Join Club

The Scratching Post: Under Pressure

The Scratching Post banner

Editor’s Note: The Scratching Post is a column that’s sponsored and written by the staff at NOVA Cat Clinic.

Most people are familiar with having their blood pressure checked as part of every visit to their doctor. Hypertension (high blood pressure) in humans is often related to a stressful lifestyle, smoking, or poor diet. But what about our feline friends?

Although cats don’t have to worry much about their stress level or smoking cigarettes, we do need to be concerned about their risk for hypertension.

Usually (but not always), hypertension in cats is associated with another systemic disease. The most common are kidney disease and hyperthyroidism. In one study, 87 percent of cats with hypertension were found to have kidney disease, hyperthyroidism, or both. For cats with hyperthyroidism, regulating the thyroid level (with medication, surgery, or radioactive iodine therapy) is often enough to resolve the hypertension. For cats with kidney disease or primary hypertension (no underlying cause) medication is often necessary to control the blood pressure.

Hypertension is diagnosed by measuring the blood pressure with a device similar to that used in a human doctor’s office; we use a small cuff placed on the cat’s foot or tail. We measure the systolic pressure, and in most normal cats the value is less than 160 mmHg. If your cat is especially stressed at the clinic, its normal blood pressure may be a bit higher.

It is important to treat hypertension for several reasons. First, it can make your cat feel restless or fidgety. This may manifest as increased activity or vocalizing, especially at night. More importantly, hypertension puts your cat at increased risk for developing blood clots which can lead to a stroke. In addition, increased pressure in the small blood vessels of the eye can lead to leakage of blood, causing vision changes or blindness. These changes may or may not be reversible.

The treatment for hypertension is typically a medication called amlodipine, which is a human generic tablet.  This medication is given once daily and is very affordable.

We often measure the blood pressure for cats with diagnosed kidney disease.  We may also recommend testing if your cat has been experiencing certain clinical signs at home, such as howling or being hyperactive at night. If you have noticed any of these changes, or if you have any concerns about your cat’s health, don’t hesitate to contact us.

The views and opinions expressed in the column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of 

Recent Stories

The passenger in a car that was pulled over for a traffic stop apparently shot himself, prompting a large police presence in the Clarendon area.

After years of consideration, and multiple days of public testimony and County Board discussion, one of Arlington’s most contentious local proposals in memory is becoming a reality.

Arlington County’s Dept. of Parks and Recreation says it has a surfeit of programs for teens — but not enough teens to fill them. Between July 2021 and June 2022,…

The Old Bike Shop closed earlier this year in Lyon Park, after a decade in business, but a new bike shop is moving in. Vélocity Bicycle Cooperative, based at 2111…

EDBS Dental Billing Solutions is pleased to announce that it has achieved compliance with the federally mandated standards of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) through the use of Compliancy Group’s proprietary HIPAA methodology, The Guard® compliance tracking software, and HIPAA Seal of Compliance®.

The HIPAA Seal of Compliance is issued to organizations that have implemented an effective HIPAA compliance program through the use of The Guard, Compliancy Group’s proprietary compliance tracking solution.

Clients and patients are becoming more aware of the requirements of HIPAA compliance and how the regulation protects their personal information. Forward-thinking providers like EDBS Dental Billing Solutions choose the HIPAA Seal of Compliance to differentiate their services.

“Since the nature of our business being exclusively remote, we take HIPAA compliance very seriously. With the help of Compliancy Group, we are able to take steps to fortify our systems to protect PHI information and familiarize each employee about HIPAA and how we can further safeguard PHI data.” said EDBS Dental Billing Solutions founder Goldie De Leon.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

Are you feeling overwhelmed or struggling to cope with life’s challenges? You’re not alone. Mental health issues are more common than you might think, and seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness.

Our counseling service provides a safe, supportive environment where you can explore your feelings, identify negative thought patterns, and learn coping skills to manage your symptoms. Lauren is trained in evidence-based practices and specializes in a range of mental health concerns, including anxiety, depression, trauma, and addiction.

We understand that seeking counseling can be intimidating, but we believe that everyone deserves to live a fulfilling, happy life. Our approach is non-judgmental and compassionate, and we work collaboratively with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that meets your unique needs and goals.

We offer a free 15-minute consultation to see if our service is a good fit for you. Reach out at or call (703) 994-0300 to set up a consultation.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

District 27 Toastmasters 2023 Virtual Conference

District 27 Toastmasters invites you to its annual conference where you can hear phenomenal speakers, attend professional development and personal growth seminars about leadership, negotiation, communication, teamwork, and mentorship. Learn how to develop your personal story and how to improve

Singin’ in the Rain

The “Greatest Movie Musical of All Time” is faithfully and lovingly adapted for the stage by Broadway legends, Betty Comden and Adolph Green, from their original award-winning screenplay. Each unforgettable scene, song and dance is accounted for, including the show-stopping


Subscribe to our mailing list