Cats normally spray to mark their territory and out of dominance. It is something that can be fixed. Spaying or neutering a cat at a young age can prevent further spraying. This is something you need to speak to your vet about since desexing a cat can reduce the motivation to spray.
Multi-cat homes that seem overcrowded have territory marking problems, making castration extremely important. Have multiple litter boxes in various areas. Litter boxes must be cleaned often. If a cat appears outside the window, causing anxiety and spraying in your cat, prevent access to that window. Use an enzyme cleaner to clean areas that have been sprayed to be sure the cat will not return to the area. You may need to restrict your cat to certain areas to better monitor it until the spraying issue is resolved.
Spraying can be stressed-related as well as insecurity, confidence and self-esteem. Your cat may need tons of reassurance from you through praise, attention and affection. Play with him as often as you can, talk to him, pet and massage him. Make him feel like the most wonderful cat in the world. The extra attention can work wonders to enable your cat to feel secure and self-assured to stop spraying. Speak with your veterinarian if your cat seems uncontrollably insecure and stressed. As a last resort, anti-anxiety drugs are available.
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Interesting feline facts and things you might be interested in knowing about your cat or kitten. If you have an interesting fact please post it for review and help our community grow.
Put out several bowls of fresh water to encourage it to drink. Pet water fountains are a great investment as well. They keep the water fresher longer, making it more appealing to the cat. Cats prefer to drink from stainless steel or glass bowls rather than plastic.
You can try to make a “soup” by mixing equal amounts of canned cat good with water. This is something a cat won’t refuse and you get more liquid in them. For a cat that likes milk, add some of the milk to water to give it that flavor. You can also add ice cubes to the water to encourage more drinking. Many cat owners find it best to let water trickle out of a faucet for the pleasure of their cat’s drinking needs – and many felines prefer this method. If you think there’s a bigger problem please consult your veterinarian.
It is not unusual to want to feed your cat table scraps as he/she peers at you with those big brown eyes. However, feeding your cat any people food will cause more harm than good. Table scraps are destructive to your cat’s digestive systems and can cause severe stomach upset such as fatal pancreatic inflammation.
Avoid giving your cat any chicken or turkey bones, do not add any table scraps to your pet’s food dish, never feed chocolate to pets due to its toxicity to animals and discard all table scraps in a tightly covered garbage can. The best thing you can do for your cat is to not give in to those pleading eyes. Feed it the proper diet, provide plenty of exercise and give your cat an extra helping of love and attention when meal time is over. He or she will live longer and happier.
You can also watch the video on the best and worst foods for your dog or cat
Hairballs are known as trichobezoar or fur balls. They are more common in the long-haired cats. Hairballs are the result of a cat’s self-grooming antics. That hairball can form into a mat which can lead to gastrointestinal problems in your cat and possibly constipation. Hairballs are quite common but there are steps you can take to keep your cat safe from any digestive problems as a result of all that grooming. To help, you should groom your cat frequently with daily brushing which can reduce the amount of hair the cat will ingest. Many pet supplies on the market, petroleum-based, that act as a laxative to pass hairballs more easily. Also with these products you add them to a cat’s food, some pet food companies also provide cat foods and treats with specific remedies for the recurrent hairball and fur ball problems.
When you get a new cat, you need to be sure it is protected health-wise through preventative vaccinations. For the health of your cat, the vaccinations necessary are for the prevention of Rabies, the Feline Calicivirus or FCV, Panleukopenia virus or distemper and Feline herpes virus. Distemper, FCV and the herpes virus are typically started when your kitten is about 8-10 weeks old and repeated at 12-14 weeks and a year old. These vaccines are then repeated every three years. Rabies is given when a cat is about 3-4 months old and repeated every year (or every three years, if you choose that option.) Please consult your vet about this.
You can read more on different breeds of cats from our library.
The first thing to do to stop your cat from pooping on the floor is to be sure the litter box is cleaned regularly and often. Cats are very fussy about this. Always put the litter box in the same place once cleaned and disinfected. If you find “accidents” on the floor, place them in the litter box to send the message, “this is where it goes.”
You can try using spray repellents around the home where the cat frequents. Most sprays are labeled for dogs but work for cats as well. You may also need to restrict your cat to certain areas of the home where you can monitor the situation more closely until the cat stops having accidents. Thoroughly clean any accident spots with an enzyme cleaner so there are no repeat offenses. If there is still a problem and you can’t get it under control, you may need vet assistance.
The last thing you want is for your cat to be affected with any type of cancer. Cats can have many of the same cancers and symptoms as dogs although there are some differences. You can help your cat with a better prognosis if you know the signs and symptoms of cancer. The disease is described as uncontrolled cells in the body that spreads to invade other cells and tissues. Older cats over the age of 10 are prone to cancer which is a difficult disease to avoid. The most common cancers, signs and symptoms in cats are –
• Skin tumors are not most common in cats and if one is detected, they are most often malignant. You should examine your cat’s body often as tumors will be evident with a lump or mass on the skin – anywhere on the body.
• Abdominal tumors are complicated to detect, just as they are in dogs and the best you can do is note any unusual signs and symptoms such as weight loss, a change in eating habits, protracted vomiting, constant diarrheal issues and an enlargement of the abdomen.
• Mammary gland tumors are common in older female cats, especially one that has not been spayed. Over 85 per cent of mammary gland tumors are malignant and this type of cancer is the third most common cancer disease in cats. The most common types of cancers affecting a cat are skin tumors and lymphoma. The most common symptom of this cancer type is a lump in the breast tissue.
• Lymphoma in cats is most often associated with the feline leukemia virus and can affect the digestive system. Normal symptoms are vomiting, lethargy and diarrhea. At least 25 per cent of cats with the feline leukemia virus are prone to lymphoma.
Obesity is a huge problem for many pets. It can be difficult because humans love their pets so much that they give in to the pleading eyes and feed them anything they want. However, this is extremely harmful for the animal. To help your obese cat, it may be necessary to switch to a lower calorie diet, per the advice of your veterinarian. Follow portion control exactly as specified on the package of the food.
Along with diet change, you will need to increase your cat’s daily exercise. Cats are notorious for excess weight gain because they do lead very sedentary lives. Choose a daily playtime with your cat, most often in the evenings before bedtime. There are many interactive toys available for your cat to enjoy during an evening of activity. If you are one of the lucky ones that can take your cat for walks, this is a great option for much needed exercise while enjoying the great outdoors. Any fitness plan is successful by incorporating less calories and more activity – including that of your cat.
You can read more on different breeds of cats.
If your cat starts drinking more water than usual and urinating excessively, it is most often a sign of illness. Kidney disease and diabetes mellitus are common in cats and can cause an increase in thirst and appetite as well. Keep out fresh cool water in various areas in the home and be sure to have your vet perform a urinalysis to diagnosis the problem. Kidney disease and diabetes are not curable but can be controlled for your cat’s better quality of life.
Read more on different breeds of cats.
Cats are known to be when it comes to eating but sometimes the issue can be due to a medical problem. If changes in eating are a sudden concern, contact your veterinarian to be sure your cat is healthy.
To encourage your cat to eat, try offering some aromatic foods like canned tuna or sardines. Most cats cannot refuse these foods as well as liver. Warming up the cat’s normal food is sometimes more appealing to stimulate the appetite. Meat flavored baby food can be enticing, warmed – being careful there is no onion or garlic in any of the foods you offer your cat.
Catnip can help a cat feel less stressed and acts as a natural appetite stimulant. While offering your cat a regular cat food, try mixing in some fish oil, broth or cooked egg. Don’t leave the food out too long as it will spoil. If the cat is hungry, it will learn to eat when the food is given. Cats will eat what their bodies require. You can alternate different foods for variety to reduce finicky habits.
Read about different breeds of cata
Seizures can be a common problem in pets and sometimes just a symptom that something is wrong with your animal. Seizures are described as a sudden disruption of the nerves in the brain. The seizure is evidenced by involuntary tightening of voluntary muscles, abnormal behaviors and sensations and can last from a few seconds to several minutes. Some causes of a seizure may be liver disease, low blood sugar, tumors, diseases from inflammation or infection, as well as head trauma or a blood vessel disorder within the brain.
Seizures can be genetic with congenital problems from birth such as hydrocephalus or water on the brain. There is no definitive reason for a seizure and they are known as idiopathic. Treating a seizure disorder is all dependent upon the cause and underlying issues. Treating the primary cause of the seizures will cause them to stop.
Watch the video on what causes seizures in pets by Dr. Karen Becker
Choosing a pet insurance most often depends upon your needs and cost. There are pros and cons to consider in making your decision with the first pro being the option to care for your animal in the face of an emergency. There are a variety of insurance companies, policies and coverage options. Some will cover unexpected medical issues as well as annual checkups and immunizations. Of course, the more coverage you get, the higher the premium. The younger the animal, the lower your premiums will be. If your pet is healthy at the time of signing up for the insurance, you have no problem qualifying for coverage. Some policies will let you choose your own vet and some may not. If you can, you can choose extended care for your pet such as dental care and accidental death.
Cons you might think about are the cost of treatments vs. the cost of insurance. Some insurance policies have maximum benefit amounts so you need to consider that when choosing. It is a con when faced with choosing a vet that you are unsure of. Some policies will not let you use your own doctor. Also consider the fact that some policies require pre-authorization before treatment – which can mean the life of your pet in an emergency. Be leery of the policies that require a physical and do not allow pre-existing conditions such as flea problems, past injuries, chronic ailments and oral hygiene. A select few companies will not cover older pets. Read all the fine print before choosing your policy. Most pet insurance companies require out-of-pocket and deductibles. Make sure there are no penalties for cancelling a policy at any time.
Having a pet insurance policy for your animal can give you peace of mind. If you can afford a policy for the health of your animal, it is a good choice and safety net in the event of an emergency.
Many pets are fearful of thunder and storms and that includes cats, although it is rare. Even though they do have an independent nature, some felines are startled by the sudden noises. You can help by counter-conditioning your pet. Distract your cat during a storm and do something you know your cat enjoys. Use a lot of praise and treats during this fun time. In extreme cases, your veterinarian can prescribe anti-anxiety medical treatments.
Most importantly, when a storm occurs, keep yourself calm as pets reflect off your feelings many times. If redirecting the cat to other activities during a storm is not working, try to provide a safe place for your get to feel secure. The most popular spots are under the bed, behind furniture or a secret basement location, any place that may muffle the noises it fears. If your cat does not have a “safe haven” chosen, you can provide a safe place by placing some of its favorite toys (with catnip) and some food bits to encourage your cat to go there.
Any changes in diet should first be discussed with your doctor to be sure there are no health issues. Once assured your cat is healthy, try changing foods to find one your cat prefers. Experiment with varieties to find something your cat will love. If you have been using a dry food, add a little water to make it more appealing. Mix canned and dry together. Warm the regular food to make it more aromatic and enticing. Pour a small amount of olive oil over its food for the same effect or try adding tuna in oil. If your cat eats dry food, leave it out so he can access it whenever he wants. To put on some extra pounds, try offering your cat homogenized milk or a mixture of milk and cream if your cat can tolerate it.
Eating habits and problems may be psychological where you may need to praise and encourage your cat in a soft tone of voice to eat its food. Provide his food in an area away from disturbances and distractions. Because of the finicky habits, changing the foods often may work as well. If you still have concerns, your veterinarian may be able to advise you about a dietary supplement or a high-calorie food specific for cats that need to gain weight. Remember to consult your vet about this. Please remember, even though your cat seems skinny some breeds are naturally thin.
You can read more on different breeds of cats.
Cats love to scratch and it is part of who they are. You surely don’t want your cat to continue defacing your furniture because of this deep-ingrained need. Cats try to make their presence known and scratching is their visual way of doing so for their humans. Another way is by releasing pheromones, a secretion on their bodies’ that attracts other felines. Either way, scratching the furniture is unacceptable; there are ways you can stop the destruction.
Many people choose to have their indoor cats declawed, which is a safe procedure, especially when your cat is young. This is something to discuss with your veterinarian.
Provide your cat with scratching posts, strategically placed throughout the home where your cat frequents. There should be at least one post per cat living in the home, plus an extra. If you catch your cat scratching the furniture, redirect it to a scratching post. Each scratching post should be tall enough for your cat to stretch to the top and should be stable enough so the feline does not fear it moving.
Some people choose to cover the furniture with heave gage plastic or use repellent aerosols to keep the cats away from scratching the furniture. Other options are keeping your cat’s nails trimmed well and often.
Need to know about different breeds of cats?
It is common for cat’s to self-groom themselves although biting their nails can be one of their bad habits, just as it is for humans. Biting the nails can be a compulsive problem because of conflict, stress, tension or anxious situations. Maybe the nails are just getting too long and the cat needs a nail trim. Whatever the cause, excessive nail biting can cause bleeding, irritation and infection to the area. If you feel there is a constant problem with your cat biting the nails, contact your veterinarian before irritation occurs. You can try to stop the behavior with anti-itch spray on the paws to ease any irritation along with an Elizabethan collar to give the paws time to heal.
Read more on breeds of cats from our about pets library.
Meowing is a way for your cat to communicate to you and needs to be addressed if it is something sudden. Otherwise, it may be due to illness, attention seeking, hunger, loneliness, stress or needing a mate. After insuring it is not a medical issue according to your vet, you can train your cat to be a little quieter.
Don’t give your cat attention when making a ruckus. Even if it is negative attention, the cat knows this is a way for you to notice it. Ignoring the outburst of meowing is the best thing you can do, even if you must wear ear plugs. It will get louder and longer but don’t give in despite all efforts on the part of the cat.
During a quiet moment, take the time to play excessively with your cat, pet and massage it, talk to it in a loving and caring tone of voice. Only give the excessive attention when your cat is quiet and stop if it starts meowing. The cat will learn to differentiate what you expect. It will take time and patience for your cat to be re-trained, so don’t get discouraged – your cat will be more relaxed and self-assured.
You can learn about different breeds of cats from our library.
When in the wild, cats tend to eat quite frequently without any obesity concerns. The reason is due to the time and physical activity necessary of foraging for their food. In domestic situations, your cat does not have to work for its grub, making kitty sometimes lazy and on the verge of obesity. Not only do you want to provide a nutritional balanced meal, your cat needs to have ample exercise to stay fit. Some options could be to literally have him/her work for its food. One of the many options could be to provide puzzle toys, balls or other interactive games with food placed inside them. Your cat will play with that toy for hours as it tries to get each morsel.
You could make some homemade games as such, by placing holes in a small box or two-liter bottle to entice kitty to reach for the food. Other games could be a hiding game where you place food bits in strategic places throughout the home. Be creative in your efforts. Cats love to hunt and will find the food, keeping him active in the process. These types of things will help your cat with weight loss and avoid obesity. If after trying various things to help your cat with weight loss and to avoid more obesity in your cat consult your vet about putting your cat on a special diet.
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Most often, if a cat gets pregnant, nature takes over and the cat knows what to do. As an owner, you need not intervene unless there seems to be difficulty during the delivery process.
A cat’s gestation period varies between 60 and 70 days, depending on its breed. You will notice if your cat is pregnant by its’ 3rd week when the nipples get large and appear visibly pink. You will notice visible weight gain by the 4th week. Usually the veterinarian can determine for sure if your cat is expecting.
Cat’s do experience morning sickness after several weeks and change their eating habits, although nutrition is important. Your vet can recommend the best diet during the pregnancy with higher calcium and protein. There is not much else you can do for your cat unless complications occur. Then it’s time to consult your vet. Other than that just sit back and wait for your cat to have her baby kittens.
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