When people think of Lyme disease, they often think about it affecting people, but the truth of the matter is that it can easily be acquired by cats as well. Lyme disease is something that has been around for hundreds of years, but it is only in the last thirty years or so that it has become commonly diagnosed and understood. It is caused by the Ixodes tick, which is found in woodlands and grasslands. This type of tick will feed on deer, sheep, horses, cats, dogs and humans and when they are bitten, they can pass the disease on to their host. When you are concerned about your cat’s health, take a look at Lyme disease cats and make sure that you understand it.
How can you tell if your cat has been infected with Lyme disease? You might notice that your cat starts moving around as though they are stiff or as though their joints are causing them pain. They may be perpetually tired and listless or they might feel as though they are hot to the touch. Another indication that there is something wrong is that your cat might suddenly lose their appetite and even more alarmingly, they might suddenly collapse. However, it is also important to remember that because not all cats are equally healthy, it might not have any symptoms at all. Some owners only realize that their cats might have this disease when they actually see a tick or a tick bite.
If you see a tick on your cat, it is important to remove it right away. Early removal of a tick may actually prevent your cat from having any problems at all, as research has shown that a tick attached to a host won’t transmit the disease for some hours. To remove a tick, you should grasp it firmly with a pair of tweezers and remove it in a twisting motion. Do not jerk it away suddenly as this can leave sediment in the wound and cause an abscess.
It is important to remember that especially in the early stages, Lyme disease is easily treatable in both cats by a SC veterinarian and humans with a round of antibiotics. With cats, the antibiotics that you are looking at are typically tetracycline, doxycycline and amoxicillin. There is no vaccine available, and cats that have been infected before can easily become infected again.
When you are thinking about Lyme disease, remember that prevention of the disease is far easier and far more effective than curing it. One surefire way to make sure that your cat does not contract this disease is to keep your cat indoors. If you live in a wooded or grassy area, there are likely ticks out there, and keeping your cat indoors can be extremely beneficial. If you allow your cat to roan, a tick collar might be helpful. When your cat comes in from the outdoors, make sure that you take a moment to search his coat for ticks.
Take some time and make sure that you consider what Lyme disease risks your cat might be taking and what you can do to mitigate them.