You may be thinking of bringing a new kitten into your home. A cat can make a lovely addition to your family and bring the joy only a feline companion can give. However, you might wonder how best to prepare for your new cat. What’s the best way to introduce a kitten to your home? Below are the steps you need to take to give your cat his best start for a healthy, happy life.
Designate a Safe Room
Cats love to explore, but when integrating your new cat into your home, it is best to start limited. Designate a safe room for your new cat to acclimate and keep him or her from potential harm. Think of it as a quiet, stress-free sanctuary for your kitten to adjust to its new life.
Make the Room Cat-Proof and Cat-Friendly
Make sure that the safe room is really safe for your new kitten. Keep electric cords, Venetian blind and curtain cords, breakables, swallowable items, and paper bags out of reach to avoid strangulation. Cats also like to hide, so providing a box with a blanket can be one way to make the space cat-friendly. Remove large furniture such as a bed or large chest from the room so that interaction between you and your kitten can be easier.
Provide the Essentials
Along with a comfortable bed, give your new kitten the proper food it needs and water on one end of the room and a litter box on the other end. Kittens require different food from adult cats, as their bodies are growing and growing fast. Therefore, they will need food with protein, fat, and calories specially made for them. Cats naturally want to bury their waste, so litter box training is generally easy. If your cat needs some help, gently move its paw in a digging motion to help get it started. You could also place the kitten in its litter box right after a nap or meal until it gets the idea.
Provide Cat Toys and a Scratching Post
Cats love to chase prey and to scratch. A plush mouse, a ball too big for its mouth, and a moving toy on a string will entertain your cat for hours. Because they also love to scratch, provide a new, 1 meter-high scratching post to call their own.
Let the Kitten Get to Know You
In the meantime, let your kitten get to know you by spending frequent, short periods of time in the same room with him or her, and speaking quietly or not speaking at all. You could also leave a shirt of yours in the same room to let the cat learn your scent.
Depending on how out-going or shy your new kitten is, the integration time can take from a few days to two weeks. Once your kitten is ready, though, allow him to explore gradually and safely.
Trust the Care of Your Pet to the Professionals at Everhart Veterinary Medicine!
At Everhart Veterinary Medicine, our veterinary professionals strive to provide your pet with the very best of veterinary care. We believe that the best care for your pet should be provided by experienced, compassionate, and knowledgeable veterinary professionals. With two Maryland locations in both Baltimore and Pasadena, we are always ready to welcome your pet as a new patient! Give us a call today at 410-355-3131 or 410-793-7670! For more information, as well as updates on veterinary news and topics, visit us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Pinterest!