Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy (HCM) Is the most common heart disease found in all domestic cats. HCM is the thickening of the cats left ventricle wall. This is a disease that can happen at any time to any breed or any cat regardless of scanning and precautions. Unfortunately, it is more common in the Maine Coons, Ragdolls, and Sphynxs which has prompted speculation that at least some forms of HCM are genetic in origin. To have your cat scan correctly it must be done by a board-certified cardiologist who uses DACVIM after their name. A board-certified veterinary college cardiologist is a licensed veterinarian who has obtained additional training in veterinary cardiology and has been certified by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM).
It is important to note that HCM is a complex disease that can appear at any time. Some cats are scanned “normal” throughout their entire life but then scan positive at 16 years old. Routine scanning is currently the best tool we have to ensure healthy hearts. Unfortunately, even with scanning, any cat or kitten, even one from a responsible breeder that scans and does their best can become HCM positive.
The general recommendation is to scan at 2 years old and again yearly after that. These recommendations can vary by new information about pedigree (i.e. a parent scans positive) so please stay current with new and developing research.
Many cats with HCM present no signs of the illness. In other cases, signs of congestive heart failure including labored or rapid breathing, open-mouth breathing, and lethargy are evident. These signs occur when fluid accumulates and creates pressure in the lung tissue or around the lungs.
All kittens leave our cattery with a 3 year guarantee against HCM.
All breeding cats in Beebe’s lines have scanned negative for HCM, and proof of scans can be provided.
We use and refer all our families to Dr. Reipe, her information is located below.