Lyme Disease is actually not that common in cats. However, it is one of the most common tick-related diseases so it is important to know about.
Lyme Disease comes about by a bacteria in a tick which is then carried over to your cat. If the tick is attached and feeding on your cat for at least 18 hours, your cat is susceptible to getting this disease.
If this disease is left untreated in your kitty, you can expect him to have many more significant health issues. Some of these include major kidney problems leading up to kidney failure. If your cat experiences kidney failure, he or she will have problems with constant and uncontrolled urination, diarrhea, vomiting and become pretty skinny.
However, there is a way to see if your cat might have Lyme Disease before it gets that bad. Here are some early symptoms:
- Loss of appetite
- Stiff walking (this disease can cause lameness in a particular leg or legs)
- Sensitive to any petting
If any of these symptoms occur, it is important to bring your cat into the clinic to get a thorough physical exam. The vet will want a complete history of your cat’s health. The vet will thoroughly check your cat, including the area where the tick bit. The skin around the area where the tick bit is also an indication of your cat’s current health. Is the wound still open? Does it look infected? (These are signs you can notice at home, too, before bringing your cat in.)
Lyme Disease is treatable. Most likely your cat will be put on some antibiotics for a few weeks. It is obviously up to the vet to determine how serious your cat’s case is, in which case additional treatment might be necessary.
You can prevent this disease. There are many different tick prevention products out there. Let the vets at the hospital recommend one that will work for your pet.