COUNTRY CATS: WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT OWNING A RURAL CAT
Want a kitty to keep you company in your home in the countryside? Learn how to feed, clean, and care for a country cat, and how to make the most of your cat’s lifestyle in these wide-open spaces!
Do Cats Get Seasonal Allergies?
Meow-choo! It’s sneezing season and you’re not the only one who might be affected by the increase of environmental irritants as the temperatures change.
Just like people, cats can develop allergies to things like pollen, grass and dust. Cats who spend time outside are more likely to get seasonal allergies than strictly indoor cats. But, there are a few things you can do to discern whether your cat has seasonal allergies and help alleviate them.
HOW TO TELL IF YOUR CAT HAS SEASONAL ALLERGIES
Cats with allergies may develop many of the same symptoms as humans, including sneezing, coughing, runny noses and irritated eyes. They can also exhibit a few signs you may not expect, such as:
- Snoring (caused by irritation in the throat)
- Skin irritation
- Excessive scratching
- Bald patches
- Redness around the eyes, mouth, chin or ears
HOW TO TREAT SEASONAL ALLERGIES IN CATS
What can you give your cat for allergies? Actually, there are a few simple home remedies which can go a long way towards relieving the symptoms without introducing new medications. Try these tricks to keep your cat comfortable during allergy season:
1. Reduce time spent outdoors.
Consider keeping your cat indoors, especially when the pollen count is high. (If you do choose to let your cat roam free, be sure to check out these helpful hints for keeping your outdoor cat safe.)
2. Keep your home allergen-free.
To keep irritants out of your home, remove shoes when you come inside. Vacuum and wipe surfaces frequently, especially windowsills. Change filters in air conditioning and heating units on schedule and consider purchasing an air purifier to keep pollen and dust at bay.
3. Give your cat a bath.
If your cat is sensitive to environmental triggers, it’s important to keep his or her skin and fur clean. Regular grooming helps remove any allergens—try these tips for making cat bath-time a painless experience. If your cat spends time outside, rinse his or her feet daily.
4. Look for other potential triggers.
Something other than pollen or dust could be causing your cat’s symptoms. Flea allergies are relatively common in cats. If your cat has fleas, be sure to treat them promptly and persistently. (Here are some ways to get rid of cat fleas naturally.) Some cats may be sensitive to chemicals present in many popular brands of cat litter. Consider switching to a natural alternative like World’s Best Cat Litter™, which uses the concentrated power of corn to give you a cleaner litter box with no silica dust, artificial fragrances or other added chemicals.
WHEN TO SEE A VET ABOUT YOUR CAT’S ALLERGIES
If you’ve done everything to reduce your cat’s exposure to seasonal allergens, and you’re still seeing signs of irritation, schedule a visit to a vet to discuss possible medications or rule out other issues like an infection or immune deficiency.
Sometimes a few lifestyle changes can be the difference between a sneezy feline and a happy, healthy cat! Looking for more cat care tips? Get advice from our team of experts or even submit cat care questions to Dear Tabby for personalized answers.