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1st time cat owner

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by LolaRose2010, Mar 28, 2011.


  1. LolaRose2010

    LolaRose2010 PetForums Junior

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    Hello Everyone!!
    ive joined today as im looking for experienced cat owners to give me some much needed advise Pleeaase!
    In a few weeks time i would very much LOVE A kitten but have never owned one b4 so i would like some info 1st just to make sure i knw what im gettin myself into lol.
    I have a 2 year old son, he loves all animals, his very loud but very loving!
    Im planning on neutering the kitten but what age can this be done?
    what ages do they need injections
    whats the best kitten/cat foods for them.
    what are the main MUST HAVES for a kitten
    Also is there a particular breed thats good with children?
    im not as stupid as i may sound as your reading this i just want to make sure i know everthing i can instead of just buying a cat and i know nuffing at all.

    thank you for taking time to read this, I appreciate all you answers! ..
     
  2. Chez87

    Chez87 PetForums VIP

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    Are you thinking of getting a rescue cat/kitten or a pedigree? Vaccinations are done at 9 and 12 weeks I think but this should be taken care of by the breeder. It is a big no no to rehome a kitten under 12 weeks of age, so by this age the breeders or rescue centre should have taken care it.

    Kittens rehomed at less than 12 weeks can have problems, as they learn so much from mum and litter mates between weeks 5-12, it will also help as they will be fully weaned and litter trainer. You don't want a bitey needy kitten who pees everywhere! :p

    Kittens can be neutered at around 5-6 months, or when they weigh more than 2kg, I got my boy done at 5 months as he was a little chunk and weighed 3kg at that age! :lol: Also do you want an indoor or outdoor cat? Many people on here keep indoor cats, or have cat runs, or use harnesses due to the dangers of outside. Others let their kitties out but not til they are much older (approx 9-10 months) so they can stand up for themselves against the other cats! Also definitely don't let kitty out before neutering, don't want an unwanted pregnancy or your male to disappear looking for a girlfriend!!

    As far as food is concerned, many of us like to feed a high quality wet food (or even raw!) diet, with minimal dry food. The moisture content is so much higher in wet food, so may help with future kidney problems, as cats don't drink enough. Check out this thread, it's very useful. http://www.petforums.co.uk/cat-health-nutrition/112132-z-wet-food-cats.html
    Popular high quality wet foods include Grau, Smilla, Bozita (pate tetrapaks and tins) and Animoda carny, all of which can be bought online from zooplus.co.uk.

    Must haves: Litter, litter tray, plenty of toys (dangly wand toys are very good, and laser pens!) also obviously food, bowls, carrier, ermm...what have I missed?!

    I'm not sure on which breeds are best with children but hopefully someone else may have knowledge on that!!

    Also, welcome, and good on you for asking these questions beforehand! :)
     
  3. raggs

    raggs PetForums VIP

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    Hi and welcome to the forum, would you be thinking of a pedigree kitten or a moggy? not that moggies are anything less than a ped, but usually if you buy a pedigree kitten from a good breeder it will be 12/13 weeks old and will have had all his jabs, flea treated, wormed and usually 4 weeks kitten insurance. Plus the most important thing you will get is a good breeder who is just a phone call away to answer any questions that may arise.:)
     
  4. lymorelynn

    lymorelynn UN Peacekeeper in training
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    Hi and welcome to the forum :)
    where to start with your questions - have you considered looking at rescues or pet shelters for a kitten or are you looking for a pedigree?
    Pedigrees will come to you at 12/13 weeks old fully vaccinated (which is done at 9 and 12 weeks approximately)
    Kittens are usually neutered at around 5 months for either sex.
    Food - there is an excellent thread here http://www.petforums.co.uk/cat-health-nutrition/112132-z-wet-food-cats.html Quite a lot to read through but our lovely Hobbs is usually around to advise :) You don't need to feed special kitten food.
    Must haves - litter tray and litter, food bowl and water bowls, a carrier for transport home and to and from vets, a selection of toys and a scratch-post/climbing post. Beds are not essential but nice too.
    Good luck
     
  5. lymorelynn

    lymorelynn UN Peacekeeper in training
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    Everybody beat me to answer :cryin::D
     
    hobbs2004 likes this.
  6. Gem16

    Gem16 PetForums VIP

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    I agree with alot of above but did want to point out a lot of rescues will rehome kittens at 8 or 9 weeks. The one i volunteer for rehomes at 9 for the sad fact that they need to make room for the next litter coming in, but if you are going for a private breeder then 12/13 is advisable.
    As said kittens can be neutered at 5-6 months :)
    A high quality wet food is important as the main part of the diet and mixed along with some raw is even better. Dry food should be kept to a minimum.
    Hope you stay around so we can see your journey with the new fur baby :D
     
  7. LolaRose2010

    LolaRose2010 PetForums Junior

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    aww thank you so much everyone! ;)

    To be honest i see some prices of pedigree kittens/cats that i would no way be able to afford but im looking for a short haired kitty, so when the times right i think il take a trip to a rescue home! :)

    il def be sticking around and posting pics of my new lovely fluff baby when he/she arrives!

    Id still appreciate if anyone knows a certain breed that are more, Lets say, Relaxed around young children :p
     
  8. Chez87

    Chez87 PetForums VIP

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    I think tbh it just depends on the cat rather than the breed, one of my mums moggies doesn't really like kids, but my (rather large) 10 month old kitten really loves kids and he is very affectionate. He loves my 3 yr old niece.

    If you go to a rescue centre they will ask you all sorts of questions about your home life, kids etc and will help to pick a cat that will be good in that sort of home, for example one that has come from a home with young children, and will steer you away from nervy scaredy cats.
     
  9. lymorelynn

    lymorelynn UN Peacekeeper in training
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    That's the hard one to answer :D I'd probably suggest keeping away from the Siamese types - though mine loves playing with my grandchildren. Ragdolls and British Shorthairs are more laid back generally but I have to say moggies seem to get along with everyone. Cats are very adept at getting out of the way when they want to so I think with just some rules of dos and don'ts with your little boy you should be fine.
    My daughter has an 18month old toddler and two six month old kittens (moggies) and they live happily together. He knows not to pick up the kitties and they know where they can hide if they need to :)
     
  10. carly87

    carly87 PetForums VIP

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    Hi there

    Welcome to the forum! It's so refreshing to see someone propperly researching owning a cat before just going out and doing it! No question is a stupid one, so ask away!

    Firstly you need to decide whether you actually want a kitten or an older cat. With a kitten, you get the joy of watching it grow up, but with a cat, you can better suit the personality to your family, as it's already developed and there's no guess work as to what kind of cat the little kitten will turn out to be.

    Next you need to decide whether you want a moggie or a pedigree. Rescues will have plenty of moggs, and breeders will often rehome their older cats as well as kittens, so it's worth giving them a call to see if they have any. There are many different breeds out there, and each have their own characteristics, so it's difficult to answer whether or not any particular one will be good with children, as it very much depends on your little boy's approach to animals, and the other characteristics you need for the cat to fit in with your family.

    For any cat, food and water bowls, a litter tray and scratching posts are essential. I'd recommend using the same litter that the breeder or rescue used for the first little while, and then gradually moving the cat onto the brand you'd prefer to use. If you can, get a small amount of the soiled litter from the old tray, bring that home with you and sprinkle it on top of the clean stuff. Sounds disgusting, but it helps reaffirm to puss where his poo box is, and will also reassure a nervous cat by putting their own smell stamp on the place.

    You should also ask for a blanket that the cat has been used to sleeping on. If you want a kitten, take a blanket that mum and kits have snuggled on for a day or two. This is for the same smell reassurance that the dirty litter will give the new arrival.

    food: Again, start on the stuff that he's used to, and gradually transition him across. Wet food is better if they'll eat it (mine won't for the most part), but dry can work if you've got no other choice. There's a really good thread on here about wet and dry foods, and it'd probably be worth having a look at. Anamonda, Grau and Bozita are all high quality wet, and the dry I use is rigin, but Acana also do a range that has no grain in it. There are others, but those are the ones I use.

    Introduce your cat to the house one room at a time, and don't bombard him with lots of affection or noise on his first day in the new house. The cat will settle much quicker if allowed to explore the environment without interferance.

    I really hope some of this helps.
     
  11. LolaRose2010

    LolaRose2010 PetForums Junior

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    :):D Thank youu very much all your replys have helped with what i needed answers to!
    im soo exited already, i cant wait! :lol:
     
  12. lisajjl1

    lisajjl1 PetForums Member

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    Just wanted to add to the forum on my own mix of cats and lively now 3 year old but only two year old child when our second cat arrived and we recently gained another.

    So far have introduced a 13 week old kitten and a 2 year year old female cat to my young daughter with no adverse effects on either side....Lola the kitten loves my daughter but all contact between them was supervised and ground rules from start, it might seem unrealistic but you can teach a toddler to leave the cat alone when its looking for a quiet spot/sleeping etc.

    The adult cat we got in January is far more wary, not used to children in any form but we have again set the rules i.e no chasing, let the cat have some peace and quiet - we made the dining room out of bounds for the child to give the cats somewhere to go to get out of the way but its amazing how they rarely seek sanctuary.

    I feel we have a successful combination as put lots of thought into introductions and made sure we didnt get into chasing/shouting mode - my daughter helps me to feed the cats and makes pipe cleaner spiders for them and its lovely but we do do things together so I can keep an eye on her and always make sure there is a free exit for the cats to get some space!
     
  13. Abster21

    Abster21 PetForums Junior

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    When we chose our kittens from the rescue centre, we had about 4 weeks until we could collect them, so we visited a few times and took along a tshirt that smelled of us and our house - so they could get used to our smells and they could have the smell of their mother to help settle them into their new home.

    Don't bother spending money on expensive kitty toys, they will find cardboard boxes, newspaper on string, and especially plastic golf balls much more fun! Same goes for beds in my experience - cats will do as they please, rather than as you please! A cushion in a dark corner, or near a radiator is most likely where they'll feel comfortable.

    We have three scratching posts strategically near where they like to scratch furniture, which works quite well.

    Enjoy!
     
  14. MaineCoonMommy

    MaineCoonMommy PetForums Member

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    Hello and welcome. I did research on cat breeds also as I have two small children (one is 20 months one is 3 1/2) and the top results for breeds that are good with children were Maine Coons and Ragdolls (I heard Birmans were good also, can't remember what others). I chose a maine coon, and before committing we went to see the kitten with the children. The breeder had small children of her own, and our kitten's mother was very friendly and went up to us and the girls to say hello.

    One thing I've heard was to select a kitten that does not cling to you and cower, even if it may seem cute, but to select one that is too busy trying to explore things and jump around-this cat will probably be able to live with a loud child, as appossed to a kitten that is nervous. Our kitten didn't sit still very long, he was too busy running around, and was not phased by the girls. He's fantastic with my daughters, they are always picking him up and are a bit boisterous, but even if I try to rescue him he goes right back to them? LOL He cries at night outside of the girls room after I put them to bed.

    So if going for a pedigree, I'd narrow down to breed and then see the litter and the parents to see their personality and choose like that. Good luck! (p.s. I hear boys tend to be more laid back than females in general, but I suppose there are always exceptions to the rules!)
     
  15. Lil Dee

    Lil Dee PetForums Junior

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    One other thing to mention - Pedigree breeds do need rescuing from time to time too !! My two BSH girls we rescues, as were my friends (another two BSH girls) and having done my homework, I did manage to come up with several options before I chose Amber and Ziva.

    If you find there is a breed that you think you would prefer, get in touch with the rescue site for that breed, and see what happens. As you say, you're not looking for something right now, so it may work out perfect timing (any good rescue will want to do a home check, as well as ensure that cat is healthy before adopting them out, which can take a few weeks if there is worming/spaying required) In the meantime, you can do your homework, and maybe get to meet others of the same breed whilst waiting for your fluff-ball to come along :)

    Have fun with it all x
     
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