So, you’ve decided to adopt a cat. As a cat owner myself, I can tell you that there’s no better companion, at least not one who can be as independent as you! Cats make great pets for fledgling
families, couples who are starting out on their own or someone who’s just looking to have someone to wave at in the evenings.
However, as a prospective cat owner, there are a few things you’ll need to know and make sure of before you go running to your local adoption centre. As per usual, we’re on hand to help you tick the
boxes and prepare you for owning the most perfect, cutest, loveable little purring machine – seriously, it’s like owning a sentient motorbike.
So, Uh, I got My Cat Home… What Now?
That’s great, you’ve already skipped the most important step: Making sure your new best friend has had their vaccinations. Joking aside, it’s important to inquire with your adoption centre as to whether Ms Clawsalot has had her go of shots, what shots she’s gotten and if she's due any more in the coming months. It’s also a good idea to see if she’s been chipped and neutered, otherwise you’ll be in for a nasty surprise if she decides to go on an abrupt holiday (more-so if she returns with four or five babies!). As the saying goes, ask and thou shall receive.
Yep, Felicity Sugarpuff III Has Her Shots, But She’s Super Shy…
Take a moment and picture yourself in your new friend’s shoes, or paws rather: Someone she’s never met has taken her from her usual home, away from her friends, favourite smells and happy memories, and brought her to a brand new place. You’d be shy too, I bet!
Familiarising your cat with your house and routine is an easy task and something that will naturally happen over time. Let your new friend set her own rules for now, let her get the lie of the land and give her time to realise that this is actually the best thing that’s ever happened to her. For now, simply being around your cat is enough for them to make the association between you and safety. Soon, once she sees who fills her bowl each day, she’ll start warming up and making the first move to interact with you. Easy-peasy.
So, Do Cats Need Toys And Stuff?
To start, you’ll need something to store their food and water in. Non-slip, stainless steel bowls with a low height are perfect for this. Alternatively, you can choose a ceramic option, especially if you plan on feeding them wet food. In terms of food, you can keep feeding your new friend whatever the shelter was feeding them, or you can try them on small samples from your local pet store. At this early stage it is important to find a food they don’t want to leave behind (seeing as some cats can be fussy).
Next, you’ll need a bed or so\ blanket for your cat to sleep in/on. As unfortunate as it is, kittens do eventually get bigger, so don't focus on buying expensive things that your new pet will grow out of. If it’s cosy, safe and closed off, your kitten s going to love it (99% of the time). Finally, you'll need treats, toys and simulating items for your new pet, things that will help keep their mind off of using your couch as a claw sharpening tool. A sisal post or scratching tower might be no harm to invest in, but as the old saying goes: If it looks stupid and works, it’s not stupid! Gauge your new friend, find out their likes and dislikes and change their part of the house accordingly. If they like a cardboard box, let them have the box!
Turns Out, Felicity Can Still Have Babies…
Not to worry, we can do that for you. Having your cat spayed has many long-term and short-term health benefits for all concerned. Spaying reduces the risk of your cat contracting a deadly disease but it also reduces the chances of your cat developing a slew of cancers later on in life. For males, this can be testicular and for females this can be ovarian cancer. Spaying (granted that it is done at an early stage) gives them the best chance at a long and enjoyable life at your side.
The procedure itself is safe, easy to perform and relatively painless for your best-friend. Even so, if we think there may be any health complications associated with carrying out a neutering, we won’t; end of. When you put your cat’s life in our care we take every ounce of them with the proper respect and treatment they deserve.
And What About Letting Them Outside, Or A Collar?
As a cat owner myself, I always get apprehensive when it comes to picking a collar for my cat. Most of the time Shadowfax has no issue with a new collar, but he has a penchant for getting out of them whenever I’m not looking. When fitting your fluff-ball with a collar, allow them to get used to its feel and weight, making sure that it’s not too tight or too loose on them. Cats don’t like collars, but they do tolerate them over time. Besides, if you wish your cat to be able to roam the great outdoors (or back garden), a collar is a necessity.
So, once you feel your floof is big and bold enough (at least 6 months old, neutered and vaccinated) for some time outside, do some research into your local area; find out if there are any other cats around or if there are any predators in the area such as foxes and hawks. Cats are capable warriors in their own right, but anything bigger than them will see them as food. Be vigilant during your cat’s outside time, but allow them to explore. It’s what cats love best!
Final Tips and Farewell:
As long as your new friend is healthy, happy, safe and satisfied, there’s not much else you can really do. Cats are certainly funny creatures (just ask the Internet), but there’s a reason why the Egyptians revered them. Not only do they make great company, they are a friend for life. Of course, if you do need any advice or Veterinary assistance with your new friend, don’t hesitate in lifting the phone and calling us! We’re always on standby to help you and your friend in any way we can. So, if you have any other questions that we didn’t manage to cover, you can always ring us or have a gander at our website.
For now, we wish you the best of luck in keeping your good couch safe!