Another skin condition of cats which may often be confused with parasitic infestation is ringworm. This is contagious and can be transmitted from the cat to its owner. Small patches of fur containing what may be thought to be cigarette ash are the first indication of its presence. Hair then falls out in a round bald area which may spread and enlarge if treatment is delayed. Fortunately today there is a very effective antibiotic treatment for the condition and veterinary help should be sought as early as possible to prevent it spreading both on the pet itself and to the human owner.
The common ailments of cats, in most cases, can readily be treated and eliminated by good veterinary care. To protect the general health of your pet, and to prevent infections, it is sensible to take your cat to the veterinary surgeon for regular observations. These give the veterinarian the opportunity to examine eyes, fur, skin and particularly teeth.
On a normal diet, cats’ teeth remain clean but frequently become encrusted with deposits of tartar which if left in place can burrow under the gum and cause the tooth to loosen. The breath will be bad and the cat may gag and shake its head while eating. Chattering of the teeth is also a sign. The gums will become inflamed and the cat may even go off its food completely. Annual check-ups where accumulating tartar is removed are therefore very much in the cat’s interest.
Regular veterinary attention, combined with the stimulation of disease resistance by administration of booster vaccine injections, and sensible food, adequate exercise and regular cleansing and brushing of the coat, can ensure that common ailments of the cat are not a problem.