Cats Doing Biscuits (Cat Kneading): A First-Time Pet Owner's Guide

Domestic cats are quite the conundrum. Most would exude elegance, sophistication, and grace, giving everyone around them a “don’t mess with me” attitude. But they also make some of the silliest habits, like getting spooked by cucumbers or randomly presenting their precious behinds to their cat parents. One particular behavior that stands out is cats doing biscuits. 

Cats tend to continuously push their paws on a soft surface, similar to a kneading motion. Check out this hilarious compilation of “overworked” cats making pastry goods.

But what is the mystery behind cats kneading? Is it something you should worry about? Let’s uncover the secrets surrounding this weird habit from our feline friends and determine whether it’s normal or indicates an underlying condition.

Fresh From the Oven: Why Does My Cat Make Biscuits?

Cats kneading on soft objects and surfaces is always a sight, but you may wonder what pushes them to do such behavior. Is it simply a silly habit, or should cat owners start worrying? 

The following can explain why cats knead:

Let’s delve into each point to clarify further.

Instinctual Behavior

Unlike what many cat owners may believe, cats kneading imaginary doughs go as far back as their kittenhood. Newborns knead at their mothers to receive more milk during rearing. Consequently, kittens began associating warm feelings such as comfort and security with kneading, effectively bringing this behavior to adulthood.

Marking Territory

Though they may seem nonchalant and indifferent most of the time, cats can be as territorial as any other animal. In line with the previous section, one possible reason to explain why adult cats knead is their territorial instinct. 

Cats have scent glands on their paws. When they repeatedly press on or scratch certain surfaces, they leave behind their mark and claim the area as their territory.

The same reason applies when they exhibit the following territorial habits:

Sign of Affection and Comfort

Instead of a soft object, your cat may sometimes knead on your face, belly, arm, lap, or leg. Don’t worry; your feline friend pressing their tiny paws on your body doesn’t necessarily mean they’re marking you as part of their territory (though it could be possible). 

This kneading behavior may signify that your cat is giving back the love and affection you have given them. They want attention and a considerable amount of TLC. 

Finally, kneading can convey that your pet is comfortable, content, and ultimately happy to have you by their side. They may also meow, pur, or rub themselves on you. How sweet!

Relieving Stress

A cat may knead biscuits because they are trying to relieve their stress or anxiety. Pets also experience anxiety and stress like humans. So when feeling agitated, they may start kneading to soothe and alleviate such distressing feelings.

However, if you notice that your cat’s kneading behavior becomes increasingly frequent, it may be a sign of an anxiety disorder. If they exhibit excessive kneading along with the following symptoms, it’s best to bring your cat to a vet to resolve this behavioral issue promptly:

Getting Ready for Sleep

When you head to bed, do you immediately fall asleep? We’re sure you toss and turn a few times and find the “cool” side of your pillow that hits just right before sleep finally comes. Cats surprisingly work the same way for relaxation. 

A probable reason for cat pawing may be that your feline friend is seeking a good spot before they hit the hay. Cats instinctively paw and press on a specific area to check if it is a comfortable and safe space for quick naps and deep slumbers.

You may also notice your cat kneading while asleep, signifying they’re comfortable in their slumber and are currently dreaming. Observe your precious pet’s next cat nap and see!

All Things Reproductive

Although cat kneading looks adorable, funny, and innocent, it can ironically mean something less wholesome. For example, if your female cat kneads imaginary air dough while lying down on her side, she is currently in heat and calling for an available mate.

A pregnant cat might also undergo labor if she paws at her nesting box or your lap. This behavior helps them soothe labor pains.

Safety in The Kitchen: Precautionary Measures for Cat Kneading

After uncovering the shrouded mystery surrounding the “cat making dough” phenomenon, we can conclude that kneading is a normal and inherent behavior that every feline exhibits. Only when the behavior becomes excessive can it signify a potential problem. 

Still, it's natural (and often reassuring) for cat parents to ask if something should be done to encourage and ensure safe cat-kneading behavior. Here are some answers for you!

🐾 Keep your cat’s nails trimmedKeeping your pet’s nails neatly cut can ensure they won’t scratch and damage surfaces, hurt your face or body, become stuck, or accidentally harm themselves while kneading.
🏠 Provide appropriate surfaces for kneadingInvest in scratching mats or posts designed for kneading to prevent damage to furniture or other valuable items at home. Place them strategically to direct your cat’s attention elsewhere, luring them into toys or soft surfaces. 
🧸Use soft barriersIf your cat likes to knead on sensitive areas like your lap or chest, use a soft blanket or towel as a protective barrier between their paws and your skin. It provides a cushioning effect and reduces the likelihood of discomfort or unintentional scratching. 

Kneading is a completely harmless feline habit. However, it can quickly become a nuisance to some owners, especially if their cat repeatedly kneads on their face or body. 

Unfortunately (or fortunately), cats making imaginary biscuits is a habit that won’t go anytime soon.

You can temporarily stop your cat from pawing at your face. However, if you wish to cease this behavior completely, understand that eliminating it is not feasible since it is rooted in their instincts. Patience and proper care are key!

Closing Up the Shop

Hopefully, this article has cleared the air and has stopped you from worrying your little head over this strange yet adorable cat quirk. The next time your cat prepares a fresh batch of imaginary biscuits, know it’s a completely instinctive behavior that comforts them or shows their appreciation for you.

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New Kitten Not Eating? Tell-Tale Signs Your Pet Needs Immediate Vet Care

Have you recently (and eagerly) brought a new kitten home, only to find that they’re not interested in their food? As adorable as their tiny whiskers and playful antics are, a new kitten not eating could indicate a sign of potential health issues. 

In this blog post, we’ll delve into the tell-tale signs that your little furry friend needs immediate vet care. We’ll also review some care tips that can be valuable for first-time cat owners like yourself. 

Is it normal for a new kitten to not eat?

To some extent, yes. New kittens may have a low appetite, especially if they have recently parted with their mother and siblings. Here are more common reasons they show a lack of interest in eating: 

Signs Your Kitten Needs Immediate Veterinary Attention

Now that you know when it’s normal for kittens to stop eating or eat too little, when should you consider seeking veterinary help? 

Check out for the following signs that could indicate your kitten’s need for urgent vet care: 

1. Loss of Appetite For More Than 24 Hours

💡 Cats can intuitively detect issues with their food, leading them to refuse to eat it. For example, if you have accidentally given an expired or spoiled kitten food, your cat won’t eat it. 

But if you offer new food and your cat refuses to eat for more than a day, that may indicate a potential health concern. Here's a quick list of these underlying causes:  

When you notice your kitten’s appetite not improving, contact your trusted veterinarian and have your cat checked for any health complications. 

  1. Lethargy

Kittens are known for their playful and curious nature. They are typically interested in exploring their new surroundings. However, if you notice a sudden change in your kitten’s behavior, such as increased lethargy, excessive sleeping, and loss of appetite, it could indicate an underlying illness. 

These changes in your kitten’s behavior should not be ignored, as they signify discomfort or distress. 

  1. Dehydration

Dehydration is a major concern for kittens as they dehydrate more quickly than adult cats. If your new cat doesn’t eat regularly, watch out for signs of dehydration. 

One key indicator is the condition of their gums. Normally, a kitten’s gums should be moist and have a healthy pink color. So if the gums are dry, that may suggest dehydration. Sunken eyes are another potential indicator of the condition. 

Once you notice your cat showing signs of dehydration, take them to a veterinary clinic immediately. 

💡 Your kitten’s organs and tissues rely on proper hydration.
  1. Labored Breathing

Difficulty breathing or coughing in kittens should never be taken lightly. Aside from your kitten not eating, check out for the following signs: 

These changes may suggest your kitten has respiratory issues, which tumors, parasites, or exposure to toxins could cause. 

Steps to Take When Your Kitten Isn’t Eating

As a cat owner, it’s part of your responsibility to observe and assess the situation of your kitten not eating. However, if they haven’t started eating within a reasonable timeframe, here are some steps you can take: 

  1. Document Eating Patterns and Behavior

Gathering information about your kitten’s situation will help your veterinarian assess the situation and give a proper diagnosis and treatment. If your kitten isn’t eating as expected, here are some factors that you need to document or take note of: 

Duration. Monitor how long your kitten has not been eating. Note the exact times and dates when you offer meals and when they show disinterest or refusal to eat. 

Eating Behavior. Notice if your kitten approaches their food bowl, sniffs the food, or shows signs of hunger. Observe if they attempt to eat or display any aversion to the food, such as turning away or pawing at the bowl.

Food Type and Brand. Note the type and brand of food you feed to your kitten.This includes whether they eat dry or canned food, flavor, or recent diet changes. 

Changes in Environment or Routine. Consider recent changes in your kitten’s environment or routine that might affect their appetite. Moving to a new home, introducing new pets, or disrupting their daily schedule can stress them out and impact their eating habits.

Other Symptoms. Make a note of any additional signs of illness or discomfort. 

  1. Consult a Veterinarian

Avoid giving your kitten any human medications, as certain medicines intended for humans are toxic to cats. If you have documented your kitten’s situation and they continue to display a lack of appetite, consult your veterinarian. They will conduct all the necessary examinations or tests and recommend appropriate steps to address your furry friend’s appetite issues.

  1. Try Hand-Feeding

Sometimes, kittens respond better to hand-feeding or interactive feeding toys. Gently offer small amounts of food from your fingers or use puzzle toys that dispense small treats. You can also try putting appetite stimulants as a topping on your kitten’s food.

  1. Ensure Proper Hydration

Hydration is crucial for a kitten’s appetite. You can try feeding your cat with canned wet food instead of solid food to help increase their water intake. Also, ensure fresh water is always available in a clean bowl. Some kittens may prefer running water, so using a cat water fountain could be helpful. 

Care Tips for New Kitten Owners

Now that you know what to do when your kitten is not eating, here are some care tips to ensure your little furball will eat regularly again: 

  1. Gradually Introduce Your Kitten to the New Environment

For a kitten, moving to a new home can be stressful. Introduce them to their new environment gradually to help them in their adjustment. Start by confining them to one room or a small area of your home, and gradually give them access to other spaces. 

During the first few days, limit the number of visitors and loud noises at home to avoid overwhelming your kitten. Then, slowly introduce them to new people and routines when they feel more comfortable.  

  1. Establish a Routine

Cats are creatures of habit, and an established routine gives them a sense of security. This predictability will help your kitten feel more at ease and adapt faster to their new home. Consistent eating schedules also promote healthy eating habits

  1. Choose a Kitten-Appropriate Diet

Kittens have different nutritional requirements than older cats. Avoid feeding them with cat food formulated for adults. Instead, choose kitten-appropriate foods that offer the right balance of proteins, vitamins, and minerals.

Although it is tempting to give table food scraps to your kitten, avoid doing so. Many human foods are toxic to pets. If you’re unsure about the cat food brand and type to give your kitten, consult your veterinarian for professional advice. 

  1. Create a Safe and Comfortable Space

Create a designated area where your kitten can stay. Provide a comfy bed, litter tray, food, water bowls, and toys. This space will become your kitten’s safe space as they slowly adapt to their new home. 

Also, clean your pet essentials regularly. Remember, cats are clean animals. When their food bowls are dirty, they’ll refuse to eat regardless of what you serve them. 

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Can Cats Have Fish and Other Dietary FAQs About Pets

Have you caught up on your cat's undeniable fascination with fish? While it's no secret that our feline friends love them, you're probably still wondering, "Can cats have fish?" Is it safe to feed fish to your cat, considering their nutritional requirements? As a cat owner, knowing the answers to such questions is vital.

In this article, we'll explore the safety of feeding fish to cats and discuss which types of fish and preparations are optimal for your pet's health. 

Can cats eat fish? 

This is one of the many questions first-time cat owners always ask: can cats eat fish? The short answer is yes! As obligate carnivores, cats need meat to survive, and fish can be a great protein source. However, the fish must be cooked and free of dangerous elements like mercury. 

But while fish can be a delightful occasional treat for your cat, it does not provide complete nutritional requirements for them. For this reason, you must familiarize yourself with the suitable types of fish for feeding and how to include them in your cat's diet best.

What type of fish can cats eat? 

Now that you know that cats can have fish, here are the types of fish you can feed them: 

✅Canned salmon is high in Vitamin D.

✅Sardines that are low in mercury and rich in Omega-3 fatty acids

✅Mussels without the elongated shells 

✅Oysters without the shells 

✅Prawns and shrimp without the shell, tail, and vein 


What type of fish should cats not eat? 

As a fur parent, you might be wondering if there are any types of fish your feline friend should avoid. Yes, a few species and preparations can pose health risks. Check out our quick list below: 

🚫Avoid feeding your cats large fish like sharks, rays, and predatory fish. Can cats eat tuna? As for the seemingly delicious tuna, it, unfortunately, belongs to fish that may contain higher levels of environmental contaminants (e.g., microplastics and heavy metals). So it’s a no. 

🚫Avoid fish with high mercury levels, such as tilefish, swordfish, and king mackerel. 

🚫Skip the octopus. Certain species of octopus are poisonous, and it's generally safer to avoid feeding your cat with any of those. 

🚫Farmed salmon is also a no. Farm-raised fish are often exposed to high antibiotics and other toxins, so it’s unsafe for your cat to eat.

🚫Avoid feeding your cat raw fish. Food poisoning could result from dangerous bacteria found in raw seafood. 

🚫Exclude cooked fish with bones, whether big or small. Fish bones can be a choking hazard for your cat and hurt their internal organs.  

Frequently Asked Questions About Cat Diet

Now that you know the types of fish your cats can eat and should avoid, let's address the commonly asked questions about fish for cats and other cat diet concerns. 

What are the health benefits of feeding fish to cats?

Fish and seafood are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been proven to promote healthy skin and coat in cats. These healthy fatty acids also help improve your cat's heart health and mobility. 

🐈 Healthy skin and coatFeeding fish to your cat improves skin health, coat appearance, shedding, and immune system due to omega-3 fatty acids and oils in fish like mackerel, sardines, anchovies, and oysters.
❤️ Healthy heartFish benefits both human and feline heart health, with Omega-3 fatty acids helping reduce inflammation, enhance blood flow, and maintain a regular heart rate.
🐾 Improved mobilityCats experience a decline in mobility and joint flexibility with age. The fatty acids in fish can aid by boosting their range of motion and reducing joint inflammation.

What are the potential dangers of feeding fish to cats?

While fish can be a tasty and nutritious treat for our feline friends, it's important to be aware of a potential danger lurking in those aquatic delights. While it contains amino acids in the perfect ratios that their body requires, not all types of fish or preparations are suitable for your feline friend's health. Here are some potential dangers of feeding fish to them: 

🐟 Fish allergySensitive cats can develop allergies to certain foods, and fish is no exception. Some symptoms of fish allergy in cats include: Hair loss Skin rashes Increased scratching Runny eyes and nose Inflammation in paws 
⚠️ If your cat exhibits these symptoms after consuming fish, it might be best to eliminate fish from their regular diet or even as an occasional treat. 
☠️ Mercury poisoningBoth humans and cats are susceptible to poisoning from large fish with high mercury concentrations. This can result in neurological problems and organ failure. 
Symptoms of mercury poisoning may include the following: 
Vomiting Loss of appetite Loss of coordination Tremors or seizures Hypersensitivity
🚫 Kidney problemsExcessive fish consumption can lead to kidney problems due to high phosphorus and magnesium. Cats require a low phosphorus diet; consistently feeding them fish can contribute to the development of kidney disease.
Symptoms of kidney disease may include the following: 
Poor appetiteHalitosis (bad breath) Mouth ulcer Lethargy Dehydration 
🦠 Feline hyperthyroidismFish contains a high amount of iodine, which may speed up the development of feline hyperthyroidism. This condition occurs when the thyroid gland produces excessive thyroid hormones, leading to weight loss, hyperactivity, and other health issues.
Other symptoms of hyperthyroidism in cats include: 
Vomiting Increased appetite Increased thirst Increased urination Messy fur 

How often should I feed my cat? 

To ensure proper feeding habits for your cat, following your veterinarian's advice is important. Generally, young kittens should have frequent meals (at least 3-4 meals a day). As they age, gradually reduce the number of feedings until they reach a year old, when you can feed them once or twice a day.

Can I feed my cat table scraps? 

Feeding table scraps to your cat is not recommended. It can lead to vomiting, diarrhea and potentially contribute to obesity and other health problems over time.

Can I feed my cat vegetables? 

Cats are strict carnivores and cannot effectively process plant material. While vegetarian diets are available, cats should stick to a meat-based diet, as it provides the essential nutrients they need.

Tips to Include Fish in a Cat's Diet Safely 

If you plan to add fish to your cat’s meals, here are tips to include it in your cat's diet without compromising their health. 

  1. Don't Feed Your Cat With Raw Fish 

Although the smell of raw fish may be tempting to your cat, it's best to avoid giving them raw food like sushi or uncooked fish. They can contain harmful bacteria or parasites that could make your cat sick. 

Consider baking, poaching, or boiling the fish before serving them to your cat. It is also best to avoid adding seasonings or additives to the fish to ensure it's safe for your cat to eat. 

  1. Remove Fish Bones Before Feeding Cooked Fish 

Fish bones can choke and hurt your cat's digestive tract. Before feeding the cooked fish to your cat, remove all of the bones. This includes large and small bones found in white fish, oily fish, and canned cat food such as albacore tuna. 

  1. Choose High-Quality Cat Food 

When selecting a commercial cat food that includes fish, look for a high-quality option that offers a well-balanced diet for your pet. Be cautious of certain fish-based cat foods, such as fishy treats and canned pet foods, as they may contain processed offcuts, guts, and fish bones. 

Fish-flavored foods can also pose health risks to your cat. So, when buying cat food, look for brands offering cooked primary fish as a source of lean protein and other essential nutrients your cat needs to thrive. Avoid those that contain artificial fillers or additives. 

  1. Offer Fish in Moderation

When giving your cat a fish meal, you should feed them moderately. Excessive fish consumption can cause nutritional imbalances in your cat. But precisely how much is too much? 

This brings us to the next point: consulting a veterinarian to determine the appropriate frequency and portion size of fish for your cat. 

  1. Consult Your Veterinarian 

Any major diet changes for your cat should always be discussed with your veterinarian. 

😺 Veterinarians can assist you by recommending the best types of fish to include in your cat's meals and advise you on potential allergies or dietary restrictions.

Regular consultation with a veterinarian is always crucial. They can provide valuable insights into your cat's specific health needs, offer preventive care measures, and diagnose and treat any underlying medical conditions. 

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The Art of Hide-and-Seek: How to Get a Cat Out of Hiding

For every pet lover who has found themselves asking, “How to get a cat out of hiding?” you’re not alone. Many people experience that moment of slight panic when they can’t spot their cat at home. They may have taken a fancy to a new cozy corner in the wardrobe, behind the sofa, or under the bed. 

While it can be heart-wrenching and often puzzling, such behavior is completely normal in most cats. But it is still your mission to understand the motives behind hiding, know when to intervene, and find respectful ways to instill comfort in their surroundings.

In the following sections, we will take you through the hidden corners of a cat’s mind, shedding light on its reasons for hiding. We will uncover creative ways to allure them into your shared spaces, making their transition a pleasant and rewarding experience. 

5 Significant Reasons Behind a Hiding Cat

Sharing your life with cats is filled with endless joy and warmth but also a mystery. Sometimes, they may suddenly tuck themselves out of nowhere, leaving you wondering, "Why is my cat hiding?" 

This act may seem peculiar, but this is a natural behavior for our furry companions. It’s a silent language they often resort to—a language we need to understand to strengthen our bond with them. 

Our first task is to comprehend their world from their perspective. Let’s delve deeper and explore why your cat suddenly starts hiding.

1. Fear and Anxiety

Cats are highly sensitive creatures. Fear or anxiety can provoke them to search for a hiding spot. Various factors can trigger these emotions in cats, such as:

📣 Loud NoisesLoud noises and sudden movements can startle and distress cats. Such noises have an amplified impact due to their acute hearing. Even a little sound can feel like a big explosion to them.
👶 Unfamiliar PeopleThe presence of new faces can make them anxious. They retreat to their secret havens, finding solace and security until the situation feels less threatening.
🐕 Unfamiliar PetsA cat may feel uncertain about the presence of other pets. They may feel uncomfortable about sharing their territory and resources. Hiding helps them feel in control and slowly get used to such changes.
🏡 Moving to a New HomeA new environment with unfamiliar sights, sounds, and scents can make cats uneasy. They long for a safe hiding place to feel grounded and protected.
⚒  Rearranging FurnitureCats are creatures of routine. Any disruption to their carefully established order can unsettle them. They seek out hidden spots for that familiar and secure feeling they crave.

2. Need for Security

Cats have a wild instinct to protect themselves. Despite being domesticated and having adapted to living with humans, their blood is still rooted in their ancestry as solitary hunters. 

When a cat hides in a concealed spot, such as under furniture or in small spaces, it gives them a sense of security and control over their space. By hiding, they can minimize the chances of encountering something they perceive as threatening.

3. Illness or Pain

Most cats hide when they are ill or in pain. They instantly seek a place to manage their unease and protect themselves. Knowing their hiding behavior in such situations can help you recognize when they may require medical attention and ensure their health.

4. Overstimulation

A new cat, in particular, can easily become overstimulated. It usually happens during play sessions or interactions with humans or pets. They want to take a break and recharge, especially when they reach their threshold for stimulation.

Cats can relax, unwind, and create a calm environment in their hiding sanctuary. It is their protective mechanism that regulates their stimulation and prevents excessive stress. This way, they can maintain their overall well-being. 

5. Pregnancy 

A pregnant cat is driven by their instinct to find a safe place to give birth. As their due date approaches, they look for quiet, secure locations where they feel protected and can create a comfortable nest for their upcoming litter.

The mother cat can protect her offspring from threats and disturbances by hiding. It gives her the privacy and seclusion to focus on the delicate process of nurturing and bonding with her kittens.

How Do You Attract a Scared Cat Out of Hiding?

Patience and gentleness are key to making a scared cat feel safe. It may be challenging, but your efforts to gain their trust will be rewarding.

Try these five approaches:

Create a secure and welcoming environmentUtilize pheromone productsBring along treats and toys for them to exploreFacilitate introducing a new petKeep a calm and respectful demeanor

Read on to explore these tips further.

😺 Provide a Safe and Inviting Space

Choose a secluded area where the cat feels safe, such as a quiet corner, under furniture, or inside a covered bed or box. Ensure the hiding spot is stable and won’t accidentally collapse or move, as this can cause further distress. 

Place a soft blanket or bedding, providing a cozy and familiar surface for them to rest on. Keep their litter box nearby. Cats prefer to have their essential needs within reach, minimizing the need to venture too far from their sheltered space.

Don’t forget to add objects that carry their scent or belongings. These familiar items will help create a reassuring atmosphere and make the cat's hiding spot more inviting.

😺 Use Pheromone Products

If you’re a new cat owner dealing with a scared cat, you can use pheromone products to attract them out of hiding. Pheromones are chemical signals that cats naturally produce to communicate and establish a sense of comfort and familiarity in their environment.

Spray their safe space with the familiar scent or place it in an area where they usually reside. This way, you help reduce their anxiety and increase their willingness to escape their sanctuary.

😺 Bring Cat Toys, Treats, and Other Essentials

Offer them a variety of cat toys and treats! Not only do these things help them build trust, but they also provide mental and physical stimulation. You can pique their curiosity and engage their instincts with enticing cat essentials. 

Interactive toys like feather wands, puzzle feeders, or catnip-filled toys can encourage them to go out and explore. Also, reward them with high-value treats they love and find irresistible. Positive reinforcement like this encourages them to venture out more confidently over time.

😺 Introduce a New Pet

As we said a while ago, introducing a new pet can be a delicate process, as cats are known for their territorial nature. But don’t let that stop you from giving it a shot! 

Gradually introduce visual access using baby gates or cracked doors. Allow your cat to see and observe other pets without direct contact. A routine like this will help them adjust to the presence of a new pet while still maintaining peace and security.

Monitor the cat’s body language and provide separate spaces to retreat if they feel overwhelmed. Respect their boundaries and don’t force interactions; otherwise, it will only cause more stress for them.

😺 Be Calm and Respectful

Cats are highly perceptive animals. A calm and serene energy sets the stage for a perfectly harmonious relationship. Speak softly and use a gentle tone of voice when interacting with your cat. Refrain from loud noises or sudden movements that could startle them. Instead, be the epitome of reassurance through your presence and actions.

Take a moment to decode their mysterious body language and cues to be able to give them the space they need. Doing this demonstrates that you are a loving and attentive parent, attuned to their needs and feelings.

When To Seek Professional Help?

If your cat's fear or anxiety continues to escalate or doesn't improve over time, it might be time to consult a veterinarian. Your vet can perform a thorough check-up to rule out any medical concerns and provide appropriate treatment. 

Even if your cat seems stressed in their new environment, like a shelter or foster home, your vet can offer guidance and recommendations on making a more comfortable adjustment period.

In addition to veterinary care, a professional behaviorist can join forces with you and your cat. Together, you can develop a personalized plan that addresses their specific anxieties, helping them feel safer, happier, and more content.

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Here’s Your Guide to a Holistic Cat Checkup Checklist

Cats are incredible companions. Their adorable antics, soft purrs, and independent nature make them beloved members of countless households. As a loving pet owner, you must ensure they receive the care and attention they need to lead fulfilling lives. A holistic cat checkup checklist can help you accomplish this goal.

At the very core of their well-being lies the essence of regular checkups. Like humans, cats need regular healthcare to identify and prevent possible health problems before they escalate.

Whether an indoor or outdoor pet, your cat deserves top-notch care and attention. This is why we've created this comprehensive checklist to address and support your feline friend's overall health and well-being, ensuring a long and vibrant life.

Why Do You Need a Cat Health Checklist? 

A healthy cat is a content cat. As they contentedly thrive, they transcend the role of mere pets and become treasured companions within our family circles. Their playful and affectionate nature profoundly impacts us, bringing joy and serving as a source of solace, even during the most trying times.

Image Alt: trivia image with a red bulb; did you know? Physical contact with a cat has been found to stimulate the human body to secrete endomorphins and lower blood pressure and cholesterol.

Studies have shown that interacting with cats can improve overall mood. It is an extraordinary phenomenon that highlights the depth of our bond with these amazing creatures. The presence of our beloved cats melts away stress and uplifts our spirits.

With such remarkable benefits, the least thing we can do is to provide a general cat health check. This way, we can proactively address their needs and fill their life with love and optimal care.

Below are more reasons to consider a cat health checklist:

Comprehensive Health Monitoring

Cats are masters at hiding illness and discomfort. They have an innate ability to mask symptoms, making it challenging for pet parents to detect any underlying health issues. A cat health checklist ensures you know of any health changes through regular assessments.

By following the checklist, you can spot any unusual signs early and give them the prompt medical attention they may require.

Proactive Preventive Care

Getting ahead is always a wiser choice than dealing with things later on. A cat health checklist emphasizes the importance of preventive care measures. From vaccinations to parasite control and dental hygiene, the list encourages you to take proactive steps to safeguard your cats' health. 

Staying ahead of potential health risks significantly reduces the chance of your cats falling ill or experiencing distress. You can provide them with a strong foundation for long-term wellness.

Peace of Mind

Following a cat health checklist gives you peace of mind, knowing you're doing everything possible to improve their welfare. It eliminates the worry of missing crucial steps or forgetting important appointments, allowing you to focus on enjoying a fulfilling and worry-free relationship with your cat.

7 Vital Areas You Must Consider In a Checkup Checklist

Cats are complex creatures with diverse needs. Every single aspect contributes significantly to their overall well-being and happiness. You must consider these seven important areas when creating a health checklist. 

1) Teeth

Proper dental care helps prevent gum color, tartar accumulation, painful or broken teeth, growths, and other abnormalities.

2) Ears

Any redness, discharge, foul odor, or excessive ear scratching may indicate an underlying medical problem that requires veterinary attention. Regular ear care is necessary to prevent infections, mites, and other ear-related issues, freeing them from discomfort and pain.

3) Eyes

Most cats suffer from conjunctivitis or pink eye. It occurs when the white part of the eye becomes inflamed due to the covered inner surface. Symptoms like redness and excessive tearing can affect their vision.

Given the prevalence of conjunctivitis in cats and the potential impact on their well-being, it is important to include the eyes as a key area in your cat’s health checklist. 

4) Skin Pigmentation and Coat

A healthy cat’s skin should not exhibit crusting, itching, scaling, or black or white spots. Though some breeds may naturally have thinner coats, it is ideal for coats to be as thick and shiny as possible. Look out for signs of bald patches, flakes, or mite infestations.

Observing and including these aspects in your checklist ensures that your cat’s skin pigmentation and coat remain thriving, reflecting its overall appearance.

5) Paws

Cats rely on their paws for various purposes. Whether maintaining balance while gracefully perched on a narrow ledge, engaging in exploratory adventures to satisfy their curiosity, or showing their innate hunting instincts, a cat’s paws are at the center of every movement.

Outdoor environments expose cats to various elements, including dirt, debris, and possible hazards. Regularly cleaning their paws helps remove any accumulated dirt, allergens, or harmful substances they may have come into contact with while roaming outdoors. It also reduces the risk of them ingesting any contaminants during self-grooming.

6) Body Condition

Cats should easily palpitate, with only a slight covering of fat over their ribs. This desirable fat layer indicates a healthy body condition where they are neither underweight nor overweight.

7) Attitude

Cats have varying social preferences, from enjoying solitude to forming intimate bonds with humans and other animals. By observing how they interact with household members, other pets, or unfamiliar individuals, we can gauge their comfort level and maintain positive social experiences for them.

A List of Essential Checkups for Your Cat

Now that you’ve learned the vital areas to cover in your checklist, let’s dive into the specific checkups and actions that will help protect your cat’s overall health and ensure paramount well-being.

For Vaccinations and Preventive Care

For Nutritional Evaluation and Diet

Dietary Recommendations

Your vet can determine the cat's needs, along with considering factors such as age, activity level, and health conditions. 

When discussing your cat's nutrition, some aspects to consider include the following:

🥫 Type of Food❎ Dietary Restrictions🍽 Feeding Frequency
Dry, wet, or comboAllergies or sensitivitiesMeal timings and portion sizes

Monitoring Weight Management

Here are three key elements to assess your cat's body condition.

RibsWaistlineAbdominal Tuck
You’re supposed to feel the ribs easily without applying excessYour cat should have a noticeable waistline when looking from above.A slight tuck should be visible when viewed from the side.
💡 Suppose the weight of your cat suddenly falls outside the optimal range. In that case, your veterinarian can provide practical advice on adjusting your cat's diet and exercise routine.

For Behavioral Consultation

For Dental Care

For Eye, Ear, and Paw Care

Checking for Signs of Infection or Irritation

Monitor your cat's eyes, ears, and nose for symptoms of infection or irritation. Symptoms are illustrated below:

Signs of Infection or Irritation
😿Runny, red, or sore eyes😿Squinting or avoiding light😿Unusual ear discharge or odor😿Excessive scratching or shaking of the head

If you observe these indications, take your cat to the vet for consultation.

Regular Trimming of Claws and Paw Care

Examine your cat's paws for cuts, sores, splinters, or swelling. Remove debris gently and clean minor wounds. Should any signs of infection arise, seek veterinary care immediately.

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The Safety of Raw Feeding Puppies: Busting Myths and Baring the Risks

Like any responsible dog parent, you only want the best for your pet in all aspects of their life, including their nutritional needs. You might have scoured the internet, asking what diet you should give your puppy, and you might have had your question answered: wet, dry, or raw food. But is raw feeding puppies okay?

Considering how gnarly and unappetizing it looks, a raw diet for your puppy may not sound appealing. But the answer says otherwise. If so, what nutrients can a puppy get from raw feeding, and how safe is it? 

Let’s explore the nutritional and health benefits of raw feeding puppies and discover how to create a safe and nutrition-rich diet for them.

Is it safe to feed a puppy a raw diet?The primary issue that most puppy parents have with raw feeding is safety. We won’t leave you hanging: yes, puppies are safe to eat raw food. In fact, raw food diets are more nutritional than simple dry dog food diets.Does that statement seem unlikely?Let’s try debunking common myths surrounding raw food diets to shed some light on the matter.

Debunking the Misconceptions on Raw Feeding

To prove that raw food diets can bring more benefits to your pet rather than doing the opposite, here are some prevalent beliefs most dog parents have about raw feeding and why they aren’t necessarily true. 

Myth 1: Puppies can get bacterial infections from having a raw food diet.

One of the most common myths surrounding raw feeding is the belief that a dog will contract bacterial infections from eating raw meat. While it’s true that raw meat naturally contains several types of bacteria, this doesn’t necessarily mean your puppy will develop diseases after consuming them.

Dogs are equipped with inherent mechanisms safeguarding their well-being and minimizing the risk of unfortunate circumstances. Their line of defense against bacteria starts from the very beginning of the digestive tract, the mouth

Dog saliva contains many enzymes that can kill bacteria and microbes that attempt to enter and infect the body, preventing harmful microorganisms from thriving. And even if these microorganisms can pass through the first protective measure, they won’t stand a chance when they drop down to the animal’s stomach.

Similar to the human digestive system, the dog’s stomach contains a highly acidic fluid called hydrochloric acid that will immediately eliminate these remaining microbes. The dog’s small and large intestinal walls are also lined with antibacterial enzymes for further protection.

So while raw food diets contain plenty of harmful bacteria, your puppy can withstand the effects of these microorganisms with the help of their digestive system.

Raw feeding can strengthen your pup’s immune system because the meals are packed with essential nutrients and are abundant in several antioxidants, helping their bodies fight microbes better.

shot of a dog sniffing or chewing on a raw meaty bone

Myth 2: Puppies can choke and die from raw bones.

As you read on, you will learn about types of food that can give your furry friend the necessary nutrients they need. Two of these are calcium and phosphorus. Your little pup can gain such minerals when you add a crucial raw food diet component: raw bones.

Due to their tough exterior and bulky appearance, one might think feeding raw meaty bones to small puppies will only lead to disastrous results, including choking, damaging their digestive tract, or worse, dying from said injuries.

No sane pet parent would want their precious puppy to suffer such a horrible fate. Unsurprisingly, many owners would avoid incorporating raw meaty bone into their dog’s diet or feeding their pets raw food altogether. Some owners even cook the bones, thinking this option would be better. However, that is a HUGE no-no.

Contrary to what many believe, cooked bones are NOT safer than raw bones.

Cooked bones tend to become more brittle, causing them to break and splinter easier when chewed on. These broken cooked bones can wound or pierce your dog’s digestive tract more than raw bones ever could.

Raw meaty bones are soft and edible, providing your pet with the necessary nutrients while preventing them from choking or getting injured. 

💡 However, while raw meaty bones are generally safe enough to nibble on, puppy parents are still highly advised to place appropriate-sized raw bones in their pet’s meals to avoid unwanted mishaps.

Myth 3: Raw feeding can negatively affect my pet’s behavior.

Dogs descended from a species known to be carnivorous and wild (wolves). This makes people develop the common misconception that raw feeding may revert these precious lovable animals to their old, bloodthirsty, and untamed selves, ready to feast on flesh.

It may seem over the top, but some people believe it. They think getting a taste of raw meat may unconsciously awaken a dog’s hidden bloodlust or activate a sleeper cell that turns dogs back into aggressive hunters. 

These narratives and beliefs are completely false. There haven’t been any reliable studies that prove the causation or even correlation between raw feeding and a dog’s aggressive or violent behavior.

Raw food may look unconventional, unappetizing, and a bit scary. But these meals are rich in vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients allowing your puppy to grow into a good, healthy, and strong adult dog.

Raw Feeding: What Can It Do for My Pets?

Our meticulous myth-busting shows that raw feeding does more good than bad for your precious puppy. To mention a few:

shot of raw meat on a metal dog bowl with vegetables and a liver in the background

A Short Guide on How to Plan Raw Food Meals

We hope you feel more confident in the potential of raw puppy food diets for your precious pups after we’ve busted common misconceptions and laid down the benefits. If we’ve successfully convinced you to include raw food in your pet’s diet, you may wonder how to prepare those meals for your pup.

What should be in it?

Before creating any meals, it is crucial to learn which vitamins and minerals are essential to a puppy’s well-being. By knowing these essential nutrients, puppy parents can make a balanced diet for their pets. 

Below is a table presenting the various types of food and their corresponding nutrients that should be included in your puppy’s raw food diet.

Essential NutrientWhere to Find It
Protein + essential amino acidsMuscle meat from fish, beef, pork, lamb or poultry, organic eggs
CarbohydratesOats, root vegetables, corn, rice, wheat
PotassiumRaw meat, avocados, bananas, apples, spinach, broccoli, and carrots
CalciumRaw meaty bones, egg shells*
IodineSeaweed or kelp, shellfish like mussels and shrimp
B Vitamins Raw turkey and duck meat (B6 and B12), organ meats like liver (B1, B2, B3), salmon (B3)
Vitamin DFish like salmon, sardines, or tuna, organic eggs
Vitamin ESeeds, nuts, raw brain

*Consult with a veterinarian before incorporating the diet

In terms of portions, experts recommend preparing your pet’s meal according to the pie chart below.

*Source: Biologically Appropriate Raw Food (BARF) For Puppies

We advise reading more about pet nutrition to better understand and plan your pet’s meal portions. 

How often should I feed my puppy?

Planning your pup’s raw food diet, you may wonder about the frequency of feeding them these meals. It’s essential to note that you can’t expect your pet to be immediately fond of or be familiar with eating such meals, mainly if they’ve been accustomed to a completely different diet.

You must gradually introduce raw feeding. Start by giving ¼ raw food diet and ¾ previous diet during the first days, slowly increasing the raw food intake after a couple of days until they become more accustomed to it.

Once familiar with raw food, you can feed your puppy small meals thrice a day.

Final Thoughts

Giving your pet raw dog food may seem unsafe and scary at first. With the number of myths surrounding raw feeding, it’s no surprise that puppy parents like you feel skeptical of it. However, with the right knowledge and proper meal planning, raw feeding is a beneficial choice for your puppy in the long run.

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