Common Disorders and Diseases in Kittens

by catfood

Kittens have the same potential for physical defects and sickness as any other animal. Disorders that are present at birth include hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The bulk, nevertheless, are transferred by viruses, illnesses, or parasites. Vaccinated kittens, fortunately, are resistant to many of the most deadly diseases.

Feline queens, often known as feral cat mothers, are less likely to produce kittens with health problems than domestic cats. There are a number of reasons for this:

  • Feral animals are more likely to have parasites that can spread disease, and they are also more likely to have more kittens than they can care for.
  • Ferals typically lack sufficient nutrition and are unable to adequately feed kittens.
  1. Panleukopenia, often known as feline distemper (Feline Distemper)

The very virulent panleuk virus, which is frequently seen in feral cat colonies and other places where many cats gather, is a member of the parvovirus family. It may cause the bone marrow and cells that line the gut to be damaged, which may result in sepsis and potentially fatal dehydration.

2. Diseases of the Upper Respiratory Tract

An upper respiratory infection called rhinotracheitis is also referred to as feline herpes virus and feline calicivirus.

Despite the fact that inherited tendencies are regularly present, cats typically do not exhibit them until they are middle-aged or older. These viruses may result in sneezing, nasal discharge, and conjunctivitis (commonly known as pink-eye).

A third infectious condition that is brought on by bacteria and can be treated with drugs like tetracycline is chlamydia. The conjunctivitis caused by this type of chlamydia can eventually spread to humans, despite the fact that it is not the same as the sexually transmitted disease that affects people.

  1. The fading kitten syndrome (FKS)

Neonatal kitten deaths, often known as FKS, are essentially a group of symptoms rather than a singular condition. The symptoms, which may appear as late as a few weeks after delivery or as soon as shortly after, are well known to fosters of pregnant cats and their kittens. 6? There isn’t just one known cause for this. The mother cat’s poor health, however, clearly has a major impact. 7

  1. The fourth strain of feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)

FIV is communicated through deep bites (saliva to blood) or through blood transfusions during pregnancy or childbirth. Because of their weaker immune systems, cats are more likely to die from secondary infections or other diseases. Finding permanent homes for those kittens who do survive may be difficult given how humans perceive this illness. However, many cats may live for years in good health before developing a disease.

5. FLV, or feline leukemia virus (FeLV)

FeLV is a highly contagious disease that can spread through casual contact, such as sharing food bowls, as well as from the mother cat to her kittens. FeLV can be avoided with vaccinations. There is no treatment for it once it appears, and on rare occasions it may become latent and cause the tests to come back negative. Although kittens with latent infections won’t become ill, the infection may return. FeLV suppresses the immune system, making cats less able to fight off infections than they might otherwise be.

  1. Not hearing

Some kittens are born deaf. Although this sickness is fatal, a cat is not rendered helpless. White cats with two blue eyes are frequently, but not always, born deaf.

  1. Infectious peritonitis particular to cats (FIP)

In addition to areas with high cat populations, FIP may be detected in kittens with a genetic predisposition.

The coronavirus that causes illness is frequently exposed, but because the virus must mutate before it can spread, only a small proportion of infected cats get FIP. The disease has the drawback of being fatal once contracted.

  1. Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is thought to be a genetic disorder even though it frequently doesn’t show symptoms immediately away. Cats are less likely than dogs to develop this malformation, and surgery can often be used to correct it.

9. Cerebellar hypoplasia in Caterina (FCH)

Feline distemper, which can manifest during pregnancy or one to two weeks after birth, usually causes FCH.

The neurological disorder Motor abilities including head control and walking are frequently hampered by CH, which has its epicenter in the cerebrum.

10. Cases of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

Veterinarians often always treat cats for tapeworms when they have flea infestations. They have Sphynx, Ragdolls, and Maine Coon Cats among other breeds. There are basic vaccinations for each of these viruses.

11. Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)

The breeds of cats most likely to develop polycystic kidney disease are Persian cats and those of related breeds. It is a progressive genetic kidney condition that is frequently not identified until much later in life. Responsible breeders are currently examining their breeding queens to try to stop the PKD gene from entering their line.

  1. Diseases caused by fleas

Several parasites spread dangerous infections to kittens. Common fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes can transfer a variety of diseases, including:


The parasite hemobartonella, also called hemobartonellosis, attacks red blood cells and can cause anemia. It can be lethal (particularly in kittens), and cats with the infection might even need blood transfusions as part of their treatment.


Even if a kitten does not get hemobartonella, the process of fleas eating on its blood over time can cause a specific kind of serious anemia.


Specific breeds of cats are more susceptible than others to developing hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). You might be asked to bring a sample of the kitten’s feces to the visit because kittens are also prone to other parasites, like roundworms.

If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your family pet, know the pet’s health history, and may make the best recommendations for your pet.

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