How To Care For A Cat After Spaying Or Neutering

Spayed or neutered cats often live longer and healthier lives. The procedure reduces the chance of getting highly fatal diseases like uterine infections, breast cancer, and testicular cancer. This is mainly the reason why, aside from deterring unwanted pregnancies, spaying and neutering is a procedure undergone by many domestic cats.

Spaying and neutering are also proven to alter cat behavior. Cats are less likely to leave home. Mating behavior is also lessened, if not totally eradicated. This is important because the mating urge of cats often put them in danger like when they become aggressive towards other male cats.

It is also a better and effective way to control the feline population and, consequently, reduce the number of euthanasia for cats in shelters. Hence, governments often have spaying and neutering programs.

With its many benefits, spaying and neutering is still an invasive surgery. This means that there are risks including death. Ensure that you are having the procedure at a reputable veterinary clinic.  Explore your options and examine if your cat is in the right shape for the procedure with a veterinarian.

Here are important things to remember in caring for a cat after spaying or neutering:

Spaying or neutering care starts even before the surgery begins.  There are actually a few important steps that must be taken to ensure the safety of the procedure. This is what we call preoperative and postoperative care.

A safe and secure enclosure during transport is necessary. Appropriate temperature, air conditioning, and ventilation must always be considered in transporting animals. Lastly, consistently monitor the cat during transportation to ensure that they are okay.

It was stipulated in the published Article, “Veterinary Medical Care Guidelines for Spay and Neuter Programs” by the journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association that food should be withheld prior to surgery.  However, water is not to be withheld. The time frame would vary with each cat and with each age group so consult your veterinarian to get the appropriate time frame.

If after the surgery, the veterinarian suggests that the cat stay confined at the clinic, follow the advice. The reason for this is that there are cats that need monitoring to make sure that everything goes well. Cats also get high on the anesthesia and might do things that damage their wounds.

Vigorous activity is discouraged while the cat is healing to avoid damage to the suture or wound. If they are especially active, try to put them in a crate. It is also a good idea to put them in a room that is isolated from other cats.

Do not let cats lick their wound. They might be tempted to lick or mind their wounds. For instances like this, an Elizabethan collar may be employed to prevent them from reversing a healing surgical wound.  

Don’t bathe your pet for ten days after the surgery. This is to keep the wound clean and dry while it is healing.  If a doctor instructs you to apply topical medication, follow the prescription religiously. If the wound gets dirty, try to clean it with a saline solution or whatever the veterinarian advised you to use. It is important to regularly check on the wound to see if there is any unusual bruising or infection.  Your vet will describe to you what’s normal and what is a cause of concern. If you see anything that’s out of the normal, make sure to bring your pet to the veterinary right away.

If you are given a medical prescription for the cat, usually in the form of tablets or syrup, religiously follow the dose and the schedule of medication.

After the wound has completely healed, schedule a check-up to make sure that everything is how they are supposed to be and that there are no medical problems that an untrained eye would miss.

Having your cat spayed or neutered is a major step for your pet. It is good for them and their health in the long term. For a short while, however, it might be uncomfortable for them. It is then your job, as the owner to be more supportive of your cat during this time.

Should I Feed My Cat Vegetables?

Cat owners often find themselves asking, “Should I feed my cat vegetables?”. When our cats are starting to get obese, or simply because we think it might benefit them nutritionally, cat owners consider feeding their cats vegetables. After all, vegetables are healthy for humans. Then, it must be healthy for cats as well.

This notion could not be farther from the truth. Cats and humans have very different digestive features and very different nutritional needs. Cats have evolved to solely eat meats. Because of this, they do not have the necessary enzymes to digest and benefit from vegetables. Hence, they are a testament to the saying: “If you don’t use it, you lose it.” Needless to say, cats are strict carnivores and the introduction of vegetables to their diet does not benefit them. In fact, it often proves to be detrimental when fed significant and frequent bouts.

From an upset stomach to organ deceases, problems that arise from felines ingesting significant amounts of vegetables are well documented.

As the simple and direct answer to the question, “Should cat parents feed their pets vegetables?” would be no.

Stick to feeding your cat meat and animal-based cat food for maximum health. This kind of food is best suited for them. Animal protein, unlike plant-based proteins, have the complete amino acid and Taurine that cats have the ability to easy process and benefit from. The absence of these vital substances would lead to a multitude of deceases like blindness and heart problems and, as documented in the ’80s, be fatal.

Further, there are vegetables that are especially toxic to cats.

  • Onions

Although traces for onions in dishes and sauces would most likely not cause health problems, eating even a slice of onion would cause digestive problems for cats. Frequent and significant occurrences would lead to anemia and open more health problems.

  • Garlic

Garlic is considered poisonous for cats because they cause the blood cells to erupt and, consequently, cause anemia. Garlic is even more potent than onions so care must be exercised not to feed your cats this pungent vegetable.

  • Peanut Butter

Cats’ tongues do not have the ability to enjoy the sensation of sweetness. In addition to the fact that peanuts do not have minerals and vitamins that cats can benefit from, they do not really have the ability to palatally enjoy it. Further, the thick and sticky consistency of peanut butter is also a choking hazard and might leave your cat’s throat irritated. There really is no logical reason to feed cats peanut butter.

Cats must live as close to their natural inclinations as possible. This also means that they get fed food that will nourish their bodies and make them more healthy. The bottom line would be to get your cats away from vegetables and invest in high-quality animal-protein based cat food for your furry babies.

As a parting note, I’ll leave you with: Never make your cats vegan.

How To Make Baths Less Stressful for Cats

Cats innately do not like water. And, the exquisite self-groomers that they are, this fact is usually acceptable.

There are just times when we need to step in and give our fur babies a dance with water for hygienic and sometimes medical reasons. Instances when baths are important for cats are times when they have skin problems, or when their furr gets tangled and/or matted.

Ensure the right water temperature.

The temperature of the water must not be too cold nor must it be too hot. The temperature must be just right. This ensures that the water temperature is comfortable to the touch. Think of the water temperature that a baby must be bathed in.

Lessen slippery surfaces.

Felines freak out when they feel like they are not in control. Grip and stability is very important for agile and graceful creatures like cats. This is why it is imperative to give them good stability when bathing them.

Place a rubber mat on the tub for the cat to stand on. Even a towel would eliminate the slippery surface that freak cats out.

Foster a calm and relaxed environment.

Bathing is an activity that cats are not huge fans of. Make this experience less stressful for them by making sure the environment is as calming and relaxing as it can be.

Make sure the water pressure from the shower head is gentle. Further, if the shower attachment produces too much noise, use a pail to scoop water instead.

Associate baths with pleasant things.

Try your best to associate bath time with things your cat loves. Try to add catnip and toys to the bathtub to entice your cat baby.

Make bath time quick.

Have everything you need— towels and at shampoo—ready to shorten bath time. A good 3-5 minutes is a good time to strive for.

Make drying tender and nurturing.

Turn the drying into cat cuddles with towels. If you must use a blower, use the lowest setting to minimize noise and avoid burns.

By just paying attention to a few details, every cat owner can show their love for their cats one bath at a time.

How to Keep Hairballs from Creating Hairy Situations

How to Keep Hairballs from Creating Hairy Situations

Hairballs are definitely one of the less glamorous sides of owning a cat. There is also a bit of irony to it as well. Cats are naturally built to self-groom, therefore reducing the need to give them frequently baths. However, it is because they know how to lick themselves clean that the dead hair their tongues catch on is swallowed and leads to the creation of the nasty hairball in their digestive system.

Hairballs are definitely one of the less glamorous sides of owning a cat. There is also a bit of irony to it as well. Cats are naturally built to self-groom, therefore reducing the need to give them frequently baths. However, it is because they know how to lick themselves clean that the dead hair their tongues catch on is swallowed and leads to the creation of the nasty hairball in their digestive system.

What is even more vexing for some cat owners is that there it is really a natural part of owning a cat. It is not something that can be ‘cured’ (especially if you own, nay, adore fluffy breeds like Persians). The only thing you can do is accept it as part of your responsibility as a good owner and know the best ways to handle these little accidents.

1. Use hairball formula cat food.

If you want something easy to start with, you can’t go wrong with cat food specially made to help your cat’s digestive systems. These are common enough across all brands but a few noteworthy benefits that you might want to look for are those that have high fiber and can also improve the health of your cat’s fur (thereby minimizing the shedding or at least making the hair more digestible).

2. Make a habit to sweep.

There is no predicting when the next time your cat is going to cough out its last grooming session. You will more likely just stumble upon a nasty pile in the corners here and there. Hence, it is best to just have a regular cleaning regimen and become accustomed to sweeping up hairballs as part of the routine.

3. Groom your cat more frequently.

Remember, there is nothing wrong with also having a personal hand in your cat’s hygiene. Start bathing them more frequently and set aside some time every day to brush your cat. Remember, the worst hairballs tend to form because there is only so much hair that can pass through your cat’s digestive tract. Even a little bit of grooming can go a long way to reducing that amount!

4. Avoid panicking or when a cat starts to cough out.

Hearing a cat retch while on the couch is certainly a bit frightening (and catastrophic as far as the clean up goes). However, the last thing you should do is panic and give your cat even more undue stress. Remember, hairballs are still quite natural and it is important for cat owners to become a bit more used to the times when their cat spits one out. And if you don’t want any landing higher than the floor, then at least make sure to pick up your cat gently and carefully set them down until the hairball’s finally out.

On a final note, don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian either if you think your cat’s hairball situation is a bit more serious. But in all cases, it’s best to accept that hairballs are just part of life with a cat and not tear your own hair out because of them!

What You Can Expect When You Live with a Cat

What You Can Expect When You Live with a Cat

Have you adopted a fur baby just now? Adopting a cat is an extraordinary experience – it becomes your confidante, your ‘practice baby’, and your best friend! It’s not only a moving experience for you, but for the cat as well. It’s as overjoyed as you to finally have a home to live in and a family that will love it.

Cats can be mysterious – they can either be playful or suddenly reclusive and hide under furniture from you. But they are not a puzzle that you need to solve, they can take a while to understand before you get to be close and personal with them. Don’t lose hope! They will soon be with you 24/7 and will always crave for your attention.

But first, what do you need to know when you live with a cat?

  • On the first days after the adoption, while your cat is grateful, they are territorial. A new home means new dangers for them and it makes them uneasy and paranoid. Since there are different furniture around the house, they will probably be too scared to approach it and make contact with it. That’s why some cats are always on edge when they’re somewhere new. For the first few days, dedicate a corner for your cat and fill it with feline amenities – litter box, water, food, and a soft cat blanket.
  • Place the litter box where the cat can do its business privately. No one wants to be disturbed when they’re doing their business, and it’s the same for your cats too. Make sure you fill up the litter box up to 2 inches and keep it clean as well.
  • Dedicate a space for eating and drinking for your cat and place it away from the litter box. Since cats can be messy – either on purpose or by accident – it pays to put a placemat underneath the bowls for easy clean up. Make sure the food you get for your cat is age appropriate and don’t make them drink cow’s milk! There’s a special formula for them to enjoy and get benefits from.
  • Cats love to hide, and they do this whenever they feel threatened. Make them a small cat house in the corner and pad it up with cushion to make it cozy. It can be made with boxes or you can buy one from the pet store. Position it to make it face the door in the room so it won’t get too startled.
  • Felines always have the desire to scratch on something to wear out their claws. Get your cat a scratching post so they won’t consider clawing your furniture and walls. There are different kinds of scratching gadgets that can help them wear out their claws for a bit – it can be directly installed on the floor, a post itself, and maybe get a cat tree. If they are too iffy to approach it, you can sprinkle some dried catnip on it to entice them to use the post.
  • Cats are explorers and hunters, so they like to pounce and hide around the house. If you have high display shelves and dangling display, expect them to climb on it and possibly break your displays! Since you really can’t make the cat stop doing this, it’s easier to keep these displays in cabinets and away from cat’s reach. It’s the same for holes – there are holes that cats would love to explore and it might injure them or destroy something in the house. Patch it up to make sure that they won’t explore the space between walls.
  • Cats are always on alert and nervous when they’re with new people. Don’t force them to interact with new people at once since they will get defensive and might claw your guest or even you! Give them time and space and soon enough – with enough respected interaction – they will approach you or them instead.

How to Care for Your Cat with Cancer

Having a pet is a joyful experience – you have someone to welcome you home, cuddle you when you feel lonely, and play with you when you’re happy. They’re soft and gentle creatures, and sympathize with you whenever you feel down and depressed. They are intelligent as well – they know when you need their attention and will run to your side when needed.

However, owning a pet is not always rainbows and butterflies, they sometimes come with physical defects and diseases. The most terrible thing of them all – cancer – can possibly be suffered by your cat. Although it’s not rampant, there are cats with cancer out there that needs proper care and whole-hearted love and affection. Don’t give up on them yet! There are a lot of effective treatments out there to help your cat survive the disease.

Cancer Treatments for Your Cat:

  • Tumor removal through surgery. It means that your cat will undergo a surgery to tediously remove the tumors in their body. They are put under anaesthesia and will require you to not feed your cat before the surgery. These tumors are collected as specimen for biopsy, eventually your cat will have to go for chemotherapy as per doctor’s suggestion. Since cats will be frail and lethargic after surgery, they are suggested to stay there overnight.
  • Chemotherapy. It usually lasts for a couple of weeks to months and are done through pills and injections. It will make your cat feel more lethargic and won’t have any appetite. It doesn’t give your cat hair loss as they only receive smaller doses compared to humans.
  • Radiotherapy. This kind of therapy requires radiation that targets tumors through x-ray. It will require longer periods and usually combined with chemotherapy.

These are the treatments available for your cancer-stricken cat, but there are other believed holistic alternative treatments that can make their condition better. But these three are usually the common treatments needed to make the cat handle the cancer. There’s also Cryotherapy and Immunotherapy for your cat that are considered safe and better for your cat’s health. Make sure that the medicine given will be strictly adhered to schedule.

How to Care for the Sick Cat:

  • Nutrition. This is usually advised by the vet since each cat is unique and will need an abundance of vitamins and minerals in their diet. They will be tougher to feed since they will associate it with nausea and medicine, and they will be tougher to convince to drink water. The way to handle this is to avoid combining pill time and meal time together and to stop forcing them to eat or drink when they have nausea.
  • Environment. Make sure you shower your cat with love and affection during this tough times. You can make a corner specifically for your cat and move all its necessities nearby as they usually lack the energy to walk to their litter box or their feeding bowls. You have to adjust to them and maybe even have to settle beside them when they can’t climb.
  • Hygiene. You will have to be extra careful when handling them and have to be more attentive for matted hair and trim their nails. You may have to wash them often than usual and make sure to be gentle in rubbing them dry and combing them.  For cleaning their litter boxes, you have to wear gloves to protect yourself and proceed to clean their items.

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