How Preventive Care Can Help Your Cat to Thrive
As a loving cat owner, you’ve probably gone online in search of answers regarding how to best care for your feline friend. Unfortunately, your cat’s health is much too important to entrust to Dr. Google. Establishing a relationship with a trusted local vet as soon as possible is the best way to get your cat on the path to optimal wellness and give them the best life possible through preventive care.
Here at GeniusVets, we believe that veterinarians are the best source of information when it comes to learning how to keep your cat healthy and happy. That is why we sent a few of the most common questions about cat preventive care to trusted veterinarians throughout the United States and compiled their answers below. However, you should not use this resource as a substitute for professional veterinary care. We encourage you to contact your own veterinarian to learn how to best care for your cat. If you don’t have a veterinarian, use the GeniusVets Directory to find a trusted vet near you.
Preventive care involves being preemptive about your cat’s health and includes any care that is not related to sickness. It helps your feline friend stay healthy and happy and ensures optimal wellness. Providing adequate preventive care for your cat includes bringing them to a veterinarian for checkups and other wellness services. It also includes feeding your cat a healthy diet, providing an enriching environment, and ensuring they receive appropriate care at home between vet visits.
Preventive care impacts their overall health and can add years to their life. Services like vaccinations and deworming along with healthy diets and at-home enrichment work together to help cats live longer, happier lives.
Preventive care encompasses several things. One of the most crucial elements is your veterinarian’s comprehensive physical examination during your cat’s annual checkups. This exam includes checking the eyes, mouth, and skin, palpating the abdomen, and evaluating your cat’s joints. The goal is obtaining a clear picture of your cat’s overall health and making sure there aren’t any signs of trouble.
In addition to examinations, preventive care for cats includes:
- Nutrition or weight-based preventive care
- Flea and tick prevention
- Routine lab work (blood, urine, and fecal tests)
When you spend every day with your cat, it is often challenging to spot subtle differences. Keeping up with your cat’s preventive care allows their veterinarian to look for signs of subtle changes that could be taking place.
Preventive care protects your cat from several conditions that can negatively impact their life. For example, vaccinations prevent feline leukemia (and other illnesses veterinarians vaccinate kittens and adult cats against). And keeping up with deworming helps prevent severe gastrointestinal problems, weight loss, etc.
Any change in your cat’s behavior could indicate a problem with their health. Changes in litter box habits, inappropriate reactions with people and other pets, drinking excessively, and respiratory changes could all point to serious health problems. Unfortunately, cats often mask their symptoms until they become extremely ill. If you notice a minor change in your cat’s behavior, it is essential to schedule an appointment with their veterinarian right away. As a pet owner, misdiagnosing a problem or failing to recognize its severity could be deadly for your feline friend.
It’s also crucial to remember that cats are not just small dogs. They are unique little creatures, and many things are significant to them. Something that is okay for your dog could be hazardous for your cat. Scheduling an appointment with your veterinarian is a vital step in caring for your cat.
Without preventive care, your cat is much more susceptible to disease. They are also more likely to contract both external and internal parasites. Plus, failing to schedule routine exams for your cat could allow minor health problems to become much more severe and difficult to treat.
The bottom line: Failing to provide preventive care can shorten your cat’s life. When it comes to giving your feline friend the longest, healthiest, and best life possible, preventative care is essential.
If you have additional questions or your cat is due for preventive care, we encourage you to contact your veterinarian. Don’t have one? Let us help you find a trusted local veterinarian for your cat.