This is a discussion of the mistakes cat owners make. The biggest mistake is to neglect your cat or to assume that things are alright.
For example your cat goes out. You let your cat out into the garden or somewhere nearby. She always comes back and all is well. One day she doesn't come back. It is easy to get lulled into a sense that things will remain the same.
The major reason she won't come back is traffic; getting run over. There are others such as being poisoned (including eating poisonous plants) or getting hurt in some way (see Poisoned cat). If we neglect our cats sufficiently she may simply go and look for another home. Or worse become a feral cat.
So, keeping a cat is a serious business that requires us to be switched on to our cat's needs and health. It is easy to become switched off because cats are self contained and they hide illness well. A cat's purr can be misleading.
In the United States people keep cats in all the time far more than in Europe. Fine, this shows a caring approach. A extra burden I'd say is then placed on us to ensure that our cat is entertained as being indoors all the time is unnatural although cats are very adaptable.
Would it be considered one of the mistakes a cat owner makes to not take our cat to the veterinarian once a year for a check up? Or to have her yearly vaccination? I am not sure that it is. We as humans do not go to the doctors every year for a check up and the policy on cat vaccinations has changed in recent years (see cat vaccination recommendations). It is not always obligatory to have annual vaccinations. Boarding catteries however insist on them.
Mistakes cat owners make can extend to not checking our cat's coat daily for condition and parasites. This is easy to do and can incorporate a daily or twice daily grooming. For long haired cats it is simply a must to groom daily. Even for shorthairs, especially if the cat has a thick undercoat, daily grooming can be essential. This is more so if our cat is overweight or lazy and is not self-grooming to a decent standard.
Some people would say that mistakes cats owner make include not having their cat microchipped. Microchipping for pets is quite a new idea. It is more important today because of the concept of taking our cats abroad with us when we travel. This was unheard of in the past. Microchipping for cats is being discussed in some local authorities across the United States as something that should be obligatory. It is also being discussed in Tasmania (desexing feral cats), the other side of the world as an obligatory process for cat keepers. In both cases it is designed to get a handle on the feral cat problem and force people who are irresponsible to become responsible and to identify irresponsible cat keepers.
On that basis if we are responsible and caring and are not travelling with our cat there is no need to consider microchipping. But as I said it will one day, I sense become obligatory I sense and not just in tasmania or the United States.
Mistakes cat owners make must include giving our cat poor food. That said good cat food is hard to come by. Vets regularly recommend Hills dry food it seems to me. One well know veterinarian criticises dry food as a source of illness, including urinary tract diseases (see cat food recipe). The best cat food commercially available is probably quality wet cat food. The best idea I think is to provide a combination of foods including dry cat food, quality wet cat food, human food such as fish, chicken etc. and if we are brave enough raw cat food with supplements (a specialist area).
Even a fairly large number of purebred pedigree cat breeders don't make up there own raw cat food.
Mistakes cat owners make must also include a failure to keep a well tended cat litter. This is important for the cat and for the human as it gives us the opportunity to check feces. This helps us monitor our cat's health. Cats will nearly always use a cat litter without training. Some cats are more fussy, Persian apparently for one.
Perhaps the biggest mistake cat owners make happens before a cat is adopted. The failure to realize that an obligation will be taken on that will last up to 20 years and be lifestyle changing. Cats create obligations and responsibilities and these must be taken into account beforehand (see buying a cat)
Lastly, but not least there are still a large number of people who do not have their cats spayed and neutered (see neutering cats). Once again this may become obligatory one day to tackle the feral cat problem. Until then we have an obligation to ourselves to see it done. Yes, it does take something away from the cat but in this world it is the only practical way.
Mistakes cat owners make to Home page
Mistakes cat owners make - photo of a dog loving cat. A good companion for a cat other than a human companion can be a great asset. Photo by darkmavis published under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs creative commons License.
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