PhotoAny cat owner knows one of the most fatal things for a cat is cancer and it's not that cats get cancer more often than other animals, it's that it appears to be much more aggressive  in cats.There are some things that the average cat owner can do to help prevent cancer.

 For female cats, being spayed at a young age will significantly decrease the cat’s chances of developing mammary cancer, or breast tumors. Ideally, female cats should be spayed prior to the first heat cycle. Doing so will nearly eradicate the potential for breast cancer.

What you feed your cat can make a world of difference, just as in humans. There is evidence that fatty acids in the diet, such as EPA and DHA, may be helpful in both preventing cancer and in feeding cats that have cancer. Watch their weight -- obesity can make your cat more prone to cancer.

Stop smoking around your cat. Secondhand smoke can affect your cat’s lungs and has been implicated as a potential contributing factor in cancer, just as it is in people. Imagine what it does to humans and your cat's lungs are that much smaller.

Controlling your pet's exposure to sunlight and ultraviolet radiation can significantly reduce the risk of skin cancer. The areas on an animal's body that are most likely to develop skin cancer are those with little or no hair or those that do not have color.

If you have an outdoor cat be really careful about chemicals in your lawn. Avoid using pesticides and other known cancer-causing agents both on your lawn and in your home.

Test your cat for the feline leukemia virus and the feline immunodeficiency virus -- both are cancer causing. Feline leukemia virus attacks the body’s lymphoid tissue and may cause tumors in various internal organs or leukemia. The virus also leads to anemia and general weakness of the immune system, which alters the cat’s ability to fight any sort of infection.The stronger the cat’s immune system, the more likely that it will overcome the infection. To test them it is just a simple blood test.

Regular check-ups with your vet can catch early signs and there is a vaccine for feline leukemia but there is no vaccine that guarantees complete protection. Early detection can lead to a better outcome if cancer is detected.

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