As your cat ages it can often be a bit difficult and confusing to take care of him or her, mostly because he or she is going to have health issues and care requirements that simply do not really occur with a younger cat. Listed below are three reasons to take your elderly cat to the vet regularly.
One of the biggest problems that your cat will deal with as he or she ages is dental disease. As your cat ages, he or she will develop dental issues that can result in the loss of teeth or severe pain, both of which can result in your cat eating less and becoming quite weak. A vet can help in this situation by sedating your cat so that he or she can extract damaged teeth to eliminate the pain and clean the remaining teeth in order to keep them in good shape.
Arthritis is a major problem that will often affect older cats. A few signs that your cat is suffering from arthritis are hesitation when it comes to jumping to higher spaces or matted fur. Matted fur often occurs when a cat is in severe pain from arthritis because arthritis can make it very painful for the cat to twist and move to reach his or her entire body, which can lead to neglected grooming.
If your elderly cat is suffering from arthritis, your vet can prescribe pain medication to make him or her more comfortable in the short term. In the long term, your vet will often recommend vitamin supplements that can help alleviate the pain and counteract the effects of arthritis.
Finally, you will want to talk to your vet about changing your cat's diet, mostly because the food that you have been feeding your cat for years may no longer be the best choice now that he or she is older. This is important because a change in your elderly cat's diet can help stave off a number of health issues that can affect him or her.
For example, elderly cats can often become obese due to not being as active. In that situation, your vet may recommend cat food that does not have a lot of calories but that is still rich in nutrients. In addition, your vet may recommend foods that are high in fatty acids as that can often help slow the spread of arthritis and allow your cat to become more active.
Make an appointment with a cat hospital in order to discuss how he or she can help you ensure that your elderly cat lives a long and comfortable life. Regular visits to your vet can help you deal with an elderly cat's arthritis or dental issues while also giving you the opportunity to discuss any adjustments that your cat's diet may require.