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ADDING A NEW KITTEN TO THE FAMILY

cats

Cats are seasonal breeders and in cooler areas of Australia most kittens are born from late spring to late autumn.

There are many places to look when trying to obtain a kitten, your local veterinarian may know of well socialized and healthy kittens, animal welfare shelters, pet stores, and the classifieds of newspapers usually have kittens for sale or free to good homes.

Try not to get a kitten from a wild or scared mother. Kittens which are born to friendly mothers will generally grow up to be friendly cats themselves. Kittens are naturally curious, playful and trusting and, unless frightened or tormented, will grow up to be loving companions. Children should be taught to handle the kitten gently and to allow it to rest when tired.

Kittens require a series of vaccinations for protection against cat diseases. The first vaccinations are usually given between 6 to 9 weeks old, with their next shots at about 12 and 16 weeks old. If your kitten has not been vaccinated prior to purchase you should arrange with your local veterinarian to start the vaccination series as soon as possible. The kitten should be kept inside until the vaccinations are completed.

Kittens should be regularly wormed with a kitten worming product, available from your veterinarian, pharmacy or pet shop, carefully following the instructions.


cats
A young kitten is better confined to one room of the house until it has settled in. Young kittens should not be left to fend for themselves outside as they are unable to escape other cats or dogs.

Most kittens will know how to use a litter tray, but if it is a little reluctant place it in the tray after each meal or after it wakes up. Make sure the litter box is kept clean but do not clean it with disinfectants.

Kittens need a different diet than adult cats and, having small stomachs and big appetites, need up to four or five meals per day. They should be fed nutritionally complete commercial kitten food which is available in both canned and dry forms. They should have access to fresh, clean water at all times.

Food and water bowls should be shallow and clean. Cowʼs milk causes diarrhea in many kittens. Low lactose petsʼ milk is available but should only be fed as a treat.

Kittens like nothing better than to play, and a ball or a paper bag (not plastic) or a cardboard box can give a kitten loads of fun. Indoor cats appreciate a climbing and scratching pole and pet stores have a large range of colourful and entertaining cat toys to
satisfy the most indulgent owner.

cats
Cats should wear a collar and identification tag but it is important to use cat collars that have safety releases or elastic inserts as, unlike dogs, cats have a habit of getting caught up on branches with their collars, or getting a leg through the collar.

Whether an indoor cat or an outdoor cat, Puss needs warm and cosy sleeping quarters. Cats feel secure in small enclosed spaces and there are a range of cat igloos and houses available - many in colours and patterns to co-ordinate with household furnishings.

For the budget conscious, a cardboard box and an old blanket will suit Puss just as well!
Kittens are little furry bundles of fun that mature into wonderful companions that give years of loving companionship.

Further Information
  For everything Cats in Australia
  OzPets Cat Shop - Toys, collars, beds, automatic feeders and fountains.



Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia

Last Update: 20/03/07 16:32 Views: 2996

OzPetShop - Pet Products, Supplies and Accessories