As cat parents, we want to make sure that our cats are as healthy and happy as possible. That means choosing the right food, making sure there is fresh water, giving healthy treats and providing a fun and comfortable environment for our pets.
It also means regular vet visits, for check-ups and to deal with those health concerns that we can’t treat ourselves. There are also regular treatments that our pets need in order to stay healthy, and a range of supplements that will keep them fighting fit. Here’s our guide to choosing the best of those.
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Flea & Tick Treatments
If you have an outdoor cat, or they share their home with other pets who do go outside, there’s a chance they could attract fleas. You’ll probably already be aware of the most obvious sign of flea infestation; scratching, but your cat may also be grooming a lot, and even losing fur.
There are several different approaches to treating fleas; broadly speaking these are either ways to prevent fleas from taking hold or cures to use if your pet gains some jumping visitors. Most of these treatments also work for ticks.
Outdoor cats should have preventative treatment regularly, just in case they come into contact with an affected cat or other animals during their travels. These come in a variety of forms, but we believe the simplest is to use a ‘spot-on’ treatment which just involves putting a dot of liquid onto your pet’s fur every 28 days.
Before choosing a treatment, it’s worth speaking to other pet owners in the area to see which are effective. Fleas can become resistant to treatment, so don’t waste your money on something that simply won’t work.
|Tuzze Flea and Tick CollarThis collar has a lifespan of eight months, and it’s waterproof so you don’t need to worry about rain washing the treatment away.
It uses essential oils to keep pets away, which will be a comfort if you value natural remedies.
For more on flea collars, we have an article dedicated to them here.
|Safari Pets Flea CombOne way to stay on top of fleas is to make sure you comb them and the eggs out of your cat’s fur. If there’s a low chance that your cat has been exposed, then this could avoid strong chemical treatments.|
|Dermoscent Spot-on Essential 6
This spot-on treatment will kill fleas if your pet has got infested, and will give your fur baby protection for up to 4 weeks.
You just put half the dose between your cat’s shoulders, and some on the crown of their head and that’s it for 28 days.
Treatment for Infestation
If you find that your cat has brought in fleas, you need to act quickly. Fleas like to lay their eggs, and they can survive for months before hatching, depending on the time of year and conditions. That means that if you don’t kill all the eggs, they could hatch and re-infect your cat later. As well as treating your cat, you will need to treat their bedding and even carpets and soft furnishings.
|Novartis Capstar Flea Treatment
One tablet will kill off any fleas your cat has acquired within 4 hours – hopefully before they’ve had a chance to lay eggs. If not, the eggs will need to be removed or treated separately.
|Adams Flea & Tick Cleansing Shampoo
Cats aren’t renowned for enjoying baths, but if you have a breed that needs regular washing you might get away without too many scratches!
This recipe kills fleas, their eggs, and ticks making it a great all-in-one solution.
|Enforcer Flea Spray
This spray kills adult fleas and eggs. You can use it to get to those hard-to-reach areas like under couches.
This is NOT for use on pets and will kill other insects that might be in your home.
Intestinal worms are another common pest that is picked up by outdoor cats. Not all worms have obvious symptoms, but others can develop to have a dangerous impact on your pet’s health. Again, our favorite treatments for worms are the spot-on variety, because they are so easy to administer – there’s no danger that you’ll find a regurgitated tablet hours later!
We’ve created a thorough guide to worms and their treatments which you can read here. If you’re short on time, though, our favorite products are these:
|Bob Martin Spot On Wormer
A quick drop to the back of the neck and the active ingredients will start working on any tapeworm in your cat’s system.
Ear Mite Treatments
If your cat is scratching at its ears, and you can see what looks like coffee grounds just inside then you could be looking at ear mites. These small bugs, ovotestes cynotis, can make your cat’s life pretty miserable and go on to cause more serious health concerns if not properly treated.
The good news is that home remedies are available. You can read our full guide on ear mites here, but this is our current top pick for treatment.
|Ear Solv Ear Treatment
This ear treatment doesn’t just handle mites, it also handles ear wax and yeast. Suitable for cats, dogs, and rabbits this will help any source of itching in your pet’s ears.
You might be surprised to find out that cats have 30 teeth! That’s a lot of tiny, pearly whites that need taking care of. Just like us, cats need to keep their teeth clean so they can last them into old age.
If your cat is happy to be handled, you could choose a toothbrush and toothpaste, but other cats need a more hands-off approach. Here are some of our favorite teeth-cleaning solutions.
|Hertzko Finger Toothbrush
Pop this brush on the end of your finger and you get great control as you work the bristles over your cat’s teeth.
Owners report that their pets are happy to tolerate them, and they remote plaque well.
|Sentry Petrodex Dental Kit
This it contains a finger brush, a longer brush, and a non-foaming toothpaste. These have been designed alongside a veterinarian.
They’ll reduce plaque and tartar, and there’s no need to rinse.
My cats love these! As the package says, these silver vine sticks have a similar effect to catnip. Expect to see your cat wrestling with them, but most importantly, chewing on them.
As they bite, the rough surface of the twig helps to remove plaque from their teeth.
|Perio Plus Feline Bites
If brushing is just too much for you or your fur baby, then these dental treats might be just what you’re looking for. The crunch outer takes care of plaque and tartar, while the inside has tasty ingredients that help support healthy gums.
Supplements for Cats
Many of us look after our own health by taking multi-vitamins, probiotics or supplements to help us with our health issues. Cats can sometimes benefit from the same idea, and there is a variety of different products available.
When choosing supplements, take some time to read the information and ingredients. There is often not a lot of difference in the packaging between vet approved remedies and herbal or homeopathic supplements.
|PRN Liqui Tinic
A liver flavored multi-vitamin supplement that your fur babies will happily take! It also contains minerals, amino acids, and iron.
This supplement is also suitable for exotic and zoo animals, perfect for the cat that thinks it’s a tiger.
|Antinol Merial Joint Health
As cats get older, they can start to show the signs of wear and tear in their joints. Help keep them in top form for as long as possible using this daily joint care supplement.
|AminAvast Kidney Support
Polycystic kidney disease is a common condition in cats. Although each cat is born with the condition, it doesn’t start affecting their health until they are older.
That’s why many cat owners like to help their cats keep their kidneys in top working order with a supplement like this.
Although Lysine, which this supplement contains, is marketed as useful for coughs and sneezes in cats there’s little evidence it’s useful for that.
However, if you have a cat that is living with Feline Herpes or FIV, then this supplement may be useful.
|Pet Wellbeing Young at Heart
This is a herbal supplement which contains a mixture of 8 different herbs which are known for helping keep the heart healthy.
It could be useful for cats with a diagnosed heart problem (always consult your vet) or one where the breed has a history of heart conditions.
|Provifex Probiotic Powder
This powdered supplement contains probiotics, prebiotics, and extra fiber to help support your cat’s digestive system.
Rebalancing the gut flora can help cats who have problems with diarrhea.
Know Your Cat – Know Your Supplements
As you can see there is a wide range of treatments and supplements available for your cat. This article is just the tip of the iceberg! If you’re not sure which would be necessary for your cat, then research their breed and speak to your veterinarian and they will be able to help you make the best choice for your fur baby.
In the meantime, the best thing that you can do to influence your cat’s health is to choose a high-quality, high-protein, cat food and make sure there is always fresh water available. Not sure if you’re feeding the right diet? Check out our food advice and reviews here.