National Take your Cat to the Vet Week (Aug 16-22) reminds us of the importance of regular vet visits for cats. Be sure to schedule your cat’s vet visit and enter the contest below!

A 2009 survey conducted by Feline Pine revealed that fewer than 50% of cat owners took their cats to the vet unless they were sick. Many of these people said they didn’t realize they needed to.

It’s recommended that all cats have annual check ups. For senior cats (10 years and older) the American Association of Feline Practitioners recommends bi-annual visits because many diseases begin in middle age and problems in older cats tend to accelerate more quickly.

Why cats need to go to the vet on a regular basis:

  • Cats have a reputation for being “low maintenance,” which is not entirely accurate. They still need regular vet care to keep them healthy and catch problems early before they become more difficult to treat.
  • Cats age faster than humans. Much can happen to a cat’s health in between vet visits.
  • It’s recommended that most cats (especially those 10 years and older) visit the vet every six months because many diseases begin in middle age and problems in older cats tend to accelerate quickly.
  • Despite the many products on the market to help keep your cat’s teeth clean, nothing compares to a thorough dental cleaning by your vet. Regular dental care can prevent serious problems – and expense – later on and dramatically improve your cat’s well being.
  • Regular vet visits are a cost-effective way for owners to take care of their cats as many problems, when caught early, require less extensive – and less expensive – treatment than if the problem progresses and more aggressive treatment is needed.

Common illnesses, caught early enough, may not require extensive – or expensive – treatment:

  • Lower urinary tract disease
  • Stomach inflammation/gastritis
  • Renal disease
  • Intestinal inflammation/diarrhea
  • Allergies
  • Diabetes
  • Colitis/constipation
  • Ear infections
  • Upper respiratory tract infections
  • Hyperthyroidism.

Most of these problems, if treated early, can be cured, brought into remission or managed so that your cat enjoys a good quality of life. In addition, the cost of early treatment can be significantly less than if a problem is left too long.

Tips for getting cats into the cat carrier:

  • Bring out the carrier several days before the appointment.
  • Place treats or catnip in the carrier to make it more enticing.
  • Don’t force or push your cat into the carrier if you can help it.
  • Stand carrier on its end and gently ease the cat in, hind legs first.
  • For very stressed cats, a house call practitioner may be the best option.
  • Learn more at the Feline Pine website and sign up for an annual email from Feline Pine vet, Dr. Michele Gaspar.


Submit your funniest vet stories via the contest tab on the Feline Pine Facebook Page in honor of National Take Your Cat to the Vet Week!

Prizes: Five selected winners (one chosen each day, August 16-22, 2010) will receive six months of Feline Pine cat litter and a $75 Visa gift card, good towards their next vet visit!

Sending a Big Thank You to Caroline Golon (of Romeo the Cat‘s animal rescue site) for her dedication in promoting this campaign!