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  • Primary vaccination is essential in order to prevent the return of the once common deadly infectious diseases in kittens and cats. Recent research indicates that not all vaccines require yearly boosters. However, there is no evidence that annual booster vaccination is anything but beneficial to the majority of cats. Ultimately, how frequently your cat should be vaccinated is determined by your cat's lifestyle and relative risk. Ask your veterinarian about the type and schedule of vaccines that is appropriate for your cat.

  • Approximately 20% of cats across all ages suffer from painful osteoarthritis in one or more joints, and 90% of cats over 12 years of age show evidence of arthritis on radiographs. Because cats are living longer, every cat owner will face the issue of osteoarthritis at some point. This handout discusses the use of nutrition and nutritional supplements to aid in the management of your cat's osteoarthritis. Weight loss, omega fatty acids, and various chondroprotective supplements are discussed.

  • Osteoarthritis (OA) is a complex condition involving inflammation and degeneration of one or more joints. Cats with OA experience pain and inflammation in various joints that interfere with the activities of daily living.

  • Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive therapy that is used to examine, diagnose, and treat diseases and conditions that affect joints. It requires a specialized piece of equipment called an arthroscope which will allow your veterinarian to look inside the joint using a small fiber optic camera that is hooked up to a monitor. It often requires general anesthesia; however, small incisions in the joint allow for a quicker recovery than traditional methods allow. The recovery time will depend on the extent of the injury, but compared to traditional surgery, recovery time is generally much shorter.

  • This handout discusses aspergillosis in cats, an infection, growth, or allergic response caused by the Aspergillus fungus. If your cat becomes infected, it can be confined to the nasal passages (nasal aspergillosis), or it can spread throughout the body (systemic aspergillosis). The clinical signs, diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of both conditions are outlined.

  • Aspirin is a commonly used over the counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and is used to treat fever, pain, inflammation (swelling), and clotting disorders in humans. Aspirin poisoning occurs when a cat ingests a toxic dose of aspirin, either through misuse or accidentally. Clinical signs depend on how much aspirin was eaten. Treatment for aspirin poisoning depends on how quickly the cat is seen by the veterinarian.

  • Asthma or bronchitis is a fairly common condition affecting cats. It occurs as a result of the airway being hypersensitive to certain stimuli, resulting in airway constriction, excess mucus production, and air trapping. Diagnostics include a physical exam, blood tests, x-rays, bronchoscopy, and bronchial or tracheal lavage. As asthma cannot be cured, treatment is aimed at the management of the disease using a combination of steroids and bronchodilators. Adjunct treatments include modifying the environment to reduce exposure to the noxious stimulus, hypoallergenic diet trials, and acupuncture.

  • If your cat has been diagnosed with feline asthma, it is important that you follow the treatment instructions that have been determined specifically for your cat. This handout is to be filled in by your veterinary team.

  • The word ataxia means incoordination within the nervous system. There are several different forms of ataxia, depending upon where in the nervous system the abnormality occurs. The most common sign of ataxia, regardless of the cause, is an abnormal gait in which the cat is very unsteady on her feet. Treatment of ataxia will be influenced by the root cause. Pain management, supportive care, and creating a safe environment (e.g., preventing access to stairs) are cornerstones of ataxia treatment.

  • This handout summarizes atlantoaxial (AA) luxation, a condition in which instability or excessive movement is present between the first two vertebrae within the neck. Atlantoaxial luxation can be caused by trauma, hereditary factors, or a combination of these two factors. The most common sign of AA luxation is neck pain, though severely affected dogs may lose their ability to breathe due to paralysis of the diaphragm.