Your cat holds immense importance for you, and you want to take every possible step to ensure they lead a long, healthy, and happy life. In this article, our Redding vets discuss the frequency with which you should schedule routine check-ups and preventive care appointments for your cat.
When should you take a cat to the vet?
Ensuring your cat enjoys a healthy and happy life involves preventing serious illnesses and detecting them at their early stages when they are most treatable.
When you take your feline friend to the vet, you enable your veterinarian to monitor your cat's overall health and well-being, identify the earliest signs of emerging diseases, and provide recommendations for preventive care products tailored to your kitty.
At Dana Park Veterinary Hospital, we recognize that the expense of routine check-ups and preventive care may be a concern, particularly if your feline friend appears to be in perfect health. However, adopting a proactive, preventative approach to your cat or kitten's health could save you the expense of more costly treatments.
What is a cat check-up?
Bringing your cat in for a routine wellness exam is akin to taking them to the doctor for a physical check-up. Like people, your cat's physical examination frequency depends on age, lifestyle, and overall health.
We typically advise scheduling an annual wellness exam for your healthy adult cat. However, bringing them in for more frequent check-ups is advisable for kittens, senior cats, or those with underlying health conditions.
How often should kittens see a vet?
If your cat is under 1 year old, we recommend bringing them to our office at least once every month. Schedule their first veterinary appointment around 8 weeks (or two months) of age.
During their initial year, kittens need multiple rounds of vaccinations to safeguard them from common infectious diseases. Ensure that your kitten receives the Feline Leukemia vaccine and the FVRCP vaccine, protecting them from three highly contagious and life-threatening feline diseases: Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (FHV-1), Feline Calicivirus (FCV), and Feline Panleukopenia (FPL).
Your charming kitten will receive the necessary vaccinations over approximately 16 weeks, significantly contributing to their lifelong health. The specific timing of your cat's vaccinations will depend on their location and overall health.
Our veterinarians recommend spaying or neutering your kitten between 5 and 6 months of age to prevent various diseases, undesirable behaviors, and unwanted litters of kittens.
How often should middle-aged cats see a vet?
If you have a perfectly healthy adult cat between 1 and 10 years old, we recommend bringing them in for an annual check-up. These routine check-ups ensure that your cat remains in optimal health.
During your cat's routine exam, your vet will conduct a head-to-tail examination to identify early signs of diseases or issues, including parasites, joint pain, or tooth decay.
Your veterinarian will administer necessary vaccines and booster shots, and converse with you about your cat's diet and nutritional requirements. Additionally, we will recommend suitable parasite-preventive products and treatments.
Should your vet detect any signs of an emerging health issue, they will explain their findings and suggest the next steps.
How often should senior cats see a vet?
Cats typically achieve senior status at 11 years old. To address the heightened likelihood of injuries and diseases in older felines, we recommend scheduling biannual check-ups with our Redding vets.
These wellness examinations for your geriatric cat encompass all the checks and advice mentioned earlier, with additional diagnostic tests to gain deeper insights into your furry friend's overall health.
We suggest diagnostic tests like blood tests and urinalysis for our senior cat patients to detect early signs of conditions such as kidney disease or diabetes.
Geriatric cat care involves a proactive approach to ensure the comfort of your aging feline, especially as joint pain becomes more prevalent. If you have a senior cat, consult your vet about the recommended frequency for routine exams.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.