Ticking off ways to stop bobcat fever

By Connie Orcutt • Published: October 1st, 2016
Category: Animal Airwaves

Ticks and the diseases they spread aren’t exclusive to dogs. Cats — and cats alone — are at risk of catching one such deadly disease.

Bobcat fever is named after animals that often carry the sinister parasite with no ill effects. When a tick feeds on an infected wild bobcat, it picks up the parasite. Then it’s poised to inject the organism into a domestic cat during its next blood meal.

Cases of bobcat fever generally peak between March and September. After tick exposure, it might be a few weeks before a cat show signs of the disease, such as weakness, fever and a poor appetite. But soon afterward, most infected cats die.

There is no consistentently effective treatment for bobcat fever, so your best bet is to prevent it by keeping your cat indoors and away from ticks. You might also ask your veterinarian which tick preventatives are feline-friendly.