It is often said that cats are low-maintenance pets.
In some ways, this is true, as they are clean animals that groom themselves and do not need to be walked.
However, cats still need routine care and attention to stay healthy and happy.
This care includes regular veterinarian checkups, vaccinations, a healthy diet, exercise, mental stimulation, and plenty of love and affection.
All cats need routine vaccinations to protect them from disease.
Kittens need a series of vaccinations to build up their immunity, starting at around six to eight weeks of age.
After that, they need booster vaccinations every year.
What vaccinations do cats need?
Cats need a few core vaccinations and others that may be recommended depending on the animal’s lifestyle.
The American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) and the Academy of Feline Medicine (AFM) jointly published guidelines that list the following as core vaccines for cats:
- Panleukopenia (feline distemper)
In addition, non-core vaccines are available and may be recommended by your veterinarian based on your cat’s risk factors.
Chlamydia Psittaci: A bacteria that can cause conjunctivitis (eye inflammation) and upper respiratory infection in cats. It is most commonly seen in catteries, shelters, and outdoor multicat households.
Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV): A virus that can cause cancer and other diseases in cats. It is most commonly seen in outdoor multicat households, shelters, and breeding colonies. Therefore, outdoor cats and indoor/outdoor cats who go outside are at the most significant risk for exposure to this virus.
When do cats need vaccinations?
Most cats need vaccinations to help protect them from diseases.
Vaccinations are usually given at 8, 12, and 16 weeks of age.
After that, most cats need a booster vaccination every year.
Your cat needs routine care to stay healthy.
Part of this care is to protect them from parasites.
Parasites are living things that live off of other living thing.
Some common parasites that can affect your cat are fleas, ticks, ear mites, and intestinal worms.
Intestinal parasites are usually contagious, meaning they can be spread from one person to another.
Some parasites are found in underdeveloped countries and others in North America.
The most common symptoms of intestinal parasite infections include:
- Weight loss
- Abdominal pain
There are several ways to prevent parasitic infections, including:
- Washing your hands thoroughly and often, especially before you eat
- Avoiding contact with stool (feces) from infected people or animals
- Cooking meat and poultry thoroughly before eating it
- Avoiding contaminated water, such as water from lakes or rivers
External parasites live on the body’s surface and rely on the host for food.
These parasites can cause various problems for their hosts, ranging from mild irritation to death.
Some more common external parasites include fleas, ticks, and lice.
Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they require animal protein to fulfill their nutritional needs.
A diet high in animal protein helps cats maintain lean muscle mass, promotes a healthy weight and supports the immune system.
What do cats eat?
Cats are obligate carnivores, which means that they require animal protein to survive.
In the wild, cats eat small prey–a trait that has remained unchanged in domestic cats.
A diet of small prey items helps keep a cat’s stomach small and allows her to digest her food more efficiently.
While commercial cat food is designed to meet a cat’s nutritional needs, some people feed their cats a raw diet.
A natural cat diet typically consists of muscle meat, organs, bones, and fat, which can be sourced from various animals.
However, it’s important to note that not all commercial cat food is created equal; some brands use lower-quality ingredients than others.
Therefore, it’s essential to do your research before selecting a food for your cat.
How much should I feed my cat?
The amount of food you should feed your cat depends on a variety of factors, including their age, activity level, and overall health.
Consult your veterinarian for specific recommendations, but in general, most healthy adult cats should consume between 24 and 35 calories per pound of body weight per day.
For example, a 10-pound cat would need between 240 and 350 calories daily.
Kittens and senior cats have different nutritional needs, so consult your veterinary practice for specific recommendations.
Kittens need more calories per pound than adults because they increase and have higher energy needs.
They also require more protein and fat for proper development.
Senior cats tend to have lower energy needs and may benefit from a diet that is lower in calories and fiber to help them feel full.
A good grooming routine will keep your cat healthy and looking her best.
It will also help you bond with your cat and check her body for any problems.
How often should I groom my cat?
Most cats groom themselves several times daily, but some need help to stay clean and healthy.
The frequency of grooming sessions will depend on the length and type of your cat’s fur.
Short-haired cats typically don’t need to be brushed as often as long-haired cats.
However, all cats benefit from occasional brushing to remove loose hair and dander.
A good rule of thumb is to brush your cat at least once a week.
If your cat has long fur, you may need to brush him daily or multiple times daily.
In addition to regular brushing, long-haired cats may need to be trimmed or shaved periodically to prevent mats and tangles.
In addition to regular brushing, all cats should be bathed occasionally.
How often you wash your cat depends on his coat type and lifestyle.
For example, indoor cats who don’t go outside usually don’t need baths as often as outdoor cats.
Similarly, cats with short fur may not need baths as often as those with long hair.
As a general guideline, most cats only need baths every few weeks. However, some cats may need more frequent baths if they get dirty often (for example, if they like to play in the dirt).
Ask your veterinarian if you’re unsure how often to bathe your cat.
What tools do I need to groom my cat?
Here is a list of recommended tools to groom your cat:
- A general-purpose pet shampoo
- A cat-shedding comb
- A pair of sharp scissors
- A slicker brush
- A pair of thinning shears (optional)
- An undercoat rake (optional)
Conclusion and final thoughts 💭
Routine care for your cat includes regularly scheduled visits to your veterinarian for checkups and vaccinations, regular grooming, and good nutrition.
Your veterinarian can help you create a health care plan that is right for your cat based on its age, lifestyle, health history, and any other factors that may be important.
How often do you take your cat to the veterinarian?
You should take your cat to the veterinarian at least once a year for a check-up.
However, if your cat is sick or injured, you must take them to the vet as soon as possible.
What does Your Veterinarian Looks For During the Checkup?
Your cat’s veterinarian will look for signs of good health during the checkup.
They will check the fur, eyes, ears, nose, and mouth for abnormalities.
They will also feel the body for any lumps or bumps.
What is routine care for cats?
Routine care for cats includes regular vet check-ups, vaccinations, and parasite control.
Cats also need a balanced diet and access to clean water.
Regular exercise and mental stimulation are also important for keeping cats healthy.
What should a cat do everyday?
There are a few things that cats should do every day in order to stay healthy and happy.
They should have a good meal, plenty of fresh water, some exercise, and some playtime.
Additionally, they should be groomed regularly and have their litter box cleaned out often.
What monthly treatments do cats need?
Cats need monthly treatments of flea and tick medicine, as well as heartworm preventative care.