Detecting deafness in cats is not always as easy as you might think. Unlike deaf people, cats born with this birth defect learn to look for another way to communicate and be prepared for danger, in a natural and detached manner from their keepers.
Do you think your cat might be deaf? Have you noticed any strange behaviour and don’t know what it might be? Find out all you need to know about deafness in cats, and the best tricks for detecting a hearing problem in your pet.
Types of deafness in cats
Hearing loss is very common in older cats. However, there are cats that are partially or totally deaf due to other reasons, among which there are two main types of deafness.
On the one hand, there is temporary deafness, caused by infection, inflammation or a build-up of a wax plug. If it is treated in time and correctly, this deafness is easy to solve in pets, hearing will return completely or mostly.
Permanent deafness occurs when a cat loses hearing in one or both ears, or is born with this condition. Common birth deafness in light-eyed white cats does not mean that all cats with these characteristics are born with hearing problems.
Why are some cats deaf?
Deafness in cats may be caused by a birth defect, or it may be acquired at some point in their lives.
When an animal’s inner ear is affected by otitis, a serious injury, or the development of ear cysts, cats can lose much or all of their hearing.
Cats’ hearing is one of the most important senses, although it is not essential to condition their quality of life. As a replacement for good hearing, cats can communicate through the vibration they perceive with the whiskers located in strategic places in their body.
Typical symptoms in a deaf cat
There are quite obvious signs that a cat could be deaf, especially when this deafness is not from birth, and has appeared at a certain age.
Deaf cats tend to meow louder than normal, unable to control the volume of their voice. You may also notice that they wobble a little when walking as a result of hearing damage, which causes them to lose their balance. There are also some tricks for detecting deafness that can be very useful to monitor your cat.
How do I know if my cat is deaf?
Try the following gestures at home to check if your cat is deaf:
- If your cat never shows up when you get home.
- If it doesn’t get upset when you make noise while he is asleep.
- If it doesn’t get scared by loud sounds like the vacuum cleaner or the hairdryer.
- If it doesn’t come when you open a can of food.
- If it doesn’t react when you make a noise when it’s distracted.
If you’re unsure whether your cat might be deaf, it’s best to visit your vet. At Sepicat, we insist on the importance of attending to the medical needs of your pets, finding the best solution according to the recommendations of a qualified professional.