Updated: Nov 30
We all know that cats are pretty independent creatures. They're known for being a bit of a loner and choosing to spend their time alone. However, it's essential for you as the pet parent to make sure your cat is happy and healthy! In this blog post, we'll show you six ways to keep your cat happy and healthy so they can live a long life with you.
Feed your cat like a true carnivore
Cats are a carnivorous species, and as such, they need a diet high in protein. Feed them cat food that has been specially formulated for a cat's age and their nutritional needs. The protein content in cat food should be between 25% to 35%. Dry cat food should have about 35 percent protein and 12 to 24 percent fat content; canned food will appear to have less because it is diluted with water.
We always recommend feeding a premium diet approved by your veterinarian.
Give your cat treats occasionally. However, be sure to give them healthy treats so you don't undo all the hard work you've done to ensure they have a high-quality diet. Treats should only account for around 15% of their daily caloric intake.
Vitamins and minerals are essential too! Vitamins and minerals are necessary for cat health. If you are feeding a premium diet to your cat they will be getting the specific vitamins that have been specially formulated to meet all their needs in each stage of life.
Cats are natural hunters, so you'll want to provide your cat with opportunities throughout the day when they can hunt insects, bugs, etc. You can do this by placing them in a cat run outside in your garden.
Cats also love to climb, so provide them with high places that they can jump up onto and perch on when they're feeling tired. You could place a cat tree near the window for sunbathing too!
Toys are essential for cats and should be rotated regularly so that your cat doesn't get bored. Just like children, cats can become easily bored if they have the same toy all the time.
Cat toys are essential for mental stimulation, which can help with cat behavioural problems. If your cat is feeling a little stir crazy, provide them with stimulating toys to keep their minds active! Feline socialisation is key to preventing behavioural problems. Cats love to play so providing an environment that meets a cat’s behavioural needs sometimes prevents these issues from happening.
Schedule Veterinary Visits
Keeping your cat happy and healthy means keeping up with regular veterinary visits. We recommend that cats visit their veterinarian at least two times a year; however, more often if necessary. This is because 6 months in a cats life is 5-7 years. Here's the takeaway:
- Don't forget to take your cat in for their first round of vaccinations and deworming!
- We recommend keeping a cat health guide on hand, so you know what signs to watch out for, when to call the vet, etc. This can be especially helpful if you have multiple cats who are all exhibiting similar symptoms.
- Keep your cat's health records in one convenient location so you can easily access them if needed during an emergency.
- Visit your cat's vet as soon as you bring them home, then schedule regular checkups for health guidance and vaccinations throughout cathood. Your cat may need to see a specialist if it has chronic health concerns for long-term care.
Minimize Environmental Stressors
Keep your cat's environment stress-free and promote self-soothing. For example, if you have multiple cats in the household, you should opt for numerous litter boxes and place them where all of the cats can easily access them. This minimises conflict between cats. If there are any other environmental factors causing tension, like food bowls or toys, make sure to keep these in separate locations.
Here are some other points to consider:
Also, avoid loud noises that may scare your cat. If you are using things like vacuums and blenders, do so when they're not around. This way, they won't associate the sound with something negative.
Keep their routine consistent! Cats have a natural inclination to sleep during the day and be active at night. Try to keep your cat's schedule as close as possible so they can get used to it from an early age.
Minimise stress by adding environmental enrichment! Enrichment is anything that gives your cat mental stimulation, which adds more fun into their lives while also preventing boredom.
New cat toys or a cat tree is a great way to add enrichment into their lives while also providing them with something that they can climb on and scratch instead of your furniture!
Also, make sure you have plenty of space for climbing, jumping, hiding spots, etc... Cats love to get up high, so having cat trees in multiple rooms is a great way to keep their content and out of trouble at the same time!
Keep cats safe by providing suitable hiding spots throughout your home. If there are multiple levels in your house, make sure they have access to upper shelves or, even better - cat trees! Not only will these provide fun for your cat but also keep your cat safe from dogs and children who may not know how to handle a cat.
Take them outdoors as often as possible, but only in secured safe areas! Make your backyard cat-friendly by adding climbing structures and hiding spots so they can explore safely while also getting some fresh air. Even better build them an outdoor cat enclosure.
Give your cat plenty of positive attention for good behaviour or when they're playing with new toys or scratching posts. If they have a behaviour you want to discourage, ignore it and try rewarding them when they do something else!
Use cat-safe cleaners around your cat so that there is no risk of chemical exposure or ingestion.
Be wary of feeding cats human food since these may not be nutritionally balanced for your cat's small stomach!
Finally, cat-proof your home to avoid potential hazards like chewing on cords or eating things they shouldn't. Provide your cat with safe toys and spaces so that there are no risks of injury!
As you can see, cat-proofing your home and keeping up with regular cat checkups is a lot of work! Luckily there are many resources available to help keep your cat happy and healthy.
Visit your vet for advice on how to properly care for cats and any routine vaccinations they may need during cathood.
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