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Are you wondering how to build a cat tower without breaking the bank. Wondering how to provide hours of kitty climbing fun and exercise? Wondering what you can do to keep your spoiled feline housemate from waking you up to play at 2 am?

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.

You've seen those elaborate, expensive cat climbing towers in the pet store and know that your kitty would love to have a spot all her own, away from the dog and kids and not on top shelf of your closet. With some imagination, basic woodworking skills and scraps of plywood and carpet that you probably already on hand you can build your own cat tree.

You Need a Plan

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.

You need to plan where this new piece of furniture is going to go and how much room you have for it. Are your eyes bigger than your living room? Get out that tape measure and be sure.

Take a look at what materials you have on hand. You're going to need a good sized piece of plywood for the base so that the cat tree has good stability. No crashing kitties please! You're also going to need something for the post(s). Wooden fence posts work well, just keep in mind that they are heavy. How much carpet do you have on hand? Do you plan to cover the posts with carpet or just the platforms? How many platforms?

The design of your cat climbing tower is going to depend a lot on what materials you have on hand, how much room you have for the tower, what you want to spend on additional materials, and of course how many cats are going to be using it!

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).
Updated: February 24, 2017 — 5:45 pm

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