First Aid for Cats: Managing Feline Arthritis


Arthritis is a painful condition that affects your cat's joints. If your cat is old and has trouble moving around, or if he's been diagnosed with arthritis by your veterinarian, then you need to take the proper steps to make sure he remains as comfortable as possible. Read on for tips on how to help your cat manage his arthritis symptoms.

Identifying the Problem

Arthritis is a common condition that affects millions of people. It causes joint pain, stiffness, and swelling. Cats can get arthritis too--and it's important to recognize the signs so you can help your cat live a long and healthy life.

The first step in treating any type of illness is knowing what it is, so let's start there: Arthritis is an inflammation of one or more joints (the places where two bones meet). There are many different types of arthritis in humans; they're often classified based on how long they've been around (acute vs chronic), how severe they are (mild vs severe), which joints are affected (joints between vertebrae in the spine are called lumbar spondylosis), where in the body these changes occur (peripheral vs axial) and what part(s) play a role in causing them (degenerative vs traumatic). Cats don't always develop all these forms; instead, we'll focus primarily on osteoarthritis because this type accounts for most cases involving cats' hind legs.

Making the Diagnosis

  • How to Tell if Your Cat Has Arthritis?
  • What to Look for in Your Cat's Behavior
  • Signs of Arthritis in Cats
  • Checking Your Cat's Joints and Bones
  • Measuring the Circumference of Your Cat's Bones
  • Finding Your Cat's Ideal Weight (and Helping Them Avoid Overweight)
  • What to Do If You Can't Get Your Kitties To Lose That Extra Pudge! - Helping Kitties With Diabetes Lose Weight Without Risking Their Lives

Treating Your Cat for Arthritis

  • Exercise is important for reducing inflammation and pain.
  • Weight loss can also help reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Medication is often prescribed to help with both of these issues as well.
  • Regular exercise can help with weight loss, but it's important to know that no matter your cat's age, regular exercise is key! Moderate activity works best--you don't want your kitty running laps around the house (unless they enjoy that sort of thing). Yoga might be a good option; many cats love yoga poses as much as humans do! But remember: no matter how much fun your cat has doing downward facing dog or child's pose, never let them try headstands without supervision because they could get hurt if they fall over backward onto their heads while inverted in this position - which would probably make any human feel pretty silly too... So keep things safe by sticking with stretching exercises instead until you're sure they're ready for more advanced moves like handstands (which aren't recommended either).

Another way you can help keep things safe while still encouraging physical activity is through diet modification - feeding high-quality dry food diets containing less than 10% carbohydrates per serving size will provide enough calories without contributing significantly towards weight gain because these foods contain fewer calories than canned versions which typically contain additional ingredients such as preservatives/additives etc...

Helping Your Cat to Exercise

  • The most important thing to remember when exercising your cat is that you want to encourage her, not force her. If she doesn't seem interested, don't push it! Instead, try playing with toys or simply petting your cat while she's on the ground.
  • When starting an exercise routine with a new cat owner and their pet(s), appropriate care must be taken so as not to overdo it. Before starting any type of physical activity, check with a veterinarian first--especially if there are any existing health issues present in either party involved in this process (elderly people should consult medical professionals before beginning any sort of new fitness routine). Once cleared by medical professionals as safe enough for participation in physical activities such as walking around outside together during daylight hours every day throughout summer months while wearing protective clothing such as hats/visor caps against sunburns etcetera...

Preventing Future Arthritis in Your Cat

  • Keep your cat at a healthy weight.
  • Provide quality nutrition, including fresh water and clean litter.
  • Avoid obesity by feeding the right amount of food to meet your pet's energy needs and providing opportunities for exercise.
  • Regularly exercise your cat with toys, playtime, and walks outdoors if possible (use a harness and leash).
  • Avoid excessive stress on joints by avoiding jumping from high places or roughhousing with other animals in ways that may cause injury or pain; keep furniture low enough so that cats can easily jump onto it; do not allow cats access to dangerous household items such as knives or toxic substances like bleach.
  • Clean the house thoroughly once a week, but don't forget about litter box maintenance!


When you're caring for a cat with arthritis, it's important to keep in mind that there are many ways to help your pet live as happy and pain-free a life as possible. The sooner you start treatment, the better their prognosis will be.

According to Dr. Bennett of VCA Animal Hospitals, there are several symptoms of feline arthritis:

  • Swelling or stiffness of joints (cats may not use their hind legs properly)
  • An increase in litterbox misses (this could indicate pain)
  • Changes in appetite (your cat might stop eating altogether or eat less than usual)


If you have a cat with arthritis, it's important to understand the signs of the disease and how best to manage it. Cats can be difficult animals to treat, but if you know what signs indicate an issue and how best to approach treatment options for your pet then you'll be able to keep them safe from harm while also helping them live longer and happier lives.

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