Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Hearing tests

Contributor(s): Celia Cox, Luc Poncelet

Introduction

  • There is relatively little data on the incidence of hearing impairment in cats.
  • In a study combining 3 results, the incidence was 50%, but the numbers examined were only 250. Of those, approximately one quarter was bilaterally deaf and three quarters were unilaterally deaf (Deleak 1984).
  • White cats with blue or orange eyes or one of each have an increased incidence of deafness. The deafness is linked to the White (W) Coat Pigment Gene.
  • Cat breeds carrying the White (W) Coat Pigment Gene include the:
    • White Scottish Fold, European White, White Turkish Angora, Foreign White, White American Wirehair, White Cornish Rex, White American Shorthair, White Devon Rex, White British Shorthair, White Manx, White Exotic Shorthair, White Persian, White Oriental Shorthair.
  • In cats carrying the W gene, hearing loss can be unilateral or bilateral. Various insults to the outer, middle and inner hear may also induce partial hearing loss. Minor losses are generally undetected, but a major loss in one ear can cause difficulty localizing sound, which can significantly increase the susceptibility of road traffic accidents.

Hearing tests

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The test

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Uses of the Baer test

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Delack J B (1984) Hereditary deafness in the white cat. Compendium on Continuing Education for the Practicing Veterinarian (7), 609-617 VetMedResource.

Other sources of information

  • Strain G (2007) Deafness in blue-eyed white cats: The uphill road to solving polygenic disorders. The Veterinary Journal 173 (3), 471-471 PubMed.


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