Is Your Cat Suffering From an Enlarged Liver? This is What you Should Know


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When a cat has an enlarged liver, it usually points towards a swollen organ. This condition is termed as โ€˜hepatomegalyโ€™ and is commonly seen in older cats. It is necessary to take your cat to visit a vet if you notice a swollen abdomen. A detailed medical examination is important because an enlarged liver condition could lead to malfunctioning of organ parts.

Causes of Enlarged Liver in Cats

Various medical conditions/diseases could cause a cat to have an enlarged liver. Some of the common causes of hepatomegaly include the following:

  • Hepatitis or liver infection
  • Heart disease
  • Cirrhosis (chronic liver disease)
  • Liver neoplasia
  • Accumulation of extra blood around the liver
  • Heartworm disease
  • Diaphragmatic hernia
  • Liver cyst
  • Metabolic product deposition in the liver tissue
Enlarged Liver Symptoms

How do you identify an enlarged liver condition in your cat? Well, if your cat has an enlarged liver, you might be able to notice certain symptoms that can help diagnose the condition. Even if you have a minor suspicion that your cat may in fact have an enlarged liver, it is best to visit a vet immediately. Some of the common symptoms of an enlarged cat liver include the following:

  • Swollen abdomen
  • Inactivity/lethargy
  • Poor appetite and weight loss
  • Pain and discomfort related to movement
  • Heightened thirst
  • Jaundice
  • Increased urination

When you visit the veterinarian, they will likely ask you to provide a detailed medical history of your pet, including the nature and onset of symptoms and potential incidents that could have caused the enlarged liver condition. A detailed physical examination will be performed by the vet for evaluating the body systems and they would also conduct a complete blood profile along with a urinalysis.An enlarged liver might show in the abdominal X-rays and the vet may also identify displacement of kidneys or the stomach. On the other hand, chest X-rays are helpful in diagnosing any tumor metastasis in the chest cavity. They may also show any lung or heart related disease.


An enlarged liver is often accompanied by symptoms of liver damage and/or liver failure. It might be possible for enlarged livers to be functional, but they are usually disturbed by various kinds of chemical disparities. This means that your catโ€™s liver might not be able to produce sufficient liver enzymes as are needed for the normal functioning of the organ. In such a situation, it is possible for the cat to become jaundiced.A treatment of antibiotics, abstinence from food, intravenous fluids and other techniques may be used for treating the problem of enlarged liver in your cat. Other treatments might be administered if the problem is severe. Denamarin is often the recommended supplement to improve and maintain liver health. Get advice from a vet to find the appropriate dosage. For instance, Denamarin 425 mg tabs are for large dogs and should never given to cats. Cats are usually prescribed 90 mg tablets.

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