Your feline companion means the world to you and of course, you want to do everything you can for them to live a long, healthy and happy life. Here, our Hermitage vets explain how often you should be bringing your cat in to see a veterinarian for routine checkups and preventive care.
How often do you take a cat to the vet?
The best way of making sure that your cat has a long, healthy and happy life is to prevent serious illness in the first place or catch conditions early when they are at their most treatable.
Bringing your cat in to see your vet routinely provides your veterinarian with the chance to monitor your kitty's overall health, to look for the earliest signs of disease in your feline friend and to provide you with recommendations for preventive care products that would best suite your kitty.
At Hermitage Animal Clinic we understand that the cost of routine checkups and preventive care can be a concern, especially if your feline friend seems to be in perfect health. But taking a proactive, preventive approach to your cat or kitten's health could save you the cost of more expensive treatments in the future.
What is a cat checkup?
Taking your cat to the vet for routine wellness exams is like bringing them to the doctor for a physical checkup. As with people, how often your cat should have a physical examination depends on their age, lifestyle, and overall health.
We generally recommend that annual wellness exams for adult cats be scheduled, but senior cats, kittens and felines with underlying health conditions may all need to see the vet more often than that for checkups.
How often should kittens see a vet?
If your kitty is less than a year old then we suggest bringing them to the vet once a month, with their first veterinary appointment taking place when they are approximately 8 weeks old.
All throughout their first year, a kitten will require multiple rounds of
Throughout their first year, kittens require multiple rounds of vaccinations to help protect them from common infectious diseases. Kittens should get the Feline Leukemia vaccine and the FVRCP vaccine which helps protect your feline friend from 3 highly contagious and life-threatening feline diseases, Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (FHV-1) Feline Calicivirus (FCV), and Feline Panleukopenia (FPL).
Your adorable kitten will be provided with these vaccines over the course of about 16 weeks in order to keep them healthy all throughout their adult life.
The precise timing of your kitten's vaccinations will vary depending on your location and the overall health and well-being of your four-legged friend.
Our veterinary team recommend that you have your kitten spayed or neutered by the time they are around 5-6 months old in order to prevent a host of diseases and unwanted behaviors in addition to unwanted litters of kittens.
How often should middle-aged cats see a vet?
If you have a healthy adult cat between 1 - 10 years old, we recommend taking them in once a year for an exam. These examinations are yearly physical checkups that are completed when your cat seems to be perfectly healthy.
All through your adult cat's routine exams and checkups, your vet will conduct a head-to-toe examination to find early signs of diseases and other injuries like joint pain, parasites and gum disease.
A veterinarian will also provide your cat with any preventive care (including vaccinations and parasite preventive medications) that they might need. The vet will also have a conversation with you about your cat;s diet and nutritional requirements in addition to any other protective measures your feline friend needs to stay healthy
If your vet detects any signs of an arising health issue they will explain their findings to you and recommend the next steps.
How often should senior cats see a vet?
Cats are typically considered to be senior when they reach 11 years of age.
Since many diseases that affect cats, as well as injuries, tend to affect senior pets, we recommend that you bring your senior cat to see your vet at least once every 6 months. Twice-yearly wellness check-ups for your geriatric cat will include all of the checks and advice listed above, but with a few additional diagnostic tests to obtain extra insights into your furry friend's overall health.
Some diagnostic tests we recommend for our senior patients include blood tests and urinalysis to check for early signs of problems such as kidney disease or diabetes.
Geriatric care for cats also includes a more proactive approach to keeping your feline companion comfortable as age-related issues such as joint pain become more common. If you have a senior cat, ask your vet how often you should bring your pet in for a routine exam.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.