The Healthy Cat Checklist

Photo of Karen Dell

Karen Dell

Senior Editor • Backyard Cat Enclosures

27 September 2016

Being a pet parent is a huge responsibility. On its own, your cat would have a lot of trouble living the city life: cat food cans are nearly impossible to open without opposable thumbs, and rare is the cat that can cook for itself. Luckily, keeping your cat safe and healthy is as simple as following this guide - and there’s plenty of o-purr-tunities for cuddles along the way. Read on, and click through the links for more instructions.

Are you keeping your cat inside?

The outdoors is a dangerous place for the domestic feline: cars, dogs and disease are just some of the possibly fatal risks that lurk in the outside world. We join the RSPCA in recommending that you keep your cat inside, or in an outdoor cat enclosure where it can climb, play and sunbake in safety.

Is your house safe for your cat?

Although significantly safer than free-roaming, your house is not without its dangers, including electrical cords, cleaning chemicals, and toxic foods. When it comes to cat-proofing your house, felines have a lot in common with toddlers: check out our guide to the most dangerous objects you might not know about.

Is your cat getting enough exercise?

It might seem like your cat does nothing but eat, sleep, and lick itself, but in actual fact felines need daily exercise to keep them looking and feeling tip-top. And by exercise, what we really mean is ‘play’. Grab some of your kitty’s favourite toys, and read this article if your cat seems more interested in dreaming of mice than chasing them.

Is your cat eating and drinking right?

You might think you have a healthy diet, but what’s good for you and what’s good for your cat aren’t always the same thing. In their wild phase, cats used to hunt and eat mice and birds, and their bodies have adapted to the nutrition and hydration that their prey gave. Now that you’re in charge of the dinner menu, it’s important to ensure that their pet food is properly balanced, and their water bowl is being used.

Are you grooming your cat?

Your cat is all too happy to take care of its own appearance - humans don’t really understand feline style anyway - but there are a few hard-to-reach areas that you should maintain if you want your cat to look and feel its best. Brush your cat’s teeth and coat regularly, and clip its claws when necessary. Remember that some breeds may require more maintenance than others!

Is your cat desexed?

Desexing your cat comes with all sorts of benefits - including eliminating any chance of contracting a reproductive organ disease like cancer. But more importantly, desexing your cat benefits the health of feline-kind everywhere by reducing the enormous amount of kitties put up for adoption every single year. Read more on desexing here.

Is your cat vaccinated?

Nobody likes getting a vaccine, least of all your cat, but they are essential to preventing a variety of common and potentially deadly diseases. If your cat could understand modern medicine, it would undoubtedly thank you for your good sense. Find out which diseases are prevented by vaccination in this article.

Is your cat free of fleas, mites and worms?

Fleas, mites and worms are all pretty disgusting to look at, and even worse to have. They can cause more than just serious discomfort - they are dangerous in their own right and can pass on deadly diseases. Click on the relevant link for more information on fleas, mites, and worms.

Are you seeing your vet?

While we’re more than happy to give basic advice on a whole range of issues, please remember one thing: we are not vets! Vets have that diploma for a reason - because they understand your pet’s health better than anyone else, and have the knowledge to treat serious health issues. You should make sure your cat is getting a routine yearly checkup, and should not hesitate to take your kitty to the vet if it presents serious symptoms.

Is your cat microchipped?

While a microchip does not have any intrinsic health benefits (that we know of), it will help you rescue your cat if it does somehow manage to escape into the terrifying world outside. It is also a legal requirement to microchip your cat in many Australian states, so for your own financial health, we recommend doing so.

If you’re looking for quality pet products that will help you satisfy your cat’s needs, check out our pawesome range here.


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