How to Spot and Prevent Cytauxzoonosis in Cats

cytauxzoonosis-in-cats-a-deadly-disease

Cytauxzoonosis is a deadly disease that affects cat. It is caused by the Cytauxzoon felis organism which is transmitted by the bite from an infected tick. This deadly disease affects cats only, and it does not spread to other cats, animals or humans.

How deadly is Cytauxzoonosis in cats?

Once a cat contracts the disease, it could die within one to two weeks. Cats that survive the disease usually become chronic carriers.

What are the symptoms of Cytauxzoonosis in cats?

The most common of signs of Cytauxzoonosis in cats are lethargy, loss of appetite, fever, pale or yellow mucus membranes, pain, difficulty breathing, and enlarged lymph nodes. If you notice your cat is experiencing these symptoms take it to a veterinarian right away. A blood test will be able to confirm if your cat has the disease.

How does Cytauxzoonosis affect cats?

Once Cytauxzoonosis gets into your cat’s blood system it attacks the red blood cells. This attack causes your cat’s immune system to respond. During the blood parasite stage, the disease is manageable.  However, once the disease passes into the tissue stage it becomes so prevalent that it overwhelms your cat’s immune system which eventually leads to death.

Is there a treatment for Cytauxzoonoiss in cats?

Currently, a treatment consisting of intravenous fluids, heparin, and blood transfusions along with administering a combination of atovaquone (an anti-malarial drug) and azithromycin (an antibiotic) has shown to increase the survival rate of cats affected with Cytauxzoonosis. Historically, prevention has been proven as the most effective remedy against this deadly disease in cats.

What can be done to prevent Cytauxzoonosis in cats?

Outdoor cats, or indoor cats that occasionally go outside, are most prone to contracting Cytauxzoonosis since they can easily be bitten by an infected tick. Therefore, it is best to administer flea and tick medication on a monthly basis to your cat.

Bio Spot Flea and Tick for Cats is an easy, one-step spot treatment that provides quick-acting, long-lasting protection against fleas, ticks and mosquitoes for cats.

Frontline Plus for Cats and Kittens is a monthly topical flea and tick preventative that kills 100% of adult fleas on your pet within 12 hours and 100% of all ticks and chewing lice within 48 hours. Frontline Plus also contains an insect growth regulator, S-methoprene, which kills flea eggs and larvae.

EasySpot for Cats is a generic form of Frontline Top Spot that provides monthly protection for your pet from fleas and ticks, in an easy to apply formula.

Effipro Topical Solution for Cats is an effective monthly treatment to treat and keep fleas and ticks off your pet.

Caution: Tick control medications meant for dogs are highly toxic to cats. When purchasing tick medications for your cats make sure it is made specifically for cats.

For a flea and tick for cats comparison chart, click Allivet Cat Flea and Tick Chart.

In summary, Cytauxzoonosis is a highly deadly disease that is exclusive to cats. It is contracted when a cat is bitten by a tick that is carrying Cytauxzoon felis an organism that causes the disease. Symptoms of Cytauxzoonois are lethargy, loss of appetite, fever, pale or yellow mucus membranes, pain, difficulty breathing, and enlarged lymph nodes. Death can occur within one to two weeks of getting the disease. Take your cat to a veterinarian as soon as it starts exhibiting these symptoms. A blood test will be able to determine if your cat has Cytauxzoonosis. Treatment for Cytauxzoonois includes intravenous fluids, heparin, and blood transfusions along with administering a combination of atovaquone (an anti-malarial drug) and azithromycin (an antibiotic). However, prevention is the most effective way to combat this notorious cat killer. Applying a monthly dosage of flea and tick control medication is the best remedy.

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