Cat anatomy blood vascular system

The vascular system supplies oxygen to the body and removes waste through five types of blood vessels. This article, the first in a three-part seriesdiscusses vascular anatomy and physiology.

The exchange of gases and transfer of nutrients between blood and tissues take place in the capillaries. A solid understanding of how the vasculature works is key to understanding what can go wrong with it. This first article in a three-part series covers anatomy and physiology; part 2 and part 3 discuss the pathophysiology of the vascular system. Citation: Jarvis S Vascular system 1: anatomy and physiology.

Nursing Times [online]; 4, The body requires oxygen and nutrients and needs to eliminate waste products to maintain metabolic stability. The vascular system has a crucial role in bringing oxygen and nutrients to every organ and tissue, and removing waste products, via a series of blood vessels. In conjunction with the heart, which acts as a pump, it forms the cardiovascular system Jarvis and Saman, Arteries leaving the heart with oxygenated blood provide oxygen, nutrients, hormones and other substances throughout the body.

Veins leaving the organs and tissues return to the heart carrying metabolic waste. There are five classes of blood vessels: arteries and arterioles the arterial systemveins and venules the venous systemand capillaries the smallest bloods vessels, linking arterioles and venules through networks within organs and tissues Fig 1.

Capillaries are in intimate contact with the tissues, providing nutrients and removing waste products through their thin walls at a cellular level. Table 1 details the functions of the five blood vessel types. Blood vessels, except the smallest ones, are made of three layers: the tunica interna, tunica media and tunica externa or adventitia.

The tunica interna innermost layer is a single layer of squamous flat epithelial cells called the endothelium; this smooth lining in direct contact with the blood offers little resistance to blood flow Marieb and Hoehn, The endothelial cells can easily be damaged by hypertension, toxins such as cigarette smoke, or hyperglycaemia; this damage can result in atherosclerosis.

These delicate cells rest on a thin layer of connective tissue made of elastin and collagen elastic and structural support fibres that anchors the tunica interna to the tunica media. The endothelium regulates blood flow and prevents clotting; it produces chemicals such as nitric oxide that help regulate blood flow by relaxing the smooth muscle within blood vessels.

The tunica media middle layer takes up most of the arterial vessel wall and is composed of smooth muscle fibres and elastin. This is where an activated sympathetic nervous system can stimulate the smooth muscle fibres to contract, provoking blood vessel narrowing vasoconstriction and decreasing blood flow Marieb and Hoehn, When the sympathetic nerves are inhibited, the muscle fibres of the tunica media relax, the blood vessels increase in diameter vasodilation and blood flow increases.

The tunica externa outer layer consists mainly of connective tissue fibres that protect the blood vessels and attach them to any surrounding tissues. In larger blood vessels, additional small vessels — vasa vasorum — supply blood and nutrients to the tunica externa and tunica media.

Introduction to Heart and Blood Vessel Disorders in Cats

Arteries supply the body with oxygenated blood — with the exception of the pulmonary arteries from the heart; these carry deoxygenated blood to the lungs, and the umbilical artery, which carries deoxygenated blood from the foetus to the placenta.

Blood travels from the arteries to the arterioles and on to the capillaries, where gaseous exchange takes place. The largest artery is the aorta, which extends from the left ventricle down the left side of the body. It divides into four major regions, the ascending aorta, aortic arch, thoracic aorta and abdominal aorta. Table 2 lists the major branches off the aorta. Arteries can be divided into elastic arteries, muscular arteries and arterioles.Below is information about the structure and function of the feline cardiovascular system.

We will tell you about the general structure of the heart and circulatory system, how the cardiovascular system works in cats, common diseases that affect the cardiovascular system, and common diagnostic tests performed in cats to evaluate the cardiovascular system. It consists of the heart and blood vessels, namely arteries, veins and capillaries. The heart is located in the chest between the right and left lungs and is contained in a very thin sac called the pericardial sac.

The heart extends approximately from the 3rd to the 4th rib of the cat. Blood vessels leave the heart and form a conduit system throughout the body that carries blood to all organs, tissues and cells.

The heart is the central organ that contracts rhythmically to pump blood continuously through the blood vessels. The heart consists of four chambers:. Arteries are strong, muscular blood vessels that carry oxygen-rich blood from the heart to various parts of the body. The wall of an artery consists of an outer coat tunica adventitiaa middle coat tunica mediaand an inner coat tunica intima.

Small blood vessels that branch off the arteries are called arterioles. Veins are thin blood vessels that carry blood from various parts of the body or organs back towards the heart. Like arteries, veins have three coats, but the coats are not as thick. Because of their thin walls, veins are very compliant, and their volume and size vary with blood pressure.

Veins also contain valves, which allow blood flow in only one direction, towards the heart. The valves stop blood from flowing backward towards the organs. Small blood vessels that lead from the capillaries to the larger veins are called venules. Capillaries are the smallest of all blood vessels. Capillaries are so small, that in many instances only a few red blood cells can pass through the center of the capillary at a time.

Capillaries usually lie between the arterioles and venules. Capillary walls act as a membrane that allows various substances to travel between the blood and the tissues. These substances include oxygen, carbon dioxide, water, electrolytes e. The capillaries are the site of the greatest exchange of material between the blood and the tissues of the body. The circulatory system transports oxygen, nutritive substances, immune substances, hormones and chemicals to the tissues and organs of the body necessary for normal function.

It also carries away waste products and carbon dioxide, helps to regulate body temperature, and helps to maintain normal water and electrolyte balance. Virginia Wells August 03, Share:. Was this article helpful? What Is the Cardiovascular System? Where Is the Cardiovascular System Located? The heart consists of four chambers: The right atrium. The right atrium is the collecting chamber for blood from distant parts of the body.

Blood is carried back to this upper right chamber of the heart in various veins. The oxygen levels in the blood in this chamber are very low. As the right atrium contracts, blood flows through the tricuspid valve into the right ventricle. The right ventricle. The right ventricle is the pumping chamber of the lower right heart.As the pace of veterinary advancement accelerates, even the most experienced veterinary teams are challenged to keep up with all the changes that impact their practice.

Veterinary teams need practical, concise and relevant visual aids at their fingertips while in practice, helping them to prescribe the right information at the right time, to improve client communication, increase compliance rates, enhance the pet owner experience and most importantly better pet health outcomes. Your working day is often fast-paced and always changing. But, a large part of your job is pet owner communication.

A simple way to overcome these barriers is to use digital visual aids and digital pet treatment summaries. Needing veterinary visual aids, anatomical diagrams, home compliance videos and images to improve the quality of care that you can provide? The use of veterinary anatomical terminology can be confusing. When discussing a pet's condition, always use both technical and laymens terminology. People think and hear in pictures. Below are a selection of visual aids to help you communicate the importance of the pet's health as well as the recommended veterinary services.

Structure and Function of the Cardiovascular System in Cats

From birth to 8 weeks, a kitten will go through major growth development phases. They are born with closed eyes and folded ears, meaning they are born blind and deaf. They cannot regulate their own body temperature, nor excrete wastes on their own. After the first week they will start to hear, in the second week their eyes will open and by the third week they will have full sight and hearing.

In the forth week they start to run and climb and by 8 weeks they have developed a full set of teeth and can start eating canned and dry kitten food. Important socialization skills need to be introduced such as playing with other kittens, interacting with people, being petted for at least minutes after feeding. Download the VetCheck Fostering Kittens Guideline for more tips on key development stages, feeding, and body temperature.

Pets communicate in a very different way than people do. They have the same basic senses like sight, hearing, smell, touch, and taste, but they use them differently to communicate with the world. In general, pets have a much better sense of smell, hearing, and sight than humans. This allows them to identify odours better, to hear noises at greater distances, and to see in the dark.

Pets also have sharp teeth and claws that developed to help them survive in the wild. Cats are solitary like to be by themselves creatures and are naturally nocturnal more active at night. They have excellent vision in the dark and can pick up the slightest of movements, which is perfect for hunting in the wild. They are very flexible creatures that have whiskers to help them jump into and crawl through awkward spaces. Cats have developed sharp claws to help them climb and catch prey in the wild.

It is a natural behavior for cats to renew their claws by scratching surfaces. The cardiovascular system refers to the organs and vessels that allow blood to circulate nutrients, oxygen, carbon dioxide, wastes and hormones to the various cells within the body. The heart pumps oxygenated blood from the lungs to the rest of the body, while pumping deoxygenated blood to the lungs. Blood vessels refer to the arteries, veins and capillaries.The cardiovascular system includes the heart and the blood vessels the veins and the arteries.

The function of the heart is to pump blood. The right side of the heart pumps blood to the lungs, where oxygen is added to the blood. The left side pumps blood to the rest of the body, where oxygen and nutrients are delivered to tissues, and waste products such as carbon dioxide are removed.

The heart is a hollow, muscular organ which, in mammals and birds, is divided into 4 chambers. The muscular tissue is called the myocardium.

There are upper chambers on both the left and ride sides of the heart called the left and right atria the plural form of atrium. There are also 2 lower chambers called the left and right ventricles. A series of valves keep blood flowing in one direction through the heart. The atrioventricular valves are valves between the atria and the ventricles.

The semilunar valves are valves between the heart and the aorta and between the heart and the pulmonary artery. Each ventricle has an inlet and an outlet valve. In the left ventricle, the inlet valve is called the mitral valveand the outlet valve is called the aortic valve.

In the right ventricle, the inlet valve is called the tricuspid valveand the outlet valve is called the pulmonary valve. Blood from the body flows through the 2 largest veins, called the venae cavaeinto the right atrium. When the right ventricle relaxes, blood in the right atrium pours through the tricuspid valve into the right ventricle.

When the right ventricle is nearly full, the right atrium contracts, pushing additional blood into the right ventricle. The right ventricle then contracts, pushing blood through the pulmonary valve into the pulmonary arteries, which lead to the lungs.

In the lungs, blood absorbs oxygen and gives up carbon dioxide. The blood then flows through the pulmonary veins into the left atrium. When the left ventricle relaxes, the blood in the left atrium pours through the mitral valve into the left ventricle. When the left ventricle is nearly full, the left atrium contracts, pushing additional blood into the left ventricle. The left ventricle then contracts, pushing blood through the aortic valve into the aorta, the largest artery in the body.

This blood carried in the aorta distributes oxygen to all of the body except the lungs. Each heartbeat consists of 2 parts: diastole and systole. One half of a heartbeat diastole is the sound of the mitral and tricuspid valves closing.

The other half systole is the sound of the aortic and pulmonary valves closing. During diastole, the ventricles relax and fill with blood. During systole, they contract and pump blood out to the body.For every beat our human heart takes, a typical cat's heart beats three times. That's a lot of hard work! The circulation cycle then starts all over. A cat's heart and blood vessels, including arteriescapillariesand veinsare finely-tuned to control the amount of blood circulating in the body at any one time.

Also closely controlled are the blood plasma contents including sugar, hormones, salts, acidity, and concentration. Blood pressure is another component of a healthy cardiovascular system that requires constant monitoring by the body. Considering all of the delicate nerve signals, fine coordination of muscle contractions, and hormonal messages needed to keep everything working just right, there are surprisingly few problems, but heart disease does occur in cats. Cats are very good at hiding illnesses.

This can be a challenge when it comes to diagnosing feline heart conditions. Sometimes, a heart problem may go unnoticed at home until it is in the advanced stages, a complication such as a thromboembolism occurs, or the cat experiences sudden death. However some signs of heart disease that may be present include:.

Cats are great at hiding sickness, and there are sometimes very few or no noticeable signs of heart disease. Therefore, it is extremely important to take your cat in for regular professional health examinations. Sometimes even when a stethoscope is used to listen, a cat with heart disease will seem normal, but there are times when a new heart murmur is noticed during the physical examination, and that can tip us off to an emerging problem.

If heart disease is suspected, the following tests can all help to identify the type and determine how advanced it is. Cats can develop many types of heart and circulatory problems, but malformations at birth, or congenital diseases, are less common in cats than in dogs. In young kittens, sometimes we hear murmurs that are benign, or harmless.

This is due to a normal heart producing a bit of turbulence because it is beating with good strength and the body wall is thin, so we hear the swooshing noises more easily than in the more mature cat. These murmurs will disappear with age. The most common heart disease in cats is hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. This is a condition in which the heart muscle becomes thickened and isn't able to pump effectively. It can lead to heart failure, the situation in which the heart can't keep up with the oxygen requirements of the body.

Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy HCM in cats.The pictures in this section are reprinted with permission by the copyright owner, Hill's Pet Nutritionfrom the Atlas of Veterinary Clinical Anatomy.

These illustrations should not be downloaded, printed or copied except for personal, non-commercial use. The body is composed of several functional units called organ systems.

Each organ system is a collection of organs that function together to perform a specific job to keep the body healthy.

cat anatomy blood vascular system

Tissues, and the microscopic units of tissues, the cells, are the building blocks of organs. Tissues include materials such as muscles, nerves and epithelia and connective tissues that bind the other tissues together. The kidneys are tucked up close to the liver toward the spine. Washington State University assumes no liability for injury to you or your pet incurred by following these descriptions or procedures. Back to Categories. The organ systems include: The cardiovascular system cat dog includes the heart and blood vessels.

The cardiovascular system performs the function of pumping and carrying blood to the rest of the body. The blood contains nutrients and oxygen to provide energy to allow the cells of the body to perform work. The lymphatic system includes the lymph nodes and lymph vessels. The lymphatic system is part of the immune system that helps the body fight off disease.

The lymphatic system also works with the cardiovascular system to return fluids that escape from the blood vessels back into the blood stream.

Heart Anatomy Part 1

The digestive system cat dog includes the mouth, teeth, salivary glands, esophagus, stomach, intestine, pancreas, liver and gall bladder. The digestive system absorbs and digests food and eliminates solid wastes from the body.

The integumentary system is the skin and fur that cover the animal's body. The skin protects the underlying organs. The fur helps insulate against heat loss. Dogs and cats do not sweat through their skin.

They only sweat from their footpads and nose. They lose water by panting rather than sweating. The musculoskeletal system includes all the muscles, bones and joints. The respiratory system cat dog includes the mouth, nose, trachea, lungs and smaller airways bronchi and bronchioles. The respiratory system is responsible for taking in oxygen and eliminating waste gases like carbon dioxide.The cardiovascular system includes the heart and the blood vessels the veins and the arteries.

The function of the heart is to pump blood. The right side of the heart pumps blood to the lungs, where oxygen is added to the blood. The left side pumps blood to the rest of the body, where oxygen and nutrients are delivered to tissues, and waste products such as carbon dioxide are removed.

The heart is a hollow, muscular organ which, in mammals and birds, is divided into 4 chambers. The muscular tissue is called the myocardium. There are upper chambers on both the left and ride sides of the heart called the left and right atria the plural form of atrium. There are also 2 lower chambers called the left and right ventricles.

A series of valves keep blood flowing in one direction through the heart. The atrioventricular valves are valves between the atria and the ventricles. The semilunar valves are valves between the heart and the aorta and between the heart and the pulmonary artery. Each ventricle has an inlet and an outlet valve. In the left ventricle, the inlet valve is called the mitral valveand the outlet valve is called the aortic valve.

In the right ventricle, the inlet valve is called the tricuspid valveand the outlet valve is called the pulmonary valve.

Cat Vessels

Blood from the body flows through the 2 largest veins, called the venae cavaeinto the right atrium. When the right ventricle relaxes, blood in the right atrium pours through the tricuspid valve into the right ventricle. When the right ventricle is nearly full, the right atrium contracts, pushing additional blood into the right ventricle. The right ventricle then contracts, pushing blood through the pulmonary valve into the pulmonary arteries, which lead to the lungs.

In the lungs, blood absorbs oxygen and gives up carbon dioxide. The blood then flows through the pulmonary veins into the left atrium. When the left ventricle relaxes, the blood in the left atrium pours through the mitral valve into the left ventricle. When the left ventricle is nearly full, the left atrium contracts, pushing additional blood into the left ventricle. The left ventricle then contracts, pushing blood through the aortic valve into the aorta, the largest artery in the body.

This blood carried in the aorta distributes oxygen to all of the body except the lungs. Each heartbeat consists of 2 parts: diastole and systole. One half of a heartbeat diastole is the sound of the mitral and tricuspid valves closing. The other half systole is the sound of the aortic and pulmonary valves closing.

cat anatomy blood vascular system

During diastole, the ventricles relax and fill with blood. During systole, they contract and pump blood out to the body. The rate and force of contraction of the heart and the degree of narrowing or widening of blood vessels are controlled by several hormones and by the autonomic nervous system the part of the nervous system that controls involuntary activity. The heart beats because of a tiny electrical current that begins in the sinoatrial node. Rhythmic electrical impulses or discharges from the sinoatrial node cause the contraction of muscle fibers in the heart.

While an animal is at rest, the sinoatrial node discharges many times each minute; in a resting cat, it will discharge more than times per minute. Heart rate is also inversely related to blood pressure. When blood pressure increases, heart rate decreases; when blood pressure decreases, heart rate increases.

In heart failure, nerve endings that are sensitive to blood pressure changes called baroreceptors report the lower blood pressure to the brain, resulting in an inappropriately elevated heart rate. Unfortunately, this further injures the heart.

Heart sounds are produced by the rapid acceleration and deceleration of blood and the resulting vibrations in the heart due to the circulation of blood.

cat anatomy blood vascular system

They can be heard using a stethoscope. In cats, 2 heart sounds can normally be distinguished.


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