What you need to know about the health of the cat?
For the loving owner of a domestic cat, nothing is more important than her health. Often, the owners perceive the pet as a full-fledged family member and are willing to put maximum efforts to maintain its well-being. To prevent possible troubles and reduce health risks, it is important to adhere to several rules, which we set out below.
How to care about the health of the cat?
At least once a year, you need to visit a veterinary specialist you trust. If there are no problems with the pet’s health, an annual vaccination must be carried out at the same visit, the marks of which are entered in the cat’s veterinary passport. This periodicity will help prevent many diseases, protect the pet from infections during the next year, and also allow you to track the regularity of visits to the veterinary clinic.
Do not use any additives, preparations and delicacies without consulting a veterinary specialist. One should not trust the opinion of “authorities” from among friends and even from the best of intentions to buy unknown biologically active additives and medicines. The same applies to antiparasitic drugs and vaccines, unfamiliar food and treats. To protect your pet, discuss with your veterinarian any significant interference with her normal lifestyle.
Be sure to take care of the safety of your home: do not leave in the public domain poisonous and toxic substances, use special nets on the windows.
At least once a month, you should inspect the cat in order to notice in advance any changes in its physical condition. It is most convenient to combine such examinations with planned hygienic procedures: claw clipping, combing, flea and tick treatment, etc.
What indicators should pay attention to?
Appetite and thirst. Attention should be paid to any change in your pet’s habits. Thus, a sharp increase in water intake can be a symptom of serious diseases: diabetes mellitus or kidney disease. Refusal of water for more than 2 days can directly threaten the life of your cat.
At the same time, a full or partial refusal of food for more than a day is a reason to guard, and for more than 48 hours, a reason to contact a veterinarian.
Body temperature. Normally, cats have a body temperature of 38.0-39.0⁰С. Deviation of a degree or more in any direction – a reason to immediately contact a veterinary specialist.
Respiratory rate at rest. An important indicator characterizing the state of your cat’s respiratory and cardiovascular systems. It is important to remember that the frequency of breathing should be considered alone, not after a game or stress. In an adult cat, this indicator should be between 20 and 30 breaths per minute.
Condition of wool and skin. Wool should evenly cover the body, bald spots are unacceptable. Shedding, even the most intense, is always accompanied by the renewal of wool: instead of old wool, a new one grows, without the formation of baldness zones.
The skin should be smooth and supple. By spreading the wool in different directions, forming a “parting”, you can assess the condition of the skin for inflammation. The presence of scratches and rashes, and especially ulcers and non-healing wounds – a reason to contact a veterinary specialist. Also note the presence of dandruff and parasites (for example, fleas).
The condition of the eyes, ears and mouth. First look at the pet’s face. Eyes and nose should be clean, without discharge, redness or dried crusts. Alternately, on the left and right sides, lift the upper lip and pay attention to the condition of the gums: they should be pink, moderately moisturized and without erosions. From the mouth should not leak saliva, and the cat’s teeth should be white and without plaque. Bad smell from the mouth (halitosis), a serious plaque on the teeth, erosion on the gums themselves are an indicator of ill health and require action.
Then look at the cat’s ears. Auditory passages should be clean, without brown discharge, redness, swelling and traces of scratches. If a pet often scratches its ears, it may indicate an itch that often occurs with allergies or external parasites (fleas, ear mites).
Feeling sore. Unfortunately, the owners usually do not pay enough attention to this item, but a careful inspection once a month allows us to find out if the animal feels expressed pain when feeling any areas (belly, ribs, limbs). If you have identified such abnormal pain, then immediately contact your veterinarian.
The quality and regularity of the chair. Relaxed stools for 2 or more days, blood in the feces, a sharp change in the color of feces, as well as a delay in the stool for more than 3 days – a reason to contact a veterinarian.
The frequency of urination and behavior when visiting the toilet. Another point that owners often do not pay due attention. However, it is the control of urination regularity and more careful attention of the owners to the behavior of the animal during visits to the toilet would allow more quickly correct the condition of cats.