Contrary to popular belief, cats don’t have 9 lives. They have one!
And it’s our responsibility as cat owners to make sure that their life is long and healthy.
Keep reading to learn 5 simple things everyone can do to help their cat live a long and comfortable life.
1. Heartworm Prevention
Heartworms pose a serious threat for both indoor and outdoor cats.
While indoor cats are at less risk, it’s always possible that an indoor cat can get heartworms if bitten by an infected mosquito.
Cats will develop lung disease associated with heart worms if they go untreated or do not receive preventative treatment.
Heartworm problems are more common than both Feline Leukemia and Feline AIDS.
Initial Signs of Heartworms
- asthma-like attacks
- lack of appetite
- weight loss.
If gone untreated, heart worms will cause lung disease. This can cause severe lung congestion and even death.
While heart worms can cause serious symptoms, they usually go undetected for years.
Schedule regular checkups with your vet twice a year to make sure your cat does not have heart worms.
SURVEY: Do You Consider Cats Family?
Your opinion matters!
2. Dental Disease
Dental disease has been described as the silent killer of cats.
A study conducted by Data Savant in 2006 showed that 40% of cats 5 years of age or older had developed some kind of dental disease.
They also found that being overweight also increased the risk of dental disease in cats.
Practicing good dental hygiene in pets has been scientifically proven to extend their life by at least 3 years.
Good dental care includes frequent brushing, yearly cleaning, antibacterial rinses, and dental chews/treats.
**PRO TIP** My vet gives his highest recommendation to Virbac C.E.T Enzymatic Oral Hygiene Chews.
Not only do they use safe and natural antiseptic ingredients for plague and tartar control, but they come in tasty flavors like fish and poultry!
Also, the treats are big so your cat has to do some biting and chewing to eat them.
This is important – more biting and chewing means the treat’s active ingredients can do their job on your cat’s teeth.
To learn more about how to prevent dental disease in cats, read this article: 6 Ways To Prevent Dental Disease In Cats
Accidents happen – cats choke on things, eat poisonous food, or get sick.
You don’t want to be in a position where your cat needs medical help, but you can’t afford it. Cat owners need to be prepared!
A common misconception is that cats die of old age. Cats rarely die from just being “old”.
Cats die from diseases and health complications that come with getting older, like kidney failure or cancer.
It’s almost inevitable that cats will develop some kind of chronic condition when they get older.
Many of these diseases are curable or at least manageable, but the medical treatment is expensive. Pet insurance offers a solution to that.
Right now, most pet owners have to choose “forced euthanasia” when they can’t afford their cat’s medical bills.
“Forced euthanasia” is having to choose euthanasia over medical treatment because the medical bills are too expensive.
This is absolutely horrible. No cat owner should have to go through this.
At a low monthly cost, pet insurance can extend your cats life for years.
RELATED: To learn more about cat insurance, read this: 4 Reasons Your Cat Needs Insurance
4. Weight Control
If a healthy weight is so important for humans, why would it be any different for cats?
A study published by Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica in 2018 found that 45% of cats from a sample of medical records were overweight.
They also found that when left up to cat owners to judge, only 22% considered their cat overweight.
This means that cat owners are biased when it comes to judging their cat’s weight.
It is best to let your veterinarian be the judge of your cat’s weight and determine if it is healthy or not.
A 14 year old study conducted by Purina found that feeding your pet 25% fewer calories can add 2 years to the pet’s life!
Even though Purina profits from pet owners purchasing food, they still recommended less food. Why?
Because Purina knows that they will make more money in the long run if pets live longer.
Feed less for a longer life!
5. Early Detection
Prevention is the best way to keep your kitty healthy and happy.
Scheduling vet visits twice a year is very important, especially if your cat is older.
Bi-annual vet visits help do the following:
- Minimizes the progression of disease.
- Allows the veterinarian to make necessary lifestyle changes as your cat ages.
- Help establish a good relationship between you and your vet.
- Allows your veterinarian and the staff to become familiar with your cat.
In many cases, your vet can detect a problem and offer a cure before your cat has to experience any pain.
Problems associated with the kidney, liver, heart, thyroid, blood sugar, and certain types of cancer can only be detected from regular examinations and routine blood testing.
Vet checkups save lives!
SUMMARY: 5 Simple Ways To Help Your Cat Live Longer
- Prevent heart worms
- Prevent dental disease
- Get pet insurance
- Weight control
- Go to the vet twice a year