Cats are much more prone to over-infusion than dogs due to their small size
Cats are much more prone to over-infusion than dogs due to their small size. Close monitoring is vital to avoid complications such as over-hydration, infection, thrombosis (obstruction of a blood vessel by blood clots), embolism, and impaired fluid delivery should the animal change positions and obstruct the fluid delivery method (AAHA/AAFP Fluid Therapy, 2013). Monitoring both animal and fluid is essential to maintaining the proper fluid rate throughout fluid administration. Readings vital to fluid rate maintenance are the feline’s packed-cell volume (PCV), her total plasma protein heart rate, mucous membrane color, warmth of extremities, and body weight. Additionally, monitoring renal function in dehydrated felines is done by measuring or approximating urine output volume. Successful fluid therapy results in the improvement or normalization of mental status, mucous membrane color, pulse rate, blood pressure. Another indicator is the capillary refill time, which can determine the blood flow to the tissue. Start by lifting the cat’s upper lip and pressing your finger against the gum tissue. Once you remove the pressure you should see a white mark on the guns where your finger was, and using the second hand on a watch, time how long it takes for the pink color to return to the white spot. For a healthy cat, it should take somewhere between 1-2 seconds for the pink color to return.