With proper wellness care, a house cat can live well into his or her late teens or early 20s. At A Cat Hospital, our cat veterinarian is committed to helping all our feline patients age gracefully and live a full, active life. We offer comprehensive senior cat care services, including wellness exams, dietary management and dental cleanings.
The point at which a cat is considered “senior” may vary from one cat to another. As your cat ages, you may notice a general “slowing down” in your cat’s senses. For example, your cat’s sense of vision, hearing and smell may no longer be as acute as it once was. In addition to diminished senses, aging also impacts the internal organs. This is why regular wellness exams are so important. During these exams, we conduct a full blood screening, fecal test and urinary test for a “snapshot” of your cat’s health. Older cats are more susceptible to injury and infection, including kidney, heart, and liver disease; diabetes; thyroid imbalance and certain cancers. Twice-yearly wellness exams with our Las Vegas cat veterinarian are essential to detecting these age-related concerns before your cat’s health is compromised.
As part of our wellness check-up, our cat veterinarian provides dietary counseling to ensure your cat is maintaining a healthy weight. Even gaining one or two pounds can affect your cat’s overall health and increase the risk for certain health problems. Food for senior cats must be easily digestible and contain potassium and taurine, which are essential for your cat’s well-being. If your cat’s sense of smell and taste has been affected by aging, your cat may have lost interest in food and be losing weight; should this occur, our vet can recommend specific dietary supplements to help your cat maintain a healthy weight. Our goal is to create a balanced diet that supports your senior cat’s long-term wellness needs.
Regular dental cleanings are also an important component of senior cat care. A lifetime of plaque and tartar build up increases your cat’s risk for developing periodontal disease. In fact, the majority of cats aged three and older already have symptoms of this disease; by the time your cat enters his or her senior years, the disease may already be advanced. Periodontal disease increases the risk for tooth loss and bacterial infections. Should a bacterial infection enter the blood stream, a cat’s internal organs can be severely compromised. For senior cats that already may be in a weakened state of health, these infections can be especially difficult to treat. Proactive care, including regular dental cleanings, is the best way to reduce the risk for these health complications.
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