Feline Health Care Basics
Just like humans, kittens need vaccinations to grow up healthy. At six weeks maternal antibody levels begin to fade, leaving kittens unprotected. Kittens are usually given a series of three sets of vaccinations.
Parasites are also common in kittens and can be fatal if not treated. In our area hookworms, roundworms and tapeworms are common. Of these parasites, hookworms and roundworms can be transmitted to humans.
Heartworms are also potentially fatal parasites that live in the heart and pulmonary artery. Recent studies show 25% of cats in the Southeast have been exposed. During the kitten visits your doctor will discuss heartworm prevention for your kitten.
A FeLV/FIV test will also be recommended for most kittens.
Between four and six months your doctor will recommend spaying or neutering your pet. Spaying your female cat will stop the monthly heats and vocalizing. It will eliminate the risk of unwanted pregnancies. Spaying your female cat also greatly reduces the risk of breast and ovarian cancers as well as uterine infections. Neutering your male cat will increase life expectancy. It will reduce the urge to "mark." Neutering reduces the male cats' natural instinct to roam and fight. It reduces the risk of cancer and disease of the prostate and testes. It will also reduce exposure to FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus) and FeLV(Feline Leukemia). The doctors also highly recommend placement of a microchip during the spaying/neutering of your puppy. While a microchip can be placed when a pet is awake, it may be less stressful to do while they are under anesthesia.
Certain vaccinations are recommended to be given annually and others have been approved to be given every three years. There are also annual tests that your doctor will recommend to keep your pet as healthy as possible.
Dental health is as important for pets as it is for their owners. Our doctors will make recommendations as needed for your pet.
Heartworm and flea prevention are recommended based on the specific needs and environment of your cat. An annual deworming may be recommended if your cat spends a lot of time outdoors.
Just as in humans, the likelihood of illness and disease increases with age. Kidney disease, heart disease, thyroid conditions, arthritis, diabetes, and cancer are common in senior cats. As your cat reaches its senior years, early detection and proper medical care are the keys in providing a higher quality of life for your cat. Effective new treatments are available to reverse or effectively manage these conditions if detected early.