Many of us find cats to be adorable and simply amazing in the way the conduct themselves. However, if it’s your first time to own a cat, then you need to make some elaborate preparations. That’s because a cat, especially if you get it while it’s still a kitten, needs some training and care. Just like most mammals, cats need to be cared for and fed, and given a comfortable place to rest when they need to rest. In this list of 20 Items You Need Before Bringing a New Cat Home, we are going to look at some of the things you need to have or do, to keep your cat happy, and make your relationship with your cat, a lifelong relationship.
The relationship with your cat is much like that of a human baby. It will depend on you fully, and you need to start planning for its comfortable right from day one. To get started, you will need to create a shopping checklist for your cat. One thing you don’t want is to bring a cat home and find that you didn’t buy its food, just as you are about to have dinner. That can easily happen during the excitement of buying or adopting the cat and bringing it home. Just like you wouldn’t want to have a baby then start buying random items immediately you need to use them. It becomes stressful for you and the baby. Which is why you will buy a changing table before the baby comes home. It’s the same with a cat, you need to get that litter box before you get the ca
You need to get the cat’s “room” ready, and it should be safe.
A cat isn’t very demanding when it comes to its beddings. A box or basket lined with towels and blankets will make a comfortable bed for him. On the other hand, you still need to create a “room” for your cat. It doesn’t have to be a separate room, but it should be somewhere it can rest or retreat from you and other family members. That’s important for a new cat, it should feel at a new home, not imprisoned or kidnapped. A good place can be a corner of your bedroom, just place a protective screen around the chosen corner so that the cat will feel protected from intruder. You may also choose a bathroom that non-uses, just make sure that you don’t use it without moving the cat’s bedding out, and creating a new room for them. Cats hate coming into contact with water, you therefore protect them being exposed to cold water against their will.
You will need to cat proof your home to minimize chances of wear and tear. Cats love to play around with anything they can get hold of, and pull or tag along. Think of things such as a ball of yarn, or anything that the cat will scratch and ruin, if there is, then you need to cat proof it or simply store it far away from where the cat will be spending its time. If you have a room that’s kept locked most of the time, that’s a good place to store anything you wish to protect room the cat. That way, you will be able to stop the cat from creating a mess when you access the room. Remember to keep it closed at all times though.
Giving the Cat a Welcome
One of the first things that your cat will receive when it gets home is a welcome. You may want to make this a big day, but you should not because, it may be too much for it. Cats don’t like it when people cuddle them against their will, that’s bound to happen if you have little children at home. To avoid such a scenario, make the welcome a low-key event, and ask everyone to let the cat have some freedom, so that it can get used to being around and not feel bullied.
Give Your Cat a Medical Checkup
You cat’s first visit to the vet is among the most important things you need to do for him before you settle down. You have to be sure that it’s in good health before you start living with it as a healthy family members. Make sure it gets vaccinated and tested for FELV and FIV, if the testing agency hasn’t done so already, if it has, the get the medical records to show that they did it. You need to keep a copy for future reference. You may be asked question such as, “Do you want to neuter and declaw it?” Your response should be, “No, only neuter it, don’t declaw.” Your cat needs its paws to feel happy and safe.
Water and Food are Essential for Your Cat’s Existence
The quality food and water you give to your cat will help to determine how long it’s going to live, and the quality of life it will have. You need to learn more about ingredients that you should include in the cat’s food, and those that you should not include in the cat’s food. Cat don’t take a lot of water, however, it’s important that you keep refresh their supply at all times. They will take water from time to time, especially if you give them dry food. Furthermore, there are foods that you should keep away from your cat for their safety, health, and happiness. On top of that list is raisins, grapes, yeast dough, raw meat, chocolate, and avocado. These are all harmful foods for your cat and you need to make sure it doesn’t eat them. Occasionally, a friend may come home and feed them these foods. If that was to happen, you need to call your vet immediacy and ask them for the way forward. Learn how to read the labels on your cat’s food, once you do, it will become a life-long habit.
Litter Box and sleeping arrangements
We discussed above about creating a room for your cat where it will retreat to at all times to feel safe. Now the next course of action is to determine whether you want it to sleep with you in your bedroom or somewhere else. You will also need to establish a scrupulous routine to maintain its litter box. It’s only through maintenance of the litter box that you will be able to get rid of odors. What you need to keep in mind is that you will be establishing life-long habits for yourself and your cat. Once the cat gets sets its mind on how you want to live with it, it’s will be hard for you to change it.
Give Your Cat Some Play Time
Again, cats are like kids, they enjoy it when you play with them. Playing with your cat will allow you to bond with them, and get to enjoy their friendly side fully. However, before you start to invest in expensive toys for cats, try giving them simple items such as a paper bag that’s inflated. Cats love that and they will enjoy kicking it around. They also enjoy sitting in card boxes and being “box sled” around the house. It’s one of the games they can play for hours, and they get serious about it too.
Get the Toys to Scratch
Cats love to scratch things, it’s part of their nature, and it feels like they are imprisoned if they are forbidden from scratching anything. You therefore need to invest in something that looks like it they can scratch or paw it. You could for example cover a ball with a course blanket, and they will have a great time scratching it. That way, you will save your hard-earned furniture and carpet from being destroyed. You will also not have to surrender it at the shelters because your cat has forced you to choose between it and the quality furniture.
Give Your Cat a Safe Indoor Space
For most of use, we know cats are domestic indoor animals, which means that you don’t expect them to spend lots of time outdoors. However, they do spend time outdoors; in fact, a friend of mine lost his cat after it fought with a neighbor’s cat and got infected with FIV. If you don’t want to lose your beloved cat, then you should keep it indoors, and only allow it to play in your house and protected deck. If it’s neutered, that will not be a problem as it will not get an urge to procreate with other cats. That’s the sole reason that your cat will get an urge to go and play outdoors.
A Place in Your Heart for Your Cat
You will be surprised to learn that on average, a cat will live an average of 13 years to 15 years. That’s a long time for you to tolerate a creature that has no place in your heart. On the other hand, if you truly love it, then you will have a great time caring for it throughout its lifetime. Your cat will also come to enjoy your company and even care for you too. There are stories of cats having saved a person’s life from eminent death after they smelt leaked gas. You therefore don’t have to see your cat as a burden, it’s also a companion and guard when you sleep. If you live with your cat, then you see it’s important to see it as part of your family, a family of two. As long as it has a warm place to sleep, it’s comfortable day and night, it gets a time to play once in a while, and you feed it on time, then all will be well.
Not every plant in your home is cat-friendly, some of them could be toxic and you need to rehome them before you bring your cat home. If you don’t, there is a chance that you may lose your cat shortly after you bring it home. Use this list here , to learn about plants that are toxic to animals. If you have any of them in your home, consider replacing it with a non-toxic plant for your cat, which you may find from the same list. Most toxic plants will cause your cat to vomit or cause gastrointestinal upsets, even when the cat simply smells them and ingest spores or pollen. Moreover, you should be aware that all plants will make your cat vomit of give it gastrointestinal discomfort when ingested raw. If you have plants in your home and you believe you cat has ingested them, then you should take it to the vet immediately.
Get and Ear Cleaner Recommended By Your Vet
You need to invest in an ear cleaner that your vet recommends or approves. When cleaning your cat’s ear, place some of the cleaner on a ball of cotton, and then use it to wipe the cat’s ear with it gently. That will take off some debris and wax from its ear, without causing discomfort to the cat’s ear, giving it allergies, or causing any form of irritation. Generally, if you hurt your cat once as you try to clean its ears, it may not trust you again. It may even become hostile the next time you try to touch its ears. It will also help if you pat its back loving before you try to clean it. A good time to clean it is after you have served it food, and it has eaten to its satisfaction.
Protection for Your Cat’s Paws
The pads on your cat’s feet are among the most sensitive part of its body. You will need to protect it from extreme temperatures, both cold and hot. Getting some protective gear for your cat’s feet or generally gives it a warm comfortable place to take its meals and rest will go a long way in achieving that goal. You will notice your cat will avoid spending its time standing or sitting or a cold or excessively heated floor at all times. It is understood that you should also warn other family members from acts of cruelty against the cat, such as trying to make it stand on ice.
Give Your Cat a Warm Bath
Generally, cats are clean animals and they will groom themselves at all times. Moreover, they will also make sure they aren’t muddied when outdoors. You therefore don’t have to keep cleaning them and shampooing them as you would do your dog. However if there is need to bath it because it accidentally got dirty, then use need to use lukewarm water. Test its temperature with your elbow to make sure it doesn’t give you a burning sensation. You will also need to rub off any gunk or debris from your cat’s eyes using a damp ball of cotton. When you do that, make sure that you rub away from the eye not towards it. Otherwise, you may blind your cat accidentally and cause it untold suffering.
Help Your Cat “Go.”
I your cat is still in its infancy, there may come a time when it hasn’t relived itself for a while. It’s during such times that you will have to be a mother and help it “Go.” To achieve that, you will need to rub the region under its tail. That will stimulate its body to relieve itself, which is why the mother cat leaks it there when it’s in its infancy. After you rub it there, you have to place it in its litter box and let it stay here for a while as it tries to relieve itself. Once it’s done, it will try to cover its excrete with the sand you place in the litter box. That’s normal, and it’s the way cats are wired to always keep their home free of smell. Your job will be to come later to change and refresh the litter box.
Get a Micro-chip for Your Cat
You will need to get a micro-ship for your cat if you are afraid it may get lost some day. As you may expect, a microchip is a great way to track your cat and bring it home if it wanders away. There are stories of people who lost their cats and only got to learn about them after someone reported they found an abused cat. With a micro-ship installed in your cat, even if it accidentally gets lost, you will be able to track and identify it with ease.
Get Your Cat Something to Stalk
Cats are naturally hunters, which mean they will instinctively want to stalk, chase, and catch something such as a mouse or rat. If you can get it a dummy rat or mice, it will have a great time playing cat and mouse with it. If you happen to live in a place where there are rats or mice, don’t be surprised if it one day comes back with a mice and starts to play with it. That’s natural, and as much as it may seem cruel, the cat is just being a cat. Of course, if the mouse is still alive, you may help it get away once the cat lets go. However, you should be careful; the cat may bite you or scratch you if you try to free the mice forcefully. Moreover, there is a good chance the mice’s back is already broken, it may not survive for long. Your best bet is to free it from its agony. Overall, getting your cat something it can use to play cat and mouse helps it to satisfy its desire to fully its instincts to hunt and kill.
Harness, Carriers, and Leashes
Cats are just like dogs, you need to train them how to walk and behave in public when they are outdoors. A good way to do that is to use a leash, and a harness designed for use with cats or kittens. The harness and leashes meant for your cat will not weigh it down because they are lightweight. You will also need to invest in a harness or leash that expands, that will protect your cat from being accidentally strangulated. You may also want to invest in a carrier for your kitten, especially if you have two or more. They will come in handy when you need to travel with your kitten, and at the same time protect it from the public. A carrier is also the ideal means to transport your kitten to the vet and back. It should be well ventilated, well padded on the inside, opens and closes easily, and secure. You will be glad you have one, once you start to use it.
Keep the Pet Poison Control Number
What would you do is you came home and found that your cat is having what looks like its last breath? Well, you will need to call people who are experts at handling such emergencies. A Pet Poison Control Number is good place to start, which is why you need to get one before you get a cat. During pet emergencies, they can direct you on what to do, or come in person to attend to your cat. It’s rare for a cat to be in a life threatening situation. In most cases, they will be hungry and meowing at you, which indicate they need to you to feed them, take them to their litter box, or even give them some water to quench their thirst. Taking poison on the other hand will cause them to lose consciousness and that’s when you need to call the Pet Poison Control Number.
Overall, cats are one of the easiest creatures to live with once you learn the basics. Once you buy their food and set their litter box, you won’t have to worry about much else for days. We hope that you found this list on 20 Items You Need Before Bringing a New Cat Home to be informative, and you will enjoy taking care of your cat.