Cats > 9 years
One of the special areas The Downtown Toronto Cat Clinic emphasizes is proactive preventative medicine for our senior kitties. Geriatric medicine is a huge component of our practice. We take great care in counseling our feline owners on diseases that may occur in their older kitties and we recommend regular diagnostic panels especially designed to maintain health in this special population of cats. We consider cats to be "Senior Kitties" once they've reached the age of 9 (which is approximately 53 in human years).
Senior Bi-Annual Exams
Senior cats age two years for every six months that passes and thus we encourage bi-annual exams to catch any signs of aging early. Just like their annual exam the doctor will look at their eyes and ears, listen to their heart and lungs and check their mouth. As seniors though, special attention will be paid to joints to catch any signs of arthritis.
Tri-annual (every 3 yrs) vaccines:
Rhinotracheitis, Calici virus, Panleukopenia (combined vaccine)1
Feline Leukemia (Recommended for outdoor cats)
We do not recommend the feline immunodeficiency virus or feline infectious peritonitis vaccines.
Senior Wellness Blood work Annual Testing
Yearly blood work is also recommended as cats are exceptional at hiding illnesses and can develop serious complications if not caught in the early stages. This can include the following tests:
Complete Blood Count: this test can help to identify different types of infection and inflammation, anemia, or clotting problems.
Serum Chemistry Panel: used to identify or rule out a number of different diseases including kidney failure, diabetes, and liver disease.
Thyroid level: hyperthyroidism is one of the most common diseases we see in senior cats and has a very good prognosis if treated appropriately.
Blood Pressure Measurement: an important test as high blood pressure can lead to or worsen retinal detachment, heart muscle disease, or kidney failure.
Complete Urinalysis: this test not only helps us look for infection or inflammation of the bladder and kidneys, but also helps us evaluate kidney function and screen for diabetes and liver disease.
Urine Culture with Susceptibility Testing: identifies bacterial urinary tract infection.
Feline Leukemia and FIV Testing: these tests can identify a variety of disease syndromes and, if present, can significantly change the treatment or prognosis for certain diseases. We recommend testing all outdoor cats as well as any indoor cat that is ill because the viruses can lie dormant for months to years in some cats causing false negative blood tests initially.