What if your cat might be blind by birth or become blind with aging or some injury? As an owner, you must think that ’Should you put down a Blind cat?’ It is a definite fact that cats do adapt themselves to be blind very well as they still own their acute sense of smell and hearing, also worth mentioning, their whiskers. So, do not worry if they have lost their sight, they still may lead a life filled with love and happiness.
However, should you put down a blind cat can be answered in more detail as follows:
Should you put down a Blind cat?
Cats are naturally independent creatures and may cope with blindness very well with time. Blind felines, in good health, must not be put down at all.
Blind cats would soon get adapted to their sightlessness. They do so by relying more on their senses other than sight to move around.
As a blind cat’s owner, one might need to make things a bit simpler for their blind cats at home, but blind cats would still lead an active and healthy life.
But do not worry, a blind cat would not use a cane to look for its way.
Causes of Blindness in the Cats:
Some common causes of blindness in your cat are as follows:
- Severe eye damage due to trauma
- Inflammation in the eyes
- Degeneration of Retina because of disease or aging
- Eye tumors requiring the eye removal
- Cataracts or Glaucoma
- Detachment of Retina caused due to a high blood pressure
- It is important to at once take your feline to the vet if you observe they are disturbed easily or are bashing into furniture and other things around.
- Check your feline’s eyes daily and if you notice any unusual discharge, cloudiness, or redness, consult your vet about your blind cat. This might help in preventing your cat from the chance of going blind.
How do Blind cats cope?
You would be worried, if you cannot put down your blind feline, then how will it survive throughout its remaining life?
Well, the following are the ways your blind feline might use its senses to navigate the surroundings and things happening around it.
The sense of Smell:
A blind cat may depend more on its sense of smell to know about its environment.
Your blind cat knows when you are making their lunch because they would smell it very well and would reach upon you and would rub up with you same as they used to do when they were not blind and could see.
However, they may become bewildered at once, so, you can help them by talking to them in a distinct and clear voice, which will help your feline to get to you.
All the cats have pheromonal secreting glands in their lower legs, under the tail and cheeks.
When your feline rubs its cheeks against furniture or other things, it leaves its scents on those things. When dealing with a blind feline, this would aid them to navigate throughout the house.
The sense of Hearing:
Your cat has acute hearing that allows it to differentiate between several voices which might be a distance away.
But if you have a swimming pool or any water area that is opened, better to keep your feline indoors. Also, prevent your blind feline from falling in it by covering it up.
The Cat’s Whiskers:
The whiskers of felines might also help them to know about how close something is.
But what are whiskers?
- What are Cat’s Whiskers?
Whiskers are specialized hairs on the face of your cat, that aid in vision and help a cat to navigate its environment, acting as supplementary sensory inputs, for example like insects have antennas.
Whiskers are specially modified sensory gears that might guide your cat in its daily functions.
- Number of Whiskers a Cat have:
In four rows, twelve whiskers are present on each cheek of most of the cat species. Whiskers are not the same as a cat’s normal furring because they raise from follicles that are blood-riched which are packed with nerve endings.
Due to this reason, like a human hand, they are sensitive to be touched and would help the blind cat with a great deal about its environment.
- How do Whiskers aid your Blind Feline?
Even the cats who can see, highly dependent upon their whiskers for help in the vision. The whiskers give information about the motion, size, and shape of objects nearby and differences in air currents.
Moreover, they aid in detecting very mild vibrations, that might alert your feline about any danger or prey in the vicinity.
Whiskers would stop your blind cat from bashing into the walls or any other solids.
Furthermore, at the ends of a feline’s whiskers, proprioceptors are present which aid the cat in balancing itself and be careful about its body position in place.
This explains that why cats could land on their feet easily.
- Does Blind Cat own Longer Whiskers?
Blind cats do not own very long whiskers.
Whiskers are supposed to grow according to the size that is the width of your cat. So, if your blind feline goes through less exercise and has more weight than usual, they would, no doubt, have longer whiskers.
However, blind cats are likely to have damaged whiskers because they are more prone to bump into the furniture or walls, which might result in the breaking of a whisker.
Bonded with a Sighted Feline:
Some felines get adapted so well to be blind that most of us would not be able to tell if they are really blind or not.
Though, if you own one more cat that is sighted, bonded with your blind feline, the one with the sight might help around the one that is blind.
A Good Memory:
Felines are very skilled to get adaptive to the environments or situations they are ought to live in. They do you also by their strong memory skills.
A Good Memory aids your cat’s blindness in such a way that your feline does not easily forget about the happenings around it.
So, your blind cat might rely on its memories of where things are present in its home to look for its way.
If you would like to test its memory, you might notice that the cats never get lost the way home, no matter where you leave them. They would always come exactly home safe and sound.
Taking Care of your Blind cat:
Apart from thinking about, ‘Should you put down your blind cat? ‘Or taking a decision about euthanizing them, it is better to find the ways to take care of them.
This is because they are not sick but healthy creatures. Death is not the answer. Cats are naturally adaptive animals. They easily cope up with their blindness.
So, you are the one to get adaptive to it, not your blind feline.
Here are some ways that might help you in taking good care of your cat who cannot see.
Inspect your cat’s eyes for Blindness:
If your cat is behaving suspiciously in a way that you think that it might have lost its sight, inspect its eyes, and observe if they seem different than normal.
Some common symptoms of your cat’s losing its eyesight may include:
- The eyes would not react to light and the pupils get dilated.
- Eyes seem discolored, cloudy, or inflamed.
Adapting your Blind Cat:
It is important that you should help your blind cat with its adaptation while going through the blindness era. It can be done through following ways:
Lessen the obstacles at your place:
You should try to bring about changes at your house and make it free of any extra obstacles as much as possible. This is done because your blind cat might be facing a hard time moving around your home.
Follow these suggestions for making it simple for your feline:
- When you keep your floor free of extra things and clutter-free, it would make it easy for your blind feline to play around without bashing into lame things.
- Leave the furniture where it is already present
- Teach your children to move their toys away after they are done playing with those
Uphold a Calm Environment:
- You must keep in mind that your cat can no longer see to find out that if someone or something around it is a danger, so, it might get startled by any kind of loud noises, that might be made by you or a result of your actions.
- You ought to aid your feline in keeping safe and calm, by preventing any loud noises.
- But if you make a loud noise by mistake, do bring comfort to your feline by speaking softly to it and petting its head.
Speak with your feline:
- Your blind cat is not able to see you. So, you need to habitat yourself of chatting and humming to make sure about your existence for your cat.
- This will make your cat comfortable too to have you around talking to it. Also, this will prevent any kind of shock for your feline.
Make sure the outdoor safety:
- Outdoor safety must be taken into account for your blind cat. Maybe your cat has a habit of going outdoors when it has good eyesight. So, it might follow the same trends.
- You need to make sure if it goes out again in its blindness, stay with it and do not let it go away from your sight.
- One thing you can do is keep your blind feline in an enclosed place whenever headed out. This would help to avoid any injuries or chances of your feline getting lost.
- If due to any reason, you cannot monitor your cat’s movement while it is out, do not allow it to leave the home.
Caring for your Blind Feline:
Now, this is the time your feline really needs you. It has lost its sight and being a good owner, you must become its eyes and bring it comfort and ease as much as you can bring.
Play with your Feline:
- You must play with your cat more than you used to do when your cat had sight. Do not forget, it is a normal creature and the same beloved for you.
- The losing sight would not kill its playfulness, so, you need to make sure that you give it time and make it feel your affection.
- You can also buy toys. Especially, go for those toys that are manufactured for blind cats. Look for anything that makes sound on touching. It might be an act of entertainment for your feline.
- Buy those toys that might squeak like a rat or chirp like a birdie. Your cat would like to play with those and get amused by their sounds.
Look out for your feline as you always have:
- One must take care of their blind cat like the way they used to do before. Feed it nutritious lunch, groom it on daily basis, treat them with sweets you used to do, and consult your vet about your cat’s condition regularly.
- Take care of your feline’s ears and nose, because these are the senses your blind cat is depending on now.
- Place your feline’s water and food at an easier place or place they always knew.
- Add another litter box, so that it is easier for your blind cat to get to a toilet in time. Maybe finding the litter box is hard for it due to blindness.
Consulting your Veterinarian:
- Try to take your cat to your vet regularly. Follow the vet’s instructions and take care of your blind feline-like asked by the vet.
- Maybe your cat’s sightlessness is followed by a medical condition and would not get better until it is cured. So, contact your vet at once if your feline’s state does not improve or worsens apart from treatment.
- You should be aware that some kinds of blindness are irreversible even with medical treatments. Your feline would be blind for its remaining life, however, still could lead a happy life.
So, ‘Should you put down a blind cat?’ the answer is clearly NO!
You do not need to put down a cat simply because it has lost its sight. Blind felines can still lead a life filled with love and comfort.
Particularly, if you bring about a small change in your blind cat’s life, will make it more secure and affectionate.
Blind cats will still do the same tasks as when they could see, be same playful, and ask for the same love, affection from you, and talks with you.