Monday, June 26, 2017

Common Cat Ailments

No matter how well you take care of your cat, they can become ill.  Every cat owner knows how it feels to see their beloved feline under the weather.  Some ailments can be treated fairly easily.  Here are a few of the most ailments and some basic treatments.

  • Fleas-probably the most common illness in cats as well as dogs.  Symptoms include itching, hair loss, irritated red skin, hot spots and frequent licking.  There are several treatment options including powders, foams, oral medications and topical treatments.
  • Vomiting-very common in cats due to many reasons.  One of the biggest reasons is from hairballs.  Their stomach can't digest the fur they take in while cleaning themselves so their body rejects it by vomiting.  Other reasons can include ingesting something poisonous or inedible - like string, diabetes, an infection or urinary tract disease. Consult your vet for treatment options if it doesn't subside within 12-24 hours.  Be sure to leave fresh water out to help prevent dehydration.
  • Tapeworms-these are caused by ingesting a flea.  Tapeworms are typically segmented and will be expelled in sections in the feces.  Vomiting and weight loss are common symptoms but many times it is hard to tell if your cat in infected.  Treatments can be taken orally, by injection as well as topically.
  • Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease-this is common in both male and female cats that are over weight and malnourished.  Contributing factors can be a change in lifestyle, other cats in the home and stress.  Symptoms include bloody urine, straining to urinate, lack of appetite, crying during urination, dehydration, and vomiting. Consult your vet for the best treatment for your cats condition.
  • Eye Problems-there are multiple causes for eye problems including conjunctivitis, glaucoma, trauma, virus, cataracts, and retinal disease.  Common symptoms include watering, squinting, cloudiness, tear stained fur around the eye, build up in the corner of the eye and pawing or rubbing at their eyes.  Antibiotic eyes are commonly used as treatment but consult you vet to diagnose the exact cause and treatment options. 
As a responsible pet owner, seek out the advice of your vet as soon as you detect any concerns. Diagnosis of your cats illness is key to the best treatment.  Your vet will discuss all the treatment options available for your cat.  Follow all the vet instructions to bring your them back to their best health. 

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Good Shampoos for Bathing Your cat

Sometimes you need to bath your cat.  Whether its because they got into something nasty outside or to help keep their long hair looking good.  No matter the reason, choosing a good shampoo is important to keep your cat's fur healthy.  

Shampoos and conditioners used by us leave your cat’s hair and skin dried out.  Ones with mild ingredients, like oatmeal, work well for most pets.  Check the ingredient labels to make sure your shampoo is designed for good bathing results.  Here’s a few that are approved by vets and with good reviews.
  •     Four Paws Magic Coat Cat Tearless Shampoo – water-based with aloe and lanolin
  •     Earthbath All Natural Pet Shampoo – all natural
  •     Top Performance Fresh Pet Shampoo – Ph balanced reduces itching and flaking
  •     Vet’s Best Dry Clean Waterless Cat Bath – leave in foam with aloe, neem oil, vitamin E and oatmeal
      Bath time can be scary for most cats.  Make your feline as comfortable as possible by talking quietly and smoothing their coat as you go.  Both of these actions will help sooth their nerves and make them more receptive to the process, making bath time a great experience for you both.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Oh So Many Cat Trees

Have you ever noticed how many sizes and styles there are available for cat trees?  I can't even tell you how many I looked at before deciding on my latest purchase.  There are so many options to look at and picking out just the right one can be overwhelming.  Here are a few things to consider when choosing one for your favorite kitties.

Consider where you want to place it.  Near a window lets them look outside while in a back corner lets them see the whole room.  Wherever you choose, check the dimensions for each tree before you order.  You want to make sure it fits in the space you have.

Keep your cats age in mind.  Older cats are less likely to jump to higher perches then younger cats. A shorter cat tree may be perfect for a more mature cat while a floor to ceiling cat tree may feel just right for your younger felines. If you have a combination of young and old, having several perches at different heights will give them all options.

Offer places for scratching.  Cat trees usually have at least one scratching post covered in sisal rope. These are great spots to teach your cat to scratch so they stay away from you furniture and woodwork. They promote healthy scratching behaviors and help work the muscles in your cat's paws.

Give them places to curl up and hide.  Cats like to crawl into small spaces and curl up for a nap. A condo or two gives them choices for getting away from everyone.  Remember, cats sleep a good portion of each day so these condos will get lots of use.

Many styles have hanging toys or ropes.  These offer exercise for all your cats, helping to keep them active and healthy. If the model you choose doesn't have any, you can purchase toys on stings and attach them yourself.  

Just a few things to consider when making your cat tree purchase.  Whether its your first or fifth, a lot of thought goes into each one.  No matter what, your cats will love any one you choose.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Siberian

The Siberian is truly a magnificent looking feline.  With their triple layer coat, they make you just want to hug them.  Their temperament is very mellow and they love to follow you around.  A Siberian wants to help with whatever you are doing just to spend time with you.  They have amazing jumping abilities so can be found on the tallest spots in you home.  This beautiful cat does require some grooming as they shed heavily during the spring and fall.  Maintaining their coats can be work but their gorgeous coat is worth the upkeep.  Siberians are very playful and love to play fetch.  Be careful what you leave out as anything is fair game when they want to play.  Similar to the Maine Coon, this is a large cat and can average around 20 pounds.  They like to be in charge when it comes to other animals but get along well in multiple pet households.  All in all they make a great family pet.  Look at the magnificent Siberian when searching for your next pet.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

The Maine Coon

Lets talk about the Maine Coon.

These beautiful long-haired cats are one of the largest domestic cats in the US.  A male cat can weigh up to 25 pounds and a female can weigh up to 15 pounds.  This long solid cat can easily take over your seating space if allowed.  Maine Coons are very friendly and are considered of above average intelligence.  They love spending time outdoors and remain playful into old age.

You can even hold a conversation with one!  They have a wide range of vocal sounds to use which makes for some great bonding.  The Maine Coon gets along well with other animals due to their calm nature and can make a good family pet.

While bathing isn't necessary, Maine Coons do have a tendency to love water so they are not opposed to bathing.  Brushing should be started while they are kittens.  Their long-haired coat can get matted or knotted up which can be helped with daily brushing.

Overall, this is a pretty healthy cat with a long life.  On average, a Maine Coon will live 12-15 years.
Which means you will have a awesome beautiful companion for a long time.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Norwegian Forest Cat

Just found an amazing cat while doing some research.  The Norwegian Forest Cat nicknamed the Wegie. The Wegie has a triangular shaped head with heavily tufted ears and a pointed chin. Large almond shaped eyes in green, gold or copper complete their beautiful face. They have a longer body with a broad chest and muscular thighs. Its bushy tail is as long as it's body. Their paws are large with tufts of fur between their toes.

They are noted for their long thick coats and larger size. Their weatherproof double coat will vary in length and thickness depending on the seasons.  The coat on their body is long and flowing with long hair covering their hind legs. They have a "bib" look which starts with a short collar at the neck and "mutton chops" on the side and a full frontal ruff. You can find them in almost any color except chocolate, lavender, lilac or a pointed pattern.

Take a look at this gorgeous cat. Who wouldn't love to have one?

Sunday, February 26, 2017

The Ragdoll

The Ragdoll was given its name because of the way they go limp when you pick them up.  This is a larger breed cat with a mellow temperament.  Ragdoll's are very loving and adore spending time with their owners.  They will seek out attention when feeling lonely and enjoy play time.    A Ragdoll will be loyal to its owner and makes a fun-loving companion.  This breed makes a great family pet since they are very tolerant of children.  Who wouldn't want one of these adorable kitties!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Tiny Kittens

Kittens are all little when they are born.  But if you haven't seen any from the miniature or dwarf breeds, you can find it hard to believe just how tiny these kittens truly are.  This picture really gives a great example of their tiny size.  There are several breeds to choose from if you are looking for one of these little kitties.

  1. Singapura - considered the smallest weighing 5-8 pounds when full grown
  2. Munchkin - has short legs and weighs 5-9 pounds when full grown
  3. Cornish Rex - has a feather like wavy undercoat instead of 2-3 layers of hair and weighs 6-10 pounds when full grown
  4. Devon Rex - considered the most intelligent breed with a waxy coat and big ears and weighs 5-10 pounds when full grown
  5. American Curl - has an outward curl on the tips of its ears which are very delicate and weighs 5-10 pounds when full grown
As you can see, these cats are quite a bit smaller than the average cat.  No matter their size, they make great family pets and have lots of energy to play.  If you are looking for a smaller cat, one of these breeds may be a good option. Check with a local breeder for availability of the breed you want.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Scottish Fold Kittens

I was reading about several breeds of cats recently. The Scottish Fold was among them.  These cats have ears that fold forward instead of sticking up.  This is caused by a mutation in their cartilage gene.  While searching them, I found this adorable picture of a Scottish Fold kitten.  You can tell that the ears are close to their head giving them a very round appearance.  With their large wide space eyes and short noses, who wouldn't fall in love with them.  All of the kittens in a litter are born with straight ears but at 3 to 4 weeks the ears will "fold" over.  These cats are not very vocal but adore human companionship.  They are hardy cats and easily adapt to any home environment. Providing stimulating play activities such as a cat tree will help keep them healthy.  If you have the opportunity to see a Scottish Fold, enjoy the uniqueness of these beautiful cats.

Thursday, February 9, 2017

King of the Castle

As I was searching on line, I came upon this picture.  This regal cat reminds me of a king surveying its surroundings.  The tuft of white fur under his chin, looks like he has a bow tie on and is dressed for dinner.  He has almost a bored indifferent look, like he could care less what anyone else is doing.  I often wonder what goes on in a cats mind when they look at us like this.  Maybe I don't want to know.  What do you think?

Sunday, February 5, 2017

IQ Busy Boxes on Cat Trees

Go Pet Club has come out with a great way to keep you cats active. They have added an IQ Busy Box on several of their cat trees.  These boxes help keep your cats mind sharp and active.  Each box has several holes in the top and sides.  Two balls are placed inside for your cat to move around.  Not only will they be able to play on the cat tree, they will have the extra challenge of trying to get the balls out of the busy box. The cat tree has definitely evolved!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Interesting Facts About Your Cats Paws

You may not think about your cats' paws all too often but here are some interesting facts you might want to know.

  • Cats don't walk on the balls and heels of their feet- they walk on their toes.  This is known as being digitigrade.
  • Cats can retract the claws on their front paws but not on their back claws. This leads to their front claws being sharper than their rear claws
  • Cats have 5 toes and 7 pads on their front paws and only 4 toes and 5 pads on the rear paws
  • Their paw pads are usually similar in color to their coat.  Example black cats usually have black pads and grey cats usually have grey pads, etc.
  • Your cats paws have scent glands. This is one way they mark their territory. 
  • Cats sweat thru their paw pads.  They will do this to cool down but will also sweat if under stress.
I thought these were interesting so I decided to share them.  Let me know if you have some more cool facts to add.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Cool Facts About Cats

Cats are such cool creatures.  They have been around people since as early as 1370!  Wow, that's a long time.  There so many interesting things we have found out about them. I wanted to share a few.

Did you know that most cats are left pawed.  Just like us, they use one paw more predominantly than the other.  Male cats are almost all left pawed.

The average cat has 244 bones and 60 vertebra with most of the bones being in their tails.  This large number of bones gives their tail flexibility.

Humans have 6 muscles in their ears.  A cat has 32!  This gives them the ability to move their ears 180 degrees.  This is why they have such great hearing while hunting.

A cats' heart beats 150 to 210 times per minute.  That's about 2 to 3 times faster than a human.

Cats have only 473 taste buds which are all on the tip of its tongue.  People have around 9,000.

A cat sleeps about 70% of the time.  That's 13 to 16 hours each day.

Cats release sweat thru their paws.  They don't have any sweat glands.

The heaviest cat on record weighed in at 46 pounds 15.2 ounces.  An average domestic cat weighs between 8 and 12 pounds.

All cats can see 6 times better than people in low light.  Their eyes have a layer of tissue that helps reflect and magnify light.

Tom cats mark a territory of 3 to 5 miles.  They will cover this area daily to keep it scented.

Above is just a few of the cool things I've read about cats.  As you can tell, there's a lot more that can be added.  Stop back to see more cool facts next week.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Lets Talk About Cat Food

I have been reading a lot about cat food lately.  If canned food is better than dry food and all about the contents.  Boy! was this a major eye opener.  The assumption has been if the label says it's good it is. Well I found out, that's not always the case.  Many canned foods are good but not all.  Dry food is a good addition to canned food but shouldn't be the only source of food provided.  Some list chicken, beef or fish as a main ingredient but only include it as "formula" or "dinner" which is really a smaller portion of the actual concentration.  Also, many add additional carbohydrates that aren't good for your cat.  So the main lesson learned is look for high protein cat food with chicken, beef or fish meal listed.  Added vitamins and minerals are great too.  Omega-3 fatty acids and Taurine are major pluses in your cats diet.  So moving forward, reading labels is key to getting the right foods for my cat. Remember, shop for high quality foods and give a combination of wet and dry foods for the optimal health of your cat.