Dear Christopher Cat
When our adult children were home for Thanksgiving, they expressed dismay that our indoor-only cats hadn’t been to the vet in years. They extracted a promise that we’d take them after the holidays. What else should we do to keep our cats healthy?
As I am nearly perfect, I plan to make only one New Year’s resolution: I’ll refrain from pawing Mom’s eyes while she’s sleeping.
It sounds like you need to make a few more. Tell your children you resolve to:
• Take each cat to the veterinarian at least annually for an examination, vaccinations, fecal testing and other procedures your vet recommends.
• Request testing for feline leukemia, feline immunodeficiency virus and heartworms, if it hasn’t been done.
• Ask the vet to microchip each cat to provide permanent identification, essential if the cat ever escapes from your home.
• Have the veterinarian sterilize your cats to decrease the risk of cancer, infection and behavior problems.
• Feed high-quality dry food, such as a dental diet.
• Offer new entertainment, such as interactive toys, a cat DVD or a bird feeder outside a window with a comfy perch.