Blood pressure in cats: why monitor it?

Blood Pressure In Cats: Why Monitor It?

In humans, we all know that it is imperative to monitor blood pressure. Both hypertension and hypotension are potentially dangerous. It’s the same for the cat. It is therefore very important to monitor the blood pressure of our felines. What are the consequences of poor blood pressure in cats? How to treat hypotension or hypertension? Here’s everything you need to know about it.

Understanding High Blood Pressure In Cats?

Blood pressure in cats has the same characteristics as that in humans. It consists of two values:

  • systolic blood pressure,
  • diastolic blood pressure.

We speak of high blood pressure when the systolic blood pressure of the cat is higher than 140 mmHg. Of course, a single measurement cannot diagnose hypertension. The measurements must be persistently abnormally high. There are two types of hypertension in cats.

  • Primary hypertension, also called idiopathic hypertension, is not related to any other condition. Hypertension is the pathology to be treated for the cat to get better.
  • Secondary hypertension is linked to other diseases. In cats, the pathologies in question are renal insufficiency, hyperthyroidism, cardiac and endocrine conditions… By treating the underlying pathology, hypertension decreases.

It should also be noted that during consultations with the veterinarian, cats are very stressed. It is therefore entirely possible for a cat to have higher than normal blood pressure for no apparent reason. This is called the “white coat effect”.

What Are The Consequences Of Hypertension In Cats?

If it is so important to detect high blood pressure, it is because the pathology has serious consequences on the well-being of the cat and on its general condition. Excessive tension can lead to eye disorders, even blindness of the animal. Indeed, in the long term, hypertension is responsible for bilateral retinal detachment, retinal hemorrhages or even glaucoma. High blood pressure can also cause brain damage, leading to seizures, kidney damage and heart damage.

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Undetected high blood pressure can worsen a cat’s condition very quickly. That’s why if you have your cat seen by a veterinarian, you greatly reduce the risks. The risk of hypertension is even greater if your cat is over 8 years old. Also, from this age, blood pressure should be measured at least twice a year.

Understanding Low Blood Pressure In Cats?

Hypotension is the opposite of hypertension. It is characterized by low measurements, less than 85 mmHg. Low blood pressure can have serious health consequences. Indeed, the oxygenation of the various organs of the body is no longer optimal. The blood pressure must be within the norms so as not to deteriorate the walls of the arteries with each heartbeat. A normal tension for a cat has an average pressure of 95 to 135 mmHg.

How To Measure A Cat’S Blood Pressure?

The measurement of the blood pressure of the cat is done at the veterinarian. The professional uses a device relatively similar to the one our doctor uses. A small armband is placed on the cat’s paw. The measurement is done quickly, it is of course painless. For the most correct measurement possible, it is preferable that the cat is calm. Leave it in its transport cage for about ten minutes. It is best that you stay with your cat to reassure him.

What Are The Treatments For Blood Pressure Disorders?

If your cat has tension disorders, your veterinarian will suggest appropriate treatments. The first step is to identify the disease that may be causing the hypertension. Once diagnosed, it must be treated. Most often, the cat’s condition improves and the hypertension subsides.

  • If your cat has primary hypertension, the risk of a ruptured blood vessel is high. You must ensure that your cat has an excellent hygiene of life. At the same time, the veterinarian will prescribe a drug treatment that will reduce blood flow.
  • If your cat suffers from low blood pressure, it will also need to change its diet. Fludrocortisone treatment will be prescribed to gradually increase blood flow.
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Whether your pet’s blood pressure is too low or too high, your veterinarian is your ally in ensuring your pet’s well-being. The professional will follow your cat, prescribe an appropriate treatment and advise you on a diet to put in place. Because he sees your pet regularly, he will know how to adapt the treatment.

A Healthy Cat: A Priority

A healthy cat is less likely to suffer from hypotension or hypertension. As we have just seen, veterinary follow-up is essential. The professional will ensure that your animal is up to date with its vaccines, sterilized, identified and dewormed every quarter. In case of persistent health problems, make an appointment with your veterinarian. A disease that is treated early has a better chance of being cured. In addition, some diseases are accompanied by secondary hypertension when it develops, so they must be treated at the first signs.

Diet is key when a cat suffers from blood pressure disorders. It is imperative to give him balanced menus and above all high quality products. It is highly recommended not to opt for entry-level croquettes. They are too rich in cereals. The formulas chosen must consist mainly of foods of animal origin. Make sure that your cat drinks enough and above all that he always has fresh water available.

Physical activity is also very important. Provide outdoor access for your cat. To do this, the cat flap is the solution. If it is not possible. Provide toys and a cat tree. Physical activity helps reduce your cat’s stress. If that’s not enough, you can bet on pheromones and Bach flowers. Finally, to ensure the well-being of your adorable furry ball, consider cuddling it!

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Monitoring a cat’s blood pressure is key to ensuring that they stay healthy. During your appointments with the veterinarian, if the latter does not take the measurement, simply remind him!

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