Any time one of our furry friends is sick, we are naturally worried and anxious - and hearing the word cancer is devastating news. If your cat has received a diagnosis of lymphoma, your heart aches for your beloved pet!
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We here at HomeoAnimal know that you want the best for your pet, and so do we! We are eager to use our decades of experience and knowledge in the pet health industry to help you cope with this stressful situation, and give you the necessary information to make informed decisions about your cat’s health.
In this article, we are going to discuss the types and potential causes of feline lymphoma, as well as symptoms, life expectancy, and treatment options available. I hope you find this article informative. Find out everything you need to know about cancer in cats in our comprehensive guide!
What Is Lymphoma In Cats?
Lymphoma is a type of cancer that affects a type of white blood cell called the lymphocyte. These cells are found in lymph nodes throughout the body, meaning lymphoma can affect multiple areas of the body instead of only being in one place.
It is a very common cancer that affects cats, with it making up approximately 30% of cancer diagnoses. While it can affect the entire body, one type of feline lymphoma that affects the gastrointestinal tract is the most common, making up approximately 2/3 of all cases: feline intestinal lymphoma.
Lymphoma in cats is often divided into categories depending on the area of the body it affects (intestinal, renal, or mediastinal), or into the size and severity of the cancer (small cell lymphoma or large cell lymphoma).
What Causes Lymphoma in Cats?
It would be nice to identify a singular cause for feline lymphoma, but unfortunately, we aren’t able to determine what exactly causes this cancer. What we do know, though, is that age and vaccinations have an effect on rates of lymphoma in cats.
Intestinal lymphoma generally affects cats older than 10, while mediastinal lymphoma (affecting the lymph nodes in the chest) affects cats with an average age of 5. This kind of feline lymphoma and renal lymphoma (affecting the kidneys) are mostly seen with cats who have the feline leukemia virus - cats who have been vaccinated for this virus are less likely to be diagnosed with mediastinal lymphoma.
What Are The Symptoms of Lymphoma in Cats?
Depending on which area of the body is affected, the symptoms of lymphoma in cats are different.
Feline Intestinal Lymphoma
Some of the signs of intestinal lymphoma in cats are weight loss, changes in appetite, and vomiting and/or diarrhea.
Mediastinal Lymphoma in Cats
If your cat has mediastinal lymphoma, you’re most likely to notice respiratory problems, like difficulty breathing, gasping, or wheezing.
Renal Lymphoma in Cats
Lymphoma can affect the kidneys as well. When this happens, some of the signs are frequent urination, and bloody or cloudy urine.
Small Cell Lymphoma in Cats vs. Large Cell Lymphoma in Cats
Small cell lymphomas in cats grow slower than large cell lymphomas. This means that symptoms might not be as noticeable, and when it is diagnosed, it tends to be less aggressive as well.
How Long Do Cats With Lymphoma Live?
Life expectancy of cats with lymphoma depends on many factors, such as where the cancer is and how early it was diagnosed and treated. Generally speaking, the life expectancy is between 4 weeks to 2 years.
Intestinal Lymphoma in Cats: Life Expectancy
Thankfully, the most common type of feline lymphoma, intestinal lymphoma, is often “low-grade”, or small cell. With treatment, cats diagnosed with this type of lymphoma have an average life expectancy of 1.5-2 years.
Is Lymphoma in Cats Painful?
Thankfully, most cats being treated for lymphoma aren’t usually in lots of pain. Towards the end of their life, though, a vet might prescribe some pain medications to help them stay comfortable.
How Can Lymphoma in Cats Be Treated?
Your vet will most likely recommend chemotherapy for treatment of feline lymphoma. With small cell lymphoma in cats, treatment often includes oral chemotherapy options.
In addition to mainstream treatment options, there are natural products for lymphoma in cats as well. Here at HomeoAnimal, we have made it our mission to provide natural products for pets.
The PIPTOPET product has been specifically designed to boost your pet’s immune system, promoting a healthy response and improving your cat’s natural ability in his fight against the disease. It can be used for long-term use, and no matter what conventional treatments you choose to pursue, it can be used on its own or in conjunction with other treatment options.
We are only a phone call, chat, or email away to answer any questions you have, offer advice, and help you make decisions on treatments. Feel free to fill out our Free Consultation form too!
Did you find this article helpful and informative? What’s your experience with lymphoma in cats? Leave a comment, and please share this article with your friends and family so other pet parents can be informed too!