Your New Kitten

Congratulations on the new addition to your family. Kittens are excellent companions. Here are a few facts to review to help ensure the health and safety of your new friend. Needed supplies for a new kitten include a proper health record with dates of vaccinations and dewormings, high quality food, bowls for water and food, a litter pan with litter and scoop, grooming tools, a pet carrier, and of course, toys. Prepare your home for the new kitten before letting it out of its carrier. Be sure all doors and windows are closed to prevent escape. Take the kitten out and let it explore the room where it is to stay. Kittens and cats will explore endlessly until they feel totally comfortable in their surroundings. 

It is surprisingly easy for kittens and even dogs to adapt to each other—if they are gradually and gently introduced. Go slow!!! It can take days, even weeks, for new pets to warm up to each other. Place the kitten’s litter box in a secluded area. Show the kitten the litter box, and place the kitten in it several times. It’s rare for a kitten to reject the box. If this does happen, the litter box should be moved to another more secluded area. If the problem continues, it may be necessary to place several boxes around the home. The kitten will find one that suits its need for privacy within 24 hours. Remember, cats are extremely clean pets. 

Cats are carnivores and have special dietary requirements. We recommend feeding Science Diet or other high quality kitten food for all kittens.  Wet or dry food for a cat should contain 30-40% protein. Milk is NOT necessary in the diet once weaned. Make diet changes slowly. Any abrupt change can cause digestive upsets resulting in vomiting and/or diarrhea. Make sure to read and follow the recommended daily feeding guide on the label to help minimize obesity. Some brands may differ. If feeding free choice, only offer what the kitten will eat in one day. Consult your veterinarian immediately if the kitten does not eat well. Water is extremely important to the cat. Insufficient fluid intake can cause the urine to become too concentrated leading to urinary problems. Make sure your cat has access to fresh water at all times.

Allow the kitten plenty of REST TIME. Cats sleep about 22 hours each day. Adequate rest is necessary for optimum growth and development. Quite often, we must perform surgery to remove foreign objects from the stomach and intestinal tract. These objects include string, fishing line and hooks, marbles, needles, coins or just about any other small object you can think of. Also beware of common household plants that may be poisonous to your cat when ingested.

By reducing stress and allowing the kitten to feel comfortable on its own terms, you will enjoy many years of affection, love, and loyal companionship.