Categories: Cat Health

How to Check My Cat’s Pulse?

Checking cat pulse at femoral artery

You can feel a cat’s pulse in two places. The first is by feeling the femoral artery in the cat’s groin. You feel along the inside of the cat’s thigh. You press with your fingers to locate the pulsation. Feel along the inside of the thigh where the leg and body join. The other place is over your cat’s heart. Take the pulse by pressing against the cat’s rib cage. Be cautious about pressing. Don’t fight your cat when doing this! You can use both methods with your cat standing or lying semi-belly up.

The pulse rate can be worked out by counting the number of beats every 15 seconds and then multiplying by four. Alternatively if your cat is passive enough you can count the number of beats in a minute. I’ve never done this but as an adult cat has a normal pulse rate of 140-240 bpm (beats per minute), it may be quite difficult to maintain an accurate count.

The pulse should be regular, steady and strong. If the pulse is rapid it may indicate: blood loss, anaemia, fever, shock, dehydration, infection, heatstroke, excitation or heart and lung disease.

Alternatively a slow pulse will indicate hypothermia, pressure on the brain, heart disease or the collapse of the cat’s circulation due to an advanced morbid (unhealthy) condition.

If the pulse is erratic or irregular this indicates arrhythmia (irregular hearbeat). Always see a vet when necessary.

Source: Cat Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook and (for image (modified)) from The American Animal Hospital Association Enyclopedia of Cat Health and Care.

Please comment here using either Facebook or WordPress (when available).
Michael Broad

Hi, I am 70-years-of-age at 2019. For 14 years before I retired at 57, I worked as a solicitor in general law specialising in family law. Before that I worked in a number of different jobs including professional photography. I have a longstanding girlfriend, Michelle. We like to walk in Richmond Park which is near my home because I love nature and the landscape (as well as cats and all animals).

Leave a Comment

Recent Posts

Cat Sculpture by Grayson Perry

This is a photograph of Grayson Perry's sculpture of a cat which he has uploaded…

14 hours ago

Notorious “Tiger King” Joe Exotic injected staff with big cat tranquilliser when they had the flu

This is another tidbit of exotic Americana; the world of private zoos, exotic cats and…

20 hours ago

Hermann Göring’s Pet Lions

The Nazis used animals as trappings of tyranny writes David Crossland in The Times today.…

20 hours ago

Cat rescuers must respect people’s privacy in Facebook postings

This is an interesting and perhaps a landmark legal case regarding writing posts on Facebook…

20 hours ago

Does cat vomit contain toxoplasmosis?

This is a good question that had not occurred to me before I noticed that…

23 hours ago

Why does my cat’s vomit look like poop?


1 day ago