They're fluffy, feisty, funny, fearless, and one of our most faithful friends. Whether they're a
morning alarm or a night time cuddle buddy, cats have crawled their way into our homes and
hearts by filling an unexplainable void.
Feline food intake changes with the season, which means their diet needs to change too. Like dogs, cats prefer to eat enough to sustain the weather outside.
Since most cats are averse to drinking water, cat parents prefer to switch to a wet food diet of the same brand as the normal diet. A cat dehydrated in the summer heat is nothing short of a recipe for disaster, which is why you need to ensure that your feline friend chilled out. Apart from a wet food diet, remember to give them popsicles from watermelon, chicken soup, or any other meat or fruit your cat likes. Never feed your cat something from milk like buttermilk or curds because most cats are lactose intolerant - even if they don't make it seem so!
A study found that a cat's body needs to work extra hard to keep warm in winter - a diet rich in fat, dietary fibre, oils, and heavy protein is essential during this time of the year. This diet can be modified in accordance with your cat's activity level during the day. If your cat is less active in the cold, you can choose to feed less of the kibble or wet food diet and vice versa. However, an indoor cat with less fur may burn as many calories as an outdoor cat from shivering to stay warm. That said, increase your cat's regular diet by 10% during winter.
There might not be a cat that enjoys the rain. It is a time of the year that cats despise, and we need to help them through it. Monsoon, as a season, is a host for several bacteria and viruses - you need to feed your cat sufficient immunity-boosting supplements or a diet rich in immunity-boosting foods. As a snack - feed kitty warm chicken or vegetable broth. Besides that, your cat needs to be dewormed for monsoon-borne endoparasites.
Back in the day, cats received most of their water from prey. They never drank from a water source like a pond or river like other animals like wolves or dogs. Today, cats end up at veterinary hospitals in need of care for severe cases of dehydration.
Water fountains - One of the best ways to get your cat to drink sufficient water, especially during the summer, is to switch to a wet food diet. You can also choose to build a water fountain at home if your cat enjoys drinking running water from faucets or taps. Increase water availability - If you have one cat, you need to have two water bowls kept at the two most frequented places by your cat. Since your cat has a positive association with that place, she is likely to form one with water too.
Wash the water bowl - Unlike dogs, cats prefer the cleanest of bowls. Their acute sense of smell can pick up a nasty smell/taste of unclean water. Remember to wash their bowls everyday to avoid bacteria build up and to get them to take more sips of water.
P.S. You can also choose to flavour the water with strained meat broth.
Curiosity doesn't always kill the cat. Sometimes, being curious and exercising through play is most beneficial to the mental and physical well-being of a cat. Play helps a cat channel and focus unused energy onto something productive. In other words, it leads to less boredom- related destructive behavior. When you allow your cat to play with different toys - ropes, balls, feathers, rods, etc., it taps into their predatorial instincts, i.e. they feel like a cat! Play also helps to build muscle tone and a sharper mind. This, in turn, reduces problems associated with obesity and stress-borne behavioural problems like unexplained aggression, litterbox accidents, and scratching—schedule playtime for at least two hours every day. Cats who do not go outside need more playtime (around 3 hours).
There's no other animal that is as clean as a cat! And rightfully so - these feline fur buddies spend hours grooming every inch of their bodies. However, once in a while, they might require a hand.
Baths: When it comes to bathing a cat - well, we all know how that goes! To save yourself and your cat from the stress of bath time - bathe them only when necessary, i.e. sticky, smelly, or dirty. Before bath time, trim your cat's nails and comb out mats. Apply a gentle layer of shampoo and massage in the direction opposite to the fur growth. Finish off with a rinse from lukewarm water, a towel dry, and a fistful of yummy treats!
Brushing: Although they might seem like they need absolutely no help, weekly brushing is something they will thank you for. Use a fine-toothed comb for short-haired cats and a steel comb for long-haired ones. Start with the face and move onto the tail brushing gently to release the skin's natural oils.
Teeth brushing: A cat with poor oral hygiene, like dogs, develop cases of gingivitis and tartar. This leads to problems like stomatitis. If your cat does not allow you to brush his teeth, take him to a veterinarian for dental scaling as often as possible - although it is stressful, the benefits outweigh few hours of discomfort. However, if your feline friend doesn't mind a brush or two every week, there's nothing like it! As they move away from their wild roots and begin to share homes with us, it is now more than ever that we need to pay attention to their health and well-being.