The 9 Most Common Cat Diseases

The 9 most common cat diseases
The 9 most common cat diseases

Cats can suffer from many different diseases. Some are caused by viruses, others by bacteria or parasites, and others are hereditary. We have summarized for you which diseases are most common in cats.

Cat sniffing (complex)

Cat Sniffing the camera- Youtube

Cat sniffing is an infectious disease that causes inflammation of the airways and eyes in cats. Also, the skin and in severe cases also the lungs may be affected. The disease is caused by a variety of pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, and parasites. Among other things, herpes and caliciviruses, but also bacteria such as brothels (Bordetella bronchiseptica) or chlamydia (Chlamydophila felis) lead to cat disease. Especially young cats or cats with weakened immune systems are susceptible to cat sniffing. The consequential damage includes a bone loss on the nasal shell, eye damage to blindness and chronic colds in the cat.

As the name suggests, the cat disease is a contagious disease. It is triggered by the parvovirus and is often transmitted to their cat puppies during pregnancy by unvaccinated mother cats. In addition to young cats, the cat epidemic can also be dangerous for older cats.

Infected cats suffer from vomiting, diarrhea, and fever and often do not eat. Especially in young cats, the cat disease should be treated as soon as possible, as they can succumb to the consequences of the disease within one day.

Cat leukemia

Cat Weepy eye

The trigger for cat leukemia in common cases is the Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV), which is transmitted through contact with other cats. Vaccination against FeLV protects the cat against this type of transmission. In addition to the virus, there are several other causes of the leukemia of the cats, but these are not currently sufficiently investigated.

Cat leukemia is usually a long-term disease that can be acute or chronic. With an acute course, severe symptoms suddenly appear. Possible symptoms include weight loss, fever, eating, and vomiting as well as diarrhea. In chronic cat leukemia, there are currently few or no symptoms.

The term cat leukemia also includes a number of tumors formed by altered cells in the bone marrow.

Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)

FIP is a viral disease that occurs worldwide. It occurs particularly frequently when several cats are kept together and can already be transferred from the mother to the puppies during pregnancy.

The disease is caused by so-called Feline Coronaviruses and is usually fatal.

Feline infectious peritonitis often takes its course over several weeks and often manifests itself through high fever, fatigue as well as eating pleasure and pale mucous membranes. Inflammation of the chest and peritoneum is also typical.

Kidney weakness

In the case of kidney weakness, the function of the kidneys decreases. The kidneys are responsible for many vital processes. Among other things, they filter the blood, form urine and regulate water balance, blood pressure, and metabolism. A disorder, therefore, affects the whole organism of the cat.

Kidney weakness can be caused by many different causes. In addition to the diminishing function in old age, the kidneys may also be weakened as a result of poisoning or infection. Also, high protein-rich diets can strain the kidneys over a longer period of time and lead to kidney weakness.

Since symptoms often only show signs of advanced damage to the kidneys, kidney weakness often remains undetected. Typical are symptoms such as eating incarcerate with at the same time strong thirst and vomiting. In addition, the cat can act lethargic, lose weight, urinate significantly more often and smell urea from the mouth in case of severe loss of kidney function.

Cat diabetes

Diabetes in cats is a collective term for a number of metabolic disorders, which also occur in humans and dogs. The disease, also known as diabetes, occurs when too little sugar from the blood is absorbed into the body tissue. The absorption of the sugar is controlled by the body’s own hormone insulin, which is either too little or not formed at all in diabetes or is no longer absorbed by the cells. Due to the over-sugaring of the blood, the metabolism of the cat gets out of balance and nerve damage can occur.

Diabetes in cats can be hereditary, but can also be influenced by diet and general lifestyle. Especially overweight cats have an increased risk. If cats drink excessively and urinate frequently, this may be an indication of diabetes. In this context, a lackluster and rough coat can also indicate diabetes.

Thyroid hyperfunction (hyperthyroidism)

With over-functioning of the thyroid gland, this produces excessively many hormones. The over-function is usually caused by a node or a tumor at the thyroid gland. If thyroid over-function is not treated, severe organ damage to the kidney, heart or liver may occur. Typical symptoms are weight loss with increased appetite, but also eating pleasure. The animals urinate more frequently and have increased thirst. Frequently, cats with a thyroid superfunction also behave cheerfully, restlessly or aggressively.

Parasite infestation

Similar to worm diseases, the cat may also be affected by other parasites. While worms belong to the so-called endoparasites that infect the interior of the cat, there are also ectoparasites that infect the appearance of the cat. These include ticks, fleas, and ear mites. Ticks bite into the cat’s skin to suck blood. In turn, they can transmit diseases such as anaplasmosis, babesiosis, and ehrlichiosis. Fleas, on the other hand, nest in the fur of the animals and also suck blood. As a result, the cat may scratch excessively. Ear mites, however, colonize the earcup of the cat and feed on skin cells and secretions of the ears. Often affected animals scratch their ears or develop ear infections.


Toxoplasmosis is an infection caused by the protozoan parasite Toxoplasma gondii in the cat. Generally, healthy cats that are infected with toxoplasma show no symptoms in most cases; occasionally diarrhea may occur. Young cats or cats with weakened immune systems, on the other hand, show symptoms such as shortness of breath, fever, cough, diarrhea, weakness, and inflammation. Cat puppies infected at birth are at high risk of dying from the disease.

Toxoplasmosis can also be transmitted to humans and is particularly dangerous for unborn children who become infected through the mother.

Worm diseases

In addition to the above-mentioned diseases, cats often suffer from complaints caused by worms. The cat can become infected with worms by eating infected mice or through the feces of infected cats and serves as a host to the parasites. In cats, coilworms, hookworms, and tapeworms are found to colonize the cat’s body. Depending on the type of worm, different symptoms may occur. Frequently, diarrhea and vomiting accompany a worm disease in cats.