When we think about adopting a cat to expand the family, it is common for us to doubt the basic needs that we must attend to guarantee its well-being. Food, accessories, care, and an ideal environment for the cat to develop the activities that are natural to it are the keys to meeting its needs and providing it with a happy life. In this article, what do cats need?
Regardless of the age of the cat that we adopt or its characteristics, there are a series of basic elements that we must have before it arrives at home if we wonder what a cat needs to live. They are as follows:
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There are several options that we find today to properly feed our cat. Regardless of which one we choose, quality should be our guide. Cats are carnivores, which means that their diet must be composed, as the first ingredient, by the protein of animal origin, which can come from meat or fish. In addition, it is important to select food according to our cat’s age and, if we buy it, respect the administration instructions provided by the manufacturer to avoid overweight problems.
The ancestors of cats lived in desert climates and hydrated thanks to the contribution of fluids provided by their prey. This is why cats don’t drink a lot of water. If their diet is limited to dry feed, they could present health problems. Therefore, if we choose to feed, it must be combined daily with wet food to ensure proper hydration. In addition, we can choose a fountain as a drinking fountain since the continuous movement of the water encourages many cats to drink.
If we ask ourselves what a cat needs, we must know that hygiene is one of the pillars we cannot neglect since they are extremely neat animals. Cats do not need to go outside to evacuate, like dogs. It is enough for them to have a sandbox with enough sand. This must be placed in a quiet place away from home traffic and must be of sufficient size so that the feline can enter and exit comfortably, turn around and bury its stools. Likewise, it is essential to maintain proper hygiene in the litter box to ensure that our cat feels comfortable using it.
On the other hand, cats spend a good part of their waking time self-grooming, so we don’t need to bathe them, except on specific occasions. Yes, it is advisable to brush them regularly to help them eliminate dead hair and prevent them from ingesting it in too much quantity since balls could form in their digestive system, causing different discomforts. We can also check the nails regularly and trim the tip if necessary.
We have talked about the needs in terms of nutrition and hygiene, but what does a cat need to be happy? A happy cat needs to display all the behaviors that are natural to it, such as climbing to heights, hiding, scratching with its nails, jumping, etc. For this reason, it is essential that, for your well-being, you have elements at home that promote environmental enrichment, such as scratching posts, furniture placed at different heights, toys, etc. We can even leave the carrier within your reach to get used to it and it is not so traumatic to introduce it to take it to the vet.
Such an environment offers you stimuli and allows you to stay in shape, helping to prevent obesity. But not only environmental enrichment is enough. Although cats are spoken of as independent and solitary animals, they all need the daily attention of their caregivers to a greater or lesser extent. This means that you have to spend time playing and interacting.
Finally, we cannot forget about veterinary care when it comes to basic needs. These are not limited to taking the cat to a clinic when it seems that it is sick. Prevention is very important and this happens by going to the reviews that the professional prescribes us and following the schedule of internal and external deworming and vaccinations he recommends. Although our cat does not have access to the outside, we could carry different pathogens in our clothes or shoes. Hence we must worry about prevention, which the veterinarian will adapt to their circumstances.
Vaccines and deworming are more frequent and important in kittens since their immune system is still immature and, consequently, they are more vulnerable, but they cannot be forgotten in the adult cat. In this way, whether we are wondering what a baby cat needs or planning to adopt an adult cat, we must bear in mind to follow the veterinarian’s instructions regarding vaccination and deworming.
Castration is also recommended. In addition, it must be known that cats tend to hide the signs of disease. That is why reviews are a great help when it comes to detecting pathologies as important as kidney failure early.