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Cats and Birds, Responsible Pet Owners, Cat Health and More

CAT Stanley here again. As you probably already know, I’m the official spokescat for CATalyst Council. There’s been a lot going on here at CATalyst Council and I’m here today to bring you up-to-date on all the happenings.

CATalyst Council Responds to Controversial Media Coverage About Cats as Predators

Recently, a study published in the journal Nature Communications reported on the impact of free-ranging domestic cats on wildlife in the United States. The study concluded “that free-ranging cats cause substantially greater wildlife mortality than previously thought and are likely the single greatest source of anthropogenic mortality for US birds and mammals.”

The publication of this study resulted in a flurry of controversial media coverage calling cats murderers, serial killers and worse. This coverage raised concerns within various animal health and welfare organizations, CATalyst Council included.

CATalyst Council expressed our concerns about the media coverage in this press release: CATalyst Concerned About Consequences of Media Commentary. In the release, our executive director Dr. Jane Brunt stated that “the study and corresponding articles may hamper the ability of shelters to place cats in adoptive homes.”

Please read the press release for more information, including a list of observations offered by CATalyst Council in response to the disparaging articles.

February Is Responsible Pet Owners Month

The recent study and negative media coverage highlight the importance of responsible pet ownership. Part of responsible cat ownership involves keeping your cat indoors. Indoor cats cannot pose a danger to wild birds or other wildlife. Keeping your cat indoors also keeps your cat safer and healthier.

Naturally, being a responsible pet owner means doing everything you can to keep your cat healthy. That brings me to my next point.

February Is Also National Cat Health Month

There are many facets to keeping your cat healthy. A good diet is necessary. Keeping your cat indoors is important. Keeping your cat well-groomed is critical. Veterinary visits are also essential.

Cats need to have regular veterinary examinations. These examinations can detect illnesses and diseases that might not be easily noticed at home. Cats are masters of disguise when it comes to sickness. They can easily mask their problems and even the most observant of cat owners may find it difficult to notice subtle changes that may be indicative of a problem that needs attention. Many of these problems are easily treated if detected early but can lead to unnecessary pain and other complications if not addressed. Your veterinarian is an expert at locating and treating problems before they become serious.

February Is National Pet Dental Health Month

One of the diseases most frequently diagnosed in cats is dental disease. Keeping your cat’s mouth healthy is part of being a responsible pet owner as well as an essential element of keeping your cat healthy.

Unfortunately, dental care is also often overlooked. Seven out of ten cats show evidence of dental disease by three years of age. Some cats develop problems at an even younger age. Dental disease is painful and can also affect your cat’s entire body, including the heart and liver.

The veterinary care that your cat is receiving on a regular basis should include dental care. Veterinary dental care is required to diagnose and treat existing dental issues and to keep your cat’s mouth, teeth and gums healthy. Home care such as tooth brushing is also an important part of keeping your cat’s mouth healthy.

You can find more information about improving your cat’s oral healthcare in Give Your Cat Something to Smile About. Be sure to follow the link to the Cornell University’s Partners in Animal Health video to learn how to brush your cat’s teeth.

So, there you have it. There’s a lot happening in February. If you haven’t taken your cat to the veterinarian for an examination in a while, do your cat a favor and go schedule an appointment right now.

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