Presentation on theme: "Animal Science I Cats. Objectives Identify the external parts and describe the physiology of a cat. Compare and contrast the short-haired and long-haired."— Presentation transcript:
Animal Science I Cats
Objectives Identify the external parts and describe the physiology of a cat. Compare and contrast the short-haired and long-haired classes and identify some major breeds of cats. Determine the facilities and equipment required for the proper care of cats. Analyze the factors to consider when selecting a cat.
Objectives Describe the nutritional requirements for cats, analyze the components of cat food, and recognize appropriate feeding practices for cats. Identify common diseases for cats and determine appropriate prevention and treatment methods (including vaccination schedules).
Facts Cats are very common in the United States. Around 60 million are used as companion animals. A companion animal is any domestic animal kept for enjoyment and companionship by humans. There are many facts to learn about the biology and anatomy of cats. Knowing proper cat terminology is also helpful. Cats can live up to 30 years, but most live only 12 to 18.
Terminology A mature male cat is a tomcat. A mature female cat is a queen. A baby cat of either sex is a kitten. A group of kittens born to the same parents at the same time is a litter. Typically, a cat weighs between 6 and 15 pounds at maturity.
Skeletal System The cat has about 500 muscles and a very complex skeleton comprising approximately 250 bones.
Physiology of a Cat The life processes of cats are similar to those of other mammals. Although most cats are fed cat food designed especially for their needs, by nature they are carnivores that can feed on mice and rats. Cats differ from other animals because they have extra-sensitive ears, noses, and paws. They also have extra taste organs and can therefore distinguish between foods. Cats have three-dimensional vision, and their whiskers are attached to nerves that help the animals to find their way in the dark.
Physiology of a Cat Other animals in the cat family include lions and tigers. Cats are similar to these wild animals because their foot structures are much the same. Claws are important tools for helping a cat catch prey. Since cats are domesticated, often their owners have the animals declawed so they don’t damage carpeting, furniture, and curtains. Declawing is the surgical removal of a cat’s claws by a veterinarian. Keeping declawed cats inside is essential because they no longer have their most important defense mechanism.
Breeds One must choose either a purebred cat or the common house cat that is not purebred. The two classes of purebred cats are short haired and long haired. Thirty-six breeds are found in the United States.
Short-haired Short-haired breeds are popular because they are less work than long-haired breeds. They require little to no brushing and have less hair to shed. Some major breeds are: 1. Rex 2. Siamese 3. American Shorthair 4. Japanese 5. Burmese
Short-haired 6. Japanese Bobtail 7. Manx 8. Russian Blue 9. Korat 10. Egyptian Mau
Long-haired Long-haired breeds require more work because they need to be brushed frequently. They often get hairballs because they lick themselves. Hairballs are wads of hair that collect inside the digestive tract and block the digestion of food. Some major breeds are: 1. Turkish Angora 2. Himalayan 3. Persian 4. Balinese 5. Maine Coon
Article Jigsaw In your groups, you are to read the articles and write the following on a piece of paper: Summary of what you read AT LEAST 3 important points What you found interesting Then you will present to the class.
Proper Care of Cats Properly managing, training, and grooming a cat to fit one’s personal needs is important. The cat and the owner will both be much happier if they are well suited to each other. A. Management 1. The cat selected should be healthy and alert. Finding out what medical attention the animal has had and if vaccinations have been given is important.
Proper Care of Cats 2. A cat should always be handled with care to make sure it feels secure. 3. Patience is needed to allow plenty of time for a cat to adjust to its new home. The new owner should not expect that the cat is going to arrive trained to his or her liking. 4. A cat should be shown that it is cared about by proper bathing and grooming.
Proper Care of Cats 5. A cat must never be left without fresh water and clean bedding. 6. Since a cat needs plenty of exercise, it must have enough space to move about properly. House cats are not meant for cages and prefer to move about the house when they please. 7. Having a cat spayed or neutered will prevent unintentional litters of kittens.
What are the facilities and equipment required for the proper care of cats? 8. Keeping a cat healthy and comfortable is important. If something that does not seem normal is noticed, a veterinarian should be contacted for professional advice.
Training B. Training 1. Training a cat requires knowledge of the animal’s habits and a good idea of what the owner wants training to accomplish. 2. The most common type of training is toilet training. Training a cat to use a litter box is generally easy.
Litter Training a. A litter box and some cat litter should be purchased and put in an area to which the cat will always have access. It is best to choose a spot that is out of sight! b. The cat should be placed in the litter box and shown how to scratch its front paws in the litter.
Litter Training c. The cat should be watched for signs that it is looking for a place to urinate or defecate and then be placed in the litter box. d. Rewarding the cat with a treat is a great way to reinforce a positive behavior.
Grooming C. Grooming 1. Grooming can be a wonderful opportunity for the owner and the cat to bond. Although cats groom themselves often, they can benefit from help. a. A cat’s hair coat should be brushed daily with a small, soft brush. b. A cat may need a bath occasionally.
Nail trimming c. Nails need to be trimmed unless a scratching post has kept them short. They should always be trimmed with a special cat clipper and file and never clipped below the nail bed. Clipping nails too short will cause bleeding. An owner who feels unsure about nail trimming should take the cat to a groomer or veterinary clinic to have the procedure done.
Grooming 2. When a cat is being groomed, its ears should be checked for mites and ticks. The animal should be treated carefully if any are present. 3. When a cat is being groomed, its eyes should be monitored for discharge, which may indicate an infection. 4. Proper foods can encourage clean teeth. Plaque and tarter should be removed by a veterinarian.
What factors should be considered when selecting a cat? Cats are wonderful pets that don’t require as much care and space as other animals. Cats also tend to be independent and affordable. There are four main things to consider when selecting a cat. They are age, gender, breed, and medical needs.
Age Age is important to consider because kittens are much more work than older cats. Kittens may be cute and cuddly, but they require special attention to their feeding and training. Adult cats tend to be more stressed when moved to a new situation and may come with old habits.
Gender Gender is important, especially if kittens are wanted. If the animals are not fixed, males may urinate frequently to mark their territory, and females will go through reproductive cycles and become annoying when they are in heat.
Fixing Spaying is removing the ovaries and uterus of a queen to prevent the animal from breeding. Neutering is altering a tomcat sexually to prevent it from breeding.
Breeds and Medical Needs Choosing between purebred and non-purebred depends on how much money one wants to invest. Buying a cat with a pedigree is way more expensive. Medical needs must be considered before selecting a cat to ensure the animal fits within the potential owner’s budget. Declawing, spaying, and neutering are just three of the costs one needs to consider before purchasing a cat.
Nutrition Like any animal, your cat needs six basic classes of nutrients to live, grow, and reproduce normally. These nutrients are water, proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals. In the correct proportion, these nutrients will provide everything that a cat needs to live a healthy life.
Water, Water, Everywhere…. Water—Water is the most important nutrient needed by cats. Water is used in a variety of ways in a cat’s body, from temperature regulation and blood formation to metabolism. An unlimited source of fresh, clean water is absolutely critical for every cat.
Protein Proteins—Proteins are required in larger amounts by cats than any other domestic animal. Proteins, more specifically the amino acids that make up protein, are essential for tissue and organ formation and maintenance. 1. One amino acid in particular, taurine, is especially needed by cats for good eye and heart formation. 2. Complete proteins, like those found in animal-based proteins, contain all the amino acids that cats need in their diet.
Carbohydrates Carbohydrates—Carbohydrates are needed by cats for energy and proper intestinal functioning. A food source with carbohydrates supplies cats with energy throughout the day and enables them to have regular bowel movements.
Fats Fats—Fatty acids are needed by cats for skin and coat health, blood clotting, and decreased swelling of tissues. Cats cannot synthesize, or create, their own fatty acids and therefore must consume them in their diet. Omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are especially important for cats.
Vitamins Vitamins—Vitamins are very important for a cat’s health. They help control enzyme action, which affects a wide variety of body functions. 1. Fat-soluble vitamins, those that can be dissolved by fat, help maintain the immune system and body structure of cats. Vitamins A, D, and E are fat-soluble vitamins.
Vitamins 2. Water-soluble vitamins, those that can be dissolved by water in the body, are used to aid in metabolism and cellular functions. The major water-soluble vitamin is B. 3. Vitamin supplements are usually not necessary for cats, provided they are fed a well-balanced diet.
Minerals Minerals—Minerals are generally needed in small amounts by cats. Minerals, such as calcium, phosphorus, and iron, help build strong bones and teeth while also aiding in metabolism. Like vitamins, mineral supplements are rarely needed if the animal is fed a balanced diet.
Feeding Appropriate feeding for cats is generally based on the age and reproductive phase of the cat. 1. Kittens require a slightly different food than adult cats, and adult cats require a different food than aging cats. A pregnant cat has different diet requirements to meet her changing body’s needs.
Feeding 2. Canned food is preferred over “soft- moist” food or dry food, because canned food contains more moisture. If feeding canned food, follow the label recommendations for the type of cat you own and never feed more than the cat can eat in 20 to 30 minutes.
Feeding 3. Feeding twice a day is fine, provided that it is accounted for in the total daily calories for the cat. Free feeding, or allowing a cat to eat whenever and however much it desires, is not recommended and can lead to a variety of health issues, including obesity.
Disease Regardless of how carefully we care for our cats, diseases that require treatment will sometimes develop. One should remember that prevention, including a vaccination schedule, will always be less expensive than treatment. Cats can be affected by many diseases with a variety of causes, but the four most common are:
Distemper- FVRCP Distemper—Feline distemper is caused by a viral infection of the gastrointestinal tract. Affected cats develop diarrhea and dehydration, among other symptoms, and normally die, as there is no treatment for this disease. Distemper is highly contagious, but very effective vaccines have been developed to protect cats.
FVRCP Upper respiratory disease—This disease is very similar to a “cold” that affects humans. Cats with upper respiratory disease show symptoms of watery eyes, excessive mucus, trouble drinking or swallowing, general agitation, and difficulty breathing. Although treatment is available, it is normally not successful, and the disease often ends in death. Once again, a vaccine is available and very effective at controlling this disease.
Rabies Rabies—Possibly the most well known of animal diseases, rabies, a viral infection of the brain, is always fatal in cats. Rabies is highly contagious and can be spread through the saliva of an animal by a scratch or bite. Most states require a rabies vaccination by law, but there are many animals born in homes that are never vaccinated and are therefore still threatened by this disease.
Feline Infectious Leukemia D. Feline leukemia—Feline leukemia is a highly contagious disease that causes a “wasting away” of a cat. Symptoms can vary, but excessive weight and energy loss are always present. There is no treatment for feline leukemia, and many states require vaccinations by law. Also known as FIV/FELV.
Vaccines Vaccinations are very effective at prohibiting many of the diseases that would otherwise take a cat’s life. 1. A vaccination is an injection of the killed form of a virus that allows the body to build up an internal immunity to the actual virus. 2. Vaccinations should be carried out in a timely fashion and not disregarded. Kittens should begin vaccinations at about eight weeks of age, followed by the recommendations of a veterinarian. Most adult cats require yearly boosters of vaccines.
Review What are the external parts, and what is the physiology of a cat? What are the differences between the short-haired and long-haired classes, and what are some major breeds of cats?
Review What are the facilities and equipment required for the proper care of cats? What factors should be considered when selecting a cat?