Like most cancers, feline lung cancer is a very serious condition. It can be categorized as two types, primary and secondary. Primary occurs when the cancer originates in one of the lungs, while the disease spreads to the area from other parts of the body with secondary cancer.
There is no conclusive cause of lung cancer in cats. However, veterinary professionals think that exposure to smoke is one of the primary reasons that the disease develops. It’s thought that cats living in a smoking household have an increased risk.
With the lungs being affected, cat lung cancer leads to signs of respiratory problems. It’s common for felines to have a dry cough, although sometimes they will cough up blood. Shortness of breath and lethargy can occur due to a lack of oxygen available to the body,
This type of cancer commonly leads to behavior changes. The pain can cause your cat to become more aggressive than usual. He may also stop urinating and defecating in his litter box. Depression is another common symptom caused by feline lung cancer, although many types of diseases and conditions can cause it.
Cancer can easily spread to other parts of the body. This will lead to other signs like bloody lesions or lumps on the skin, bad breath, and vomiting.
The vet will need to exam your cat as well as his medical history. Lung cancer in cats can be diagnosed based on chest x-rays, or radiographs. The vet may also elect to have an MRI or CT scan done. These tests will help determine not only how badly the disease has affected the lungs, but also if it has already spread to other areas of the body.
Your regular vet won’t be able to provide treatment for feline lung cancer. Instead, you will need to take your cat to an oncologist. There are various treatment methods. The specific one appropriate for your cat will be determined based on his age and state of his overall health.
If the disease has yet to spread, then surgery may be a good option. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy are the only options if it has already started to affect other areas of the body. Generally, these treatments simply prolong the life of your cat. Once diagnosed with feline lung cancer, cats typically have one year or so to live.