How Often Should You Take Your Cat To The Vet?

How often should you take a cat to the vet?

A good relationship with your vet is essential for the wellbeing of your cat. He isn’t there just to see your cat when he is sick, but he also should be used to check the overall wellbeing of your cat so that problems can be picked up early.

Whenever you obtain a new cat or kitten it is prudent to take him to your own veterinarian for an examination to make sure everything is okay. If your kitten hasn’t already been vaccinated and microchipped, this will also need to be done. Kitten vaccinations should be given as follows:

F3 (1st shot)

8 weeks

F3 (2nd shot)

12 weeks

F3 (3rd shot)

16 weeks

F3 (booster shot)

12 months

Rabies *

12 weeks




Rabies *(booster)

12 months

Then every 1-3 years or as recommended by your veterinarian.

* Where applicable.

If your cat hasn’t been spayed or neutered, this will need to be performed from between 10-24 weeks. Generally the earlier, the better.

Annual check-ups:

Once your cat has settled in, had all his vaccinations, been desexed and microchipped then it is just a case of seeing the vet when your cat is sick and/or once a year for a check-up. Previously, it was recommended that boosters should be given every 12 months, but the majority of vets now recommend every 3 years for low-risk cats.

A part of the yearly booster visit was also to check the overall health of your cat. This will include listening to the heart, checking the teeth, weight, skin, and coat as well as answering any questions you may have about your cat’s health and nutrition. While we can’t say that 1 human year is the equivalent of 6 cat years, it is a long time between visits considering the average cat lives for 12-15 years. Cats over 8 years of age should have a health check up every six months. Bloodwork is strongly recommended at least once a year to pick up common diseases to affect senior cats.

Blood tests:

Your veterinarian may choose to perform some routine blood tests on your cat. Even if he is well, it is a good idea to have these tests to see an overall picture of your cat’s health. Plus it enables your veterinarian to go back on previous tests to help pinpoint when a problem may have occurred.

The most common tests include complete blood count, biochemical profile and urinalysis. These tests check the blood cell count as well as evaluate the organs and detect inflammation and infection.

When your cat is sick:

A lot of cat owners are unsure when to take their sick cat to the vet. I usually recommend a trip to the veterinarian for the following:

  • If he is has lost his appetite.

  • If he vomits more than once or twice in a day.

  • If he is drinking a lot.

  • If he is lethargic.

  • If he appears to be in pain. Signs of pain may include hunching over, crying when touched, not eating, hiding.

  • If he is having difficulty going to the toilet.

  • If you notice blood in his urine.

  • If he has been involved in any kind of accident, even if he appears to be well.

  • If you notice symptoms of the “cat flu” such as nasal discharge, sneezing.

  • If you notice any lumps or bumps.

  • If your cat can not bear weight on a leg.

  • If you see a wound more than 1cm in length.

  • If he has had any type of burn.

Also see:

Choosing a veterinarian   Cat symptoms   Signs of sickness in cats




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