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Cat Facts

    Page 3

  • Cats do not think that they are little people. They think that we are big cats. This influences their behavior in many ways.

  • Cats are subject to gum disease and to dental caries. They should have their teeth cleaned by the vet or the cat dentist once a year.

  • Cats, especially older cats, do get cancer. Many times this disease can be treated successfully.

  • Most cats have no eyelashes.

  • Many cats cannot properly digest cow's milk. Milk and milk products give them diarrhea.

  • Cats lack a true collarbone. Because of this lack, cats can generally squeeze their bodies through any space they can get their heads through. You may have seen a cat testing the size of an opening by careful measurement with the head.

  • Cats with white fur and skin on their ears are very prone to sunburn. Frequent sunburns can lead to skin cancer. Many white cats need surgery to remove all or part of a cancerous ear. Preventive measures include sunscreen, or better, keeping the cat indoors.

  • Cats can get tapeworms from eating fleas. These worms live inside the cat forever, or until they are removed with medication. They reproduce by shedding a link from the end of their long bodies. This link crawls out the cat's anus, and sheds hundreds of eggs. These eggs are injested by flea larvae, and the cycles continues. Humans may get these tapeworms too, but only if they eat infected fleas. Cats with tapeworms should be dewormed by a veterinarian.

  • Cats can get tapeworms from eating mice. If your cat catches a mouse it is best to take the prize away from it.

  • There are tiny, parasitic worms that can live in a cat's stomach. These worms cause frequent vomiting.

  • Many people fear catching a protozoan disease, Toxoplasmosis, from cats. This disease can cause illness in the human, but more seriously, can cause birth defects in the unborn. Toxoplasmosis is a common disease, sometimes spread through the feces of cats. It is caused most often from eating raw or rare beef. Pregnant women and people with a depressed immune system should not touch the cat litter box. Other than that, there is no reason that these people have to avoid cats.

  • Cats have a full inner-eyelid, or nictitating membrane. This inner-eyelid serves to help protect the eyes from dryness and damage. When the cat is ill, the inner-eyelid will frequently close partially, making it visible to the observer.

  • You can tell a cat's mood by looking into its eyes. A frightened or excited cat will have large, round pupils. An angry cat will have narrow pupils. The pupil size is related as much to the cat's emotions as to the degree of light.

  • A cat is pregnant for about 58-65 days. This is roughly two months.

  • The two most common problems with cats are aggression, and refusing to use the litter box. Both of these problems are usually caused by social conflict among cats. To have the fewest problems, have only one cat at a time. The more cats you introduce into a house, the more likely you are to have difficulties with the cats.

    Cat Facts Page 4

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