What checks do kittens need to do when they arrive home?
What checks do kittens need to do when they arrive home?
When taking a kitten home, in addition to creating a comfortable environment for the kitten, a physical examination is also essential. The physical examination of kittens is extremely important for both cats and parents. On the one hand, if the cat is found to be carrying a certain disease, it can be treated in advance to shorten the course of the disease. On the other hand, it can reduce the possibility of disputes. For example, a cattery sells kittens that are only guaranteed to be healthy for three days. The incubation period of the most common but very serious cat plague is generally 3-5 days, which causes unnecessary trouble.
1. Necessary inspections (name, purpose, fees)
(1) Feline plague antigen test paper (FPV Ag) coronavirus antigen test paper (FCoV Ag)
This examination targets the two digestive tract infectious diseases that young cats are most susceptible to. Feline distemper has an extremely high fatality rate. Although the fatality rate of coronavirus is initially low, it can cause another disease in cats—feline infectious peritonitis, which cannot be ignored.
Generally, a cotton swab is used to take a fecal sample from the cat's anus, and the detection time is about 15 minutes.
(2) Microscopic examination of ear canal secretions (ear examination)
This examination targets ear diseases, ear mites and Malassezia infections that kittens, especially kittens raised in groups, are susceptible to. Ear mites are also called ear itch mites. Infected cats' ear canals will have strong itching intermittently for a long time, and occasionally produce black sludge-like secretions.
You can use a cotton swab to collect the cat's ear canal secretions for inspection. The inspection takes about 10 minutes.
(3) Wood's lamp inspection
This test is for ringworm infection, which is very common in young cats. Ringworm of cats is also called Microsporum canis. The infected area will lose a lot of hair and there will be small scabs. The itching will not be very strong, but it is highly contagious and it is very common to transmit it to humans.
The detection method is very simple. Just illuminate the skin with a Wood's lamp in a dim environment. The detection time is about 10 minutes.
(4) Stool microscopy (stool examination)
This examination targets several digestive tract parasites that kittens are susceptible to. In most cases, coccidia, trichomoniasis, and roundworm infections can be diagnosed through this examination, but the accuracy of stool examination is about 70%, and there is a possibility of missed diagnosis. Therefore, if the first examination is normal, another examination should be performed when symptoms occur (soft stool, loose stools, blood in the stool, no vomiting).
The detection method is usually to collect feces from the cat's intestines for examination. If there is fresh feces, it can be used directly for testing, and the detection time is about 10 minutes.
(5) Blood routine
On the one hand, this examination can assess the nutritional status of the kitten, and on the other hand, it can determine whether there is infection. It also has certain reference value for whether you are infected with cat distemper (cat distemper is also called feline panleukopenia, and the white blood cells of sick cats will be reduced).
The detection method is to take the venous blood of the cat and use an instrument to detect it. The detection time usually takes about 10 minutes.
2. Selected inspections
(1) Antibody test
This examination is for kittens that have completed vaccinations and can intuitively determine whether the cat’s antibody level is sufficient to cope with the disease. The main tests are for antibodies against three diseases: feline distemper (feline panleukopenia), feline coronavirus, and feline herpes virus (feline rhinocele). If the antibody level is not enough, you need to follow the doctor's instructions for additional injections.
The detection method is to take the cat's venous blood and use a special test strip box to detect it. The detection time is usually about 30 minutes.
(2) Toxoplasma antigen/antibody test strips
This examination can intuitively detect whether the cat has been infected or is currently infected with Toxoplasma gondii. Families preparing for pregnancy or families with children can choose to have the examination.
The detection method is to take the cat’s venous blood and test it with test strips. The detection time is usually about 30 minutes.
(3) Biochemical tests
This examination is an in-depth examination of the cat, which can intuitively reflect the cat’s liver and kidney function, immunity, nutritional status, etc. Usually if the cat has other problems, you can choose to have it checked.
The detection method is to take the venous blood of the cat and use an instrument to detect it. The detection time is usually about 20 minutes.
(4) Upper respiratory tract infection combined PCR
This examination targets the most common upper respiratory tract infectious diseases in young cats. Herpes virus (cat nasal congestion), calicivirus, mycoplasma, and chlamydia are all within the detection range. If your cat has a lot of eye and nose secretions, red and swollen eyes, sneezing and other symptoms, it is necessary to have it checked.
The detection method is to take the cat’s eye and nose secretions and oral epithelial cells for examination. The detection time is generally 1-2 days (because most cases need to be sent to a specialized laboratory for examination).
(5) Skin scraping microscopic examination (skin examination)
This examination is for cats with visible skin lesions or positive Wood's lamp test, and can determine the type of skin disease the cat has. It is very important for symptomatic medication in the later stage, so if you have skin disease symptoms, this examination must be done.
The detection method is to take the cat's skin scrapings and use a microscope to detect them. The detection time usually takes about 15 minutes.
On the basis of the basic physical examination, if the cat has other symptoms, additional examinations must be performed. Most examinations require the assistance of expensive instruments, or the consumables themselves are expensive. Therefore, be sure to ask the doctor about the fee details before the examination, and when doing unnecessary examinations, ask about the purpose, and judge whether it is necessary. Finally, this picture can be saved for emergencies.