More Cat Care Information:
A certain excitement goes into your heart when you learn that you are getting a new cat; however, will your old cat be as excited? It may seem hard at first but by following the pieces of advice here, you can successfully introduce the new to the old. Though solitary by nature, many cats will accept or at least put up with additional company if the new cat is introduced to it properly.
|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.
If your cats are still kittens, it may take only a short while to initiate them. They may get along within 10 to 15 days of introduction. Both cats' temperament and personality influence the introductory process. Allay the feelings of your old cat by not showing preferential treatment to the new cat so that it will not think that it is its rival.
When bringing the new pet home, allot a safe room for the new cat to live in for a while. The new cat has to settle in this safe room until it has been properly introduced to the old cat. There are no specifics for the room that you could make use of – it can be a spare bedroom or a bathroom. However, the room that your new cat will live in should be a place that your old cat does not enter. Put a scratching post, litter box, bed, water dish and food dish inside the room so the new cat will be comfortable.
The new cat may be dominated by the old one by making it feel that it is not accepted in the house. The old cat may hiss and howl at the new cat when it sees it by the door. If this happens,take no notice of the old cat. If you castigate the old cat, it might cause huge problem for you later. Eventually, the old cat will calm down when it goes near the door of the new cat. Once the hissing and howling stop, reward your old cat with praise and acknowledgment.
|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.|
When the old cat is no longer hissing and howling at the new cat, that is the time that they can be initiated to one another. An effective way to do this introduction is by using their scent. First, use one food dish in feeding them. They have to get used to each other's scent first so you will need to feed them at different times.
In a few days, they will probably be used to each other's scent; then you can try to feed them closer to each other. To do this, keep your new cat in the safe room then close the door. Feed the new cat in the safe room with the door closed. Then, have your first cat eat at the other side of the door with its food dish. Later on, they will stop hissing and growling at each other and eat peacefully at the same time. Then, the time to meet each other has arrived.
The growling and hissing may commence when you try to introduce them in the same room. Even though they are used to each other's smell already, your old cat may still feel ill at ease seeing the new cat in its territory. If you are planning to make them see each other, you have to make them greet and smell each other while playing together with them. When fighting starts, separate them and give them a bit of time apart.
Giving them time is important. If you want them to adjust to each other properly, be patient and follow the instructions above. Once they break into each other's lives, both of your cats may turn out to be playmates until the end. The introductory phase is important for the peaceful living of both cats sharing the same roof. It will be easier to add in another one in the future if you be successful in introducing your cats with each other.
|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).|