We combined the fact that International Cat week is in August, with the fact that many new cat owners do not fully understand the cat pregnancy risks for unneutered females. The Vets at Rouken Glen Vets have put some helpful advice together below.
Female cats are fertile every two or three weeks and can come into season for the first time when they are just 4 months old. Our clinical team in Giffnock thought they would be wise to provide some advice on cat pregnancy in an article that may be of particular benefit to new cat owners.
As a new cat owner, one of the first things you need to think about is whether or not you would like your cat to have offspring. If not, then we recommend that you neuter them before their first season. If you would like to discuss neutering, then the friendly team at our vet practice in Giffnock can help you.
Get in touch and we can talk you through the facts.
If you are keen to experience a litter of kittens, or you get caught out (by not neutering your cat in time) and experience an unexpected cat pregnancy, it is important to make sure your cat is healthy and properly supported.
Signs of cat pregnancy
Do not panic! Look out for the three classic signs of cat pregnancy: red and enlarged nipples, extra weight, and changes in behaviour. Definitely book a check-up as weight gain can be a sign of many things so if you are seeing that, then we need to see your cat. We will complete a full health check and can confirm a pregnancy just 15 days into her term using ultrasound.
Five things to expect when your cat is expecting…
- Cat pregnancy usually lasts between 61 and 72 days.
- Apart from the three classic signs above, expect vomiting in the early weeks.
- A day before labour begins, your cat’s body temperature will drop to around 37.8 degrees.
- As labour starts, she may seek out a quiet place, seem restless and lose interest in food.
- As she delivers, you will see discharge, followed by kittens. If the discharge is discoloured or your cat appears to be struggling to deliver, you should contact us quickly on 0141 620 2580.
Four things your pregnant cat will need
Our Vets will prepare you with a cat pregnancy timeline, safe flea & worm treatments, and will walk you through the birthing process. You will also need:
- More food: Pregnant cats eat around 25% more food, especially in the 3 weeks to delivery.
- More water: She should also have access to more fresh water whilst pregnant.
- A kittening box: Create a safe space in a quiet corner – give her some room.
- Loving homes: You need to understand ‘Lucy’s Law’ which means you cannot sell your kittens unless you are a registered breeder or animal shelter. We recommend that you start looking for suitable homes early in the process.
Cat pregnancy can be a wonderful thing if you are informed and prepared, so, please do remember that we are here to help. You can contact us by popping into our Rouken Glen Road practice or give us a call on 0141 620 2580.
Long, hot summer days spent sunbathing and going on new adventures… sounds divine. We are sure most cats in East Renfrewshire would agree! Unfortunately, there are a few summer dangers such as heatstroke, burnt paws, and accidents that could scupper your cat’s plans.
The nursing team at Rouken Glen Vets have pulled together their top tips to help you ensure your cat has a cool and carefree summer.
The first action on your checklist is to get your cat microchipped. Besides the new law due to come into force this year making it compulsory, cat microchipping is one of the most helpful things you can do for your cat this summer. Keep reading to discover why and get more cool cat summer tips from Rouken Glen Vets’ nursing team.
1. Why microchip your cat
With longer daylight hours, more sunshine, and more adventuring to do, summer can heighten certain dangers for cats including:
- Pet theft
- Wandering off too far and getting lost
- Looking lost close to home and being taken to a vet practice or animal shelter
- Road traffic accidents and other injuries from summer adventures
- By microchipping your cat, you are giving them the best chance of being reunited with you should the unthinkable happen. Book a cat microchipping appointment today.
2. Think ‘hot weather cat safety’
Cats are big sun worshippers but too much can be detrimental to their health. The heat can get to indoor and outdoor cats so it is important to take steps to avoid heatstroke, which can be fatal.
Follow these tips from Rouken Glen Vets’ nursing team and make sure your cat enjoys a safe summer:
a. Provide plenty of water in multiple locations so your cat avoids getting dehydrated.
b. Set up some shady areas where your cat likes to lay even if your cat lives indoors – get into the habit of pulling down the blinds or drawing the curtains against the midday sun.
c. If your cat likes to sunbathe, apply pet-specific sunscreen to delicate areas such as paws and noses to avoid sunburn – especially if they are lighter in colour.
d. Your cat’s paws are especially sensitive so be aware of the temperature of pavements before letting them outside in hot sun – check for signs of blisters when they come in.
e. Heat leads to cats tiring out more quickly – avoid letting your pet play too much in the heat or it might lead to exhaustion.
f. Be wary around paddling and swimming pools – while cats are not known for jumping into water voluntarily, accidents happen, and cats are not great swimmers.
3. Avoid fleas, worms & ticks
Like cats, many parasites will become more active in the warmer weather and who better to hitch a ride with? Your cat of course! As well as being very annoying for your cat, fleas, worms, and ticks can create a whole host of health issues for your cat, as well as your human family.
Ask any of our Rouken Glen Road Vet Nurses and they will tell you that ongoing preventative treatments are the best course of action to avoid parasite problems in cats. Contact our team on 0141 620 2580 to order your cat’s next treatment, or to discuss the best products for your pet.
We hope you can use our advice to help your cat have a cool and carefree summer. If you have questions after reading this or want to book an appointment for microchipping or preventative care, do get in touch.
Having a new kitten is very exciting as they attract a lot of attention with their playful antics. However, it must not be forgotten that they require a lot of care too. It is important to have your house prepared with adequate bedding, a cat carrier for vet visits, food and water at the ready, enrichment for your kitten, and to have some knowledge about how to bond with them.
As well as ensuring your kitten is comfortable in your home, you must take them to the vets so they can get vaccinated, microchipped, and checked over for any health problems.
Follow Richard’s advice below to make sure your kitten has a happy and healthy start to their life with you.
Where do I get a kitten from?
We recommend adopting your kitten from a local animal charity and helping to reduce the number of unwanted kittens that need a home. If you are buying from a breeder, before choosing your kitten you should gather some information such as:
- When was it born? (Kittens should stay with their mother until they are 12-14 weeks old to avoid some health and developmental issues, although many are separated at 8 weeks)
- Will I be able to see the kitten with their mother?
- Is there any information about the father?
- What breed is the kitten?
- Is it friendly?
- Is the kitten on solid food?
All these questions will help you understand what your kitten will be socially and physically comfortable with, as well as any important details concerning breed specificity. In addition, make sure the kitten’s environment looks clean and the litter seems healthy. You can ask similar questions to an animal charity however they may not have all the answers.
Should my kitten be vaccinated?
It is crucial to have your kitten vaccinated, microchipped, treated for worms and fleas, and potentially neutered (at 4 months old). Here at Rouken Glen Vets, we can take care of all these procedures. They are important to ensure disease protection, identification, parasite infestation, and the prevention of unwanted litters.
There is also new government legislation to be released in 2022, stating cats must be microchipped by 20 weeks old. If the owner fails to do so, they risk being fined up to £500.
Should my kitten be neutered?
If you don’t want your female kitten to be at risk of becoming pregnant as young as four months old, or your male kitten contributing to the ever-growing population of strays, then yes, your kitten will need to be neutered. Our Rouken Glen Road Veterinary Surgeons can take care of this and microchipping at the same time.
Kittens require a diet high in energy, protein, vitamins, and minerals. They should have been weaned by the time you purchase them, now requiring soft, wet, digestible food. They will then need to switch to dry food or a mix of wet & dry as they grow. Ask our team about the best types of food for kittens and young cats – get in touch.
Water should be always available and cats often like running water to drink from if possible. Ideally, your kitten should have a litter tray on each floor of your home away from their food and water bowls. If you have more than one kitten or cat, each will need their own litter tray to avoid fighting.
For enrichment, cats and kittens often enjoy interactive puzzles, toys, food balls, scratching posts, places to climb and hide, and time to roam outside. It is important that your kitten doesn’t venture outside until they have been vaccinated, microchipped, and neutered.
Having a kitten is a very fun, rewarding experience, but also requires effort and responsibility. It is important that you follow the guidance above to ensure your kitten has everything they need for a healthy start, and they are comfortable within your home. If you have any concerns, share them on our Facebook page.
Book an appointment at our Giffnock vet practice so our team can advise you further and make sure your kitten gets the preventative treatments they need.
People often think about how to look after their dogs in the summer months but may not think they need to do anything different for their feline friends. Our Giffnock Vet Nurses are here to tell you why it is just as important to make sure your cat is prepared for summer. Get stuck into their summer prep list for cats below.
Did you know May is Veterinary Nurse Awareness Month? Why not share why your pets love our Vet Nurses on our Facebook page? If you include the hashtag #VNAM on your post, you can help to spread the word about our fantastic nursing team.
How to ensure a happy summer for your cat
1. Summer cat health check
A lot can happen for pets in six months or a year, which is why it’s a good idea to get your cat checked by one of our Vets in Giffnock in time for summer. A cat check will help to put your mind at rest, and it enables the Vet to make sure your cat is in good health for the hot season ahead and treat any ailments.
2. Parasite control for cats
Parasite control is very important as more cats will be roaming around East Renfrewshire during the summer, encountering more species and more parasites! When is a good time to check your cat for fleas? When you are grooming them, which brings us nicely to…
3. Feline grooming
Our Giffnock Vet Nurses advise that cat grooming is important ahead of the summer months, especially for long-haired cats. There is no need to shave cats but if they have thick fur, regular brushing can ensure their coat is not as dense, which will keep them cooler.
4. Holiday cat sitter
Making holiday plans is high on most people’s to-do-list at the beginning of summer, but don’t forget to organise your cat’s holiday care. This could be a live-in or drop-in service, or a visit to the cattery. Either way, it is important to ensure whoever is responsible for your cat while you are away is adequately insured and qualified to do so. If your cat is staying at a cattery, they will need to be fully vaccinated and you will need to take their up-to-date vaccination certificate with you. Book your cat’s booster vaccination now.
5. Cats and heat
When thinking about the heat, it is important to protect cats. You should ensure they have plenty of access to water bowls, shade, hiding places away from the sun, and encourage them to stay indoors during the hotter times of the day. Cats can get heat stroke just like dogs, so be sure to keep an eye on them.
6. Cat ‘traps’
Our Vet Nurses warn owners to be extra vigilant in making sure their cat comes back every day. Cats seem to have a habit of getting themselves trapped in sheds, garages, and other outbuildings that may have been left open during the day. Ask people in your local area to check their outbuildings if your cat is missing.
7. Update your cat’s microchip details
Ensure your contact information that is connected to your cat’s microchip is up-to-date. This will give you peace of mind that if your cat wanders off in the warmer weather and gets taken to a vet practice, they are identifiable. If your cat has not been microchipped yet, give us a call on 0141 620 2580 and our team can book that in for you.
Is your cat due for a booster? Our team can check and book for you – contact us.
We hope you found our Veterinary Nurses’ advice helpful and are ready to get started with your cat’s summer prep. If your pet has a favourite Nurse, or two, pop over to our Facebook page and share it for #VNAM – Visit Rouken Glen Vets’ Facebook page.
If you need to book your cat’s health check, vaccinations, microchip, or anything else, we are here to help.
National Pet Month (April 1st – May 2nd) promotes responsible pet ownership, but what does that mean when it comes to cats? Many people believe that cats “pretty much take care of themselves”, and their aloof behaviour means they have little interest in or need for their human companions. Our Giffnock Vets are here to tell you why this is not the case.
If you have any concerns about your cat’s health, book them in to see one of our Vets.
Cats actually become very attached to their humans. Like dogs, cats can suffer from separation anxiety too, although they’re usually not quite as vocal and destructive about it.
At Rouken Glen Vets, we believe that being a responsible pet owner means ensuring your cat has everything they need to live a healthy, happy, and fulfilled life. To help you, the cat-loving Vets at our Rouken Glen Road clinic have pulled together the ultimate cat care list for you.
Cat care 101 – How to take care of a cat
1. Provide calm & comfort – Cat care starts with a comfortable home environment that’s as stress-free as possible – remember not all dogs and cats, or multiple cats will get on. A plug-in pheromone diffuser can help to ease tensions between pets – ask us about this.
2. Get these essential items – There are many options when it comes to cat beds, including those that hang over radiators, and yours of course! Your cat might prefer a certain type or a combination. They will also need litter trays, and food & water bowls. Multiple cat households need a litter tray per cat, ideally on each level of your house, and separate food & water bowls away from the litter trays. If your cat likes to roam, fitting a microchip cat flap will give them the freedom they desire.
3. Commit to lifetime cat vaccinations – Making sure your cat is vaccinated every year will help to protect them from harmful and life-threatening contagious diseases, keeping them healthier for longer – book now.
4. Take your cat for regular health checks – Your cat will receive a thorough health check at their annual cat vaccinations appointment at Rouken Glen Vets. Having 6-month checks-ups in between their boosters can help our Vets to spot any health issues early.
5. Keep up to date with parasite control – The best way to avoid your cat picking up fleas or worms is to give them vet-recommended cat flea & worm treatments regularly. These are typically given monthly and help to protect your pet from the nasty effects of parasites.
6. Get your cat microchipped – A press release was published on the UK Government website recently stating that microchipping cats is going to become mandatory with fines for non-compliance. Get ahead of this new law and get your cat microchipped, which most importantly increases your chances of being reunited with them if they go missing.
7. Try a collar & ID Tag – Many owners tell us their cat doesn’t wear a collar & ID tag because their “cat doesn’t like them”. Our Vets suggest it is worth trying again as ID tags are the quickest way for someone to contact you if something is wrong with your cat.
8. Give your cat a nutritious diet – Hard kibble is important for dental health, wet food provides moisture, avoid human foods, and opt for good quality food brands. Our Vets & Nurses can provide you with more in-depth, expert advice tailored to your cat’s life-stage, activity level, and current health. Chatting to us before changing cat foods is wise too as even small changes can have a big impact on your cat’s health – get in touch.
9. Try these cat enrichment ideas – Boredom and loneliness can affect your cat’s behaviour and health. Avoid this by spending plenty of time with your cat playing, grooming, or simply snuggling up together, and by providing cat enrichment toys and activities. Our Giffnock Vets recommend scratching posts and searching YouTube for how to build a cat home gym.
10. Get a cat sitter for holidays – Booking a cat sitter at your home (or taking them to a cattery if this is not possible) will ensure your cat still gets everything they need when you’re away, bar you.
Now, we don’t want you to think that all cats are high maintenance after reading this (well, some are), but we should point out that owning any pet is a big responsibility. You can always ask us cat care questions on our Facebook page, or if you are concerned, come and see one of our Giffnock Vets.
So, can cats have hay fever?
It is one of the most common illnesses in cats, yet many East Renfrewshire owners are not aware of it. Hay fever, at its worst during spring and summer, does in fact plague both humans and animals alike.
At Rouken Glen Vets in Giffnock, we have seen many cats with a grass or tree pollen allergy. It affects the skin more than it does the sinuses and can make your pet chronically ill. Fortunately, there are things you can do to help…
1. Be aware of cat hay fever symptoms
Excessive licking and scratching are signs that are often associated with fleas, but they can also be brought on by an allergic reaction to pollen. This can make the skin, ears, and bottom very irritable and itchy. Plus, if your cat has bald patches around the lower back, groin, tail, or paws, there is a high chance they are suffering from hay fever.
2. Check for fleas
So that you do not confuse hay fever with fleas, Rouken Glen Vets’ nurses recommend that you should check your pet’s fur for flea dirt. You should also ensure your cat is up to date with their preventative parasite treatments. Most spot-on pipettes and tablets need to be given monthly.
Not sure if your cat is up to date? Call our team on 0141 620 2580 and we can help.
3. Treatment of cat hay fever
If you are concerned your cat may have an allergy, book an appointment to see one of our Vets. We can run tests to help pinpoint the problem and, if needed, subscribe treatments such as antihistamines and anti-allergy vaccines.
Important: Never give your cat human medicines unless instructed by your Vet as only some are safe for cats and dosages will differ.
4. Preventative measures?
It is hard to avoid pollens, as many hay fever sufferers in East Renfrewshire will know. Sometimes even staying indoors to avoid pollens can still be miserable and forcing your cat to stay in can damage their health in other ways. In addition to anti-allergy injections or antihistamines, here are some other ways to help your cat beat hay fever:
- Evening primrose oil can be effective in reducing a reaction – drop into your cat’s food or directly into their mouth, or on their nose to lick off
- Wash your hands before and after handling your cat to reduce the transference of pollen
- Wipe your cat’s fur when they come inside with a damp (but not soaking) cloth to remove some of the pollen
- If your cat is willing, an occasional bath can help to remove pollen from their fur
If you would like more advice on cat hay fever or wish to book an appointment if your cat is suffering, give us a call and we will be happy to help.
Did you know a preventative approach to your cat’s care is the best way to keep them in tip top condition for longer, and prevent them from catching a number of harmful diseases?
Here at Rouken Glen Vets in Giffnock, our Vets and Nurses have many years of experience dealing with serious cat health conditions that could have been prevented. In this article, our Head Vet Richard has put together their top five preventative healthcare ‘must-haves’ for cats.
To help cat and kitten owners further, our team have also created a handy checklist of everything your pet will need for a happy and healthy life on top of the preventative care list below.
Five important preventative care needs for cats
1. Cat vaccinations
It is important to keep up with the recommended cat vaccination schedule advised by your Vet to give your pet optimum protection against infectious diseases. These preventable diseases can have devastating consequences and include:
- Feline panleukopenia virus (FPV, feline infectious enteritis; feline parvovirus)
- Feline herpesvirus (FHV-1, cat flu)
- Feline calicivirus (FCV, cat flu)
- Feline leukaemia virus (FeLV)
Many cat owners ask our Giffnock Vets, “do indoor cats needs vaccinating every year?” It is wise to remember that sometimes indoor cats can get out and neighbouring cats can get in, so there is always a risk for un-vaccinated cats. Also, FPV can be transferred via contaminated water, feed bowls, or on shoes and clothing.
Not sure if your cat’s vaccinations are up to date? Give us a call on 0141 620 2580 and our helpful reception team will check for you.
2. Cat flea & worm control
Fleas multiply at an alarming rate and will affect your cat, your human family, and your home. Cat fleas cause itching and irritation, leading to excessive scratching, sores, hair loss, and scabbing. An infestation can also cause anaemia and fleas can carry tapeworms and other diseases. Unprotected cats are at risk of picking up roundworms too. Therefore, an ongoing programme of vet-recommended cat flea and worm treatments is always the best option. Call 0141 620 2580 to see if your cat is due a treatment.
3. Cat neutering
The obvious reason to neuter any cat is to stop unwanted pregnancies – especially as female kittens can get pregnant at just 4 months of age. However, there are many more benefits of cat neutering including:
- reduced risk of mammary and prostate cancer
- prevention of testicular cancer and pyometra (uterine infection)
- prevention of stressful phantom pregnancies and seasons
- can stop some undesirable behaviours and make pets easier to live with
4. Health & dental checks
It is a good idea to get your cat’s dental and general health checked every 6 – 12 months so our Vets can begin treatment for any issues that could be brewing right away. Dental disease can be especially problematic for cats as most tend to hide pain and dislike having their teeth cleaned. Ensuring our Vets can get a good look at your cat’s teeth regularly means any concerns can be dealt with to improve your cat’s quality of life.
Finally, this might not seem like a preventative measure, however, it is something our experienced Vets always discuss with cat owners when talking about preventative healthcare. Microchipping your cat will greatly improve your chances of being reunited with them should they get taken to a vet practice, or an animal shelter, after going missing or being in an accident.
We hope the above advice is helpful. When it comes to your cat’s overall health and happiness, do you know what all their essential needs are? We have got you covered with our handy cat checklist – download it now.
Dental disease in cats is more common than you might think, affecting around 85% of cats over the age of three according to International Cat Care. With February being Pet Dental Health Month, Rouken Glen Vets’ experienced team are here to help owners understand the dental problems their cat could be living with.
Plaque & tartar – the common culprits
Head Vet, Richard Black, explains why so many cats have dental issues. Periodontal disease is typically associated with the build-up of plaque (layer of bacteria) and the formation of tartar deposits (hard yellow/brown substance) on the teeth. Left untreated, periodontal (dental) disease can develop, affecting the teeth as well as the supporting structures i.e. gums, ligaments, and bone.
Types of feline dental disease
– Gingivitis can be very painful and ranges from mild to severe; signs include red and inflamed gums, excessive drooling and bad breath, pawing at the mouth, difficulty eating, and bleeding in some cases.
– Periodontitis is severe gum disease, common in older cats with a lot of tartar deposits. Diseased ligaments begin to break down, exposing the roots and making the teeth unstable. Bacterial infection can be present and extraction is usually needed. Inflamed and receding gums are common signs.
– Stomatitis – Chronic gingivostomatitis is when inflammation spreads from the gingiva (gums) to other areas, often at the back of the mouth. It is extremely painful and cats will find it difficult to eat, probably lose weight, drool excessively, and show signs of pain such as pawing at the mouth. Some cases have been linked with persistent FCV and FIV infection.
– Feline resorptive lesions (FRLs) are erosions in the tooth in or below the gum line, commonly found in cats over five years old. Left untreated, the crown can come off leaving the root exposed.
– Fractures can be caused if the tooth is weakened and/or through eating extra hard food, engaging in rough play or hunting, or trauma.
Are some cats predisposed to dental disease?
Yes. Cats with misaligned teeth are more likely to develop dental disease; food gets trapped and can’t be cleaned effectively through diet and dental aids. Short-nosed breeds, congenital abnormalities (such as overbite/underbite), trauma, and deciduous tooth retention (when baby teeth don’t fall out and cause adult teeth to grow abnormally) are all causes of tooth misalignment. Other predisposing factors are an unsuitable diet and some infectious, preventable diseases.
How often should cats visit a Vet Dentist?
Prevention and early diagnosis are key to protecting your cat’s oral health. Prevent disease by vaccinating your cat annually, and help to prevent plaque and tartar build-ups through regular home cleaning and a suitable diet. Our Giffnock team can help you with all of this so do get in touch.
It is wise to book a 6-month check-up in between your cat’s annual vaccination & health check – a lot can change in a year and cats tend to hide pain. Checking regularly at home is a good idea too if your cat will let you. You are looking for red/swollen/bleeding gums, receding gums, excessively bad breath, tartar deposits, and missing/broken teeth.
As with all pet health concerns, we are on hand to help. Richard recommends booking a dental check-up and talking to one of our Vets. Our Vet Nurses can also help you master the art of caring for your cat’s teeth at home, so don’t struggle alone.
UK pet owners spend £7.9million a year on their pets according to the most recent figures published by the Office for National Statistics (2020). As we move into 2022, there’s never been a better time to think about spending some of those pounds on more sustainable cat products. The team at Rouken Glen Vets have some ideas for you below.
If you’re a cat owner in East Renfrewshire, you can help others in your area by sharing your top eco-friendly cat products and tips on our Facebook page.
Our Rouken Glen Road team have created two lists of helpful ideas to get you started.
Eco-friendly cat products
You can find a wide range of eco-friendly cat products on Amazon, and in pet shops and other online retailers. Here are three our team picked out:
Biodegradable cat litter
These contain natural raw and recycled materials that are biodegradable and much better for the environment. As well as being more sustainable, they also produce less waste, less dust, and have a good natural odour. You may have to do a bit of trial and error to see which your cat prefers though: biodegradable cat litter
Biodegradable litter tray liners
If you can’t do without your no-hassle-no-mess cat litter tray liners, then try switching to biodegradable ones. These liners come in recyclable packaging too: litter tray liners
Eco-friendly cat bowls
Bamboo cat bowls will last for years and are made without plastics and lacquers, meaning the materials used in manufacturing are much less harmful to the environment. Try these out for size: bamboo cat bowls. You can also get bamboo litter trays and poop scoops!
Eco-friendly cat owner tips
Recycle cat food pouches
We bet a lot of people throw cat food pouches away as they’re not glass, plastic, paper, or metal. Check the back as many are now recyclable – remember to empty them first!
Make your own cat toys out of unwanted household items
String, toilet roll tubes and cardboard boxes will give your cat hours of fun! Why not get super creative and build your cat a home gym? You can still recycle this ‘rubbish’ when your cat is done with them.
Give your cat’s unloved toys away
If your cat has too many toys and doesn’t play with them, ask a fellow cat owner if their cat might like them, or donate to a cat rescue centre.
We hope our article on how to be a sustainable cat owner has inspired you to do more research on the topic. If you have your own tips and eco-friendly products you use, don’t forget to,
Ever heard the saying ‘happy cat, happy life’? Ok, so maybe that’s not exactly the saying, but it’s still true. Rouken Glen Vets’ team of cat-loving Vets have pulled together some helpful advice on how to keep your cat happy, healthy, safe, and purring ‘tis the season to be jolly’ over Christmas.
Your cat’s happiness is directly linked to their wellbeing. When cats become unhappy or stressed, they can develop abnormal behaviours such as overgrooming and overeating, which can affect their health. Try these tips below and don’t forget to download our festive guide to making your cat happy.
Five ways to make your cat happy this Christmas:
- Cat toys: Christmas doesn’t have to be expensive when it comes to getting a gift for your cat. Like small children, cats often get the most joy out of the packaging the gift came in. Why not make some DIY cat toys? Attach a piece of string to a toilet roll tube and encourage your cat to chase it like it’s their prey. Also, start saving cardboard boxes to make your cat a series of fun hidey holes and tunnels.
- Cat nip: Our Rouken Glen Road team hasn’t met a cat yet who didn’t go nuts over catnip – a member of the mint plant family that releases a chemical called nepetalactone. Most cats respond to this chemical in different ways ranging from hyperactivity to completely mellow for around 15 minutes. You can buy catnip in edible treats, toys, and sprays to give your cat some extra festive fun.
- The right diet: It might be tempting to give your cat human food as a treat ‘because it’s Christmas’. However, too much can cause weight gain, and some common festive foods are harmful to cats including onion gravy, chocolate, and mince pies. Get more advice on giving your cat a safe festive diet by downloading our cat guide.
- Coat care: Winter in East Renfrewshire can play havoc with your cat’s coat. Extreme temperature changes between outside and inside your home can cause static electricity, itchiness, and dandruff. And don’t get us started on snow problems! Brush your cat more regularly this season to help prevent their thicker coat from becoming matted & tangled, and to remove dirt and debris. Some cat foods contain omega-3, which is good for coat condition. Talk to a Vet before changing your cat’s diet.
- Avoid cat troubles: Being in overwhelming situations at home and getting injured are common occurrences for cats at Christmas time; both will affect your pet’s happiness and wellbeing. We’ve included our handy guide, which includes advice on dealing with visitors and celebrations, and avoiding decorative hazards.
Here is one final piece of festive advice for you – when it comes to buying a Christmas tree, our team at Rouken Glen Vets recommend that artificial trees are usually the safest option for cat owners. This will avoid poisoning from fir tree oil, injury from eating pine needles, and sickness from drinking mouldy standing water.
Yes, all of these things can and do happen!