Every pet owner wants the absolute best for their cat. The first step to ensuring this is to make sure your pet is happy and healthy. How can you achieve this? Monthly trips to the vet is a good place to start. Consult the checklist provided below to spot any unusual signs early on so can you seek immediate treatment!
While caring for cats, it is essential to regularly check their body condition score. Cats should ideally have a well-defined hourglass waist with their ribs easily visible and a slight covering of fat.
Delicate and sensitive, cat ears should be treated with care. They should be cleaned of any thick or waxy discharge and the caretaker should ensure there is no redness or offensive smells emanating from the cat’s ear.
Your cat’s eyes should be bright and clear with no signs of redness or runniness.
Your cat’s nose should be soft and damp. Crusting, bleeding, and excess sneezing are alarms for a health check with the vet.
A cat’s teeth should be white or cream with no excess tartar. Their gums should be healthy pink (or black, depending on your cat’s skin pigmentation) and not red, swollen or bleeding. Bad breath, excess salivation and a reluctance to eat are all signs that something is wrong.
Crusting, itching, scaling, black or white spots and inflammation on your cat’s skin are all signs of concern. Ideally, their coat should be shiny with no broken hair, bald patches, dandruff or fleas.
Your cat’s nails (can be black or white) should be smooth- rough or flaky nails may require a visit to the vet. You can check your cat’s nails by gently squeezing on the pads of their paws so the nails fully emerge.
Cats can be fussy eaters- it is quite normal for them to occasionally regurgitate food or cough up a hairball, but vomiting or reluctance to eat is a matter of concern.
Since cats cannot open-mouth breathe, any signs of panting, wheezing or coughing should be investigated by a vet immediately.
You should NOT be concerned if your healthy cat does not drink a lot of water. However, you should make sure that you always have a bowl of clean, fresh water available for them. If your cat suddenly becomes thirsty or starts drinking more water than usual, it could be time to consult a vet.
A cat’s attitude is often an indicator of how he or she is feeling. If they are under the weather, you may see them sleeping more, being quieter and less playful. However, they are very good at hiding their illness, so speak to your vet in case of concerning changes.
Follow this checklist to ensure your cat remains in excellent health, so you can look forward to many more days of quality time between you and your pet!
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