The Aging Cat – Helping Your Feline Enjoy His Golden Years
The aging process is no fun. This is also true for popular household pets, like the cat. As your feline ages, you’ll likely experience a wide range of symptoms that you’ve never seen before. Although some of these symptoms may be serious, that doesn’t mean you can’t help make life more comfortable as your furry friend ages.
Arthritis occurs when the joints become inflamed, causing them to become stiff. This is a common ailment among aging cats as the cartilage in the joints becomes damaged after years of use. It can cause a lot of pain, which in turn may cause Fluffy to become more inactive than usual. The pain associated with arthritis can also make some pets quite grumpy.
Although you can’t cure arthritis, you can help manage your cat’s pain. Acupuncture is gaining in popularity among pet parents as a safe, natural way to help reduce the pain associated with arthritis. Losing weight may help take some pressure off of the joints. Your local animal hospital may also be able to prescribe pain medication.
The eyes and ears
Not only does the cartilage in the joints deteriorate with age, eyesight and hearing is often reduced as well. For a cat that has been able to see and hear clearly his entire life, losing one of these essential senses can be quite terrifying. Not only is a deaf or a blind feline easy to startle, he’s also likely to run into furniture and become irritable.
Try and keep furniture and accessories in the same place so your cat can navigate throughout your home by memory. It is also helpful to stomp loudly when approaching a deaf kitty so he can hear you coming.
Gum and periodontal disease
Unfortunately, very few owners care for their cat’s teeth. This results in gum and periodontal disease, which can make it very painful for your feline to chew. Switch to a wet food or soften your pet’s dry food with a bit of water to make chewing easier.
It is extremely important to monitor your pet’s health closely with the help of your local animal hospital. That way, you can identify potential medical problems early to ensure your aging pet enjoys life well into his golden years.
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