If you want your cat to live as long and happy a life as possible, it is worth devoting time and energy to preventative health care.
Rather than dealing with a health problem as it arises, this means paying attention to your cat’s well-being on a regular basis. It involves ensuring that your cat has routine health checks, paying attention to her diet and nutrition, having regular grooming sessions and making sure your cat has sufficient rest and exercise.
Although the vet will give your cat a physical check when you visit, you too can examine your cat — for example by feeling her body when grooming or playing — to keep an eye out for unusual lumps.
Ensuring that your cat stays in good physical and mental shape and lives to its maximum age means monitoring your pets well-being on a regular basis.
It is important to make sure that your cat has a healthy diet and does not become overweight. Your vet can advise you on your cat’s dietary needs. Commercially-prepared foods contain a balance of vitamins, minerals, proteins and carbohydrates for a healthy diet. Paying attention to your cat’s diet and nutrition helps to maintain the efficiency of its immune system to help fight infection or disease.
PLAY, REST AND EXERCISE – KEYS TO PREVENTATIVE HEALTH CARE FOR CATS
Your cat’s well-being also depends on getting the right amount of rest and exercise. Cats generally, prefer the quiet life with plenty of sleep, so if you have children, teach
them to respect her need for peace. If your cat has to live indoors, you should arrange a `climbing corner’ for her to exercise in. Play is important for a cat’s development and if you continue to play with a cat from an early age, she will remain
playful as an adult. The time you spend interacting with your cat reinforces her mental health.
PHYSICAL CHECKS FOR CAT HEALTH
Safeguarding your cat’s health means ensuring that she has a full physical examination by the vet and any due vaccinations at least once a year. You too can keep a check on your cat by feeling her body carefully when grooming, for example, for parasites and fleas. Regular grooming keeps a cat’s skin and coat in top condition and reduces the chances of bacterial skin problems.
- Check your cat’s teeth and gums regularly to see if they are healthly. Encourage your cat to chew rubber toys as this can exercise a cat’s teeth and gums.
- Your cat’s ears and eyes deserve special attention. Keep a close eye on these areas for any signs of infection and see a vet immediately if you suspect a problem.
- Grooming in itself can be a sign of your cat’s health. If a cat stops grooming altogether it means that something is wrong physically, whereas excessive self-grooming can be a sign of an emotional problem.
How can I get my cat used to me cleaning her teeth regularly?
Train your cat to associate teeth cleaning with simple rewards. Start with a cotton bud with some pet toothpaste on it, and rub gently against her teeth and gums. Once she is used to this action, move on to a toothbrush. The most common reason cats visit a vet is because of dental problems so it’s worth persevering.
I have a new cat and want to ensure she has a healthy diet and doesn’t gain weight. How can I best do this?
Monitor your cat’s weight routinely on an accurate scale and see your vet if you notice any changes. Commercially-prepared cat foods provide the nutrition cats need, but cats like them so much that they tend to eat more than they need so obesity is increasing in the feline world.