Did you know that February is National Cat Health Month? There are certainly a lot of pet holidays in February, not to mention Valentine's Day! How healthy is your cat? Have you ever asked yourself that? Does your veterinarian give you advice on how to get, or keep, your cat healthy when you take him in for his annual check-up?
Remember, our cats are masters of disguise! It's not because they want to hide anything from us, but our domestic cats still have the instinct of the wild and in the wild, only the strong survive. That means, if your cat isn't feeling great, she may hide it from you and you may not notice something is wrong until it's too late.
How Healthy Is Your Cat?
Here are a few things you should make note of when trying to determine whether your cat is healthy and whether you need to make an appointment with your veterinarian.
- How is his appetite? Just like humans, cats will have days when they eat a lot and other days when they just pick at their meals. A day or a meal without much interest in dinner may not be anything to worry about. If a lack of interest in food persists for more than a day (or more than is typical for your cat), call your veterinarian.
- A change in attitude. Is your cat hiding? Is she hissing, spitting and scratching? Take a look at your household dynamics and you may be able to find a connection between attitude change and the household. A new human or pet or a move or new noises or scents could cause a change in your kitty's behavior. See if you can pinpoint when the change occurred and what might have caused it. If your cat stops playing with his or her favorite toy or rolling in his favorite catnip that could be a sign something isn't quite right.
- Litter box avoidance. When a cat who has never avoided the litter box all of a sudden stops using it, it should raise red flags. Talk to your vet to rule out any health issues. Did you change the litter? Is there a new cat in the house or a new dog or human? Have you lost a pet? Perhaps you have too many cats and too few litter boxes? When is the last time you bought new litter boxes? They do need to be changed because claws dig up the plastic and that means the scent of urine and feces won't go away even when you change the litter.
These are the top three changes a pet parent may notice. Talk with your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns. Be aware though there are illnesses and disease that won't have any visible signs -- that is why it's necessary to have annual vet check-ups for your furbaby.
What does your cat do when he or she just isn't feeling right or is out-of-sorts? We'll bet you notice right away when something just isn't normal, don't you?
Let us know on Facebook what your kitty does to give you signs something isn't right.