6 Purrfect Ways To Be A Great Cat Owner

Cats are the second most popular pet in the U.S., and it isn’t hard to see why. Fluffy is not only absolutely adorable, she is also one of the easiest pets to keep. You won’t have to walk or train your feline pal, and she’ll take care of her own grooming needs. Most of these charming furballs also spend a ridiculous amount of time sleeping. Of course, good cat care entails more than providing food, water, and lap space. A local Pendleton, IN vet offers tips on being a ‘purrfect’ cat owner in this article.


Give Your Cat High-Quality Food


Filling your kitty’s bowl isn’t complicated, but there are some things to consider. Fluffy’s exact dietary needs should depend on her age, health, and lifestyle. You’ll also need to make a few decisions, such as whether to feed your furry buddy wet food or kibble and whether to feed your pet free-feeding or at specific times.


Of course, you also have to choose the right brand. Advertising gimmicks can be a pitfall here, as manufacturers use clever tactics to make their products look like they’re the best. 


Our advice? Read the labels carefully. As with human products, pet food manufacturers must label their products in a certain way. Generally, the first ingredient on a label is the main ingredient, proportionately. The first ingredient should be meat, fish, or poultry. Avoid brands with long ingredient lists that look like science projects.


You will need to make some adjustments as your feline friend ages. Changing brands should be done slowly to avoid upsetting the furry belly. Ask your Pendleton, IN veterinarian for specific advice on this. 


A side note: you may want to get your pet a drinking fountain: many cats like running water. (Fluffy sometimes likes sticking her paw in the water, but that’s another topic.) 


Provide A Safe Environment


One thing we know for certain? Fluffy has a knack for getting into mischief, and sometimes narrowly escaping it.


In order to keep Fluffy safe, you’ll need to do some petproofing. This involves removing or securing anything that isn’t safe for your playful pet. Some of the items on that list include small or sharp objects, such as beads, buttons, safety pins, jewelry, small toy parts, and craft or sewing kit pieces; plastic bags and ties; anything ropy or stringy; and toxic plants.


Chemicals are another concern Poisons are one of the biggest reasons for emergency visits, and are one of the main causes of pet death in American households.


Here are some of the things that are toxic to kitties:

  • Automotive products
  • Fertilizer
  • Pesticides
  • Cleaning agents
  • Paint
  • Drain openers
  • Detergents
  • Antifreeze
  • Rodenticides
  • Bug Spray
  • Medicines, whether prescription or OTC

Keep in mind that Fluffy only needs to walk through a puddle of chemical cleaner or get a little spilled on their fur to get sick. Ask your Pendleton, IN vet for more information. 


Don’t Let Your Kitty Out


It’s important to limit your furry little adventurer’s explorations once he goes outside. Fluffy is bold and adventurous, but you need to restrict her explorations to random open cupboards, closets, and boxes. Cars, weather, chemicals, stray cats, predators, parasites, and people, unfortunately, are just a few of the things that endanger outdoor cats.


Grounding your pet can also help protect wildlife. Our feline pals hunt and kill many types of animals, including several threatened species. (We’ll leave Fluffy’s serial killer habits to another blog.) 


Make Your Home Fun And Comfy For Your Kitty


It doesn’t matter how big or small your home is: it’s going to be much cozier with a happy cat. However, you should take some steps to make it cat-friendly.


Add some cat furniture, such as a scratching post or board. Fluffy will also appreciate a cat tower: this will provide a scratching post, as well as a lookout point.


You can also make your home fun for your furry friend by giving her vantage points and things to explore. A comfy window seat can keep a cat occupied for hours. Fluffy loves birdwatching! If you want to go all-out, you can build a catio or enclosure for your pet!Keep Your Cat Entertained 


Stimulation and enrichment are as important to kitties as they are to people! Keep your feline buddy entertained by providing a variety of playthings, and play with her for at least a few minutes a day.


It’s always cute to see Fluffy pouncing on things and chasing them. Our feline friends are hunters by nature, so when they are playing, they mimic the strategies and behaviors they would use to score dinner in the wild. It’s always adorable seeing a frisky kitty pouncing on a catnip mouse! 


Keep in mind that every cat has his or her own unique tastes. Some like wand toys, some like catnip mice, some love chasing that little red dot from a laser pointer, and some are purrfectly happy playing hockey—or pawkey—with a bottle cap. Try different things and see what Fluffy likes. If you have more than one pet, offer different choices.


Keep Your Kitty’s Veterinary Care Up-to-Date


Our feline pals don’t actually have nine lives, though we aren’t sure anyone has told them this yet. In truth, they aren’t nearly as tough as they think. Just like any other animal, Fluffy is susceptible to illness and injury. 


The first thing we recommend is that every cat be microchipped and spayed or neutered. This should ideally happen when Fluffy is young, but it can also be done safely on an older cat.


It’s also important for you to protect your pet against dangerous parasites and diseases. Rabies, (FCV) feline calicivirus, (FHV-1) feline herpesvirus-1, (FPV) feline panleukopenia, and (FeLV) feline leukemia are the core vaccines Fluffy will need. Additionally, your veterinarian may recommend a few non-core vaccines, such as (FeLV) for cats over one year, Chlamydia felis, and Bordetella bronchiseptica vaccines.


You’ll also need to keep Fluffy’s parasite control up to date. Even indoor cats can get parasites such as fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. There are many options to choose from, so talk to your vet about which option is right for you.


Aside from that, you’ll need to watch out for signs of illness. Cats can be secretive here, as they tend to hide signs of illness. You may not know anything is wrong until your pet’s condition becomes quite severe. 


Watch out for these things:


  • Withdrawal
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Grumpiness
  • Lethargy
  • Fever
  • Disorientation
  • Uncharacteristic Behavior Or Vocalizations
  • Reduced Appetite
  • Poor Grooming
  • Litterbox Avoidance
  • Respiratory Issues
  • Discharge


Contact your Pendleton, IN veterinarian immediately if you notice anything amiss. The sooner an issue is diagnosed and treated, the better!


Make Sure Your Cat Feels Loved


In order for Fluffy to feel loved and safe, it’s important to spend time with her every day. Many kitties are lap cats, who love to curl up on your lap while you read or watch TV. Talking to your cat can also get that motor going. Some cats will talk back, while others will just listen. The point is that you will know that you are trying to communicate with your feline buddy. That will certainly help with bonding!


Feel free to contact us, your local Pendleton, IN pet hospital, if you have questions about cat care! We are dedicated to providing top-notch care. 


Comments are closed.