Can Cats Have Arthritis?

When we talk about our beloved cats, it’s easy to think of them as forever playful and agile. However, just like humans, cats can experience changes in their health as they age, including arthritis. This condition isn’t just a human issue; it affects our cats too, causing them discomfort and reducing their quality of life. In this blog, we’ll explore what cat arthritis is, how to spot the signs, and the steps you can take to help your cat live a more comfortable life. If you’re concerned your cat might be dealing with arthritis or if you have questions, we at Kryder + Harr Veterinary Clinic in Granger, IN, are here to help. Give us a call at (574) 277-6533 to learn more or to schedule an appointment.

cat with arthritis

Understanding Cat Arthritis

Arthritis, also known as osteoarthritis, is a condition that involves inflammation and stiffness in the joints. It can make movement painful and difficult for cats. As cats age, the wear and tear on their joints can lead to arthritis, but it’s not only senior cats that are affected; younger cats can suffer from it too, especially if they have joint abnormalities or have suffered injuries.

Spotting the Signs of Arthritis in Cats

Noticing arthritis in cats isn’t always straightforward since they are masters at hiding pain. However, there are some signs you can look out for:

  • Reduced activity: Your cat may play less, sleep more, or hesitate before jumping onto surfaces.
  • Limping or stiffness: You might notice a change in how your cat walks or see them limping after a nap.
  • Difficulty with stairs: Cats with arthritis may avoid climbing stairs or struggle when they do.
  • Changes in grooming: Over-grooming or under-grooming in certain areas could indicate discomfort.
  • Mood changes: Your once sociable cat might now hide more or show irritability.

Making Your Home Comfortable for an Arthritic Cat

Creating a cat-friendly environment can significantly improve the quality of life for a cat with arthritis. Consider the following tips:

  • Soft bedding: Provide comfortable, easily accessible beds in various places around your home.
  • Ramps and steps: These can help your cat reach their favorite spots without having to jump.
  • Low-sided litter boxes: Make it easy for your cat to get in and out without pain.
  • Keep essentials within reach: Place food, water, and litter boxes on the same floor where your cat spends most of their time.

The Importance of a Healthy Diet and Weight Management

Managing your cat’s weight is key in reducing the strain on their joints. Overweight cats are more likely to suffer from arthritis, so maintaining a healthy diet is essential. We can suggest specific foods or supplements that support joint health and recommend an eating plan that keeps your cat at a healthy weight.

Regular Veterinary Visits

While it’s true that regular check-ups are part of maintaining your cat’s health, they’re especially important for cats with arthritis. These visits allow us to monitor your cat’s condition, adjust treatments as necessary, and ensure they’re as comfortable as possible. If you notice any changes in your cat’s behavior or mobility, it’s important to let us know.

How We Can Help Your Cat

At Kryder + Harr Veterinary Clinic, we understand how important your cat’s health and happiness are to you. If you suspect your cat has arthritis, we’re here to provide support and treatment options. While there’s no cure for arthritis, there are ways to manage the symptoms and improve your cat’s quality of life. Treatment might include medications to relieve pain and inflammation, dietary changes, or even physical therapy. We’ll work with you to create a personalized care plan for your cat.

Arthritis in cats is a manageable condition with the right care and attention. By being observant and proactive, you can make a significant difference in your cat’s comfort and well-being. If you have any concerns or questions about cat arthritis, or if you’d like to schedule an appointment, please reach out to us at Kryder + Harr Veterinary Clinic by calling (574) 277-6533. We’re here to support you and your cat every step of the way.


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About Us

Welcome to Kryder & Harr Veterinary Clinic! Our animal hospital has been a fixture in the Granger community since 1981, practicing full-service veterinary medicine for all our pet parents and their furry family members. At KHVC, we pride ourselves on our history, of providing excellent customer service for our clients, along with dedicated, compassionate, and exceptional medical care for all of our patients.