Looking After A Deaf Cat
Deaf cats are often exposed to increased dangers, especially when outdoors they may not hear an oncoming car or an aggressive animal that might pose a threat.
Many cats love to , so adjusting to hearing loss can be very difficult. If you have a garden, transform it into a safe, cat-proof haven so they can maintain their outdoor life while staying protected from dangers – tall fencing and overhead netting both work well. If providing a safe outdoor space isnt possible, your cat should be kept indoors at all times. Catios are being popular amongst cat owners that are keen to keep their cat safe, but allowing it to get fresh air and some space to roam.
Whether inside or outside, dont forget to provide lots of interesting places or objects for them to explore and display their natural behaviours.
Aside from keeping them safe, youll also need to adjust the way you communicate with your cat as they lose their hearing. For example, replace voice commands with hand signals or use catnip-scented toys.
Deaf cats can be easily startled, so always approach your cat in their line of sight.
Kyra’s Behavior Started To Change
Around September 2012 we noticed a slight difference in behavior. When we called her she was not coming straight to us, but started to make little rounds on the spot she was in. It looked like that she was losing some orientation ability. It seemed that she didnt know exactly anymore from which direction the sound came from. We thought she was developing some hearing problems. One new thing she was doing: she would sit somewhere and then started to meow a lot and very loud.She had been doing that when she had caught a mouse and was telling us to come see what the cat brought in. She never meowed otherwise, so this was strange, like she was feeling all alone or something. So when we heard her hollering, we made sure she knew that one of us was around.She was still quite playful, especially when she got hold of my long braids.
Blind Cat Kyra drying up at the coal stove
Gradual Blindness Related Aggression
Cats that are gradually losing their vision, whether due to age or another medical issue, have a tendency to hide in a small dark space or lash out when you least expect it.
Other indicators of sickness are frequently present, but felines are adept at concealing their condition.
Keep an eye out for the following:
- Lack of desire to be noticed.
- Hiding in a dark, confined space.
- Aggressive against other pets and family members in the house.
- Constant yowling or meowing
- An overall hunched look, a greasy appearance to her coat.
Any of these behaviours should prompt you to take your cat to the veterinarian right away. A physical ailment is the most typical cause of abrupt onset hostility.
Don’t Miss: Why Do Cats Knead Before They Lay Down
What Is The Function Of The Retina
The retina is a light sensitive layer of cells at the back of the eye that contains cells called . When light enters the eyes, it is focused by the lens onto the retina, where it is converted into electrical signals that are sent to the brain for processing and interpretation.
The two main photoreceptor cells of the retina are the rod cells and the cone cells. The cat’s eyes contain many more rods than cones. Rod cells are responsible for vision in low light conditions and for detecting and following movement. Cone cells are responsible for detecting color. Cone cells do not work very well in low light.
How Will I Now If My Cat Is Going Blind
How to Tell if Your Cat Is Blind Method 1 of 3: Looking for Behavioral Changes. Look out for clumsiness. Watch to see how your cat gets around furniture or if it misjudges jumping onto furniture. Method 2 of 3: Noting Changes to the Eyes. Look at your cats pupils. Method 3 of 3: Caring for Your Blind Cat. Take your cat to the vet.
Don’t Miss: Can You Bathe A Cat With Dawn
Signs Your Cat Is Going Blind
If your cat loses its sight, it most probably happened so gradually that you did not notice anything until the loss was total. This is not your fault cats will seem completely able to do their normal activities while their vision is waning because they use their other senses to compensate. Their sense of smell is still quite acute so they may still be able to come to you when you serve their meals, even if they cannot see properly.
There are several telltale signs of a cat going blind, or already being blind. They start bumping into things. They might also get startled by a toy being waved on their blind side. You may see your cat misjudging attempts to jump up or down from furniture.
Cats that go blind suddenly rather than gradually might become disorientated or distressed. They may walk around in a wary or unbalanced state.
You might notice something abnormal about their eye or eyes. In particular, one of your cats pupils might appear bigger or smaller than the other. Squinting can also be a sign of blindness, as well as redness around the eyes.
If you are concerned that your cat is going blind or have questions regarding your cats eyesight, your vet is always the best person to consult.
Some conditions causing blindness can be treated effectively, and further loss can be prevented.
Always remember that sudden vision loss is an emergency and you should take your cat to the vet as soon as possible.
They Get Agitated When Touched
If you notice your dog or cat is responding more aggressively to touch or sudden movements, Dr. Horwitz says this could indicate vision loss. “If a dog or cat doesn’t see or hear the person reaching out to them, and are surprised or agitated when petted, it’s often associated with blindness,” Dr. Horwitz says. “To avoid startling a blind dog, speak to them before reaching out to touch or pick them up.”
Recommended Reading: How To Tell Cat Gender
Looking For Behavioral Changes
Watch Your Cats Behavior And Check Their Eyes
The most obvious way you might discover your cat is losing their sight is if you notice them becoming clumsy while going about their day to day activities.
Specific things to look out for include:
- Misjudging attempts to jump up or down from furniture or cat trees.
- Seeming like theyre bumping into furniture around the house that has always been in the same space.
- Looking like theyre walking around in a wary and unbalanced state.
- Seeming disoriented while trying to look for their food bowls or litter box.
Beyond clumsiness, you can look closely at your cats eyes to see if anything seems amiss. In particular, one of your cats pupils might appear bigger or smaller than the other, which can signal the onset of blindness.
Squinting can also be a sign to watch out for. Redness around the eyes or the eyes looking cloudy can be warning signs that should be brought up with your vet, too.
If you notice your cat meowing more, that can be an indicator that the cat is in distress and attempting to communicate this to you for help.
Finally, as a quick test, move a favorite toy up and down in front of your cat. If the cat doesnt seem to recognize the presence and movement of the toy, that might mean blindness has become an issue.
Recommended Reading: 16 In Cat Years
What Causes Blindness In Cats
Like any health problem, blindness in cats can be due to a lot of reasons. The following are commonly observed on blind kittens:
- Cataract and glaucoma. These two eye conditions are the most common reasons for feline blindness. A cataract causes damage to the lens while glaucoma results in pressure buildup behind the eye, which damages the optic nerve. If not treated early, these two conditions can cause either partial or total blindness among cats.
- Feline Immunodeficiency Virus . This condition leaves a kitty vulnerable to various infections, some of which can damage its eyes. It can range from bacteria, viruses, fungi, protozoa, and more.
- Old age. Healthy yet old cats are also at risk of developing blindness. It usually occurs on purebred kitties primarily due to progressive retinal atrophy.
- Genetic predispositions. Lastly, kittens can be born blind and its often difficult or mostly impossible to reverse. Blind cats must be fixed so they will not pass the defect to their litter.
Recovery Of Blind Quiet Eye In Cats
Blind quiet eye is a condition that diminishes a cat’s vision it isn’t fatal. With proper treatment, most felines enjoy a normal life despite this ailment.
Recuperation periods following the diagnosis and treatment of blind quiet eye vary. No standard exists because recovery depends on the origins of the ailment. Also, some animals never get better. Your cat’s rendering provider will set timelines for recovery as well as aftercare. Below are a few considerations:
- Follow-up visits. If your feline has cataract surgery, he must have frequent follow-up visits with the vet for a while. Risk factors for this procedure include retinal detachment and lens capsule scarring. Both may damage the eye and cause permanent vision loss.
- Taurine additives. Recovery from taurine deficiencies start at 30 days. Healing begins at the increase of this amino acid in your cat’s diet. Watch for side effects such as an upset stomach.
- Household adjustments. For cats suffering from SAARD, no effective treatment exists. Pet owners must work around the illness. This includes keeping the floor areas clear of small objects to prevent falls and putting their feline on restrictive diets. Regular check ups aid too in overall health maintenance.
*Wag! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Items are sold by the retailer, not Wag!.
Blind Quiet Eye Average Cost
From 568 quotes ranging from $200 – $2,000
Don’t Miss: Is Baking Soda Bad For Cats
Testing Your Cats Vision
There are several tests a vet will perform to check your cats vision. You can also try these at home:
Kyra Is The Boss Over All Cats And Dogs In Our House
In our house, Kyra was the boss. She was bossing the Tortoise Red and she was bossing the Border Collie dogs Tipper and Dixie.The only cat she respected was our big Tomcat Bram, but he passed away, bless his darling soul.Kyra and the Tortoise were enemies from the start. Whenever the tortoise was getting too close, Kyra would jump her. Then the flocks of hair flew all over the place. The tortoise was so stupid to let herself get caught all the time. The only thing she had to do was to jump on a chair or a table to avoid getting attacked by Kyra.
Blind cat Kyra and Bram
They Say About Blind Cats #3
A cats sense of hearing is amazing. Cats can hear high frequency sounds we cannot. They can also distinguish the tone or pitch of sounds better than we can. And their ability to locate the source of a sound is highly advanced. From a yard away, a cat can distinguish between sound sources only three inches apart. They can also hear sounds at great distances four or five times farther away than humans.
Also Check: Is Baking Soda Bad For Cats
Can A Cat Suddenly Go Blind
Sudden blindness in cats can happen, though its a rare condition. Strong medication and injuries can cause this. Elderly cats are also more likely to suffer from sudden blindness. Overall, sudden blindness is a rarity among kittens, unless the kitty has a genetic predisposition or is exposed to infections.
Special Items To Help Blind Cats
It may be a good idea to get a medical alert tag to keep your catâs collar that states she is blind. Keep your contact info on this tag.
There are a number of special toys you can buy for your blind cat to keep them entertained and safe. âWand toys are great because theyâre interactive and make sounds when they move,â explains Ushi.
You can also spoil your cat with catnip toys since they rely on scents and sounds, this is the perfect toy for them.
It could be a good idea to buy toys that stimulate the other senses, maybe give them a toy or pet bed with lots of texture, or toys with bells or squeak, to stimulate their hearing.
Don’t Miss: Is Blue Buffalo Good Cat Food
Important Tips To Help Care For Your Blind Cat
Try to keep the catâs water and food bowl in the same place so they know where to find it.
Pet-proof your house. Eliminate any potential hazards in the house, e.g. furniture with sharp edges. âTuck away any loose electrical wires and make sure hot or dangerous e.g. fireplaces are not on his path,â advises Dr. Maureen Murithi , veterinary spokesperson for doggiedesigner.com. Adding padding to sharp corners such as tables can also go a long way in avoiding injuries.
Time spent outside should be supervised. Look out for any objects that may be a danger to your cat. âOne can try to put a wind chime next to the door that will help guide them back into the house,â says Dr. Murithi.
Keep the layout of your home the same. Cats that lose their sight gradually manage to maneuver their way around the home. The best thing you can do for blind cats especially if this is a new development is keep everything the same. Cats will remember where all the steps are and where the litter box and food is kept, but not if it keeps moving.
They’re Scared Of The Dark
If your pet is reluctant to go outside when it’s dark or to enter poorly lit areas of your home, both veterinarians warn this could be a sign of vision loss. “Pets with gradual onset blindness may have reduced vision initially at night, so a pet that is reluctant to go out at night should be evaluated,” Dr. Sadek explains. Additionally, Dr. Horowitz says that pets that are unwilling to go up and down the stairs in low light, or that avoid dark rooms in your house altogether, might be losing their sight.
Also Check: Are Venus Fly Traps Toxic To Cats
What Are The Signs Of Progressive Retinal Atrophy
PRA is not a painful condition, so it is rarely noticed in its earliest stages of development. The first sign that is usually noticed in a cat with PRA is night blindness. Affected cats tend to be nervous at night, may be reluctant to go into dark rooms, or may bump into things when the light is dim. Pet owners with cats that are developing PRA often observe that their pet’s eyes have become very reflective when light shines on them, and that the pupils are more dilated than normal. Both eyes are affected. If an affected cat never goes outdoors or into unfamiliar environments, the condition may not be observed until the cat is completely blind. In Abyssinian cats, more specific signs when examining the back of the eye can help determine what stage the condition is in.
An Elderly Cat Encounters Blindness
The first sign that 16-year-old Gertie had a problem was when her owners saw her urinating in a potted houseplant. They snatched her and headed for the litter box in the laundry room. But Gertie bolted and ran head-first into the wall. They realized their sweet old cat was suddenly blind in both eyes.
Gertie already had high blood pressure that can cause detached retinas, and her veterinarian prescribed medication to reduce it. Her owners moved her litter box to another room, which she immediately found and adapted to for the next four years, coping with blindness and a mostly sympathetic dog in a large, two-story home where she died peacefully at the age of 20.
Recommended Reading: Is Blue Buffalo Good Cat Food