If you own a cat, the occasional hairball is probably a part of life. These regurgitations by your cat are certainly unpleasant… how much do you really know about them? Here, your vets Savannah, GA goes over the basics of hairballs.
What Causes Hairballs?
When your feline friend grooms herself, tiny barbs on her tongue pick up hair, which your cat swallows. Most of the swallowed hair passes through the digestive tract and is expelled through the feces; that which isn’t, though, clumps together into a hairball. Eventually, that hair gets regurgitated!
Are Hairballs Safe for My Cat?
Yes—the occasional hairball is a natural part of life and shouldn’t cause your feline friend any harm. Frequent hairball production, though, could mean a health issue; you’ll want to have your cat examined if your cat is producing a lot of hairballs. If your cat is gagging and retching without producing a hairball, take them to the emergency room.
Can I Minimize Hairball Production?
Grooming Fluffy yourself will prevent her from swallowing excessive amounts of hair. Additionally, specialized diets or dietary supplements can help cats who are particularly prone to high hairball production.
Call your veterinarians Savannah, GA to learn more.
There are plenty of harmful plants and flowers out there for our feline friends. It’s important to know what to look out for! Here, your Rochester, NY veterinary professional tells you about three of the most common offenders.
Did you know that many varieties of lilies are toxic for cats? Day lilies, Easter lilies, and tiger lilies are just a few examples. Symptoms like drooling, lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhea could result if your cat eats lilies—keep your feline friend away!
The Sago Palm
The sago palm is highly toxic for pets, your cat included. Bleeding disorders, liver failure, vomiting, diarrhea, and more could be caused by ingestion! The sago palm may be found outdoors or indoors; if your cat ingests any part of the plant, take them to the vet’s office right away.
The rhododendron plant, also called azalea, can cause symptoms like irritation in the mouth, vomiting, and diarrhea after only a few leaves are ingested. Without treatment, blood-pressure drops and even coma could occur! Don’t keep these common houseplants in your cat’s living area.
Want more advice on keeping your cat safe from toxic plants? Call your animal hospital Rochester, NY to make an appointment.
Cats and milk seem to make a good match. Did you know that they actually don’t mix well? Your veterinarian Wake Forest, NC veterinarian tells you more below:
Why Isn’t Milk Good for Cats?
Most adult cats are lactose-intolerant, meaning that they can’t digest milk properly. Many humans suffer from this same condition! If your cat ingests a lot of milk, they’re likely to experience an upset stomach, vomiting, or diarrhea.
Don’t Kittens Need Milk?
Yes, kittens will need the mother’s milk (or a substitute milk if the mother isn’t around) during the early nursing stage to grow properly. As they get older, though, they produce less and less lactase in the gut, meaning they can’t digest lactose as well. By the time a kitten has grown into an adult cat, milk probably won’t do them much good!
How About Other Dairy Foods?
Other kinds of dairy like cheese and yogurt either contain less lactose or are pasteurized, meaning that microscopic organisms have already removed much of the lactose. As such, these foods are a bit safer for cats. Still, they’re not nutritionally necessary at all!
Want to know more about your cat’s dietary needs? Contact your vet Wake Forest, NC.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure—this old adage couldn’t be more true than when it comes to your feline friend’s health! Here, your veterinarian Los Gatos, CA tells you about three key elements of preventative healthcare for your cat.
Cats require the core vaccinations to protect against diseases like feline leukemia, feline hepatitis, calicivirus, influenza, and others. It’s far more difficult to treat and eradicate these diseases after they’ve taken hold than it is to avoid them initially! Talk to your vet if your cat needs vaccinated.
Don’t let fleas, ticks, or worms afflict your beloved pet. Keep your cat on the proper preventatives to ward off these pesky critters. Make no mistake; even indoor cats are prone to infection and infestation by pests! Your veterinarian can set your cat up with the medications she needs.
Feeding your cat a quality diet is one of the easiest ways to keep her healthy long-term. Make sure Fluffy is getting an age-appropriate food with all of the essential nutrients.
Want a recommendation on a great cat food choice? Contact your animal hospital Los Gatos, CA today to set up an office appointment.
You’ve probably seen your cat knead—it’s when your cat presses the front paws into a soft object before lying down. Have you ever wondered why Fluffy does this? Your vet Marietta, GA fills you in on a few possibilities below:
You’ve likely seen your cat knead before bedding down for a nap. It’s believed that our cats’ ancestors kneaded grass or dirt surfaces in the wild, preparing them as a bedding spot for themselves or their offspring. This behavior may have gotten passed down to our domesticated felines!
Your cat’s paw pads contain scent glands, and scents are released when your cat kneads. It may be her way of marking her territory—that territory might be a pillow, a pet bed, or your leg!
Did you know that kittens often knead their mother’s belly during the nursing period to stimulate milk production? Adult cats may knead as a sort of “remnant” behavior from kitten-hood, and they may even associate the action with the feelings of contentment they felt while nursing!
Want more information on your cat’s behavior? We’re here for you. Call your veterinarian Marietta, GA today to learn more about your pet.
Although dogs are often more likely to gobble up whatever substance is in front of them, putting them at a somewhat greater risk for poisoning, cats are also susceptible! Here, your vet Aurora, CO tells you about some of the most common cat toxins to be aware of.
Plenty of plants and flowers aren’t safe for cats, and they’re some of the most common toxins since our feline friends often like to munch on vegetation. Lilies are particularly poisonous, and other plants like dieffenbachia, elephant ear, certain aloe plants, rhododendron, and more can also pose a serious risk. Keep your cat away!
Garlic, onions, grapes and raisins, chocolate, candy, gum, alcohol… the list of potentially harmful foods is quite long! Don’t leave dangerous foods out on countertops; you know how easy it is for cats to leap up and start exploring!
Antifreeze is a particular problem during the winter months; it contains ethylene glycol, a poisonous alcohol substance. The problem is that antifreeze tastes and smells sweet, which may attract your cat! Use antifreeze carefully and clean up spills right away.
For more information on cat toxins, give your pet clinic Aurora, CO a call.
Do you have an aging cat on your hands? Keep your elderly feline companion healthy and happy so that she enjoys her golden years! Below, your Plano, TX vet offers three easy tips to do just that:
All aging cats should be fed a specially formulated senior diet, which is made with just the right ingredients for your older cat’s nutritional needs. Ask your vet to recommend a great choice, and also be sure to ask about the portion that your cat needs.
Cats need exercise, even older ones! Provide your companion with plenty of fun toys to let her entertain herself. Catnip toys are always a hit, but even a simple string dangled in front of Fluffy’s face will likely do the trick! Try to get your pet moving on a daily basis to help stave off obesity.
Cats always love napping; your senior companion probably sleeps now more than ever! Make sure she has plenty of soft, warm beds to relax in throughout her golden years.
Does your senior cat need veterinary care? We’re here to help with all of your pet-care needs. Make an appointment at your animal hospital Plano TX.
Hairballs are a part of life for most cat owners. Have you ever wondered what causes these unsightly expulsions, and if they are a problem? Learn more here as your Sugar Land, TX veterinarian fills you in.
What Causes Hairballs?
A cat naturally ingests some hair while grooming herself, thanks to tiny barbs on her tongue. Most of this hair passes through the digestive tract and is expelled in the feces, but some remains in the stomach and is eventually regurgitated in the form of a hairball.
Are Hairballs Safe?
The occasional hairball won’t cause your cat any harm; it’s a normal part of your cat’s life. However, if hairballs are becoming frequent or if they’ve suddenly started appearing more than normal, it’s worth a visit to the vet’s office. If your cat is retching and gagging but not actually producing a hairball, let your vet know.
How Can I Reduce Hairballs?
Ask your vet about a high-fiber “hairball formula” diet; these are made to help your cat shed less and move hair through the system more smoothly. Grooming your cat is also helpful since you’re trapping fur in your brush!
For more information, contact your vet Sugar Land, TX.
All cats, even those that stay indoors, need proper pest control. Pests can get indoors on humans or other pets, potentially causing your feline friend harm. Here, your Rochester, NY veterinarian goes over the basics of good pest control for cats.
Fleas and Ticks
A seasonal or year-round preventative is essential for warding off fleas and ticks, which can cause serious infestations and disease. The preventative may come in a chewable form or be administered topically. Never use a flea-and-tick preventative designed for dogs or other animals—this can prove very dangerous!
Heartworms, roundworms, and other worm varieties can infest your cat and start causing harm. A heartworm preventative will protect your cat from virtually all dangerous worm pests, so talk to your vet about getting Fluffy set up with a great heartworm medication to keep her safe throughout life.
If your cat already has worms, fleas, or ticks, the infestation must be eradicated before a preventative can be administered. Giving a preventative while a cat is infested can prove deadly! If your cat is demonstrating adverse health symptoms and you think a parasite may be to blame, set up an appointment with your animal hospital Rochester, NY.
You’ve probably seen your cat knead at least a few times—that’s when your cat presses their front paws into an object in a repeated fashion. There are several possible reasons why cats do this! Learn more below from a Savannah, GA veterinarian.
Preparing for Naps
It’s thought that the ancient ancestors of our domesticated cats kneaded grass and dirt surfaces in the wild, softening them up for naps. That may be why your cat often kneads before bedding down for a snooze!
Kneading may also be a form of territory marking. Your cat’s paw pads contain scent glands, and the scents are released when your cat’s paw presses into something. Kneading may be your cat’s way of marking her spot as her own.
Kittens often knead their mother’s belly while nursing. This is thought to help stimulate milk production in the mother. Kneading may be a sort of “remnant” behavior left over from kitten-hood; it’s even possible that adult cats associate kneading with feelings of contentment that they experienced during their younger years!
Would you like further insight into your feline friend’s unique behavior? We’re here to help. Contact your veterinary Savannah, GA today.