Expert Cat Health Tips

If you want to enjoy many joyous years with your treasured cat, follow these important cat health tips from the experts.

Veterinary Checkups

Here is what the experts advise about veterinarian care for your cat:

•- Before you get a cat, consider the expenses entailed in visits to the vet, vaccinations, and care costs if your cat gets sick

•- Finding a top-notch veterinarian

•- Take your cat for annual veterinarian checkups

•- Get your cat vaccinated against all common threats/cat diseases

•- If your cat exhibits any of the following symptoms, seek medical care from a vet immediately: Won't eat or drink for longer than 18 hours; displays unusual hissing, hiding, seeking-dark-places behavior; vomiting; continuous coughing; breathing difficulties

•- Excessive thirst may be an indication of diabetes, kidney problems, or liver problems; consult with your vet or take your cat for a checkup

Ear Mites

Seek immediate veterinarian care if you suspect your cat suffers from ear mites, parasitic mini-critters which feed upon and infect the lining of cat's ear canals. Symptoms of cat ear mites include excessive scratching behind/inside the ear and a dark brown wax inside the ear.

Cat Spraying/Neutering

The experts recommend spaying male cats and neutering female cats at age 6-7 months. Spaying/neutering decreases the effect sex hormones can have on your pet's behavior, the risk of unwanted births, the risk of your cat wandering far from home, the likelihood of your cat catching diseases from strays, getting into fights with other animals, and getting hit by a car.

Basic Cat Supplies

To keep your cat healthy and happy, provide a food dish, water dish, and litter box. Empty the litter box daily and clean it on a weekly basis, as many cats won't use a dirty litter box. Cats should wear an ID collar at all times, even indoor cats. Finally, your cat will be much more content if you provide it with cat toys (i.e. a ball to roll, a rolled-up sock to play with), a scratching post, a bed, and if possible, access to a window they can look out of.

Poisonous House Plants

Keep your home environment free of poisons, and especially free from an array of ordinary houseplants and outdoor plants which are toxic for cats. Other types of potentially harmful substances include household chemicals, insecticides, and more.

Feeding Your Cat

1) When to Feed Your Cat: Cat food should be "age appropriate." In other words, kittens should receive only nutritious kitty food (no table scraps) and require several small feedings each day until they reach 3 months of age. From the age of 3 to 6 months, cats should be fed three times a day, while older cats only require two small meals or one large meal per day.

2) What to Feed Your Cat: Cats love canned food, however it is expensive and your bills might run up quickly. Dry cat foods are less expensive and offer greater dental health benefits, such as the prevention of tartar buildup on your favorite feline's teeth. Buy only the best food for your cat, looking for brand name cat food products known to contain all the necessary nutrients for optimal cat health and growth; avoid trying to cut costs by purchasing a generic brand of cat food.

3) Treats for Your Cat: You can pamper your cat or kitten with "human food" or treats on occasion, but keep these to a minimum as treats may cause diarrhea or make your cat fat.

Brushing Your Cat

Brush your cat daily to prevent hairballs, which are especially prominent in long-haired cats and which are caused by cat's self-grooming habits. Cat hairballs refer to when a cat swallows its own loose hairs. Although cat hair usually passes out of a cat's system naturally, too much swallowed hair can create a fur ball that gets stuck in the cat's intestines, causing vomiting, intestinal blockage, or other complications.

If you follow these expert cat health tips and give your cats plenty of tender loving kitty care, you and your cat should live happily ever after!