More Cat Care Information:

The herpes virus causes many problems for your cat, with one of them being the development of rhinotracheitis. This condition mainly causes upper respiratory infections in your cat, and can also lead to eye problems like conjunctivitis.

General Cat Care #1: Before You Bring Your Cat Home
You will need food, food dish, water bowl, interactive toys, brush, comb, safety cat collar, scratching post, litter and litter box.
General Cat Care #2: Feeding
An adult cat should be fed one large or two smaller meals each day. Kittens from 6 to 12 weeks need to be fed four times a day. Kittens from three to six months need to be fed three times a day. You can either feed specific meals, throwing away any leftover canned food after 30 minutes or free-feed dry food (keeping food out all the time).

Feed your cat a high-quality, brand-name kitten or cat food (avoid generic brands) two to three times a day. Kittens can be fed human baby food for a short time if they won’t eat kitten food softened by soaking in warm water. Use turkey or chicken baby food made for children six months and older. Gradually mix with cat food. Cow’s milk is not necessary and can cause diarrhea in kittens and cats. Provide fresh, clean water at all times. Wash and refill water bowls daily.

Feline rhinotracheitis is mainly a problem for young kittens. However, young ones can harbor the virus for years without showing an outward signs in the meantime. Cats that are infected with the leukemia or immunodeficiency viruses have a major risk of being infected with this one. If your cat frequently displays signs of this condition, then it may be a sign that something more serious is wrong.

The virus that causes rhinotracheitis in cats doesn't prompt symptoms right away. The incubation period, the time in which cats don't display signs, typically lasts for a few days up to a couple of weeks. This can prove problematic for households with multiple cats, since felines can infect others despite not showing signs themselves.

The signs of feline rhinotracheitis are quite similar to those of other upper respiratory infections. Cats will start coughing, sneezing, and producing discharge from their nose. The nasal lining and the eyelid lining may also become inflamed. The former is referred to as rhinitis, while the later is called conjunctivitis.

General Cat Care #3: Grooming
Most cats stay relatively clean and rarely need a bath, but they do need to be brushed or combed. Frequent brushing helps keep your cat’s coat clean, reduces the amount of shedding and cuts down on the incidence of hairballs
General Cat Care #4: Handling
To pick up your cat, place one hand behind the front legs and another under the hindquarters. Lift gently. Never pick up a cat by the scruff of the neck (behind the ears) or by the front legs without supporting the rear end.
General Cat Care #5: Housing
Cats should have a clean, dry place of their own in the house. Line your cat’s bed with a soft, warm blanket or towel. Be sure to wash the bedding often. Please keep your cat indoors. If your companion animal is allowed outside, he can contract diseases, get ticks or parasites, become lost or get hit by a car, hurt in a fight or poisoned. Also, cats prey on wildlife.

Cats commonly have a fever while battling this condition too. Others will lose their appetite until they start feeling a little better. Rhinotracheitis in felines can cause cats to display just a few of these symptoms or all of them at once.

There isn't an exact testing method to diagnose feline rhinotracheitis. Your vet will simply need to look at the signs that your cat is displaying while taking his medical history into account. It isn't always easy to identify this condition accurately.

Even if rhinotracheitis in cats were diagnosed, there is no way for vets to treat your cat. The disease usually runs its course after a week or so. In the meantime, supportive measures can be provided for your pet.

Since cats with rhinotracheitis have nasal discharge that can make it difficult to breathe, nasal decongestants are usually provided. Keeping your cat in a room with a humidifier or vaporizer going will also help him breathe better. Owners need to wipe away secretions from the eyes and nose to help minimize the risk of their cats getting reinfected.

Once feline rhinotracheitis compromises the immune system, secondary bacterial infections can easily set in. Your cat may need to take antibiotics to keep these infections from causing additional problems.

This condition is highly contagious. If you have one cat that has been infected, it's best to keep him away from other felines for a while. If not, you will likely be dealing with multiple sick cats at once.

There is a vaccine to protect against feline rhinotracheitis. However, it doesn't always keep cats from being infected entirely. Those that have been vaccinated though likely won't experience serious stages of the disease.

General Cat Care #6: Identification
If allowed outdoors (again, we caution against it!), your cat needs to wear a safety collar and an ID tag. A safety collar with an elastic panel will allow your cat to break loose if the collar gets caught on something. An ID tag or an implanted microchip can help insure that your cat is returned if he or she becomes lost.
General Cat Care #7: Litter Box
All indoor cats need a litter box, which should be placed in a quiet, accessible location. A bathroom or utility room is a good place for your cat’s box. In a multi-level home, one box per floor is recommended. Avoid moving the box unless absolutely necessary. Then do so slowly, a few inches a day. Cats won’t use a messy, SMELLY litter box. Scoop solids out of the box at least once a day. Dump everything, wash with a mild detergent (don’t use ammonia) and refill at least once a week, less frequently if using clumping litter. Don’t use deodorants or scents in the litter or litter box (especially avoid lemon scent).
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