What are the considerations at different life stages?
Every cat is unique but certain health problems tend to arise in certain life stages. Some of these are highlighted in the following sections. The information here is by no means exhaustive, but it gives an idea of when certain problems more commonly occur, and what your vet may be looking out for during routine checks.
For further information on many of these problems please see the information on our main web site – www.icatcare.org
Adult (3 to 6 years) cats
Common problems encountered at this life stage include obesity, dental disease, cystitis (inflammation of the bladder), intestinal diseases, heart disease and behavioural problems. During their Adult life stage, many cats that are allowed outdoors are still active hunters, so careful attention to parasite control is important.
Over 70% of Adult cats have dental and/or gum disease – this can lead to considerable pain and loss of teeth. Regular annual checks mean that problems will be detected early, hopefully before significant disease develops. Where dental disease is found, it is often necessary to examine the mouth more thoroughly under a general anaesthetic, allowing cleaning and dental work to be done at the same time.
Feeding at least some dry cat food in the diet can help to keep teeth clean. Actually cleaning your cat’s teeth can be highly beneficial, and is the best way to keep the teeth clean. Many cats can be trained to readily accept brushing of the teeth, especially if this is started at a young age. Ask your veterinary clinic about a suitable brush and toothpaste if you are interested in trying this, and make sure you don’t use any human products – these are very unsuitable for cats!