When you adopt an animal and become the owner of a dog or cat, it can be a life changing and enjoyable experience. But occasionally, things don’t go always to plan.
The staff at Animal Welfare League NSW have great knowledge and experience and are always happy to help.
Some tips to keep your cat safe and healthy.
Safety in the home
- Lock away household cleaners, medicines and pesticides so the cat can’t get into them
- Put away electrical cords or leads that might be mistaken for a mouse’s tail or a toy
- Always put away human food, like table scraps that could be bad for your cat
Food and water
- Choose balanced diets matched to your cat’s age – and carefully avoid things like oriental lilies or cooked bones that can be very dangerous to cats
- Make sure the water bowl is kept full and fresh and that you leave enough water if you’re away for a day or overnight, especially in summer
Protecting from pests
- Treat your cat regularly with quality cat-specific products to prevent ticks which are common and can be fatal (see our separate info sheet on Ticks), and watch for signs of ticks – changed appetite, meow or urination/defecation, smelly ears/mouth or pawing at them, itchy/abnormal skin, coughing or sneezing, discharge, limping, listlessness. If in doubt, call the vet and get advice
- Protect your cat from fleas – treat regularly with high-quality “spot on” applications. Flea collars and powders are NOT very effective. Don’t use dog flea protection on cats – this can be harmful
- Worm your cat regularly with a quality tablet or paste to protect your cat’s health – and your family’s health as well
Protecting from illness
- Take your cat for an annual check-up at the vet. Make sure all vaccinations are up to date
- Never give a cat human pain relief or other human medications – these can cause serious illness or even death
- Watch for signs of illness – like those shown for ticks above. If in doubt, call a vet and get advice
Exercise and movement
- Your cat needs exercise – for its physical and mental health and happiness. Rolling a ball, playing with a soft toy on a string – encouraging the cat to jump and catch.
- Try to keep your cat away from roads. Keep it safely inside at night. Provide a litter tray and replace the litter regularly.
- Remember to lodge your cat ownership details with your local council.
- Consider pet insurance – contact us for details.
- Take care with your cat when going to the vet or moving house. Most cats prefer to be in a secure cat box. After moving, keep your cat indoors for a few days while it gets settled. Avoid moving a cat from house to house unless necessary.