Owning a cat is a big responsibility. Although every loving cat owner has the best intentions for their cats, some choices that seem harmless will actually shorten your pet’s lifespan.
In this video, we will talk about 16 common mistakes that can chop years off your cat’s life
Not keeping them well-hydrated
Many cats don’t like water so they don’t drink enough of it. Because of this, they are more prone to developing health issues such as urinary crystals and kidney problems. To avoid the complications of dehydration, it’s important to give them constant access to water in a way they find appealing such as water fountains, canned food, and multiple water bowls.
Giving them access to open windows
Every year, animal hospitals treat cats who have fallen from great heights, often out of windows of multi-story buildings. If you live in an apartment or high-rise building, don’t leave any windows open. Your cats’ natural instincts may kick in when they see a bird and they may jump right out of an open window to chase their prey, leading to a tragedy.
Stressing your Cat
Too much stress is harmful not just to humans, but also to your feline best friend. Research has shown that fear and anxiety can shave months off your feline’s life. Stressors to cats can come in ways you may not expect.
A sudden change in the family or household, loud noises, dirty litterbox, inconsistent routines, lack of mental stimulation, and forced confinement are among common causes of stress in cats.
Remember, having a good life and strong emotional bond with their families help cats live longer lives.
Not providing enough exercise
Cats need exercise just like humans and dogs do.
Be sure to spend at least 20 minutes per day engaging in interactive play with your cat. Exercise provides mental stimulation and ensures good muscle and bone health.
Cats are excellent at grooming themselves and they rarely need to be washed. If cats are bathed too often, they may lose essential oils from their fur, and it may even be a traumatic experience for them.
Not being picky about their food
We all need good nutrition to feel our best, and the same goes for our pets. Regardless of whether your cat eats wet or dry food, pay attention to the content.
Poor quality cat foods can cause allergies, skin irritations, and overall poor health. Cats are natural carnivores who need plenty of meat in their diet.
Allowing your pet to eat too much is a habit that can shed years off your pet’s life. Recent reports indicate that over half the pet population is overweight. Obesity can bring with it a number of health issues such as joint problems, diabetes and an increase risk of getting cancer.
Cats are very clean animals. Poor hygiene practices can leave your cat susceptible to stress and diseases. Cleaning your cat’s feeding equipment and litter boxes on a regular basis will help them feel comfortable and prevent diseases.
Taking your pet to the vet less often than once a year
Vet bills can be expensive but taking your pet to the vet on a regular basis is simply part of being a good, compassionate pet owner.
Taking them to the vet for a checkup is the only way to ensure that your pet is as healthy.
Exposing your pet to second-hand smoke
Just like humans, felines’ lungs can’t handle smoke being blown at them all day. Second-hand smoke can be extremely harmful to pets, causing all sorts of health problems.
Forgetting essential care
Like humans, cats need regular dental care. Their teeth are often home to hundreds of bacteria and need to be brushed just like yours do.
Grooming is also important. It helps prevent hairballs, removes loose fur, and prevents matting and skin diseases. Long-haired cats should be brushed daily, while short-haired cats can be groomed about once a week.
And remember, almost all cats need to have their nails clipped. Regular nail trims helps reinforce healthy posture and foot structure, and reduces the risk of infection and broken claws.
Letting your cat roam free outdoors
Cats who roam freely can encounter a variety of dangers.
Cats outdoors are vulnerable to contagious diseases, parasite infestations, freezing, heatstroke, attacks by dogs and other predators, and being hit by vehicles.
Because of elements like these, research has shown that outdoor cats live only 2-5 years on average compared to 15-20 years for indoor cats.
Feeding unhealthy table scraps
Many foods that humans consume are extremely high in fats and sugars, compared to what our pets should be exposed to. In addition, certain human foods—such as garlic, onions and chocolate—can be toxic to cats if consumed.
Not protecting against fleas, ticks, and heartworm
Fleas and ticks can cause skin irritation, severe allergic reactions and even carry diseases and lead to serious health problems in your pets. If you bring in ticks or even mosquitoes, your pet could be exposed to heartworms, Lyme disease, or even the plague.
My name is Mark and the senior editor
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