Time for your cats check?
Understandably some of us will have fallen into the trap of thinking that our cat is self-sufficient, while many more will have been fooled by our feline’s ability to mask signs of illness. Owners everywhere will testify that cats can be tough as teak, but it’s vital that they are given a routine health MOT if you want to safeguard their future help and happiness.
Cornering your cat and whisking it off for a visit to the vet might feature pretty low on your to-do list, but it’s wise to get a professional to give them a quick once over every so often. Capturing little fluffy and enduring a noisy ride to the vets might not hold much appeal right now but it will prove well worth the effort if your vet detects a problem. Even ‘indoor’ cats need regular wellness exams. The question is; how often should you pencil them in for a review?
Ask three different vets about the recommended frequency of your visit and you’ll probably get three different answers. One thing they are all likely to agree on though is that an adult cat should be checked annually as a bare minimum. The lives of animals are shorter than ours, which sees them age more rapidly. If a human year is on a par with seven cat years, taking your cat to the vet once a year is the equivalent of you visiting your GP every seven years.
Once they’re into old age (over 10 years), a six monthly check-up might be more appropriate. Health problems are more prevalent as animals get older and disease can advance rapidly in an elderly puss. Frequent checks are the most effective way to ensure an illness is detected in its infancy.
Prepare your kitty for an outing by tempting them into their carrier in the days leading up to a check. Popping treats or toys inside will make the experience a pleasant one and your pet will readily hop into the crate when the time comes for their medical. Always keep the carrier locked during the journey and inside the surgery waiting room, to avoid any distractions while driving or dashes for the door once you’ve reached your destination.
Remember to inform the vet of any changes in behaviour or signs that your cat might have a health problem. Don’t be afraid to ask any questions while you are there, particularly around dosing instructions should your furry little friend need medication. It’s better to take advice from the experts while you have the chance than trawl the internet for help when you are back home.
1 March 2015
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