Pet Care Articles

Welcome to our Award Winning Pet Care Library. Featuring more than 500 pages of essential need-to-knows, in-depth investigations and species/breed databases. Select a topic from the menu or browse this week’s featured articles.

The Cat Owner’s Guide To Traveling

Whether your are planning a holiday visit to the in-laws or contemplating a long family vacation, traveling with your cat may be in the cards.

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Osteoarthritis and Your Cat

Osteoarthritis is fairly common in older cats, whose joints eventually undergo the same degenerative process that ours do. This painful and progressive condition can result in a range of symptoms, the worst of which is chronic pain.

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Nutrition for Your Cat

Cats are strict meat-eaters, carnivores, and they require relatively higher amounts of dietary protein and fat than do omnivores such as dogs and humans. However, carnivores do not live by meat alone; they still have complex nutritional needs, and cats must be fed a diet specifically formulated and balanced to meet those needs.

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Litter Box Cleaning Tips

How can the harmony of your home be most quickly disrupted? By finding that your beloved, formerly fastidious cat has relocated her bathroom from the litter box to the living room carpet.

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Encourage Your Cat to Exercise

Cats are like people in some ways, and one of the characteristics we share is an individual difference in activity levels. When all factors are considered (general noise and activity level of the home and family, age and health of the cat, and so on), some cats are simply more active than others.

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A Healthy Digestive System

Just as with people, cats have a very intricate and complex network of body mechanics that must keep running in tip-top shape if the cat is to be her best. Some of the barometers of good health are relatively easy to see: shiny hair and clear skin, bright eyes and good mobility.

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Advances in Feline Dental Care

At heart, cats are still creatures of the wild. As such, they hide their pain, even when it’s a toothache. And as anyone who’s had a toothache knows, dental pain ranks pretty high on the scream-out-loud scale.

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The Meaning of Meow

"Meow!" As cat owners, we hear it every day, often many times a day. But what does it mean? Well according to Dr. Nicholas Nicastro, we understand its meaning more clearly than we might think. Nicastro wrote his PhD thesis in psychology at Cornell University on humans’ ability to understand the meows of cats.

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Dematting Your Cat

Longhaired cats develop mats in their fur – those clumps of dead hair that get stuck in the coat – more easily than shorthaired cats, but any cat can develop them. During humid weather the fur bunches up and mats much more readily and requires more grooming. Cats also mat more frequently in the armpits and other places where their body parts rub against one another.

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Annual Feline Health Checklist

It seems like just a short time ago that your best (feline) friend had a veterinary check-up, but today, once again, you’ve spotted that familiar reminder card in the mail. Another veterinary exam already? Here is a checklist of some of the ways you can help ensure your cat’s good health throughout the year:

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How to Give a Cat a Pill

It’s the subject of far too many jokes, and most cat owners cringe when the vet says tabby will have to take a pill.

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Cat Shows at a Glance

At Cat Fanciers’ Association cat shows, each cat is judged according to a common standard for its breed. Color and characteristics of the breed are the two principal designations that set champion cats apart.

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Is Your Cat Too Fat?

If your favorite feline looks more like a potato than a panther, you’ve got one fat cat. Here’s how to tell if kitty is overweight.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Respiratory Disease

Respiratory distress is a symptom of many conditions including infection, aspiration pneumonia, near drowning, shock, heat stroke, fluid in the chest cavity. Irregular or shallow breathing indicates serious illness. Unless you can immediately identify and treat the cause e.g. treat heat stroke, seek veterinary advice immediately.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Septicemia

This is generalized infection i.e. the kitten’s system is filled with harmful bacteria. It may have picked up these bacteria in the womb, during birth or after birth through a skin lesion or umbilical cord.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Shock

The common term for collapse resulting from circulatory failure. The heart is unable to supply all the tissues in the body with adequate blood keep them oxygenated. Without adequate oxygen, those tissues cannot function normally.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Worming

Intestinal parasites (roundworms, tapeworms) are common in kittens unless the mother was wormed before pregnancy began. With abandoned kittens it is impossible to know whether the mother was wormed or not. Feral kittens almost always harbor worms.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Vomiting and Gastritis

At approx 3 days old, kittens gain the ability to vomit on a full stomach. Vomiting is a general sign associated with many different gastrointestinal (stomach and gut) problems.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Malnutrition and Starvation

This can occur before birth due to placenta problems. It also occurs in weak kittens e.g. runts or where the litter is too large for the mother to feed them all adequately. The runt is the first to suffer if there is a more general problem with lack of maternal milk supply.

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Hand-Rearing Kittens: Diarrhea, Gastro-Enteritis and Enteritis

Severe Diarrhea or severe Gastro-Enteritis is a serious inflammation of the stomach and intestine which causes abdominal pain, severe diarrhea and often vomiting. It quickly causes dehydration and electrolyte loss due to excessive fluid loss. The kitten may cry in pain if it has the strength to do so. Seek immediate veterinary help. Antibiotics may be required to combat infection. If and when the condition stabilizes, the kitten may be too weak to suckle and may require tube-feeding.

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