cats have a sweet voice, they will answer if you talk to them, but they aren’t demanding in the way other talkative breeds can be.

Maine Coon

Maine Coon

  • Coat: Long
  • Activity: Moderate
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles, homes with other pets
  • Cost: $1,000 – 1,600

The largest of the domestic cat breeds, the Maine Coon is an imposing breed which originating from the United States. Maine Coons have a luxuriously long coat, ear furnishings, and powerful body. Despite its size, the Maine Coon is a gentle giant who is loyal and intelligent.

Maine Coons meow, just like other cats, but they love to trill and chirp when greeting their human family too.

Egyptian Mau

Egyptian Mau

Image courtesy Nickolas Titkov, Flickr

  • Coat: Short
  • Activity: Moderate to high
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles, homes with other pets
  • Cost: $1,200 plus

One of the oldest cat breeds, the Egyptian Mau is thought to have descended from the African Wildcat.

Egyptian Maus are intelligent, outgoing, playful, lively and active. They love human attention and do not like to be left alone for extended periods.

They are a talkative breed, but also communicate they are happy by wagging their tail.


Balinese cat

Image courtesy jiva, Flickr

  • Coat: Semi-longhair
  • Activity: Moderate
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles, homes with other pets
  • Cost: $1,200 plus

The Balinese is a semi-longhaired Siamese which originated in the United States in the 1950s. Occasionally a long-haired Siamese would turn up in a litter of kittens but these were sold as pets. It is not known if the longhair gene was introduced to the breed at some point or if it occurred as a spontaneous mutation.

Balinese share many traits with their Siamese cousins, they are intelligent, loyal, playful, and love to talk. Their voice is softer than that of the Siamese.


Himalayan cat

Image courtesy Tatiana Stukalova, Flickr

  • Coat: Long
  • Activity: Low to moderate
  • Suitable for: Families (older children), retirees, singles
  • Cost: $900 – 1,500

The Himalayan is essentially a pointed Persian cat who has an easygoing and quiet nature. They are moderate to large in size with a beautiful long coat with darker points on the extremities.

Himalayans share the traits of both the Persian and the Siamese. They are intelligent, loyal and devoted. The Himalayan is more vocal than the Persian but not as talkative as the Siamese.


  • Coat: Almost none
  • Activity: High
  • Suitable for: Families, retirees, singles, homes with other pets
  • Cost: $1,100 – 1,800

The Sphynx cat is an almost entirely hairless cat who originated from Toronto. The skin has a delightful chamois feel due to the presence of soft down hairs giving it a fuzzy peach appearance. The condition which causes hairlessness is known as hypotrichosis and aside from the lack of hair, causes no health issues.

Outgoing, friendly and loving, the Sphynx loves to be up high and is always on the go. They love to talk to their human family and will happily tell you about their day.

8 Common Eye Problems in Cats – Causes, Symptoms & Treatment


At a glance

  • Uveitis
  • Conjunctivitis
  • Glaucoma
  • Retinal detachment
  • Blepharitis
  • Dry eye
  • Corneal ulcer
  • Cataracts

Close up of a blue eyed catOverview

Cats are susceptible to a number of eye problems, which have the potential to impact on their vision (either short-term or permanently). Some eye conditions are due to an underlying (and sometimes undiagnosed) medical condition. All eye (ocular) changes should be investigated by a veterinarian as soon as possible.


Uveitis in cat

Image courtesy of Kirsten

Uveitis is an inflammation of the uvea, the pigmented layer that lies between the inner retina and the outer fibrous layer composed of the sclera and cornea. It is one of the most common eye disorders in cats and can be potentially very serious.

There are many possible causes of uveitis in cats which include immune-mediated disorders, diabetes, metabolic disorders, cancer, trauma, infection (viral, bacterial, fungal or parasitic), high blood pressure and idiopathic (no known cause)


  • Pain (squinting, sensitivity to light, excessive watering, third eyelid elevation)
  • Swelling of the eyeball
  • Changes to the iris
  • Abnormal pupil shape
  • Eye discharge
  • Dull or cloudy appearance to the front of the eye
  • Inflammation can cause the eye to become softer (hypotonic)


The goal of treatment is to address the underlying cause as well as relieve symptoms. This may include:

  • Topical anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce inflammation.
  • Topical atropine to dilate (enlarge) the pupils, this helps to reduce pain and stops the inflamed iris sticking to the pupil.
  • Analgesics (pain relief).


Glaucoma in cats

Also known as hard eye, glaucoma is an increase in the intraocular pressure (IOP), leading to damage to the optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain. Any damage can cause partial or full blindness.

Glaucoma is often secondary to uveitis (above), other causes include lens subluxation (displacement of the lens), trauma, diabetes, infection, advanced cataracts, and eye tumours.


  • Eye enlargement
  • Pain
  • Blepharospasm  (abnormal contraction of the eyelid muscles)
  • Dilated (enlarged) pupil(s)
  • Vision loss


  • Topical medications to increase fluid drainage and/or reduce aqueous humor production.
  • Steroids: To reduce inflammation.
  • Cryosurgery: To freeze a portion of the ciliary body which reduces the production of aqueous humor.
  • Treat the underlying cause, if secondary.

If glaucoma cannot be brought under control, it will be necessary to surgically remove the eye.

Retinal detachment

Retinal detachment in cats

Retinal detachment is where the retina, the layer of light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye detaches or pulls away from the underlying layer of blood vessels.

The most common cause is hypertension (high blood pressure), other causes include blood clotting disorders, diabetes, kidney disease, glaucoma, hyperviscosity syndrome, exposure to toxins, uveitis cataracts and lens luxations.


Retinal detachment isn’t painful, and it is quite easy for the condition to go unnoticed. It may occur in one (unilateral) or both eyes (bilateral). When both eyes are affected, it is generally due to an underlying systemic disease.

  • Sudden blindness or reduced vision, the cat is bumping into furniture or walls
  • Dilated pupils which don’t respond when a light is shone into them
  • In some cases, hemorrhage in the front of the eye may be seen


The goal of treatment address the underlying issue as well as repair the retina if possible.

Retinal tears:

  • Cryopexy is a procedure in which the ophthalmologist uses extreme cold to freeze the retina around the tear. This causes the area to swell and forms scar tissue when it heals. It is this scar tissue that seals the retina to the wall of the eye.

Retinal detachment:

  • Scleral buckle surgery: The surgeon places a piece of silicone to the sclera (the white portion of the eye) to push the sclera towards the break or tear in the retina, the fluid is drained and the tear is frozen during this process.
  • Pneumatic retinopexy: The surgeon injects an air or gas bubble into the center of your eye, to push the retina back in place. The tear is then lasered or frozen to seal it up.
  • Vitrectomy: The vitreous is removed from the eye and replaced with a gas bubble which pushes the retina back in place against the wall of the eye keeps allowing it to heal. The tear is then repaired by cryosurgery or laser.


Cataracts in cats

Image Helen Haden

The role of the lens role is to focus light onto the retina. It is predominantly made up of water and proteins in layers like an onion. A cataract is a clouding/opacity of the lens which occurs when protein within the lens clumps together.

The amount of light which reaches the retina reduces in cats with cataracts. Similar to the view from a frosted window. Over time, as the cloudiness increases, the cat’s vision deteriorates.

The most common causes is due to the natural aging process, however, trauma, inflammation, electric shock, metabolic disorders, poor nutrition, certain drugs, and toxins can all lead to the formation of cataracts.


  • Blue/grey cloudy appearance in the pupil(s) of the eye.
  • Affected cats may bump into furniture or be more reluctant to explore as their vision declines.


  • Phacoemulsification – Surgery to remove the lens and replace it with an artificial one.
  • Extracapsular lens extraction – Surgical removal of the entire lens if it is too solid to be break up, or the practice doesn’t have the necessary equipment for phacoemulsification.

In some cases, the cat may not be a suitable candidate for surgery, anti-inflammatory and/or antibiotic drops can relieve inflammation.

Corneal ulcer

Corneal ulcer

A corneal ulcer is an open sore of the cornea, which is the transparent dome-shaped layer covering the front of the eye.

Scratches, which are common in young cats can damage the outer layer of the cornea. Cells quickly repair this damage.

Erosion of the cornea, typically involving more than one layer is known as a corneal ulcer or ulcerative keratitis and can occur as a result of injury or trauma (such as rubbing an itchy eye), infection (such as fungal infection, herpes or calicivirus), chemicals, damage due to structural abnormalities such as entropion, dry eye (lack of tear production) and foreign body. Secondary bacterial infection can occur once the cornea has become damaged, further complicating the problem.


  • Pain
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Cloudiness of the cornea
  • Excessive watering of the eye
  • Eyelid spasms (blepharospasm)
  • Squinting
  • Conjunctivitis


  • Atropine to dilate the pupil and relieve pain as spasms of the ciliary muscle (which controls the dilation and constriction of the pupil) cause pain in the already damaged cornea. Unfortunately, as the pupil is dilated, the eye becomes more sensitive to light, therefore it is important to provide the cat with a dark room to retreat to if necessary.
  • Serious corneal ulcers will necessitate the eye be protected while the ulcer heals. This usually involves suturing the eyelid shut for several days which is medically known as a tarsorrhaphy.

Dry eye

Dry eye syndrome is a condition characterised by insufficient watery tears reaching the surface of the eye which leads to dryness of the cornea and the conjunctiva. As a result, they become irritated and inflamed due to the lack of lubrication and moisture.

Herpesvirus is the most common cause of dry eye in cats. Other causes include trauma, immune-mediated inflammation or destruction of the tear glands, inflammation of the eyelid, certain drugs, damage to the facial nerve which activates the tear glands, removal of the third eye to treat cherry eye, congenital.


  • Excessive blinking
  • Squinting
  • Thick, stringy mucoid discharge particularly around the rim of the eyes
  • Painful red eyes
  • Reluctance to open the eyes
  • Swollen eyelids
  • Dry, dull and opaque appearance to the cornea
  • Sensitivity to light (photophobia)


The goal of treatment is to increase tear production and replace tears as well as addressing the underlying condition where necessary.

  • Cyclosporine is an immune modulating medication which can suppress immune system inflammation of the tear glands.
  • Artificial tears three times a day to keep the eye moist and lubricated.
  • Antibiotics to treat secondary bacterial infections.
  • Topical corticosteroids to treat eye inflammation.
  • Cats who don’t respond to treatment may require parotid (salivary) duct transposition surgery. This involves moving the parotid duct which is located in on either side of the cheeks up towards the eyes so they can act as additional tear ducts. Saliva and tears are very similar in composition. While this surgery is usually successful, eye drops may still be required.


Conjunctivitis in kitten

Image credit, WATERBOYsh, Flickr

Also known as pinkeye, conjunctivitis is a common eye disease characterised by inflammation and pinkness of the conjunctiva, the pink membrane which covers the front of the eyeball and the inside of the eyelids. It can affect one eye (unilateral) or both eyes (bilateral) and covers a broad range of possible conditions.

The most common causes include feline herpesvirus, chlamydophilia, coronavirus, and mycoplasma.


  • Ocular (eye) discharge
  • Red and swollen conjunctiva
  • Meaty appearance to the eyes
  • Blinking
  • Squinting
  • Pawing and rubbing at the eye
  • Third eye protrusion


Mild cases of conjunctivitis may only require flushing of the eye with a saline solution. Find and treat the underlying cause as well as conjunctivitis.

  • Eye irrigations and warm saline soak.
  • Anti-inflammatory eye drops.
  • Antibiotic eye ointment or systemic antibiotics.
  • Topical or systemic anti-viral medications such as Famciclovir.
  • L-Lysine for cats with herpesvirus.
  • Artificial tears.
  • Supportive care.


Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelid margins and surrounding skin and in some cases, the Meibomian glands, which are tiny glands on the eyelid margin which secrete an oily substance to keep tears within the eye.

There are a number of causes which include parasites, infection (viral, bacterial, fungal), eyelid abnormalities, allergies, immune-mediated, trauma, irritants, inflammation and unknown (idiopathic).


  • Eye discharge which may contain pus, mucus or watery discharge
  • Irritated, watery eyes
  • Eyelid redness (hyperemia)
  • Inflammation of the eye margins
  • Thickening of the eyelids
  • Hair loss
  • Pawing the eyes due to irritation
  • Sensitivity to light (photophobia)
  • Inflammation of the cornea
  • Squinting or spasmodic blinking (blepharospasm)


The goal of treatment is to address the underlying cause, where possible, which can include the following:

  • Corticosteroids to reduce inflammation.
  • Topical or oral antibiotics.
  • Antiviral eye drops.
  • Anti-fungal medications such as itraconazole or ketoconazole.
  • Surgery to correct eyelid abnormalities or tumours.
  • Immunosuppressive therapy for cats with pemphigus.

Baytril (Enrofloxacin) For Cats-Uses, Side-Effects & Safety


Baytril for cats

Baytril is a broad-spectrum antibiotic that is manufactured by the Bayer company. The medication is FDA approved for use in a number of animals which includes cats, dogs, and horses to treat bacterial infections.

It belongs to a class of antibiotics known as fluoroquinolones, and is effective against a number of species of bacteria but has no effect on viral, fungal or parasitic infections. Broad-spectrum antibiotics are capable of acting on the two major bacteria groups, gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria.

Mechanism of action:

Baytril inhibits bacterial DNA-gyrase, an enzyme which inhibits inhibiting both DNA and ribonucleic acid (RNA) synthesis. Bacterial cell death occurs within 20-30 minutes of exposure.


For the treatment of single or mixed bacterial infections, which include the following:

  • Urinary tract infections
  • Gastrointestinal tract infections
  • Upper respiratory infections
  • Wound infections
  • Skin and soft tissue infections

Bacteria susceptible to Baytril include Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Klebsiella sp, E. Coli, Enterobacter, Campylobacter, Shigella, Salmonella, Aeromonas, Haemophilus, Proteus, Yersinia, Serratia, Vibrio sp., Mycoplasma, and Mycobacterium. [1]

Mode of delivery:

Baytril is available in tablet, liquid (Baytril otic for the ears), flavoured liquid and injection.  Baytril has a bitter taste, therefore the tablets are coated. Crushing and hiding Baytril in food is unlikely to be effective due to its bitter taste. Drooling can occur in cats due to its bitter taste, ensure the cat has access to clean drinking water.

Shake liquid Baytril before administration.

Baytril dosage for cats:

Oral tablets and liquid suspension – 5 mg/per kilo, per day, or as instructed by your veterinarian, in some cases, veterinarians will prescribe a half dose twice a day.

Always follow the instructions provided by the prescribing veterinarian.

What happens if I give my cat too much?

Baytril has a wide margin of safety, and it is unlikely the cat will experience more than loss of appetite and vomiting if given too much. Dogs receiving doses ten times the standard rate of
enrofloxacin for at least 14 days developed only some vomiting and anorexia. However, death did occur in some dogs when fed 25 times the labeled rate for 11 days. Contact your veterinarian if you suspect your cat has had a larger dose than prescribed.

It is always recommended that one person in the household be responsible for administering medications to reduce the chances of the cat receiving a double dose.


Do not use in cats with:

  • Impaired cartilage growth
  • Known seizure disorders
  • Hypersensitivity to fluoroquinolones

Baytril is eliminated by both the kidneys and the liver, therefore, it is important to monitor cats with impaired kidney or liver function and prescribe a lower dose to prevent the drug accumulating in the system.

The safety of Baytril in pregnant dogs demonstrated no side-effects, however safety in breeding, pregnant or lactating cats has not been established.

Drug interactions:

Due to decreased absorption, do not use Baytril within two hours of administering the following:

  • Antacids
  • Sucralfate
  • Aluminum
  • Calcium
  • Dairy products

Baytril may react with the following medications [2]:

  • Probenecid
  • Antacids
  • Sucralfate
  • Extended-spectrum penicillins
  • Clindamycin
  • Nitrofurantoin
  • Cyclosporine

What happens if I miss a dose?

Give the cat the medication as soon as you remember, however, if it is close to the time the next dose, skip the missed one. Never give two doses at once.

Side effects:

The adverse effects of Baytril are minimal but can include:

  • Gastrointestinal disorders such as vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite.
  • Retinal degeneration, resulting in blindness has been reported in cats who received much higher doses than the recommended 5 mg per kilo, per day.
  • Cartilage damage in developing kittens who received an oral dose of 25 mg per kilo per day, (which is much higher than the recommended 5 mg per kilo, per day) for 30 days. Although Bayer says no cartilage lesions have occurred in kittens.
  • In humans, reported adverse effects include sensitivity to light, ataxia (wobbly gait), tremors and other neurologic signs, and crystals in the urine (crystalluria).
  • Baytril may lower the seizure threshold in cats with known seizure disorders.


Store in a tight container at temperatures under 30C and out of strong light.

Do not store in areas of high humidity, such as bathrooms.


  • Always follow the instructions listed on the label and make sure the full course is given, even if symptoms resolve before the course has been finished.
  • Never administer a prescribed medication (including Baytril) to other pets unless prescribed by a veterinarian.
  • Do not administer Baytril at a higher dose than prescribed.
  • Do not administer Baytril more or less frequently than prescribed.
  • Store out of reach of animals and children.
  • Never administer Baytril that has expired.
  • Always inform the veterinarian of underlying health conditions the cat has and if the cat is taking prescribed or non-prescribed medications or supplements.
  • Do not administer if the cat has a known allergy to Baytril.

Baytril FAQ

Can Baytril treat cat flu?

Feline herpesvirus and calicivirus account for 80% of cases of cat flu, and antibiotics are not effective against viral infections. In some cat cases, veterinarians will prescribe antibiotics to treat secondary bacterial infections in cats with cat flu.

Should I give Baytril with food?

Baytril can be given with or without food. Never administer with dairy. Always follow instructions on the label.

Can humans take Baytril?

No, Baytril is toxic to people. Ciprofloxacin is a similar antibiotic which is for human use.


[1 & 2] PLUMB, Donald C, Veterinary Drug Handbook. 3rd edition.