Cat schizophrenia, or feline hyperesthesia, is a behavioral condition identified by extreme levels of strange habits. While all felines will act strangely from time to time — looking at the thing that aren’t there or running around rapidly for no apparent factor, for instance — in severe cases, this behavior ends up being inefficient and is categorized as the syndrome feline hyperesthesia.
Cat Schizophrenia Symptoms
Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome, or FHS, causes severe character changes. Felines with this condition may act manic or schizophrenic; they may seem to hallucinate. Symptoms include:
- Frenzied grooming of the flank and tail, typically leading to loss of hair
- Dilated pupils
- Fixation with the tail, usually manifested as swishing of the tail, chasing of the tail or assaulting the tail
- Bouts of hyperactive or aggressive habits
- Rippling of the skin
- Apparent hallucinations
- Loud vocalizations
- Sensitivity to touch along the spinal column; often, stroking of the spinal column causes bouts of odd habits
- State of mind swings
Bouts of FHS habits frequently happen in cats who suffer from this condition. They might experience bouts of weird behavior once every couple of days, or continuously.
Common Causes of Cat Schizophrenia
Vets do not really know what causes Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome, but they have some ideas.
Some felines have seizures during or following an attack of FHS. This leads some veterinarians to believe that FHS might be caused by abnormal electrical activity in the part of the brain that controls emotions, grooming, and predatory aggressiveness. Some felines with FHS react to anticonvulsant therapy, a truth which provides weight to this theory.
Some veterinarians believe that FHS might be a type of feline obsessive-compulsive disorder, triggering felines to worry fanatically about grooming, predatory behaviors, and individual safety. Because FHS grooming behaviors replicate obsessive-compulsive disorder and because some cats with FHS respond well to anti-anxiety medications, there might be some truth to this theory.
Some veterinarians think that FHS is a combination of both of the above. They mention that irregular electrical activity in the brain causes seizures, which then in turn cause obsessive-compulsive ideas and habits. This discusses why both theories appear to be true to some degree.
Vet have discovered that FHS seems connected to stressed out. They likewise believe there might be a genetic component to the disease. Some types, specifically Oriental ones, seem predisposed to developing FHS.
Some felines with FHS have actually been found to have lesions in their back muscles. While veterinarians believe that these sores might contribute somehow to FHS, they aren’t sure precisely what role they might play.
Interesting fact: Their latest research study, released in Schizophrenia Research, together with researcher Wendy Simmons, compared two previous research studies that found a link in between childhood cat ownership and the development of schizophrenia later in life with an unpublished survey on psychological health from 1982, 10 years prior to any data on feline ownership and mental illness had been published. Outcomes of the analysis indicated that direct cat exposure in childhood might be a danger aspect for developing psychiatric disorders.
Toxoplasmosis Parasite and Cat’s Schizophrenia
Scientists have actually found how the toxoplasmosis parasite might set off the advancement of schizophrenia and other bipolar disorders. They have actually shown that the parasite may contribute in the development of these conditions by affecting the production of dopamine — the chemical that relays messages in the brain controlling aspects of movement, cognition and habits.
How Is Cat Schizophrenia Treated
There’s no conclusive test for the medical diagnosis of FHS, however, if your veterinarian is able to eliminate medical causes of the above habits and if your feline responds to FHS treatment, a medical diagnosis of FHS is made.
Treatment involves anti-anxiety and anti-depressant medication, in addition to anti-convulsant medication. You should also do everything possible to provide your FHS cat a stress-free environment. You should make sure your feline gets lots of workouts; feed him on a regular schedule; teach him techniques and spend more time with him. If there is stress in between your FHS feline and other cats or family pets in the home, do your best to reduce it.