Choosing a Vet
Choosing a vet is really selecting a partner in your kitten's health care. Scheduled vaccinations and yearly examinations mean that you'll see your vet on a regular basis, so choose wisely. Use our list as a basis for picking the right clinic for your cat:
- Get recommendations from friends, co-workers and other cat owners to compile an initial list of clinics. Ask them what they like about each one.
- Find a surgery that has different waiting areas for cats and dogs - to help reduce the stress for your pet.
- Look for a clean, sterile space with up-to-date equipment.
- Ask about the emergency care, hours and any equipment or terms you don't understand.
- Ask what the fees are for basic vaccinations and exams.
Spaying and Neutering
Many owners choose to have their cat spayed or neutered. It eliminates the risk of unwanted pregnancies and can curb undesirable behaviour in your cat. Vets advise that this should be done by six months of age, or younger if you have both male and female kittens.
Note the following advantages of spaying and neutering:
- Spaying eliminates behavior associated with heat cycles, such as wailing to attract males or spraying urine.
- Spaying helps prevent potential health problems, including breast tumors and uterine disease, possibly adding years to your cat's life.
- Spaying or neutering helps prevent the occurrence of unwanted litters.
- Neutering reduces the effects of puberty and hormones. A neutered male is less likely to mark territory by spraying urine and less apt to roam and get lost, and he won't congregate or fight with other toms over a female in heat.
Fleas are one of the most common cat complaints, and your kitten can pick them up quite easily, especially when they start going outdoors.
- Fleas are most common in warm weather (spring and summer).
- They can transmit parasitic or infectious diseases, including tapeworms.
- Flea infestation may in turn cause anemia (low red blood cell count) and/or allergic dermatitis, a skin allergy characterized by itching and irritation.
- Though some cats become irritable and scratch, others have no visible signs of discomfort.
thankfully, fleas are quite easy to treat. You can get a spot-on solution from your vet to treat the cat, which will kill the insects and eggs. You may also have to treat your home as fleas can hide in carpets and soft furnishings. This can be done with home treatment sprays available from pet stores.
Hairballs are tube-shaped brown masses of hair fibres. When cats clean themselves, they ingest fur. Because hair isn't digestible, it either passes through the intestinal tract and ends up in the litter box or is expelled by vomiting.
Cats who pass hairballs more than once a week or who pass foul-smelling hairballs may have a serious underlying health problem. See your vet for advice.
Prevention and treatment
- Keep your cat well-groomed with regular brushing.
- Brush all your cats, not just the ones with hairballs, because cats often groom each other.
- Feed our hairball care food, which help reduce the likelihood of hairball formation. Our special recipe contains a natural fibre system that gently passes ingested hair through the digestive tract.