If a senior cat is part of your family, you’ve treated them to a lifetime of love and happiness, particularly around the holidays. However, it can be difficult to determine what the best gift for your senior cat is. Another toy? Their favorite treats, again? This year, consider going outside the box and giving your feline friend the gift of a healthy and agile body.
It’s no surprise senior cats have different needs and health risks than younger cats do. As they age, cats’ bodies begin to deteriorate, potentially causing problems with their mobility, cognition or organ functionality. Most of us would probably gift our cats youth if it were possible. But what if you could give them the next best thing? Giving your senior cat the gift of natural supplements designed to alleviate the body’s aches and ailments will ensure them you love them and help them live a long and happy life.
The particular supplements you choose to give to your pet this holiday season should be based on their unique healthcare needs. Here are a few to consider, based on the most common health problems senior cats face.
- Cognition supplements: Just like in humans, older pets are susceptible to deterioration of their cognitive abilities once they hit a certain age. Cats can experience feline dementia, or cognitive dysfunction, slowly over time or quite rapidly. In either case, the changes to their brains can lead to decreased problem-solving skills, confusion and trouble remembering commands or proper behaviors. Additionally, cats with cognitive dysfunction tend to suffer from insomnia and might spend half the night wandering around and meowing. An herbal supplement with memory and focus-enhancing ingredients may help your cat stay calm and keep them sharp as they age.
- Immunity supplements: Senior cats have a higher chance of succumbing to infections or illnesses because their immune systems don’t work as well as they used to. Protecting your cat’s immunity is extremely important once they get older, since even a minor cold or infection could turn drastic with an impaired immune system. A daily immunity supplement can give your cat’s immune system a boost and keep them healthier and happier overall.
- Diabetes supplements: Diabetes is a common problem for older cats—especially ones who are overweight. Over time, the harmful effects of hyperglycemia can wreak havoc on your cat’s body, potentially impairing their nervous system, vision and more. Whether or not your cat needs more intense diabetes treatment, like insulin therapy, giving them a diabetes supplement can help support their pancreas and keep their blood sugar levels stable, minimizing the effects the condition has on their body.
- Kidney disease supplements: Kidney disease is another common health problem in senior cats. Not only can kidney problems make your cat uncomfortable each day, but they might lead your cat to urinate outside of their litter box. While most senior cats manage their condition through a specialized diet and water, natural kidney supplements can give your cat additional support, keeping them healthier for longer.
- Joint pain supplements: Humans aren’t the only ones who begin to feel stiff and sore as they age. Senior cats suffer from joint pain and arthritis, too! Arthritis supplements can help lubricate your cat’s aching joints. Not only can these help your cat move without pain, but they can give your cat the freedom to wander your home, run, jump and play more easily, just like a young cat can.
- Holistic wellness supplements: If your senior cat hasn’t been diagnosed with any specific health problems, that doesn’t mean they can’t benefit from added nutritional support. Natural supplements designed for total-body wellness can help your kitty feel great and potentially stave off the effects of aging even longer. Consider adding an omega-3 fatty acid supplement to your cat’s diet, which can reduce inflammation, protect the heart and even make their skin and coat moisturized and healthy. An overall nutritional supplement can also be useful in ensuring your pet gets all the vitamins and minerals their body needs to stay healthy for as long as they live.
Gifts like blankets, toys and treats might get your cat excited, but the gift of a healthy, youthful life is much more meaningful. If you’re considering your cat’s holiday gifts, give them the opportunity to share many more holidays with you by providing for their health and wellbeing.