Kitten Care Guide
Caring for your kitten the right way will give years of fun
Kittens are so cute and cuddly you just have to love them
Know How To Care For Your Pet
There is hardly anything cuter than a little baby kitten. It doesn't matter if it is a boy, girl , black or white.
They play, they roll around, they dab at your finger, they just win your heart.
Your kids love them, you love them, even your neighbors love them.......and then
The kiten gets older and it starts to claw at your furniture, rip up your drapes, scratch at your kids and even terrorize the dog!!!
Suddenly your pet comes in from outside, all beat up from fighting and in need of a Vet. Not a cheap proposition I might add.
Wouldn't it be nice if someone had given you some advice from ,day one, on raising your new pet and what to expect from your lovable little kitten?
This simple guide might be just what you need to help you learn about baby kitten development, kitten food and what to expect. Hey...for warned is for armed.
I have had many cats in the past few years and each one has been wonderful to have around, but each one has had it's own set of problems.
I hope this information will make your life and that of your kitten a little easier.
photo from redgage.com
Note to Self
Love my kitten
Love my kitten
NEVER TRUST MY KITTEN
Be it one or three, you and your cats can have a great time
What Age Should The Kitten Be
So you, your children or both, want a kitten. One of the biggest considerations in making that purchase (or taking a free kitten) is their age..
Some people and some pet stores will try to sell or give away kittens 6 weeks old or younger. There are some HUGE problems with buying pets at this very early age:
...they are extremely social animals and spend most of their early lives playing with and interacting with other animals, this allows them to learn good and acceptable social behavior which will stay with them all their lives
...mother's milk is very important to the kitten during the first 3 months of life. It provides important nutrition and antibodies
...mother cats must help the kitten go to the toilet by stimulating them in certain ways, during the first few weeks of life
...up until about the 7th week of life, a kitten has poor coordination and eyesight and must rely on the mother to remain safe and out of trouble
My advice would be to purchase (or receive) a kitten that is 12 weeks or older. At that point the kitten will be starting to become independent, will be healthy and ready for food other than mother's milk.
The kitten will have good eyesight and will have been taught how to keep itself safe.
Do You Get A Male Or Female???
Big Choice With Lots Of Considerations
The first thing that usually comes to mind is...."should I get a male or female kitten". That becomes the million dollar question, and there are probably a million answers, talk to anyone and they will be glad to give you their opinion.
Unless you are going to breed the kitten, it really doesn't matter which sex you choose
Males grow into tomcats and will try to prowl the neighborhood
Males may be more aggressive unless neutered
Females will grow into female cats and will come into heat, unless spayed
Female cats in heat will do their best to find male cats to have more babies with
Both male and female kittens will be cuddly and loving and can grow into very loving cats
Over the years I have had both male and female cats.
We spayed and neutered all our kittens, so we didn't have the "baby kitten" or prowling problems.
How Did You Get Your Pet
Have you ever purchased a baby kitten
Be careful where you get your pet
Once You Have Your Pet Home
The care and feeding of a kitten requires a little effort and a some good information.
Without a properly balanced diet, your kitten will not grow correctly, will not be free from illnesses, and you will not have a healthy kitten. You may have to try a few different foods until you find the 2 or 3 that your kitten will eat and enjoy.
Stay away from feeding table scraps, our food isn't good for your kitten
First and foremost-----always have plenty of fresh water available
Feed a nutritious food, rich in animal protein from fish or poultry
Avoid foods that have "by-products" or fillers
Foods with lots of preservatives should be avoided
Feed a variety of foods, food boredom could slow down you kittens eating and their healthy growth
DRY FOOD OR WET FOOD??? try both, maybe even mix them together--just watch out for excessive fillers and follow the amount recommendation on the label
Don't be afraid to give your kitten a "cat treat" once in a while. Hey--we all like a treat every now and then.
Pets enjoy lots of attention, but don't get carried away
Should You Spay or Neuter Your Kitten?
This Is A Big Consideration Of Kitten Care
First off---let me say that I am 100% in favor of neutering or spaying a kitten. I don't intend to breed any of my cats, so "taking care" of them means that I won't be contributing to the over population of the cat species.
6 to 8 months of age is the preferred age to spay and neuter. Doing it at an earlier age could result in more health problems
THERE ARE SOME DEFINITE ADVANTAGES TO SPAYING OR NEUTERING YOUR KITTEN
"fixed" males can't develop testicular cancer, females cannot develop uterine or ovarian cancer
males and females probably won't develop mammary cancer
spayed and neutered cats live longer, 12 to 14 years, compared to about 7 for a feral cat that hasn't been "fixed"
spaying and neutering is a convenience for the owner, no worry about your cat having babies and no worry about the neighbors cat having babies
helps keep the cat population down, so there are less cats in shelters and roaming the streets
there is less male aggression and spraying (urinating around the house)
unneutered males are harder to control and are frequently injured in cat fights outside of the house while prowling the neighborhood
THERE CAN BE COMPLICATION AND PROBLEMS
this is a surgery and there can be bleeding
care must be taken to make sure infection doesn't set in
could result in obesity, watch their diet and exercise
Always consult with your Vet to make sure that your kitten is healthy and of the proper age to have the surgery
There is a lot that goes into caring for your kitten
Should You Declaw Your Kitten?
Inside Or Outside Kitten Makes The Difference
My words of wisdom on this would be-----
If your kitten will become an outside cat, you don't want to declaw. You will be sending your cat into the world completely undefended. A cats claws are one of the primary ways they have to fight off other cats, dogs, rats and what ever else prowls the night.
But keep this in mind.....your outside cat may come inside and then all your furniture and drapes will be targets for clawing. It's a vicious cycle and there is a lot to consider when deciding on an indoor or outdoor kitten.
If your kitten will always stay inside (except when you walk them on a lease outside) then I would say, GET IT DECLAWED, you will hate your cat after they have destroyed your $1,000 sofa and $2,000 drapes, not to mention carpets, chair coverings and who knows what else.
We had a cat that would go outside then come inside to be with the family. He destroyed the front of our couch, tore up the screens on our windows (so he could get outside after something) ruined all the sheer curtains and drapes and came close to being "murdered" a couple of times. He was a rescue cat, about 2 years old and past the age to get declawed.
We had an inside cat and had her front claws removed, we left the back ones just in case she did get outside, she would have something to defend herself with.
If you live in an apartment, you might find that any cat you bring into the building MUST BE DECLAWED. Check your lease before buying a new kitten.
Having your kitten declawed should not change the personality of your cat!!
Having your kitten declawed is surgery. Any surgery can result in pain for the kitten, soreness when they walk (for a period of time), irritability until the discomfort goes away and a "bad attitute" for a short period of time.
After about 2 weeks the kitten should no longer have discomfort. After that you can begin playing with it and treating it in a normal way.
It's a good idea to check with your Vet on how they do the procedure, how many they have done and what pain killers they use during surgery. If you aren't comfortable with the answers, ask around to see if any of your friends have had the procedure done by another Vet and if they were pleased with the results.
Don't let your pet get bored. All kittens love to play
How About Some New Toys for Your Kitten
Play is a big part of caring for your new pet
Kittens love to play, just like any other baby
Before you get your pet home, pick up a few toys that are designed for newborns.
Nothing so big that they can't toss it around,
Nothing so hard that they can't chew it,
Remember----your little friend will be teething and will want something to "work on" with their new teeth.
I have discovered that fingers are a great toy for kittens, but those little teeth really can make tears come to your eyes.
So many toys, so little time
Vaccinate Your Pet Regularly
This Is A Vital Part Of Care
Even though your kitten looks like it will grow up to be a fierce little lion, don't be fooled
Kittens and older cats are susceptible to many diseases and great care should be taken to make sure that they are given a healthy diet, taken to the Vet when they act differently and given medication recommended by the Vet
When you get your pet, make certain that they have had their "kitten" shots, if not, have it done as soon as possible.
Some feline diseases are:
urinary trac infections
Your Vet can recommend a schedule of vaccinations that will help insure that you will have a healthy kitten that will grow into a healthy cat.