Specially-Abled Pets Day is coming up May 3rd! This unofficial pet holiday was started to spread awareness about adoptable pets that have handicaps, such as hearing impairment. That’s definitely a worthy cause in our book! Cats can still lead full, happy lives, even if their ears don’t work very well. However, you will need to take some extra precautions with Fluffy, to keep her happy, healthy, and purring. A San Antonio, TX veterinarian offers some advice on caring for deaf kitties in this article.
To be fair, this one applies to all cats. However, it goes triple for specially-abled kitties. If you want your furry friend to be able to enjoy the stimulation and enrichment that going outside would normally offer her, make her a little catio. All you really need is a comfy window seat and some pet-safe plants! Check the ASPCA site here for suggestions.
Pets that can’t hear well often really, really hate being startled, especially when they are sleeping. Try to avoid sneaking up on your drowsy buddy. Stomp your foot or clap your hands to let your feline friend know you’re approaching. Also, don’t pet her or pick her up unexpectedly. You probably wouldn’t like being randomly swooped up by surprise, either!
Most cats train their humans, rather than it being the other way around. This is just as true for kitties that can’t hear as it is for others. That said, you may be able to teach your furry pal to respond to hand signals or perhaps light patterns. Sign language is one option. You can use ASL, or just make something up. You probably won’t have much luck with complex commands, so stick with basics like ‘Come here’ and ‘Get down from that.’ Laser pointers and flashlights can also come in handy here.
Fluffy will be very reliant on you, so be sure to pay attention to her every day. Talk to your feline buddy, pet her, and let her snuggle up with you. This will help her feel loved and safe. It will probably put a smile on your face, too. Kitties definitely are precious little furballs, and they have a way of melting our hearts!
As your local San Antonio, TX animal clinic, we are always here to help! Call us anytime!