Is there anything more worrisome than a sick cat? Fevers in cats can be extremely dangerous and if left untreated, can lead to death. Furthermore, fevers in cats could also be an indicator of other serious conditions such as heart or kidney disease which will need immediate treatment. Therefore, it’s important that you learn how to tell if your cat has a fever.
First thing’s first, how do you check if your cat has a fever? You can’t really touch it or ask the cat what’s wrong so cats are almost always left undiagnosed until they become so sick that treatment is mandatory.
How to tell if your cat has a fever
It is not always easy to explain, when your cat has a fever. This can be difficult in itself and it does not make things easier when you need an answer from the veterinarian. Here are ten signs for when a cat has a fever:
Your cat loses its interest in food or drink
When cats get sick, they often will lose their appetite. The same is true when they have a fever. However, if your cat does not eat for two days in a row, this should already be reason enough to call the veterinarian.
When your cat’s gums are pale pink to white
The gums should always have healthy coloration and never pale. The paler the gums, the less blood is circulating. If you notice this, this is an indication that there may be a fever.
When your cat is breathing faster than normal
A healthy cat normally breathes about 20 to 30 breaths per minute while resting at home on his/her favorite spot or when asleep. When cats have a fever, they often take more breaths. If your cat is breathing over 60 times per minute while resting or sleeping, it may indicate that there is a fever.
When your cats nose and ears are cold
Cats normally have an average temperature of 38 to 39 degrees Celsius (100.5-102 degrees Fahrenheit). You can check this by putting your hand under the cat’s tail. A cat that has a fever usually have cold ears and nose. If you touch the ear of your cat, you will notice that it is cooler than normal.
When your cats stomach is hard
When you put your hands on your cats belly, normally there are soft movements because of its intestines. When the cat has a fever, the stomach may become hard or tense, this is natural because of the fever. You will notice this when you touch your cat’s belly.
Your cats back is arched
When you have a cold or have pain, does your back become stiff? The same thing happens with cats that have a fever. As soon as they have a fever, the back will become stiff and arched and this is often the first sign that there is something wrong with your cat.
When you notice changes in behavior
A cat with a cold or other sicknesses may sleep more or less than usual, but it should not be too different from what you’re used to. If your cat sleeps a lot more or a lot less, it may be that there is a fever.
Vomiting and diarrhea
Both vomiting and diarrhea are symptoms of a cat that has a fever. If the cat is sick, it will often start with one, before developing the other symptom too.
The eyes are closed
When cats have a fever, they often close their eyes. As already mentioned, the eyes should have healthy coloration and shine. However, you will notice that the eyes are less shiny when your cat has a fever. Furthermore, it may also indicate that there is something wrong with them or what is around them.
When the cat’s temperature is over 39 degrees Celsius (102 degrees Fahrenheit)
A normal temperature of a cat is about 38 to 39 degrees Celsius (100.5-102 degrees Fahrenheit). This can be checked by using a thermometer and putting it under your cats tail. Cats with a fever often have their temperature at this level. If you think that your cat has a fever, you should call the veterinarian as soon as possible!