September is Happy Cat Month!
Happy Cat Month is an event created by the CATalyst Council to improve cat wellness by focusing on happiness. Scientific studies have shown that happy cats are healthier cats. As a follow up to National Take Your Cat To The Vet Day in August, Happy Cat Month’s first week highlights the importance of your Happy Healthy Cat. We aim to go beyond the basic levels of cat care to ensure that each cat has a happy, joyful, fulfilling life. We believe you can help your cats reach this by focusing on four major categories: health, enrichment, safety, and value. One category will be featured per week and relevant information and resources will be shared with cat owners, so we can work together to counteract common stereotypes & ensure cats are well cared for and live their best, happy lives. Follow us on Twitter or Facebook this month for additional information in each of these four categories and for links to future related blog posts!
Our September Newsletter
Happy Cat Month Site
Happy Safe Cat
How to keep your cat feeling happy, safe, and protected
Who loves this cat?
Regardless if your cat lives indoors and never goes outside or if it only gets out when the door is open, all cats should carry their purrsonal ID at all times. The most easily recognized are snug-fitting collars with identification tags, which can be made with your pet’s name and information like your cellphone number or the microchip number. Medical information can also be inscribed or linked to a database via the microchip. Cats get out of collars because many people are afraid to put them on properly. Once fitted, if you can slide more than one or two fingers under the collar, it needs to be tightened. Microchips are invisible and safe implants embedded over your cat’s shoulders and have a unique number encoded in the chip. When a missing cat is found, a scanner detects the number and (once you’ve registered the chip and provided your contact information), you and your cat will be reunited!
Hidden Safely Away
Cats love to feel safe; that’s why they climb and hide in high places or squeeze under furniture. Having a carrier be a safe haven makes perfect sense, especially a carrier as safe and cozy as Sleepypod! Place the carrier in your cat’s safe retreat and sprinkle catnip or food inside to encourage your cat to get in and get comfortable.
You might remember last week’s blog post about cat spaces, and the importance of spaces in which cats can be enriched. Similarly, these spaces are very important for a cat to retreat to as a way to feel safe and recuperate. Cats perceive threats differently than social group creatures like dogs or humans. Loud noises are threats, changes in the environment can be threats, strangers in your house or apartment can be threats, and any sort of small change can be a threat. They also have difference senses of safety. Cats absolutely need their own safe spaces to hide and feel safe and in control of their environment.
Common hazards for indoor cats include many medications and cleaning chemicals, pesticides, lilies, and even glow sticks. Foods like tuna, dairy, grapes, chocolate, caffeine, and tea, onions, and anything containing onion powder should also be avoided. If you’re looking to buy indoor plants, check them against this list of poisonous plants. And if you’re taking home a new kitten, here’s a Vet Street guide for “kitten-proofing” your home. For those living on a second-story or above, high-rise syndrome is a cat hazard also, because of the misconception that cats have perfect balance and just can’t fall. Unfortunately their balance is not perfect, but falls are preventable by installing snug-fitting screens. Also be sure not to leave loose threads, yarn, strings, or dental floss within a cat’s reach, as this can be very dangerous to ingest.
It’s important for a cat to have enrichment outdoors & enjoy sun bathing and fresh air, but the safest way to do this is either in a very safe backyard catio or securely walking with an owner using a Sleepypod harness in addition to it’s collar and ID tag. Cars are a hazard if a cat is free-roaming or somehow slips out of a harness, so you can eliminate this danger by ensuring your cat is wearing the correct size, and testing it to make sure it won’t slip off. Other animals may be threatening too, so make sure you’re always nearby to protect your cat. And as always, check for hazardous plants that may be growing in your backyard or garden. When the snow rolls around this year, it’s also important to remember these tips for keeping your cat safe when out in the snow. Snow melters can often be irritating to paws, and toxic to cats if they ingest it during grooming.
SleepyPod conducts extensive and thorough product testing using animal test dummies at the same standard set for child safety restraints. You can watch videos and read about their safety testing on their website, and also shop for harnesses and carriers. They have earned the highest possible safety rating – they’re called the safest pet company for a reason!
Important Safety Guides
It’s always important to be prepared before an emergency. Keep your veterinarian’s number in your contact list, as well as that of the If your cat has trouble breathing, get to the veterinarian’s office right away (administering CPR on the way if necessary, while someone else drives).
- To administer CPR correctly for adult cats, spend time understanding this Cat CPR guide from Cat World.
- CPR is done differently to kittens since they’re so much smaller and you don’t want to risk hurting their tiny lungs. Here is a kitten CPR guide from Pet MD.
- How to Assemble a Pet Disaster Preparedness Kit from Merial’s “Paws to Save Pets.”
- ASPCA’s Holiday Safety Tips
Previous Happy Cat Month Posts: