When cats become older, their mental health declines. And there is the possibility of causing health problems by starting to show behavior change. In this case, only the elderly may not be the root cause.
People wonder if cats can also get Alzheimer's. Like humans, cats can also have dementia called cognitive dysfunction syndrome (CDS).
Cognitive dysfunction syndrome is a decline in mental function in older dogs and cats. This is like Alzheimer's or dementia when hit by a person. The pet's brain structure wears and becomes damaged over time. And the speed of its progress varies greatly from object to object.
According to a recent study conducted by the University of Edinburgh team, certain proteins were accumulating in the nervous system of cats. This protein, which is an amyloid-like protein, exacerbated the cognitive ability of the cat.
Diagnosing Cat Dementia
Cat dementia symptoms can also be seen as medical symptoms or behavior problems. Therefore, veterinarians exclude these causes before the onset of dementia. In addition, only qualified veterinarians can make appropriate diagnoses and can be confirmed through various laboratory tests.
Signs of Cat CDS
Changes in Sleep Behavior - Cats with dementia can be affected by the sleep cycle. In other words, you sleep more during the day than before. If a cat is more sleepy than usual, it can be regarded as a change due to declining cognitive function.
Rejection of the use of a bowel movement box - The cat is able to urinate or defecate outside the bowel movement due to incontinence. And confusion associated with dementia can lead to forgetful behavior that has accumulated over many years. A cat is a scrupulous animal toil than any other pet. The sudden outbreak of such a cat can be interpreted as a result of dementia. However, because it can be seen as a symptom of other diseases, veterinarians should be diagnosed to avoid infection or constipation.
Cats easily become annoyed - cats lose interest in their favorite objects, do not welcome their owners, and do not routinely act like sitting on their lap. In other words, you will not be able to respond to the cat's expectations. And cats with dementia do not recognize their family members and are stressed in everyday situations. This behavior may be due to pain, so it should be ruled out by arthritis, injury, or other cause.
Loss of appetite - cats with senile dementia can forget to eat. Just as bowel habits change, this is also an observable symptom. And this problem can be a serious health problem. Cats who forget to eat can become vulnerable to hepatic steatosis. There are many reasons to stop eating appetite or stop eating. Therefore, it is necessary to get a veterinarian's examination as soon as possible.
Lack of grooming habits - Animal is always an animal that remains clean and in good condition. So the fact that the cat began to forget this important thing means that something is wrong. As with most behavior changes, neglecting cleanliness is a sign of many diseases. Most older cats do not manage their fur well. Cats that are overweight also tend to get tired because their body becomes bigger.
There is no way to restore cats with dementia. Dementia is a progressive disease that worsens over time. However, there are many treatments that can slow down progress and improve routine function. These include regular diet changes, antipsychotic medications that can improve brain function, and physical activity such as exercise. And most importantly, you should not ignore behavior changes. Cat behavior is a signal for many diseases and problems. It is important to remember that as the dementia progresses, the cat may be stressed by changes in the surrounding environment.