Do Cats Sweat?

Do cats sweat?

Do cats sweat?

Yes, but unlike humans who have sweat glands all over the body, cats only sweat through their paws. These glands are known as eccrine glands. Due to the small number of sweat glands and the location, sweating does not play a significant role in thermoregulation in cats. On scorching days you may see wet paw marks on the floor where your cat has been sweating.

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Cat Language – What Is Your Cat Telling You?

Cat communication
Communication is essential to all species of animal. It lets others around them know how they’re feeling, warns them of danger and is used to threaten or intimidate predators or aggressors.
Cats have several ways they communicate with other animals as well as their human family. Language is just one of them; body language and smell are two other ways. So what are the different ways our cat speaks to the world, and what exactly do they mean?

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7 Hypoallergenic Cat Breeds For People With Allergies

Sphynx cat

Hypoallergenic cat breeds at a glance

What causes allergies?

The primary cause of allergies to cats is a glycoprotein known as Fel D1 which is produced by the sebaceous glands under the skin, and to a lesser degree is present in the cat’s saliva.

A cat is constantly shedding minute particles of dander (skin flakes) into the environment, and when he grooms, he transfers saliva onto the coat, which is then shed around the home producing allergies in those susceptible.

Symptoms

Symptoms vary depending on the severity of the allergy but may include:

  • Itchy, red, watery eyes
  • Runny nose
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Chest tightness
  • Hives

If you are not sure that you are suffering from an allergy to cats, you can request an allergy test, which involves either a skin patch test or a blood test.

As we discussed in our previous article hypoallergenic cats, do they exist? There are no true hypoallergenic breeds of cat; there are however some breeds of cat who are believed to have less of an allergic reaction in people.

Hypoallergenic cat breeds

It needs to be repeated; no breeds of cat are truly hypoallergenic. The cats below may be slightly less allergenic than other breeds.

Siberian

White Siberian cat

A natural breed of cat from Russia, the Siberian is a large, longhaired cat who are very personable and love to spend time with their human companion. There is no concrete proof the Siberian is indeed a hypoallergenic breed, but many breeders have reported anecdotally that allergy sufferers have had success with Siberian cats.

Devon Rex

Brown and white Devon Rex kitten

The Devon Rex is a short-coated cat who arose from a spontaneous mutation. They are friendly, outgoing, active, and get along with absolutely everyone. They make a perfect family pet.

Cornish Rex

Cornish Rex

The Cornish Rex is similar to the Devon Rex in temperament but with a finer frame, a Roman nose and a coat which forms ripples. Active, outgoing, friendly, this breed is a wonderful cat who gets along with absolutely everybody.

Sphynx

Sphynx cat

Although they look bald, the Sphynx has a beautiful peach-like fuzz over his body which feels like soft chamois.

Sphynx cats are outgoing, friendly, and love to climb. They have been described as part cat, part dog, part monkey. Lesser known hairless cats include the Peterbald, Dwelf and Donskoy.

Bengal

Bengal cat

The Bengal originated as a hybrid between the Asian leopard cat and domestic cats. They still maintain their wild look but with the nature of a domestic cat.

They are extremely intelligent, energetic, love heights and they thrive on human companionship.

Russian Blue

One of the oldest domestic breeds of cat, the Russian Blue is a quiet, devoted breed of cat who loves to be close to their human companion.

This breed is moderate in every way; they are not vocal; they are not highly active, nor are they lazy.

Balinese

Balinese cat

The beautiful Balinese is a longhaired Siamese. They share common traits with their Siamese cousins, being intelligent, outgoing and people-oriented. They love to play games and will follow you from room to room.

Why are these breeds more hypoallergenic?

The Rex and Sphynx cats have less fur (yes, Sphynx cats do have a peach-like fuzz) and therefore less is shed into the environment. While Rex and Sphynx cats shed less fur, they still shed dander (skin flakes) which contain the Fel d1 protein.

The other hypoallergenic cat breeds are thought to produce less Fel d1 than other breeds of cat. This has yet to be proven. However, many cat owners and breeders substantiate this claim.

Most cats shed all year round, with a more substantial shed around springtime. I recently spoke to a Siberian cat breeder who said that Siberian cats tend to shed less year-round, but instead shed twice a year heavily. She reported that in her experience, the breed has been good for allergy sufferers. *

Are some coat colours less likely to cause allergies?

Coat colour has no impact on the level of danger, one study identified lower levels of salivary Fel d1 in older cats.

Male vs female cat

Entire male cats produce more Fel d1 than female cats (either entire or spayed).

Points to consider before you adopt a hypoallergenic cat

* Unfortunately there are no guarantees if you suffer from an allergy to cats. A leading cause of Rex cats being surrendered is that they were purchased with the belief they would be “allergy-free” and the new owners still suffered from cat allergies. You can do your best to reduce your chances by adopting from the list of cats LESS LIKELY to cause allergies, choosing a lighter coated cat, a desexed male or female, but even with all of this, they still may trigger problems.

Visit cat shows and chat to cat breeders, ask them for their opinion on their chosen breed. If they claim their breed is hypoallergenic, see for yourself by spending time with the breed(s). Even if you visit a cat show or a cat breeder and experience no problems with allergies, allergies can develop with repeated exposure.

If allergies become a problem, speak to your doctor as are many ways to relieve symptoms and ways you can reduce exposure to allergens within the home.

Spaying a Cat

Spaying a cat

What is spaying?

Also known as ovariohysterectomy or sterilising, spaying is the removal of the uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries in the female cat to prevent her from reproducing. In male cats, the castration of the testes is known as neutering, which renders him infertile. This article refers to the spaying of the female cat only.

How much does it cost to spay a cat?

The cost to spay varies from vet to vet and even on circumstances. It is more expensive to spay a cat who is either in heat or who is already pregnant.

At the time of writing (February 2013), I phoned 5 Australian veterinary practices to find out how much they charge to spay a female cat. The prices ranged from $195.00 to $250.00, with an average cost of $223.80

Spaying the female is more expensive than neutering the male as it is more complicated. However, most veterinarians are aware of the importance of desexing household pets and do their best to keep costs down. Speak to your vet if you have any concerns about cost. Most are very approachable and will be willing to work with you.

Some animal shelters have cheap spaying and neutering days to encourage pet owners to spay their animals.

When should a cat be spayed?

Cats can be spayed from 8-10 weeks of age, although some veterinarians prefer to wait until six months.

How is a cat spayed?

The veterinarian will perform a physical examination of the cat before the surgery to make sure she is in good health. A pre-surgery blood panel may be recommended before surgery to determine the overall health of your cat.

  • The cat will receive a light sedative before the procedure to relax her. This will make her drowsy and relaxed.
  • Following the sedative, general anesthesia will be induced either via gas or injection.
  • A tube is inserted into the windpipe to allow the gas anesthetic to be administered (intubation).
  • The cat is shaved under the belly (midline) or on her left side (the flank), the area will be cleaned with a surgical antiseptic.
  • She will be placed on her side or back, depending and an incision is made through the skin and into the abdomen. Blood vessels which supply the reproductive organs are tied off to prevent bleeding.
  • The uterus and ovaries are removed from the abdomen and stitches are used to close off the incision.
  • Spay surgery takes between 30-45 minutes.

What are the benefits of spaying a cat?

There are many benefits to spaying a cat. The entire cat is more likely to roam (and over a greater distance), exposing her to risks from attacks (dogs, other cats), and vehicles.

Spaying also reduces certain behaviours in the female such as calling, offers several health benefits which include eliminating the chance of pyometra (infection of the uterus), and significantly reducing the likelihood of mammary cancer.  Spaying prevents more kittens from being born into a world where shelters are already brimming with unwanted kittens and cats.

Health benefits of spaying a female:

Spaying can reduce the number of conditions in the female cat, including:

  • Mammary cancer
  • Pyometra
  • Uterine cancer
  • Eliminates birth and postnatal conditions such as difficult birth, mastitis etc.

Other benefits:

  • Eliminates calling behaviour
  • Reduces the likelihood of your female roaming (to look for a partner)
  • Reduces the chances of your female spraying

It also reduces her chances of catching transmissible diseases such as FeLV and FIV.

Complications

All surgeries carry risks; however, spay is a routine surgery and complications are uncommon.

  • Bleeding during the operation
  • Post-surgical infection of the wound
  • If a small part of the ovary is left behind, it will continue to release hormones, which in turn can cause your cat to continue to call
  • All anaesthetics come with a small risk of death

Post spay care

You should be able to bring your cat home either later that day or the following day. She will be a little sore for a few days after surgery and should be kept quiet and not allowed outside.

Some cats will feel somewhat nauseous due to the anesthetic so that she may prefer a bland diet of cooked chicken for a day or so.

Keep an eye on the wound and look for signs of infection such as weeping, redness, swelling or discomfort.

Stitches will need to be removed 10-14 days after surgery.

Cat Surgery – Everything You Need To Know

Surgery for cats

From time to time, your cat may require a surgical procedure. Usually, the first time a cat undergoes surgery is during spay or neutering as a kitten.

Surgeries fall into three main categories.

Elective-Desexing, declawing.

Non-elective – Necessary Surgery, but no immediate need. This can include corrective surgery to repair a broken bone, dental work/extraction or an anatomical fault.

Emergency – Surgery when the cat’s life or body part (limb, organ, etc.) is in immediate danger (massive bleeding, significant wounds, breathing difficulty, emergency cesarean section).

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