More Cat Care Information:

Most people look to their vet for the best advice on kitten care, or any animal care come to that.

General Cat Care #1: Before You Bring Your Cat Home
You will need food, food dish, water bowl, interactive toys, brush, comb, safety cat collar, scratching post, litter and litter box.
General Cat Care #2: Feeding
An adult cat should be fed one large or two smaller meals each day. Kittens from 6 to 12 weeks need to be fed four times a day. Kittens from three to six months need to be fed three times a day. You can either feed specific meals, throwing away any leftover canned food after 30 minutes or free-feed dry food (keeping food out all the time).

Feed your cat a high-quality, brand-name kitten or cat food (avoid generic brands) two to three times a day. Kittens can be fed human baby food for a short time if they won’t eat kitten food softened by soaking in warm water. Use turkey or chicken baby food made for children six months and older. Gradually mix with cat food. Cow’s milk is not necessary and can cause diarrhea in kittens and cats. Provide fresh, clean water at all times. Wash and refill water bowls daily.

But can you be sure that they are giving you good, sound, unbiased advice based on solid research?

The early months of 2009 have seen media reports about Harvard (US) medical students protesting that their professors have strong and lucrative ties to pharmaceutical companies. This compromises the professors integrity and can't exclude them from biased teaching.

If the most famous and most prestigious medical school in the largest democracy of the world has this problem, image what it must be like in less well known medical and veterinary schools.

Add into the mix the lucrative commercial pet food industry and you may want to consider if your vet, who may be the nicest person in the world, has had the best training. Or perhaps s/he has received very biased and limited training: limited to ensuring the burgeoning profits of already highly profitable companies.

You can't blame the universities who are always short of money. You can't blame the governments as they are always under pressure to deliver cheaper courses. It's probably best not to blame anyone.

But it does pay you to know what is going on.

Perhaps now you can appreciate why so many vets strongly promote commercial pet food. Their reception rooms are packed solid from floor to ceiling.

But stop and ask yourself if this is really the way to optimum kitten care. Or is it more for optimum profits in the commercial pet food industry? Or optimum vet care, with all the ensuing unhealthy cats?

I want to introduce you to Dr Francis Pottenger. He was a research scientist and conducted nutritional tests on cats between 1932 and 1942. He discovered that cats who were fed only a cooked diet, even though 'perfected balanced', showed a marked reduction in their immune responses. This lowered immune response was passed on to the next generation.

General Cat Care #3: Grooming
Most cats stay relatively clean and rarely need a bath, but they do need to be brushed or combed. Frequent brushing helps keep your cat’s coat clean, reduces the amount of shedding and cuts down on the incidence of hairballs
General Cat Care #4: Handling
To pick up your cat, place one hand behind the front legs and another under the hindquarters. Lift gently. Never pick up a cat by the scruff of the neck (behind the ears) or by the front legs without supporting the rear end.
General Cat Care #5: Housing
Cats should have a clean, dry place of their own in the house. Line your cat’s bed with a soft, warm blanket or towel. Be sure to wash the bedding often. Please keep your cat indoors. If your companion animal is allowed outside, he can contract diseases, get ticks or parasites, become lost or get hit by a car, hurt in a fight or poisoned. Also, cats prey on wildlife.

Further feeding of cooked food, further lowered the immune response. And so the cycle went on.

By the third generation illnesses such as heart lesions, hepatitis, feline urological syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, leukaemia, tumours, arthritis and a host of other immune deficient maladies were occurring.

Dr Pottenger went on to discover that the immune response could be improved simply by giving them a raw food diet. But it took another three generations for the immune system to be back up to a really optimum level of efficiency, that you commonly find in wild cats.

If you are still confused, and I can't blame you if you are, here's a suggestion to use when you search for the best kitten care.

Fads come and go. What 'science' discovers this year, is out moded next year as fashion changes, as inaccuracies are discovered, as more information comes to light.

On the other hand, nature has perfected herself over millennia. Cats have evolved on their raw diet and thrived. Man and his puny ideas, have not, and will never, alter a cats digestive system. How can it when you look at all the time nature has had to fine tune it?

Translating good kitten care feeding into practice is not without its problems. There are some do's and don'ts that you must adhere to. Such as:

  • what meat can be overfed with disastrous results
  • what ingredient, often left out, MUST be present is a healthy kitten's diet
  • what additional supplements should you add to the diet

Once you get your head around the concept and get into the routine, natural kitten care comes easily. It will also deter most cats from hunting as an adult. Hunting domestic cats are normally trying to redress the lack of nutrients in their diet, rather than doing what comes naturally.

Feed your cat as nature intended, and the rewards will be endless.

General Cat Care #6: Identification
If allowed outdoors (again, we caution against it!), your cat needs to wear a safety collar and an ID tag. A safety collar with an elastic panel will allow your cat to break loose if the collar gets caught on something. An ID tag or an implanted microchip can help insure that your cat is returned if he or she becomes lost.
General Cat Care #7: Litter Box
All indoor cats need a litter box, which should be placed in a quiet, accessible location. A bathroom or utility room is a good place for your cat’s box. In a multi-level home, one box per floor is recommended. Avoid moving the box unless absolutely necessary. Then do so slowly, a few inches a day. Cats won’t use a messy, SMELLY litter box. Scoop solids out of the box at least once a day. Dump everything, wash with a mild detergent (don’t use ammonia) and refill at least once a week, less frequently if using clumping litter. Don’t use deodorants or scents in the litter or litter box (especially avoid lemon scent).
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