Easy Peasy for Evie

Easy Peasy for Evie

Following on from the blog post on World Spay Day 2016 and the importance of neutering, I thought I would share my own experience as a cat owner and the spaying process.

Having Evie spayed was the easiest and best thing I could have done for her. I can let her run around and play outside, safe in the knowledge that she won’t be able to bring home any litters of kittens!

We dropped her off at our local vets at 9am, and had her back home by about 3.30pm the same day. The cost was roughly £60, we paid into a pet plan in monthly installments to help with the cost, but this will vary depending on your vets practice.

Evie is used to being pampered, but when she arrived home after getting spayed, she really knew how to play us! Although she was a little cold and shivery, the vet said this would be normal and to keep her warm. The image below shows Evie in her favourite place, her radiator bed and we placed a light blanket on her for extra warmth.



She was sleepy as was to be expected and the next morning she was back to her bouncy self. You can see from the photo on the right the small circle of shaved fur where her wound was, which was neat and clean, this grew back pretty quickly.

The vet advised us to reduce the amount of food we give her, as her body has less work to do. Evie is prone to weight-gain, so we changed her diet to a dry food which specialised in neutered kittens.

I hope by sharing how simple the spaying process can be, this helps put other cat owners mind at ease.

All views expressed are those of my own and not necessarily that of Cats Protection Stranraer & District.

Your Cats Wish List No.1: Vaccinations

Your Cats Wish List No.1: Vaccinations

It might not be the first thing on your mind when bringing home a fluffy new kitten to love and care for, but vaccination is vital to keeping your pet protected.

Kittens can be vaccinated from 9 weeks of age; two vaccines are usually needed – three to four weeks apart – to ensure kittens are not left susceptible to infection. This is alongside an annual booster to help maintain their immunity against certain diseases. Carrying out this simple trip to your local vet will help ensure your bouncy new kitten gets the best chance of maturing into a healthy cat.

Vaccines are not available for all infectious diseases, but luckily there are a number of vaccines available to help protect your cat from the life-threatening diseases that are commonly found in felines:

  • Feline parvovirus (FPV) – FPV is also known as feline panleukopenia virus and feline infectious enteritis – it causes severe disease in cats and especially kittens and is frequently fatal
  • Feline herpes virus (FHV) – FHV is one of the causes of cat flu and is a very common virus. It can cause serious and very unpleasant ulcers on the face, ears, neck and more worryingly the eyes
  • Feline calicivirus (FCV) – FCV is another common cause of cat flu. It is also one of the main culprits for stomatitis (painful inflammation of the mouth and gums) and chronic gingivitis in cats. This can become so bad that only steroid treatment can keep it under control. Leaving it untreated will cause the cat severe pain and prevent eating, grooming and drinking with ease. An annual booster will help the vet to spot this before it has any damaging effects
  • Feline leukaemia virus (FeLV) – FeLV is a virus that causes a fatal disease – it affects the immune system and can also cause vulnerability to other infections, anaemia or tumours
  • Chlamydophila felis – Chlamydophila felis is a bacterium that often causes painful conjunctivitis with discharge and redness of the eyes, but it can also be a cause of cat flu
  • Bordetella bronchiseptica – Bordetella bronchiseptica is a bacterium that causes flu-like signs such as sneezing, runny nose and eyes, high temperature and a cough
  • Rabies – Rabies is a lethal virus which is not currently a problem in the UK – cats travelling abroad under the Pet Travel Scheme must have vaccinations against rabies

Sadly, most cats coming into our care are suffering from diseases that could have been prevented with simple routine vaccinations. One of these cats is Blue, who alongside his brother Inky is one of our longest residents at the moment. Unfortunately for Blue, he has been suffering from the Feline Herpes Virus (FHV).

Blue arrived into our carBluee with a very sore eye, one of the causes of FHV. This can cause extensive ulcers that need long-term treatment. Thankfully Blue is responding to treatment from his fosterer. However eye-drops will become a daily need for him, something that could have been prevented with vaccination when he was younger.

Both Blue and Inky are very placid cats and easy to handle, making the application of his eye drops very easy for him.

Getting your kitten vaccinated and keeping up to date with the annual boosters would be our minimum wish list for your cat, and we think your cat deserves this consideration – we hope you do too!

Visit our veterinary guide on infectious disease and vaccination here for more information.

Boys together

If you think you could give Blue & Inky a loving home, visit our website for more information.

Thank you!

Christmas Wishes for our Cats

Christmas Wishes for our Cats

Image courtesy of pixabay.com
Christmas is fast approaching us this year, and with just a few days to go, why not help make Christmas extra special for one of the many moggies who will be spending the holidays in care?

The Stranraer & District branch of Cats Protection is a small self-funded branch run solely by a few volunteers. We have set up an Amazon wish list  with items the cats in our care need. This ranges from litter trays and cat beds to small toys to help keep our felines entertained. Whatever your choice of gift, it will be gratefully received by our volunteers and help make a cat very happy.

If you have a knack for knitting, why not make a fun homemade present, the ‘Captain Cat-Battler’ mouse toy! This was originally designed by Lauren O’Farrell (www.whodunnknit.com) for Battersea Dogs & Cats Home. Click here  to download the Captain Cat-Battler pattern. Whether it be for your own cat or to the kitties in our care, your gift will definitely help to make their Christmas.

Captain Cat-Battler Toy
For more creative ideas for homemade toys, visit the posts by Cats Protection in their ‘Meow’ blog.

Advice from Cats Protection on homemade cat toys below:

“Please note that if you are knitting a toy or blanket for a feline friend, it’s best to avoid the use of stretchy yarns or small plastic items – such as those that can be used for mouse eyes – to reduce the risk of inadvertent injury/ingestion. Loose-weave blanket patterns involving the use of large needles are also best avoided. Any knitted toys should be avoided for cats known to be wool-chewers. Please supervise play with your cat and don’t leave your cat unattended with toys which could be shredded and eaten or cause entanglement. Check toys regularly for signs of wear, replacing when appropriate.”

Furry Friends with FIV

Furry Friends with FIV

What is Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)?

FIV is a virus in cats that is similar to the human virus, HIV or Human Immunodeficiency Virus. However, FIV does not infect humans in the same way HIV does not infect cats.

Signs and Symptoms

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Cats Protection Guide to FIV

An FIV positive cat can live healthily for years with the virus before any signs or symptoms start to show.

The main impact of FIV is a weakened immune system for the cat, which can make them vulnerable to other infections.

Living with FIV

FIV is present in the bodily fluids of infected cats, including their blood and saliva. The virus cannot be transferred to other cats from your hands or clothes, as it is unable to survive for long outside the cat.

Cats mainly pick up the virus through bite wounds from fighting; mating behaviour and an infected female cat can pass it on to her kittens.

Unfortunately, there is currently no reliable treatment for FIV and once a cat becomes infected, they will be FIV positive for the rest of their life.

Adopting a cat with FIV

FIV positive cats need loving homes just as much as FIV free cats. A perfect example is the lovely Mog, who landed in our care this week.

Mog strikes a pose

Mog is estimated to be about 10 years old and apart from being FIV positive, he has had a full vet check-up and is fit in every other way. He is affectionate and friendly, and just wants a warm home with food and lots of cuddles.

Loving and Cuddly

Although he has no need to be on medication for the foreseeable future, he will need to be kept indoors as a house cat, to prevent the spread of FIV to other cats. Advice from Cats Protection includes:

“Cats Protection recommends that FIV-positive cats are kept indoors and only allowed outside in an impenetrable garden or safe run. They should not be allowed direct contact with FIV-negative cats”

Mog will make the perfect house cat for an elderly person or couple.

Mog and his mouse

At the ripe old age of 10 – we think he is doing ok! If you’re looking for a house cat with character, Mog is your man.

If you think you can offer Mog that special home, we’d love to hear from you.

Email: cpwigtownshire@btinternet.com

Phone: 0345 371 2759

Read the handy guide to FIV produced by Cats Protection here.