Thursday, 29 February 2024

Water in cat's lungs

20 May 2021

The most common cause of fluid in the lungs in a cat is the onset of viral peritonitis - FIP. It is one of the chronic and fatal diseases - however, in some cases, it is possible to keep the animal alive for a period of several months. Unfortunately, FIP is a disease which is not easy to diagnose - during a blood test a high level of total protein and globulins can be detected. The appearance of fluid from the body cavities of the animal may be an important clue in diagnosing the cat.

Water in the lungs in cats - causes

Other causes of fluid in the animal's lungs can be pleurisy, heart problems, liver or kidney problems, or damage to the lymphatic vessels. Whatever the cause, the prognosis should be rather cautious, sometimes it can be bad. In order to know how to proceed with a sick animal it is necessary to have more data that can accelerate the diagnosis of the disease.

Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in cats is usually seen in young cats (1-5 years of age), although older cats over 10 years of age may also be affected (although in this case it is called secondary cardiomyopathy and is usually associated with geriatric conditions such as hyperthyroidism, renal failure and primary hypertension).

Lung water in the cat - symptoms

Symptoms seen in many cats with water in the lungs include pulmonary edema, which causes shortness of breath, and abdominal compression assisted breathing. Sometimes the disease is asymptomatic and is only detected on clinical examination or, in extreme cases, a previously healthy cat suddenly dies. In some cats, clots appear on the wall of the enlarged left atrium.

treating water in the cat's lungs

Unfortunately, the clot may break off from the wall (it is connected with the abnormal blood flow), which then with the blood goes to the abdominal cavity. This can have unpleasant consequences such as the occurrence of sudden paralysis of the hind legs, an increasingly higher body temperature, or worsening of the animal's mood - these symptoms can make it difficult to clearly diagnose the disease. If a young cat (1-6 years) has a heart murmur, the animal should undergo a cardiological examination to determine the cause of the murmur.

Water in the lungs in a cat - treatment

Water accumulates slowly in the lungs of cats. If the amount of fluid is small the animal feels well (in the case of outdoor cats it is impossible to notice symptoms of the disease at this stage). When the amount of accumulated water becomes larger it presses on the diaphragm and lungs of the cat, leading to the weakness of the animal and the appearance of dyspnea - most cat owners just at this stage of the development of the disease notice worrying symptoms.

The causes can be different - usually they are chronic diseases that can have serious consequences (infectious diseases, heart disorder, or cancer). In some cases, fluid collects in the lungs as a result of trauma (such as a fall from a great height, a car accident). Veterinarian after examining the animal and making X-ray knows what may be the cause of the appearance of water in the lungs. If he has any doubts, it is a good idea to perform additional tests, such as morphology, or examination of fluid taken from the chest.