Wondering how often you should take a cat to the vet?
Well, there are many variables that contribute to the answer to this question. Cats are often very good at hiding pain and keeping to themselves if anything is wrong. Age, diet, health status, and lifestyle will all play a significant role in your cat’s vet schedule. If you notice something unusual about your cat, you should take your cat to the vet. Being a responsible feline parent, you know your cat the best, so if something seems unusual, it’s worth the peace of mind to schedule an appointment with the vet.
How Often Do You Take A Cat To The Vet?
Your vet is a pillar of support for your kitty and regular vet visits are a key component of preventive care. Your vet will identify irregularities in case your cat has any issues.
Much like other aspects of feline care, how often you should bring your cat to the veterinarian depends on your cat’s life stage. Your vet can give you advice on how to prevent breed-specific health issues and recognize the onset of any feline disease.
The first year of your kitty’s life might be when you see the vet the most often. Kittens should be brought in for vaccines every three to four weeks until they are 16 weeks old.
During these visits, your kitten will get vaccinated for different diseases. Those vaccines start when your kitten is 6-8 weeks old and continue for the rest of their life. These vet visits give you a chance to track your kitten’s growth and discuss any questions about the kitten’s health with your vet. This is also a great time to talk to your vet about spaying or neutering your pet and microchip services.
When your cat is above one year old, you’ll still need to visit the vet regularly. For adult cats, vet visits will become a yearly occurrence. If your kitty is healthy, once a year might be enough. An annual checkup is generally all that you need for healthy adult cats between the ages of 1 – 7 years old. Again, your cat’s breed or underlying health issues may necessitate more visits.
Once your cat reaches six months, it will be time to consider spaying or neutering your pet. Checkups will usually consist of general examination, dental cleanings, inspections, and vaccinations. Even if your cat is an indoor pet, it’ll still require distemper, rabies vaccines, and boosters.
Regular check-ups also give vets the chance to check your cat’s teeth. Infections and bacteria in cats’ teeth can spread to other organs like the liver or kidneys. So, it’s important to make sure they’re in good shape. During your visits, your vet can also recommend any dietary changes that might be needed if your cat is overweight or underweight.
Once your cat is around 7 years old, you may need to change up their care schedule. You’ll probably start seeing more of your vet around the time your cat becomes old. Vets recommend bringing your cat in twice or thrice a year when they’re between 7 to 10 years old. It’s important to catch age-related problems as early as possible to ensure proper treatment.
Teeth wear down as cats get older, so your vet will continue to monitor your cat’s teeth. They’ll also consider changes to your cat’s diet, perhaps switching to a diet with fewer calories.
Common problems that require a comprehensive treatment plan for senior cats are arthritis, obesity, and liver and kidney problems. Along with vaccinations and physical exams, vets will also give blood and urine tests to check on your cat’s kidney and liver health. These vet visits make the latter stages of your cat’s life more comfortable.
Common Reasons That You Need to Take Your Cat to The Vet
Many cat owners struggle to bring their kitty to the vet for check-ups on a regular basis. Since cats can’t talk, often it can be difficult to detect when they don’t feel well or they aren’t in perfect health. Vet visits are a combination of urgent care, advanced care, treatment options, and a firm commitment to keep our pets healthy. Here are some common reasons that you need to take your cat to the vet:
1. Regular wellness checks
Most cats are good at hiding pain and discomfort. If you notice any changes in eating habits, playfulness and general overall health, it’s time to see the vet. Your feline companion should be examined at least once per year. You may not be aware that your cat is not feeling well, and it’s best to stay one step ahead of potential medical problems. Senior cats should have a semi-annual wellness exam.
Regular wellness checks give the perfect opportunity to discuss your cat’s behavior, daily habits, diet, and any problems that you have noticed.
2. Your cat is vomiting
If your cat vomits, it could be that they just have an upset stomach or ate something that didn’t agree with them. Sometimes vomiting can also be a sign of something more serious.
Occasional vomiting in cats is normal. Cats experiencing continuous vomiting can also be at risk of dehydration. If your cat stops drinking, eating, and urinating along with vomiting, it is considered a medical emergency. So, you need to take your cat to the vet for supportive care, medications, and in severe cases, surgery.
3. Weight loss
Unintentional weight loss in felines can be a cause for concern. The causes of weight loss in cats generally range from simple lifestyle changes to serious illness.
Any noticeable changes in your cat’s weight typically warrant medical attention, particularly if you can’t isolate the cause. The vet will examine and run the necessary tests to determine the root of the problem. He’ll also suggest a feeding regimen to meet your cat’s nutritional needs.
If your feline companion has suddenly begun to put on weight without any obvious reason, it’s time to take your cat to your vet. Unexplained weight gain might be a symptom of an underlying health issue.
Obesity can shorten a cat’s life and increases the likelihood of developing diseases. Obese cats have an increased risk for diabetes mellitus, heart problems, hypertension, osteoarthritis, urinary bladder stones, and anesthetic complications.
5. Behavioral issues
Cats experiencing behavior issues need to see the vet. If your kitty has started scratching, snapping, biting, pacing around the house, house soiling, not greeting you the way they normally would, or showing reluctance to move around the way they typically would, there could be a medical reason.
Being a pet parent, you know what’s normal for your kitty. If your cat starts to act in a way that seems odd or atypical, it may be a clue that something isn’t right. There might be a serious health problem and it is time to schedule a vet exam.
6. Changes in appetite
Not all cats have huge appetites, but most felines should be eating regular meals and have an interest in their food. If you notice that your cat’s appetite has changed significantly, showing either more or less interest in their food than usual, it might be time to make an appointment with your vet.
Changes in appetite might be a sign of illness or mouth injury. Keep an eye on your cat’s eating habits and make an appointment with the vet if it’s been more than a day or two since your cat has eaten.
7. Excessive drooling
If your kitty drools only once in a while, they are probably fine! However, if your cat drools excessively, it means there is some problem and you need to take your cat to a vet.
There are various underlying health conditions that can cause cats to drool. Speak to your vet if drooling is accompanied by bad breath, lack of appetite, weight loss, sneezing/nasal discharge, and lethargy.
8. Drinking excessively
A cat that’s drinking more than usual should be taken to a vet, as this may indicate that something is amiss. Excessive thirst may be a sign that your cat has diabetes or kidney disease. Both these medical conditions can be life-threatening.
If you notice your cat seems unusually thirsty, it’s important to contact your vet for screening. If caught in time, both diabetes and kidney disease can be managed with medical treatment.
Cats deserve to live comfortably for as long as they possibly can. Remember that preventive solutions and early treatment equals a more successful outcome for your pet. Vaccination and regular vet checkups keep them happy, healthy, and active.
Your cat’s checkup is not too different from yours. Your vet will ensure all areas of your cat’s health are in good shape.