An eight year old cat is the equivalent age of a 50 year old person. When humans reach this stage in their life their doctor will recommend screening for various age related conditions such as cancers, kidney and liver abnormalities, gastrointestinal and heart conditions. Blood work, urine testing, x-rays and blood pressure measurement and other diagnostics can catch disease and age changes early. We recommend the same for your cat.
Even though you may believe your pet is healthy, there are many age-related disease processes that do not show any outward sign until the disease is quite advanced. More advanced diseases can be more difficult to treat, and are not always as responsive to treatment as diseases diagnosed early.
Early detection of kidney, liver and thyroid diseases, to name a few, allow us to administer the appropriate treatments to make your cat comfortable, and help extend their life.
In addition, your cat’s nutritional needs will change as they age. We can discuss an appropriate diet to meet those needs.
For senior cats, it is more important than ever that they have an annual visit with their veterinarian to address all the above issues. Cats over 12 years of age require geriatric care. A check-up is recommended every six months for geriatric cats.
An annual visit includes a thorough examination as detailed below, appropriate vaccinations, parasite control, and nutrition, weight, and behavior counseling. In addition, your veterinarian will be able to advise you on any preventive care measures that can be taken to help your cat live a long and healthy life. Of course, you can request your choice of veterinarian for your visit.
A thorough dental check-up is a routine part of your cat’s physical examination. Healthy teeth and gums are directly linked to your cat’s general health and well-being. Dental disease can cause serious oral pain for your cat. It can also lead to the spread of bacteria through the bloodstream, settling in vital organs such as the heart, kidneys, and liver causing serious illness.
There are many vaccines available to protect your cat from disease. Our philosophy at Annex Animal Hospital is to use vaccines only for diseases that our patients are at risk of contracting. We follow the guidelines of the American Animal Hospital Association in choosing our “core vaccines”. We do not vaccinate for every disease annually. Cats need to come in for an annual examination and vaccines will be prescribed as needed.
Many people think that indoor cats do not need vaccines. This is not true.The most common carriers of Rabies in Toronto are bats but foxes and raccoons may also spread this serious human health hazard. It is a City of Toronto bylaw that all cats and dogs are vaccinated against Rabies.