There are a number of health problems that cats suffer. Some of these conditions can be prevented; however, some are inherited from your cat’s parents and passed down from one generation to the next.
Hairballs are the most common cat health problem. Your Ragdoll cat grooms itself by licking its fur. By grooming with its tongue your Ragdoll swallows loose hair. This hair forms a dense, matted ball. If your cat is unable to pass the hairball by conventional methods they will throw the hairball up. This is the coughing and hacking you hear followed by vomiting up the hairball. You can reduce the frequency of hairballs by brushing your Ragdoll’s fur to remove loose hair. Other options for reducing hairballs are available; consult your veterinarian to see if any of these options are right for you.
Worms are a common problem for cats. Your Ragdoll could come down with hookworms, roundworms, tapeworms, and even heartworms.
It is important to take a stool sample when you go to your Ragdoll cat’s annual exam so the veterinarian can test for worms. Worms are easily treated with medication; however, serious conditions can develop if this is left undiagnosed.
Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections are another common health problem for cats. If you have a male Ragdoll that has not been fixed, this may be a common infection for your cat. Urinary tract infections can be identified when your cat stops using the litter box, or howls when going in the box. The urine may be accompanied with a strong smell; if you notice these symptoms you should contact your veterinarian immediately.
There are a number of viral infections your Ragdoll cat could contract. These viruses include feline leukemia, feline infectious peritonitis, and feline immunodeficiency virus. These are all very serious conditions that must be treated by your veterinarian. Keeping your Ragdoll cat’s immunizations current is the first step to preventing these terrible diseases.