PDSA Weekly Cat Q&A  

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Medran
(@medran)
Estimable Cat Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 209
03/10/2018 8:07 am  

Dear PDSA Vet, a tom cat has appeared in the area and he’s bullying my placid cat, sneaking in through the cat flap and stealing her food. I’ve also found him cornering her in the garden. How can I stop this? Lajina

Dear Lajina,

It’s important that your cat feels safe in her own environment and has somewhere safe to retreat to. You can get cat flaps which scan, and only open, for your cat’s individual microchip, so other cats can’t sneak in and steal her food or upset her in her home. You cat will be familiar with when the other cat is around, so she can choose when it’s safest to go outside. Try keeping an eye on when the encounters normally happen and see if keeping her inside for a few hours around that time reduces her stress. Finally, try to make your garden really secure and enclosed to stop wandering toms, with a high fence so she has a good view of her surroundings.


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RoseyToesMeows
(@roseytoesmeows)
Reputable Cat Moderator
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 357
04/10/2018 4:03 pm  
Posted by: Medran

Dear PDSA Vet, a tom cat has appeared in the area and he’s bullying my placid cat, sneaking in through the cat flap and stealing her food. I’ve also found him cornering her in the garden. How can I stop this? Lajina

Dear Lajina,

It’s important that your cat feels safe in her own environment and has somewhere safe to retreat to. You can get cat flaps which scan, and only open, for your cat’s individual microchip, so other cats can’t sneak in and steal her food or upset her in her home. You cat will be familiar with when the other cat is around, so she can choose when it’s safest to go outside. Try keeping an eye on when the encounters normally happen and see if keeping her inside for a few hours around that time reduces her stress. Finally, try to make your garden really secure and enclosed to stop wandering toms, with a high fence so she has a good view of her surroundings.

Just thought I'd mention that we've used microchip cat flaps for quite a number of years now. 

We initially used a flap that would allow any cat to go outside. But only a cat programmed into the cat flap can come back inside. It worked great, and we no longer had neighbourhood cats sneaking in and eating our cats food.

Then we had cats then needed to stay indoors, but our outdoor cats got depressed if they couldn't get out during the day. So we then got a dual scan cat flap. With this, the cat flap is programmed to know which cats are allowed outside. All cats are programmed to be allowed back inside, in case any accidentally get outside somehow. This is working well too. 🙂

Rose.


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Medran
(@medran)
Estimable Cat Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 209
26/11/2018 8:25 am  

After a lot of thought we’ve decided to adopt a cat. Our children are very keen and we know we can care for it properly, plus afford the costs involved.  I wanted to get it as a Christmas present, but I know animal charities often advise against this. What would you suggest? Belinda

 

Dear Belinda, pets bring companionship and enjoyment to millions of people but they are also a big responsibility, and you must be able to care for their welfare needs. They rely on their owners to provide them with everything that they need during their whole lifetime. Visit www.your-right-pet.org.uk to check that you can provide everything a cat will need to be healthy and happy. If you are still sure you want to go ahead then consider the timing – Christmas is a chaotic, noisy time of year and this can be a very stressful environment for a new pet so it isn’t the best time to bring them home. Perhaps wrap up a photo of the cat you intend to adopt, or make a short video for your family to watch on Christmas morning. You can then bring your new addition home after the bustle of Christmas is over, and you have more time to help your new pet settle in calmly.


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Medran
(@medran)
Estimable Cat Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 209
26/11/2018 8:26 am  

Dear PDSA Vet, for the last few weeks my cat Bongo has been limping on his back leg. There are no signs of injury and it only seems to happen when he’s been sleeping or lying down for a long period of time. What could it be? Emma

 

Dear Emma, you should take Bongo to your vet so they can check him over. Limping after a period of rest can be a sign of arthritis, especially in senior pets. But there are many other causes of stiffness and limping including; something stuck in a paw (e.g. a grass seed or an ingrown nail; a pulled muscle, or a strained or broken ligament (though these are less likely to come and go). Cats with arthritis may give subtle clues that something is not well with small changes in their behaviour, such as resting more or not jumping up as much as they used to. They may also become more withdrawn or even irritable due to their sore joints. If Bongo does have arthritis, a few changes around the home can help him get around, and keeping him slim is essential to make sure extra pressure isn’t put on sore joints. Medication can also be prescribed to help control the pain and inflammation. 


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Medran
(@medran)
Estimable Cat Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 209
26/11/2018 8:26 am  

Dear PDSA Vet, I’ve recently started feeding my cat, Silver, jelly-based cat food and now he can polish off six pouches daily. Is this normal because it’s costing me a fortune? Steph

 

Dear Steph, the amount of food to meet a pet’s requirements varies from brand to brand so I would recommend having a look at the packet and feeding Silver the recommended amount for her ideal weight. If you’re not sure if she’s on the best food or what her ideal weight would be, book an appointment with your local vet nurse who will be able to help you. While wet foods are ideal for cats with (or at risk of) certain medical conditions, feeding dry food is generally much cheaper and can improve dental health, so it’s usually not wrong to keep them on one or the other or even a mix. If she’s still ravenous it’s best to book a vet appointment as that could be a sign of a hormone issue. 


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