EVERYDAY CAT CARE

Dear Doctor: Indoor-Outdoor Choices

Q. I know that pet cats are supposed to live exclusively indoors for their safety as well as for the protection of local wildlife that cats prey on, but it just seems so restrictive to me — to the point of making a cat miserable. Are there any options for letting a cat outdoors? Lionel […]
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A Simple Way to “Talk” Cat

Cats communicate with us in a variety of ways. They often purr when they’re in a good mood, for instance, and sometimes they’ll rub or butt their heads against us if we feel sad. (It’s called bunting.) We communicate with them, too. When we feed and play with them and stroke them, we are expressing […]
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Taking the Stress Out of Bathing

Although most cats spend a lot of time cleaning themselves with their tongues and teeth (which they use as combs to rake their fur), many could still use a bath once in a while. They become dirtier than their own grooming tools can handle, getting a gummy feel that sets up their skin for feeling […]
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Gentle Into That Good Night

Your cat’s heart disease has progressed to the point that there are no more medicines to try, no higher dosages to give, no more procedures to perform. Or her liver failure has reached a tipping point; toxins are building up in her body faster than they can be cleared. That is, the end is near. […]
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Whether to Issue a ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ Order

If you’ve ever watched a primetime television hospital drama, you know that “Code Blue” means someone has gone into cardiac arrest. She has died on the table because her heart has stopped beating, and she needs immediate assistance in the form of CPR to bring her back to life. In comes the crash cart. But […]
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International Cat Care

How Not to Pick Up an Uncooperative Cat

A cat who is a new mother may sometimes gently carry one of her kittens by the scruff of the neck to move him to safety — perhaps back to the “nest.” For that reason, some people who handle cats, including people who work in veterinary offices, assume it’s okay to carry an adult cat […]
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When Fur Flies

Cats in the wild do a lot of shedding all year round but with seasonal peaks — once during warmer weather and once when it’s cold. Indoor house cats shed year-round, too, but not necessarily more during the peaks — they don’t have all that direct exposure to the sun and changes in temperature, daylight, […]
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Dental Care for the Older Cat

There’s never an age at which you can stop caring for your cat’s teeth. If anything, dental health becomes even more important for an older cat. Neglected teeth and gums can result in severe mouth pain and sometimes lead to infections in various body organs, says the American Association of Feline Practitioners. Additionally, a cat […]
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Feline Fun With Toilet Paper Rolls

Switching out your cat’s toys frequently doesn’t always have to mean purchasing them. You can make his day a lot more interesting if you just save your toilet paper rolls and repurpose them with ingenuity. Here are some ideas to enliven your cat’s waking hours that won’t cost you a cent. Better still, these toys […]
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Judging a Cat by Its Cover

A number of years ago, psychology researchers asked almost 200 people to assign personality traits to their cats. Among the choices: aloof, bold, calm, friendly, shy, stubborn, and tolerant. The investigators’ finding, laid out in the journal Anthrozoos: people tended to rate orange cats and cats of two colors as friendly. But cats of three […]
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Dear Doctor: Safe to clean the cat carrier with bleach?

Q. We have had a wicker cat carrier in the garage for many years and now wish to use it for a kitten we...

Yes, You Can Train Your Cat to Use the Toilet. But Should You?

Who among us hasn’t seen those cute little videos of cats doing their business in an actual toilet? And who among us hasn’t fantasized...