If My Indoor Cat Is Healthy, Do They Really Need a Cat Wellness Exam?
We get it. Cats are famously put-together animals who seem like they do not need much help from us. Their tidiness, independence, and convincing vitality lead many to question the importance of routine cat wellness exams. While a cat may be in perfect health, there’s an equal possibility that they’re hiding symptoms related to an underlying health condition. We believe it’s always worth the peace of mind, and look forward to promoting lifelong health through our cat wellness exams.
Distinct Life Stages, Unique Needs
If you’ve had your cat since their infancy, you know that their first year was on the busy side. After their initial wellness exam (shortly after adoption), we see kittens every 3–4 weeks in order to complete their series of vaccinations. If they need to be dewormed, we will need to see them every 2–3 weeks until it is resolved.
Kittens are also spayed/neutered between 6–12 months old and microchipped. We also establish a year-round approach to parasite prevention.
Adulthood and Beyond
After their first year needs are completed, we recommend scheduling their next wellness exam in one year. Routine cat wellness exams are crucial opportunities to assess their appearance, weight, dental health, behavior, and development.
We encourage cat owners to bring a list of any questions or concerns, and enjoy going into detail about a cat’s lifestyle, environment, personality, and enrichment.
The Meaning of Bloodwork
An essential feature of our cat wellness exams is screening for disease. We can learn a great deal from routine blood work and other diagnostics. A clean bill of health is incredibly valuable for comparison at future visits. Additionally, if we find any abnormalities in the results, we can swiftly address, treat, and resolve problems long before symptoms even present themselves. In other words, early detection of disease is what it’s all about!
One of the most common issues that cats face is dental disease. Since a majority of pets over age 3 have at least one stage of periodontal (gum) disease, we feel that it is a high priority to prevent plaque and tartar from gaining a foothold. Left alone, dental issues can cause intense pain, behavioral changes, inappetance, and loose, broken, or missing teeth.
We offer dental cleanings for cats under anesthesia. Digital radiographs (also taken under anesthesia for safety) may reveal extensive damage beneath the gum line. Extractions and scaling are often part of dental procedures.
One Becomes Two
Around age 7 or so, cats become classified as seniors. At this point in their lives, it’s important to stay in front of any age-related issues. We do this by increasing their vet visits from once to twice a year. The more we see your cat, the closer they can get to optimal health.
Many cat owners make the mistake of waiting too long between visits. Often, the result of this is an illness or injury that requires emergency help. While not all feline conditions are 100% preventable, many of them are. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, and it’s easy to schedule an appointment online.
Call us at (732) 531-1212 when it’s time to schedule your cat’s next wellness exam. Our team at Oakhurst Veterinary Hospital is always here for you.