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Basics about Cats
History
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Descendants of Miacis
Proailurus, appeared 35 million years ago
Egypt, and the Middle East domesticated cats
Romans introduced the cat to Europe
Cat became valued by farmers
Genus Groups
1. Panthera – lion, leopard, tiger, and jaguar
2. Felis- cannot roar, including small
domesticated cats
3. Acinonyx- includes only one member, the
cheetah, because its claws do not fully
retract.
Felis Division
Long-Haired
Short Haired
Terms
Male- Tom
Female- Queen
Baby- Kitten
Characteristics
Developed for speed and flexibility.
The bones, muscles form together to give the
animal its size, shape, speed, and strength
Skeleton of the cat contains 244 bones, 40 more
than humans.
Cats coat provides cats with protection from
excessive water loss, heat, cold, excessive
sunlight, and physical injuries.
Characteristics
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Forearms grasp prey
Whiskers and eyelashes are sensitive to touch.
Noses and paws are sensitive
Great sense of hearring
– Some white cats with blue eyes may be deaf
• Cats eyes have three eyelids
– Two close to protect the eye, third is known as the
nictitating membrane, lubricate cornea
Kitten’s Characteristics
• Eyes closed for about 10 to 12 days after birth.
It takes 3 months before the eye is completely
developed.
Jacobson’s Organ
• They have a third set of receptors
• Located on the roof of the mouth.
• Stimulated by odors that are picked up by the
tongue from the air and transferred to the
organ when the cat presses its tongue against
the roof of their mouth
Feeding
• Cats are true carnivores and require almost twice
as much protein in their diet as dogs.
• 30-40% of the cat’s diet should be animal-type
protein.
• 10% fat
• Too much liver can cause vitamin A poisoning
• Milk is great but may cause gas and diarrhea in
adult cats, supplement calcium with bone (not
chopped or pieces that may get lodged)
• Raw egg white destroys Vitamin B, biotin
Training
• Amount of exercise varies
• Cat scratch to sharpen their claws, to remove
loose scales and fragments of dry skin, and to
leave a mark for other cats
• - Kittens should be trained to do so when
weaned
Urination
• Marking territory
• Inappropriate urination is often a symptom of
urinary disease and warrants a quick trip to
the vet.
Common Infectious Diseases
Feline Panleukopenia
- Common in kittens
- Adults create immunity and are less likely to die
- Spreads through direct contact
- Capable of spreading through placental barrier
- Vaccines offer the safest and most effective
means of protection.
Common Infectious Diseases
Feline Herpes Virus and Feline Calicivirus
- Respiratory virus infections.
- Both can be shed in discharge from nose,
eyes, and throat
- Direct Contact
- Early signs: depression, sneezing, and
coughing
- Vaccines are available
Common Infectious Diseases
Feline Rhinotracheitis
- Respiratory
- Vaccines
Feline Infectious Peritonitis
- Direct Contanct
- Abdomen and chest or Specific organ
Feline Leukemia Virus
- HIV
Toxoplasmosis
• Internal Parasite
• Develops fever, jaundice, enlarged lymph
nodes, difficulty breathing, anemia, eye
inflammation, encephalitis, and intestinal
disease.
• Transmitted to humans