Do I need to visit the vet if my cat is in purrfect health? Yes. Here’s why.
Look, I’m a huge optimist. The reality is though, that your cat isn’t invincible. But don’t just take my word for it - the proof is in the blog.
Chatting to fellow feline owners, it seems that there are two parts to why they always assume that their cats are healthy. The first reason is that cats always seem to be pretty healthy. Unlike dogs who are more obvious when they aren’t feeling well, sicknesses are a lot harder to detect in cats.
The second reason is the fact that taking your furball to the vet is a headache. Unlike your pup that is a lot more enthusiastic about car rides and open window tongue-wagging, cats aren’t exactly down for road trips. First, you’ve got to get them into their carriers which is honestly an Olympic event in itself. Then you’ve got to sit through excessive hissing and growling mid-car ride. Not to mention when you get to the vet and your sweet kitten is overwhelmed by all the pet smells and sound.
Basically, heading to the vet is not fun.
And while prioritising your cat’s health is a pain, they are your family and should always be worth the trouble.
Why do we need to visit the vet regularly?
Okay, so your cat may look healthy, but seeing as you aren’t an expert (unless you are a certified vet, then kudos to you and your cat) then you aren’t likely to know about the health conditions lurking beneath your cat’s beautiful coat, not to mention the need for preventative care. ? Here is why you need to take your cat to the vet even when they may seem like they’re doing okay.
Cats are good at hiding illnesses
This is a known fact. Cats are incredibly stoic and don’t have easy symptoms for you to pick up on. So even if your kitten is giving you all of the love and eating away, they could still be harbouring an illness. So, don’t take their demeanour for perfect health, okay? You also have an untrained eye, so while they may look happy and healthy to you, a vet may instantly be able to notice an issue. Let a vet rather confirm that they are okay.
It’s a form of preventative care
Look, there is no better way to prove that you love your pet than prioritising preventative care measures. I mean, prevention is better than cure. Much like humans, your cat can also develop serious illness like cardiac issues, cancer, diabetes, kidney issues and so much more.
To better protect your pet from a life-threatening illness, it’s better to detect the issue before it reaches an unpreventable stage. Going to the vet is the first (and most important step) in preventative care.
It saves you money
Now I know that this may sound counterintuitive because going to the vet isn’t even free, but just hear me out here. Waiting until your cat is diagnosed with an illness or serious disease is EXPENSIVE. I cannot stress this enough. Treatment options will set you back thousands of Rands.
That's why I believe that bringing your cat to the veterinarian at least once a year is one of the most important things you can do!
The role of the vet
Your vet is your realist. As a cat owner, it’s easy to get swept up in all of the cuteness that you forget that your little fur baby CAN and most likely will get sick. Your vet plays an important role in reviewing your cat’s lifestyle, temperament and nutrition.
They will also do a full body assessment.
For example, they will examine the cat's ears for parasites, such as ear mites.
They'll look at the eyes for general retinal health, peer inside your cat's mouth to look for signs of tartar or gum disease, listen to the cat's heart and lungs, and survey the skin for any lesions or bumps.
Your little furball will also be weighed to make sure that your cat’s body conditioning is at the right number. Impress your vet with the following information: your cat should be between a rating of 1 to 9. The higher the number the fatter the cat. Your cat should aim to be in the middle of the range – 5 is the goal.
Get comfortable asking questions
The important thing is that you need to get comfortable asking your vet questions. Ask them what the tell-tale signs of an illness are. They will be able to give you pointers as to what you should look out for to make sure that your cat is healthy.
With the help of a thorough physical exam plus the information that you share, you and your veterinarian can create a plan to meet the individualized needs of your cat.
Regular check-ups are key to a healthy and happy cat.
Your cat is always ready to give you so much love and they don’t ask for much in return. You owe it to your feline friend to keep them safe, happy and healthy.
Here is my personal greatest secret weapon to keeping my fur baby safe and I think it’s time that you make use of it too: Oneplan pet insurance.
It is worth the click trust me!
Until next time,
The Pet Insurance Team