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Cat fatty liver disease

Feline Fatty Liver Disease:

Cat fatty liver disease is also known as Feline Hepatic Lipidosis and it simply means that there is an accumulation of fat taking place in the liver tissue that is mainly found among older cats.

At its worst, cat fatty liver can even lead to fatal complications. Cat livers have important jobs to do for the body. The liver helps in filtering blood, in preparing toxic waste that is to be eliminated by the kidneys. It also helps in detoxification of drugs, some chemicals and any other waste products.

The commonest feature that cats who are suffering from cat fatty liver disease have is obesity. The most common symptom of this condition is loss of appetite. This fact is actually both the initial symptom and one of the cat fatty liver causes. When an overweight cat stops eating for various reasons like stress or maybe illness, the cat’s body now must convert all the fat to usable energy.

Normally this is the way the liver functions but with a loss in appetite, the liver is now required to perform this particular function for a certain length of time. This causes the fat to accumulate in the liver and leads to cat fatty liver. This cat will be jaundiced and will start to have other breakdowns in organs if the condition is left untreated.

Some common cat fatty liver symptoms include lethargy or depression. The cat may not want to play or will refuse to go for any walks. Its belly can get a swollen look like a “fluid filled” one. This is referred to as ascites and here fluid fills up in the belly because of some circulation changes in the cat’s abdomen. The feces appear to be pale grey in color. The cat will have gastrointestinal problems that are accompanied by vomiting, loss in appetite, diarrhea and constipation. The urine becomes orange in color and jaundice or icterus can be other symptoms. Some basic cat fatty liver treatment involves removal of any toxic agents that can possibly damage the liver. The cat should be given plenty of rest as this will help to channelize the body resources towards healing the liver condition. It is very important to manage the diet of an ailing cat. This is done with the aim of giving the cat all the nutrients it would have lost due to its liver failure. It is also vital to control the problem of ascites and any other problem like water retention.

  Submitted on March 4, 2010  

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