Why Do Cats Knead?

Why do cats knead?

Kittens knead at their mother’s belly when they feed; this helps to stimulate her milk flow.

When a kitten or cat kneads, they will push rhythmically in and out with alternating paws (kneading is also referred to as making biscuits or milk treading for this very reason). They often appear to be in a trance-like state, with eyes closed, sometimes drooling and purring. They seem to be enjoying the moment, and I view kneading as a sign of a contented cat.

In many cats, this kneading behaviour continues into adulthood. Cats can often be found kneading a soft or furry blanket, and some will even knead on humans. I have a cat who will also lie on his side and knead into thin air.

Read moreWhy Do Cats Knead?

Miliary Dermatitis in Cats

Miliary dermatitis in cats

What is miliary dermatitis?

Also called miliary eczema, papulocrusting dermatitis or scabby cat disease, miliary dermatitis is a collection of crusty skin lesions around the head, neck and back along with intense itching. It isn’t a specific disease but a disease complex.

The term miliary refers to the millet-like papules on the skin which feels simiar to millet seeds.

Read moreMiliary Dermatitis in Cats

Cat Claw Disorders

Cat claw disorders

Claw disorders     Additional symptoms     Diagnosis     Claw care

 

A cat’s claws are an amazing part of the anatomy which performs several important functions. Located at the end of each toe, the claws help the cat climb, balance, grip prey, defend against attacks from other animals and protect the toes (digits).

The claws are continually growing, with the outermost layer sloughing off every few weeks to make way for a newer, sharper claw.

Read moreCat Claw Disorders

Heartworm Disease in Cats

Heartworm in cats

How do cats get heartworm disease?    Symptoms    Diagnosis    Treatment    Prevention

At a glance

About: Dirofilaria immitis are a parasitic worm which lives in the pulmonary arteries, lungs and heart of affected cats.

Transmission: Infection occurs via the mosquito who passes on the microfilaria (baby heartworms) when they feed on the cat.

Symptoms: Include difficulty breathing, coughing, gagging, exercise intolerance, loss of appetite and weight loss.

Treatment: There is no safe treatment to kill heartworms in cats. Most veterinarians monitor your cat closely and offer supportive care. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the worms.

Read moreHeartworm Disease in Cats

Quick Guide to Tapeworm Treatments for Cats

Quick guide to cat tapeworm products
Product/active ingredients Type/Frequency of dosage Parasites Treated Notes
Drontal (Praziquantel and Pyrantel) Tablets. Tapeworm, roundworm and hookworm. Can be used on pregnant and lactating cats and kittens over 8 weeks.
Aristopet (Praziquantel  and Pyrantel) Tablets. Roundworm, hookworm and tapeworm. 8 weeks old. Can be used on pregnant and lactating females.
Droncit (praziquantel) Tablets or injection (by your veterinarian). Tapeworm. 6 weeks old. Can be used on pregnant and lactating females.
Excelpet (Praziquantel and Pyrantel Embolate) Tablets. Roundworm, hookworm and tapeworm. 6 weeks old. Can be used on pregnant and lactating females.
Milbemax (Praziquantel and Oxime) Tablets. Tapeworm, roundworm, hookworm, whipworm, heartworm preventative. Can be used on pregnant and lactating cats and kittens over 6 weeks or .5 kg.
ParaGard (Praziquantel, Oxibendazole) Tablets. Tapeworm, roundworm and hookworm. 2 weeks old. No studies have been done on pregnant or lactating females with this product.
Popantel (Praziquantel) Tablets. Tapeworm, roundworm, hookworm and whipworm. Can be used on pregnant and lactating cats and kittens over 6 weeks.
Panacur (Fenbendazole) Paste or tablets. Tapeworm (Taenia taeniaeformis species), roundworm, hookworm, whipworm, lungworm and giardia. Does not treat Dipylidium caninum tapeworm. Can be used on pregnant and lactating cats and kittens over 2 weeks.
Profender (Praziquantel and Emodepside) Spot on. Tapeworm, roundworm, hookworm, lungworm. Can be used on pregnant and lactating cats and kittens over 8 weeks.
Purina Total Care (Pyrantel embolate and Niclosamide) Paste or tablets. Roundworm, hookworm and tapeworm. 6 weeks old. Can be used on pregnant and lactating cats.

Side effects are rare but may include drooling, vomiting, diarrhea and loss of appetite.

Worms may be visible in the stool 1-2 days after treatment.

Kitten worming schedule

Always read the label and make sure the de-wormer is safe to use on young kittens.

2 weeks Worm
4 weeks Worm
6 weeks Worm
8 weeks Worm
12 weeks Worm
24 weeks (3 months) Worm
Every three months from then on Worm

Ear Mites in Cats

Ear mites under a microscope

What are ear mites?

Ear mites are a common spider-like external parasite which causes significant discomfort to the cat. Although the name would suggest otherwise, ear mites can live on any part of the body although they generally live in the ear canal of cats. They are the most common cause of otitis externa (inflammation of the outer ear canal) in cats.

Read moreEar Mites in Cats

Kitten Vaccination Schedule

Kitten vaccination schedule

Kitten vaccination schedule   Core vaccinations   Non-core vaccinations   What shots does my kitten need?

Vaccinations are a way of preventing disease by introducing a weakened or killed form of the disease-causing organism. This stimulates an immune response which helps prevent the animal (or human) developing the full-blown disease should it be exposed to the pathogen in the future. The most common vaccination in the cat is known as F3 or FCRVP; this is commonly referred to as F3 and is a core vaccine.

Read moreKitten Vaccination Schedule