Having a cat can be such a fulfilling and wonderful experience, but you need to put in a bit of work in order to make sure that he or she lives a long and happy life. The hardest part about this is that cats are extremely skilled at hiding their pain and discomfort, so you really have to pay attention to any odd behavior. Improper grooming and litter box usage are two signs that your cat may need medical attention as soon as possible.
Since cats are usually so obsessive about keeping themselves and their fur as clean as possible that something is typically very wrong if your cat fails to properly groom himself or herself. One possible reason for your cat not grooming himself or herself properly is skin allergies or a bite wound.
In the case of a skin allergy or bite wound, the cat will often groom one spot intensely enough to cause a bald patch. In that situation, a vet can help you identify the cause of the allergic reaction so that you can remove the allergen from your home, or treat the bite wound so that it can begin healing.
Another cause for improper grooming is joint pain or arthritis. In that situation, your cat may begin developing matted fur because it is too painful to actually try and reach his or her entire body in order to groom himself or herself. A vet can help you out by providing pain medication to make your cat more comfortable.
Improper Litter Box Usage
Another big sign that your cat may be suffering from a serious health condition is if he or she is no longer using the litter box. Before you take your cat to the vet for this symptom, make sure to eliminate any other possible causes for your cat avoiding the litter box, such as a dirty box.
One possible reason for your cat not using the litter box is if he or she is suffering from a kidney infection or kidney stone. In order to alleviate the pain, cats will often urinate on soft or cool surfaces when suffering from a kidney stone. If you have a male cat, it is vital that you get him to a vet immediately as a kidney stone can often cause a male cat to sicken and die in a very short amount of time.
Speak to a vet like Rivers Animal Hospital in order to schedule an appointment for your cat. If your cat is not using the litterbox or failing to groom himself or herself, you need to get to the vet as soon as you can in order to rule out any serious health issues.