Fun fact: today is “National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day!” While every day seems to be some sort of National this or that day, and most of those holidays are just for fun, this one is actually very important. It’s meant to drive awareness and remind cat parents that kitties need proper medical care just as much as our canine kids do. Did you know that half of all cats do not see a vet on a regular basis? Pet parents are far more likely to take their dogs to the vet than their kitties. It’s time to change that!
This post is sponsored by Royal Canin® and the BlogPaws® Pet Influencer Network™ . I am being compensated for helping spread the word about Royal Canin® and National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day, but I only share information I feel is relevant to my readers. Royal Canin® is not responsible for the content of this article.
Willow Versus the Milk Jug Ring: How I Learned the Hard Way About Not Putting Off Vet Visits
I would like to say that I’m 100% on top of my cats’ vet visits every single year without fail. I’d love to be able to say that I am teaching by example. I’d be fibbing, though, and I would never fib to you. I’ve put off vet visits with my cats in the past because I thought “oh, they live in the house all the time, they never go out, they’re fine!” I’ve also put off visits because I thought an issue would resolve. Let me give you an example, so you can learn from my mistakes.
My cat Willow has pica. If you’ve never heard of it, basically, it means she eats really odd, inappropriate things. Plastic seems to be her favorite, especially those little rings that you pull off the lid of the milk jug. It’s relatively rare in cats from what I’m told. I didn’t even know she had it until a few years ago. One day, I noticed Willow was having a hard time going to the bathroom. She wasn’t her peppy self, either. She hid under my bed, wouldn’t eat. Rather than just take her to the vet (we were struggling financially at the time), I assumed she had a belly ache and would be okay the next day.
The second day, we noticed she still wasn’t going to the bathroom, so I we gave her some cat laxative. By the third day, she still wasn’t going and things didn’t look quite right back there under her tail. I had to take her to the vet. I couldn’t let it go anymore. When I got there, I found out that she was so backed up, she had to be sedated and, well, I’m going to spare you the gory details, but let’s just call it manually evacuated. That’s when we found out she likes the plastic milk jug rings. My vet told me that it was likely my cat had been feeling miserable for longer than I noticed, but she just hid it for as long as she could.
Now, at the first sign of constipation in Willow, I call my vet. I know that if I’m seeing the signs, it means she needs a visit to make sure we don’t get to the point where we’re doing manual evacs again! My vet also gave me plenty of tips that really helped me prevent it from happening again.
Of course, signs of sickness aren’t the only reason to take your cat to the veterinarian. Good preventative care goes a long way to keeping you out of the office for sick calls. I would much rather take my cat in for a routine checkup and address problems before they occur than rush my cat to the vet in a panic, crying the whole way because I’m scared I’ll lose her and berating myself for waiting so long.
Pledge to be Curious About Your Cat’s Health
To celebrate National Take Your Cat to the Vet Day, Royal Canin, in partnership with the American Association of Feline Practitioners, the CATalyst Council, The International Cat Association and the Cat Fanciers’ Association, launched a brilliant campaign which asks all cat owners to pledge to see the vet this year. Visit the Curiosity Saved the Cat page and “scratch” your name on the pledge list. You’re not just pledging to help keep your kitty healthy. For every pledge made on the website through August 26, Royal Canin will donate a bowl of food to animal shelters across the country!
After you make your pledge, stick around and scroll down to check out all their great tips & articles for getting your cats of all ages ready for their vet visit. Alex the Fuzz will have his first adult cat visit this year! He’s been with us a year in November. Since he was a feral, we were very diligent with his kitten visits. He needed a lot of extra care and attention. Now, he’s a happy, healthy big boy and can start his regular yearly exams.
I also checked out the tips for senior cat visits. Did you know that my cat Mally just turned 20 this year? She’s been with me for half of my life now. According to the rule of thumb for cat math in the Royal Canin article on vet visits for senior cats, Mally is about 93 in human years. Give or take. I’m not a stellar mathematician.
I learned that she actually should be going to the vet semiannually, or twice a year. According to a survey commissioned by Royal Canin, 31% of us with senior cats only take our cats to the vet when they’re sick, compared to 20% for older cats, 18% for adolescent cats and 17% for kittens. The survey also showed that 2/3 of cat owners believe that cats just have fewer health issues than dogs.Joining Royal Canin in urging more attention to preventative veterinary care for cats are the American Association of Feline Practitioners, the CATalyst Council, The International Cat Association and the Cat Fanciers’ Association.
This is so important, my fellow cat lovers. Please take a moment to pledge to be more curious about your cat’s health. Visit the “Curiosity Saved the Cat” page and scratch your name on the list. Also, in case that awesome YouTube video filled with celeb cats didn’t display properly above, check it out here. Follow Royal Canin on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with news. Check out their Instagram page for loads of cuteness and great tips!
Did you take the pledge? How often do you take your cat to the vet? Share your thoughts in the comments!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Royal Canin®. The opinions and text are all mine.