How to Keep an Outdoor Cat Healthy

Do you allow your kitty to go outside? Maybe you adopted-or semi-adopted-a local cat? While it is always best to keep Fluffy inside, we do know that some cats like to investigate the great outdoors. Others just never get used to living indoors. A veterinarian provides some advice on how to keep your outdoor feline friend healthy, happy, and purring.

Water

A basic necessity for all animals is clean water. It needs to be available to Fluffy at all times. Regularly clean her water bowl, so germs and dust don’t build up in it. 

Food

All animals need good food to thrive. Fluffy is no exception. Feeding your cat kibble is probably the best option for an outdoor kitty, since it lasts longer than canned food. Just don’t leave too much food out, as this can attract vermin, such as mice and other pests. It is always best to feed your kitty inside, if you can.

Shelter

Your feline pal might have on a fur coat, however, that doesn’t give her complete protection from the weather. Bring your cat inside when it’s cold or hot outside. It’s a good idea to make an emergency shelter and leave it outside, in case Fluffy gets left outdoors. One simple DIY project for this is to use two plastic storage totes. One should fit inside the other, leaving a little space between them. Put old towels or newspapers in this space to provide insulation. Add a soft blanket to the bottom of the shelter. Cut holes in the side for a kitty door. 

Lifestyle Change

The best choice for any kitty is to keep her indoors. Fluffy will be both safer and healthier staying inside. This lifestyle change will take time and patience, but don’t stop trying. Giving your furry friend treats, toys, cat furniture, and catnip can help sweeten the deal. Try to limit Fluffy’s time outside. Let her out only during the day, and when it is warm and sunny. 

Veterinary Care

It is recommended that all cats be kept current on parasite control and vaccines, fixed, and microchipped. This preventative care is especially vital for cats that are allowed outside. Outdoor pets are exposed to more germs and parasites than indoor ones, so they should come in to see the vet a little more often. Ask your vet for more information.

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