Pet advice: Tips for a healthy cat

Cats might be experts in letting you know when they want fed or are looking for attention but when it comes to more complex needs, you need to be the one in control.

Read up on some great advice for keeping your cat healthy and know he’ll always be at his best.

Look for signs of health

Check whether your feline is fighting fit by paying attention to the way they looks. Healthy cats are lively and will have a shiny coat, their eyes and ears will be clean, they won’t be sneezing and shouldn’t be overly skinny or plump.

Get the diet right

Many cats will happily eat everything that you give them, so it’s up to you to make sure portion sizes are appropriate. These days, most vets and experts are recommending a wet food diet, which more closely apes the kind of food a cat would eat in the wild, with added biscuits for variety.

Keep water fresh 

While cats don’t generally drink very much, it is essential to make sure they have fresh water in their bowls every day. Cow milk is too rich for most felines but if you want to give your cat a treat, you’ll find special cat milk in the shops.

Sleep and play

Cats can sleep for up to 20 hours a day, so don’t panic if your moggy seems to prefer snoozing to running around. That said, it’s a great idea to engage your cat in playtime when he is in the mood. From catnip mice to laser pointers, there are lots of ways to tempt your cat into activity.

Keep playtime fresh

Just like humans, cats can get bored seeing the same things every day. Try rotating their toys to keep interest high.

Clean that litter box

If you want your feline friend to be comfortable and happy, you need to keep a close eye on their litter box. Ideally, you should give the box a quick clean out every day and replace the litter completely once a week.

Brush your cat

Cats are great at keeping themselves clean and many get by without ever needing a bath at all – you may decide otherwise if you notice your pet isn’t as fragrant as he should be. The best thing you can do is to add a regular brushing session into your routine. Not only will it remove excess hair, most cats love it.

Learn his personality

The best way to keep your cat happy is to take your cues from him. All cats have different personalities, some prefer to lie around being stroked for hours and others like to play on a scratching post, be sure to match his.

Invest in vaccinations

Outdoor cats can get into all sorts of innocent scrapes and adventures and if you want them to be safe, it’s essential that you invest in the right vaccinations and booster shots. From cat flu to cat leukaemia there are lots of nasty diseases you can protect your cat from with a simple visit to the vet.

Consider microchipping

By nature, cats are very curious and they can sometimes stray far from home. Microchipping is a simple way of making it easy for them to reunited with their owners.

What are your top tips for keeping your cat healthy?

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Rachel - Silversurfers Assistant Editor

Hello there! I’m Rachel and I’m the Assistant Editor for Silversurfers. I work behind the scenes to bring interesting, informative and entertaining subject matter to the Silversurfers community. I hope you enjoy the features we have shared with you. Please feel free to comment below and share your thoughts with us, we love to hear from you!

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28th May 2016
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I have an elderly cat, who is about 70 in human years. She used to get lethargic due to constipation or would eventually get hair ball sick, which made her look very poorly.

I monitor this now and if she does become disinterested in play and her pupils are large despite it being daylight, I know to stir in five drops of nux vomica for cats into her food. I cannot remember the last time she has been hair ball sick (certainly not since I've been giving her this treatment). She only needs it about once every few months, so though it is expensive to buy, it lasts for a very long time.

She eats a very good diet but like most old ladies, occasionally gets a bit constipated, so it is good to have something on standby. There is also a paste but she turned her nose up at that.

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