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Cat Care

Important Cat Care Tips:

  • Visit your veterinarian annually for an exam and vaccines.
  • Control parasitic infection and give your cat a heartworm pill once a month, year-round.
  • Cats require a balanced diet of 80% dry food & supplement with vitamins.
  • Cats will benefit from a good bathing. Protect eyes and ears, and use only cat shampoo. Check ears for dark residues.
  • Brush and rinse teeth at least twice a week.
  • Use flea and tick prevention March through December.
  • Give laxative for hairballs.
  • Give low-calorie treats.
  • Cats will benefit from a good brushing twice a week. Groom kittens daily.

Pilling a Cat: Wrap the cat in a towel. Open the mouth and insert tablet. Using the eraser end of a pencil, tap the back of the throat to stimulate the swallowing reflex. Quickly withdraw pencil and tap cap’s nose. When the cat licks its nose, it swallows the pill. Another way is to open the mouth with one hand and use forceps or tweezers to drop the tablet deep into the cat’s throat. Withdraw the forceps quickly and tap the cat’s nose, the job is done.

cat_pilling

Exercise: Outdoor cats get much more exercise than indoor cats do, since their social habits keep them patrolling and defending their territories constantly. To stimulate indoor cats to be more playful, provide scratching posts, catnip, and other toys suspended from a string. Two cats will exercise and play together.

Preventing and Controling Worms:
Give your cat a heart worm pill once a month, year-round. Prevention and control of intestinal parasites can be complex; multiple infections are common, so specific diagnosis by a veterinarian is essential. Usually this is best done by microscopic examination of a stool specimen.

Steps to Control Parasitic Infection:

  1. Obtain a specific diagnosis and proper treatment instructions from a veterinarian.
  2. Use good sanitary practices. Pick up and dispose of stools daily. Never feed your pet on the ground. Use a clean dish. Put parasite-inhibiting agents on the ground or in the cat’s pen, if the cat either roams outdoors or is confined to an outdoor pen.
  3. Control intermediate hosts in order to break the parasite’s life cycle: Keep your cat from eating raw food such as mice, rabbits, or birds. Control fleas and other insects by using insecticides in a regular spray program.
  4. To eliminate and contol worms, administer the correct drug at the proper intervals for as long as necessary.
  5. Apply all of these measures. Used alone, no one control is entirely satisfactory.

Fleas and Other External Parasites: Cats are susceptible to many external parasites that live on or are embedded in the surface of the skin. Fleas, lice, ticks, and mange mites are the most common pests. Most are easy to control with systematic treatment.

Fleas: Fleas are especially troublesome where the climate is humid. Their bites may cause an initial local reaction, but as cats become more sensitized to flea bites, a more generalized reaction may occur, usually rashes that appear on certain parts of the skin. Eliminating fleas from your cat and home can be accomplished with a commercial products, including powders, sprays and collars.

Ticks: Common in woods, fields, and sandy beaches, ticks attach themselves to the skin, especially around the ears and toes. Ticks can be removed with powders or can be picked off individually. Never use the tip of a hot cigarette to burn the tick. The easiest way to remove it is to dab the tick with alcohol for several minutes, and them pull it off gently with tweezers.

Lice: These tiny parasites causes intense itching, but are easily controlled with flea powders or sprays repeated weekly for three of four applications. Look for dandruff-like eggs attached to the hair shafts and adult lice on the surface of the skin.

Mange Mites: Several types can afflict cats. Some live in the ears or on the surface of the skin. They are contagious and cause intense itching. They are quite easily cured by insecticides. Ear mites are common in kittens, which produce a black granular discharge in the ear canal. Cleaning the ears daily with mineral oil and dusting the kitten with flea powder usually solves the problem.

Grubs: Cutevebra larvae, or grubs, are wormlike parasites that may affect dittens during the late summer. Evidence of this pest is a lump with a slight hole in the center, usually in the skin around the kitten’s neck or chest. The moving grub is about three-fourths of an inch long and may be seen at the entrance to the hole. Treatment requires anesthesia and veterinary care.