Small animal cats unit f
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Small Animal Cats- Unit F. Competency 15.00. Use information specific to each breed to choose the best cat for a given use. Cat Breeds. Differ in color, patterns, length of hair, shape and length of ears, shape and color of eyes, head shape, body conformation, size, and disposition

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Small Animal Cats- Unit F

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Small AnimalCats- Unit F

Competency 15.00

Use information specific to each breed to choose the best cat for a given use.

Cat Breeds

  • Differ in color, patterns, length of hair, shape and length of ears, shape and color of eyes, head shape, body conformation, size, and disposition

  • For our discussions we will focus on the two major types of hair:

    • Shorthaired Breeds

    • Longhaired Breeds

Objective 15.01

  • Describe major shorthaired and longhaired breeds of cats

Pictures courtesy of Google Images

Shorthair Breeds


  • Ruddy (orange-brown), red and blue, all ticked with darker colors at tips of each hair

  • Medium sized

    • Muscular cat

  • Almond shaped eyes

  • Very active

    • Fond of water

    • Can be taught to retrieve


American Shorthair(Domestic Shorthair)

  • Came to US with English settlers

  • 34 recognized color patterns

    • tabby is the most common color

  • Medium to large sized

  • Affectionate

    • makes great lap cat

American Shorthair(Domestic Shorthair)

Bombay (1958)

  • Relatively new breed resulting from Burmese x American Shorthair

    • Medium sized cat

    • Jet black

    • Copper or gold colored eyes

  • Disposition

    • Graceful, charming, and get along well with others, even strangers


British Shorthair

  • Oldest Natural English breed

    • Larger and taller than American Shorthair

    • Large rounded head

    • Big, round copper or gold eyes

    • Quiet, easy going, docile nature

      • likes to sleep a lot

British Shorthair


  • Originated in the Unites States

  • 1930’s

  • Cross between Siamese x Burma

    • Medium-sized

    • Sable-brown in color with gold eyes

    • Good disposition, enjoy being held

      • Can become bossy, stubborn, and angry


Cornish Rex

  • Small to medium size

  • Oval eyes and curves or rippling hair coat

  • Must be kept indoors

    • lacks guard hairs to protect it from the elements

Cornish Rex

Devon Rex

  • Resulted from feral (wild) domestic cat x cared-for stray

    • Medium sized cat with wavy hair coat

    • Large, wide-based ears are set low and distinctive to this breed

Devon Rex

Japanese Bobtail

  • Known for calico (tortoiseshell or 3 colors)

    • Calico is some shade of black, orange (red), and white.

  • Distinctive short (bob) tail

    • Is kinked to form a “pom” or “bunny tail”

  • The tail is sensitive

    • Care must be taken to prevent injury and pain when handling the cat

Japanese Bobtail


  • Highly prized, rare cat of Thailand

    • Protective of family members, and reserved with strangers

  • Medium-sized cat

    • Silver blue fur tipped with silver

      • Produces a halo effect



  • Among earliest European breeds

    • result of a genetic mutation

  • Medium-sized

    • affectionate cat

    • tends to be better in one-to-one relationships

  • The BEST show Manx cats do not have a tail (rumpy)

    • others have a short tail (stumpy)

    • some have a long tail (longy)



  • Known for one-on-one devotion to one person

  • Eye color is always deep blue

  • Head forms an equilateral triangle from the nose to the tips of the ears

    • Very little pigmentation in color pattern

    • Pigmentation is darker at the points

    • Color is restricted to the points: mask, ear, foot and tip of tail


  • Medium-sized

    • very long and refined

  • Siamese cats are very unpredictable; however, they are described as talkative, loyal

  • Fearless cats of extraordinary intelligence.

  • Siamese cats are particularly sensitive to vaccinations and anesthetics



  • Small breed

  • Known for its’ quiet, shy disposition

  • Males weigh at most 6 pounds

  • Females usually weigh less than 4 pounds



Crossed with Abyssinian recessive carriers for long hair

Friendly, affectionate, prefers company, playful, very active

medium size

usually orange-brown ticked with black or red ticked with brown coat

gold or green eyes

Snowshoe Breed

  • Medium to large size

    • Similar to American Shorthair

      • white feet

    • Bright blue eyes are large, oval

    • Ears are large and broad at base

    • Wedgeshaped head

  • The mask, tail, ears, and legs are usually defined seal or blue with the masking colors covering the entire face, except for inverted white V-shaped pattern over mouth and nose

Snowshoe Breed


  • Canadian origin in the late 1960’s

  • Known for its tough, wrinkled hairless skin

  • Indoor cat

    • cannot survive outdoors

    • depends upon people for survival

    • Constantly purrs

  • Adores body contact and is very affectionate

  • Normal body temperature is 4°F higher than most other breeds

    • unable to store body fat

    • must eat more frequently to maintain its body temperature


Longhair Breeds

Balinese and Javanese

  • Body style of Siamese, but long hair

  • Warm

  • Vocal

  • Persistent

  • Eyes are deep vivid blue

Balinese and Javanese


  • Sturdy cat of medium to large size

  • Long, silky coat that does not mat

    • requires little care

  • Very sociable

    • needs the company of others

  • White paws - trait

    • Eyes are round

    • Ears are medium with rounded tips


Cymric Longhaired Manx

  • Alert and sweet natured

  • Excellent with other pets and children

  • Large cat that is tailless

Cymric Longhaired Manx

Himalayan and Kashmir

  • (Siamese x Persian x Birman)

  • Medium to large size

  • Persian type cat

  • Long, flowing hair coat with Siamese patterns

Himalayan and Kashmir

Maine Coon

  • Oldest natural breed in North America

    • native American origin

  • Large-sized

    • reaches 12 -18 pounds

  • Brown tabby is the best known color

  • Lovable and friendly

    • has a tiny voice that squeaks and chirps

Maine Coon


  • One of the oldest and most popular breeds

  • Medium to large size

    • short, compact body

    • large head

    • small rounded ears

  • Well mannered

    • easy going

    • quiet cats

  • Make good apartment cats and excellent companions

  • Require daily grooming

    • removes and knots

  • Requires regular bathing

    • removes excess oil from the coat



  • Originated in the US during the 1960’s

  • Exceptionally large

  • Heavy breed

  • Blue eyes

  • Docile, quiet, and composed

    • named because they show little signs of fear or pain

    • take a floppy posture when handled



  • Himalayan x Burmese

  • Medium size

  • Oriental style

    • essentially a long-haired Burmese

  • Follows owner like a puppy

  • Few exist in the United States


Turkish Angora

  • Small to medium-sized cat

  • Polite

  • Intelligent

    • very responsive

    • easily trained to perform tricks

  • Prefers a clean, almost spotless environment

Turkish Angora

Objective 15.02

  • Select a cat based on qualifying characteristics

Selecting a Pet Cat

The Cat vs. The Dog

  • Requires less care

    • independent nature

  • Lower feeding cost

    • smaller

  • Initial purchase price is less

Qualities to consider

  • Adult cats are better for elderly or busy owners

  • Kittens adapt quickly

  • Females reach sexual maturity at 5 months

    • estrus cycle every three weeks

  • Friendly affectionate pets

    • “they don’t usually kill or injure small children”

Qualities to consider

  • Pedigree animals have certain characteristics

    • most cats are mixed breeds

  • Long haired breeds require frequent grooming

    • require air conditioned facilities

  • Mixed breeds are cheaper to purchase.

Choosing a healthy cat

1. Look for signs of health

  • Pale pink gums

  • White teeth

  • Nose should be cool and slightly damp

  • Clean glossy coat

  • Free of mats

Proper teeth cleaning can prevent the absorption of toxins and bacteria present in the mouth which can damage internal organs.

Most veterinarians can clean teeth and do so regularly for most cat owners

Choosing a healthy cat

2. Look for signs of illness

  • Discharge from the eyes or nose

  • Buildup of wax in the ears

    • ear mites

  • External Parasites

    • Fleas

  • Internal Parasites

    • Potbellied cats may indicate worm infestation

Competency 16.00

Use techniques that improve the well being of cats.

Objective 16.01

  • Discuss grooming practices for cats

Grooming Cats

  • Removes old and dead hair

  • Provides opportunity to check for:

    • Parasites

    • Skin disorders

    • Eye problems

    • Ear problems

Longhaired Cats

  • Need daily care to keep free of tangles and mat.

  • Equipment

    • Combs

    • Blunt end scissors

    • Nail clippers

    • Grooming brush

    • Grooming powder

Grooming Longhaired Cats

  • Procedures for longhair cats

    • 1st-Use a wide tooth comb for animal

    • 2nd- Use a small toothed comb

    • Once all tangles are out, brush hair in opposite direction of growth occasionally and sprinkle grooming powder

      • This removes old hair and reduces hairballs.

    • Check for parasites, skin disorders, eye and ear problems

Longhair Grooming

  • Comb with two sizes of teeth (fine toothed and a flea comb).

  • Nail Clippers

  • Grooming brush natural bristles (nylon causes static)

  • Grooming powder such as baby powder, talcum, or cornstarch.

Shorthair Grooming

  • Rubber grooming brush

  • Fine-toothed/ flea comb

  • Soft chamois, silk, nylon pad

  • Rubber grooming brush

    • Avoid removing good hair

Flea Combs

Bathing Cats

  • Start bathing as early as 4 months

  • Avoid splashing or running water when cat is present

  • Use ~4 inches of warm water

  • Gently lower cat into the water until the entire cat is wet

  • Keep water our of eyes and ears

  • Apply a baby shampoo to the wet coat, lather and rinse

    • Medicated shampoo for fleas

  • Towel dry or use a hairdryer

Other Grooming

  • Check teeth and gums

    • Dry food helps to clean the teeth

  • Check for ear mites

    • Dark, crumbly wax indicates mites

    • Use ear drops to treat

  • Used special clippers to trim claws

    • Do not cut into pink area of claw, it will bleed

    • Scratching post helps to reduce claw trimming

Objective 16.02

  • Describe major health concerns for cats.


  • Infectious

    • Cat Distemper (FPV)

    • Feline herpes virus (FHV)

    • Feline calicivirus (FCV)

    • Feline Rhinotracheitis (FVR)

    • Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)

    • Feline Leukemia (FeLV)

    • Feline Enteric Corona virus (FECV)

    • Rabies

Feline Panleukopenia (FPV)

  • Feline distemper

    • caused by a parvo virus or DNA virus

    • Abnormally low white blood cell count

    • Affects young cats

    • 75% death rate

  • Spread by direct contact but also from food and water, bedding, litter boxes, etc.

Feline Panleukopenia (FPV)

  • Symptoms:

    • Depression

    • loss of appetite

    • high fever

    • lethargy

    • vomiting

    • diarrhea

    • dehydration

Feline herpes virus (FHV)

  • Caused by respiratory virus infection

    • Shed in discharges from the nose, eyes, throat

    • transmitted through direct contact

  • Can remain dormant for years

Feline herpes virus (FHV)

  • Symptoms

    • depression

    • sneezing

    • coughing

    • severe eye and nasal discharges

    • increase in temperature

Feline Rhinotracheitis (FVR)

  • Widespread disease

  • Caused by the Herpes virus infection

    • confined to the upper respiratory tract

  • Symptoms:

    • sneezing

    • discharges from eyes and nasal passages.

Feline Rhinotracheitis (FVR)

Feline Calicivirus (FCV)

  • Respiratory virus infection

  • Discharges from the nose, eyes, throat

    • transmitted from direct contact.

  • Symptoms- Depression, sneezing, coughing, severe eye and nasal discharges with an increase in temperature

Feline Leukemia (FeLV)

  • Severely limits the cat’s immune systems

    • virus is excreted primarily in the cat’s salivary excretions

    • also present in respiratory, fecal and urine secretions

  • Spread through direct contact and by sharing litter, food, water, etc.

  • Symptoms:

    • low grade fever, vomiting, soft or watery diarrhea, blood in the feces and dehydration

Feline Enteris Corona virus (FECV)

  • Ingestion of contaminated feces in kittens between four and twelve weeks of age.

  • Symptoms: low grade fever, vomiting, soft or watery diarrhea, blood in the feces and dehydration.

Feline Infectious Peritonitis virus (FIP)

  • FIP occurs when FECV mutates

  • Affect those with weak immune systems

  • Leads to organ failure

  • Symptoms:

    • fever

    • loss of appetite

    • depression

    • weight loss


  • Fatal viral disease

  • Spread by the saliva of an infected warm blooded animal

  • Cat become highly agitated and possibly aggressive

Cat Disease Review

  • Feline panleukopenia

    • Cat Distemper (FPV) Low White Cell Count and high death rate

  • Feline herpes virus (FHV)

  • Feline calicivirus (FCV)

  • Feline Rhinotracheitis (FVR)

  • Feline Leukemia (FeLV)

  • Feline Enteric Corona virus (FECV)

  • Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP)

  • Rabies


Suggested Feline Vaccination Schedule

  • 5 Weeks

    • Panleukopenia (distemper)-Killed, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus

  • 9 Weeks

    • Panleukopenia, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydia, Leukemia

Suggested Feline Vaccination Schedule

  • 12 to 15 Weeks*

    • Panleukopenia, Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Chlamydia, Leukemia

  • 16 to 19 Weeks*

    • Feline Infectious Peritonitis, Ringworm, First rabies

      *Follow label directions for booster shots


  • Non-infectious

    • Feline Urological syndrome (fus)

    • Entropion

    • Wet eye


  • Entropion

    • eyeball sinks into socket and the eyelid spasms with discomfort.


  • Wet Eye

    • excessive tear production

    • blockage of drainage canal causing the tears to overflow at the inner corner of the eyes

Feline Urologic syndrome (fus)

  • A feline urinary tract disease also referred to as FLUTD

  • May range from mild inflammation to blockage of the urethra

  • uremic poisoning and death can occur

Internal Parasites

  • Toxoplasmosis- prtozoan parasite Toxoplasm gondii infection

  • Ascarids-Toxocara cati

  • Hookworm-Ancylostoma tubaeforme

  • Tapeworm-Dipylidium caninum

External Parasites

  • Lice- Felicola subrostratus

  • Mites-denidex cati

  • Feline Scabies-Notoedres cati

  • Feline Mites-ear mites, walking dandruff mites, chiggers, fleas and ticks.

Fungal Diseases and Poisonings

  • Cats and dogs share the same concerns for fungal diseases and poisonings

    • Insecticides

    • Plants

    • Household cleaners

    • Rodenticides

    • Antifreeze

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