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Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by Gooch, Jul 2, 2009.


  1. Gooch

    Gooch PetForums Newbie

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    Hi

    I'm new to the forum. I wonder if you any of you can help me.

    My wife and I are considing homing a cat or a kitten. We are a little unsure whether we can provide the care and attention needed though. Perhaps you can help us with this. The problem is we both work 5 days a week and so the house can be empty for up to 10 hours a day sometimes. We do not have children or any other pets but are worried that it would be cruel to leave a cat for such long periods. We would not want to get a cat flap installed so it would be a case that the cat would be "in or out" for the time we are at work. In bad weather we are worried that it would not be nice for the cat to be locked out all day and the same thing goes for a cat that would be locked in a house all day.

    Having enquired I have found that we can purchase a "Kat Kabin" or a similar shelter that can be left outside so there would be somewhere for the cat to shelter in the day when we are out a work. Is this sufficient though? Also if we were to get a cat of kitten, how long should we take off of work in the first instance to make sure that it has had time to settle into its new surroundings?

    Sorry for our naivety but I though it would be better to get all the information first so that if we were to home a cat it would get all the care it deserves.

    Thanks in advance
     

  2. Hiya

    Firstly welcome to the forum and well done for taking the time to consider things!

    Many many working people own cats so please dont let that put you off, but there are suggestions and things to consider first.

    *Does the cat have to be an outdoors cat? If yes then i would really suggest you re-consider the catflap. The cat cabin's and similar are OK but are not ideal for a long term soloution.

    *If the cat can be an indoor cat - then a cat tree and litter tray are essentials (personally i think they are essential no matter where your cat goes). Indoor cats can and do live very very happy fulfilled lives!

    *I would also say that a pair of cats would be a much better arrangement than a single one. They would have company while you and your wife were out, and have a playmate in each other. Something you really need to think about carefully though. I know the rescue i volunteer for wont home a single cat to be left for so long, and will only consider pairs, or a single to go as company for an existing cat.

    *If you go for a pair it doesnt necessarily mean 2 kittens or 2 adult cats. You could consider homing a mum with one of her kittens... many rescue centres jump at this chance, as kittens are homed quickly, while mum is left behind for months waiting for her new home.

    *on the subject of kittens... They really need 3 meals a day (sometimes more) in the early weeks. So if you dont think someone could pop in to feed at lunchtime i would consider either an older kitten (14weeks+) or an adult cat. Perhaps a neighbour could pop in for you for a couple of months to give the kittens their lunch?

    * Time off is a difficult one... I would suggest a week but for a 2nd week work part time so that the cats get used to being left alone. If you get two they would have company for each other and this time could be cut down a bit.

    *Have you considered all the costs involved in owning a cat? Neutering, microchipping, yearly vaccinations, good food, litter, insurance premiums, toys, grooming equipment etc. It all mounts up!

    I hope this helps! I'm sure someone else will be along with some more suggestions for you!

    xx
     
  3. Gooch

    Gooch PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for the good advice billyboysmammy! :):):)
     
  4. badbudgie

    badbudgie PetForums Member

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    Hello,

    Just to say that we re-homed two adult cats, a mother and son when they were 18 months and 11 months respectively.

    Me and my partner both work full time and can be out from 7.00am until 5.00pm most weekdays.

    As they are both house cats I do feel a little guilty about leaving them all day but they have a scratching post and loads (and I mean loads) of toys to keep them entertained.

    But to honest when I am off they tend to just sleep anyway, Mani doesn't even come downstairs until lunch time sometimes.

    I would definately consider two, and like the previous poster, a mother and kitten would be great!

    All in all it has been a wonderful experience and wouldn't change it for the world.

    Hope this helps!
     
  5. Gooch

    Gooch PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks Badbudgie

    I have just spoken to Cat rescue centre and was advised that 2 house cats would be better if I'm going to be out all day. I think we are going to have to have a good think about this before making any commitments.
     
  6. badbudgie

    badbudgie PetForums Member

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    Hope you make the right decision for you, no matter what it is...

    There are also disable cats which would be better suited to being house cats, I imagine this would be very rewarding.
     
  7. dave2506

    dave2506 PetForums Newbie

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    Hi there, my wife and I are in exactly the same situation as you in that we both work full time and are often out of the house for 10 hours or more during the day. Because of this we chose to get 2 kittens so they would have someone to play with when we are out. We're also quite lucky in that my wife's a Teacher and is now on summer holiday so is with them all day now.

    We will however be putting a cat flap in when they are old enough to go outside so perhaps the only difference is there!
     
  8. Gooch

    Gooch PetForums Newbie

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    Hi dave2506

    It's good to hear that you managed to get both of your cats at the kitten stage. I have spoken to 2 different rescue centre's and they both told me that they would not let me have a kitten or kittens from them if we were both going to be out for at least 10 hours a day. This is due to the fact that they would need feeding at least 3 times a day. I also explained that I could take the first week off so they could get used to new surroundings and work a second week part time. I was told that this still would not be acceptable which I though was fair enough as they would be still very young.
    I am assuming you and your wife had a bit more spare time when you got yours?
     
  9. Trellis

    Trellis PetForums Member

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    Hiya

    We got our cat at Christmas. He stays in the house all day while we are at work (from about 8:30am - 6pm) where he has the stairs, landing, hallway and dining room to run about in. To be honest though, I tend to find he sleeps most of the day, even when we're at home!

    He is a very nocturnal cat and tends to go out around dusk for a while. Sometimes he's only stayed out a short while, other times he's ended up being out all night but usually we call him in when we go to bed.

    He seems perfectly happy with this arrangement. I would like to get a catflap but we have a glass back door and the front is upvc so need to find a suitable one, which we haven't done yet.

    Oh and as for feeding, he has 2-3 wet meals per day, and I leave dry food down while we are out, plus he has water available all the time.

    Luckily we were at home over Christmas when we got him so could settle him in and feed him frequently to begin with.
     
  10. Janee

    Janee PetForums VIP

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    Well done for considreing all the possiblities and issues before you go ahead :)

    You have been given excellent advice. I too would go for 2 if you work those long hours as they do give each other companionship. I would also suggst you get 2 from the same place as they will know abouttheir cats.

    However, some cats are definitely loner cats. They don't like being with other cats but do probably want human companionship. So just be aware of that.

    Get a cat tower/scratching post a variety of toys, catnip and horizontal scratcher (cheap sisal mat or similiar from Wilkinson etc), and empty cardboard boxes for home entertainment.

    If you are going to let them out try to get them in again before dusk. The microchip catflaps have a 'daylight only' programme - making certain that the cat can only come in but not get out once dark.
     
  11. Gooch

    Gooch PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks all for the advice so far. It has been extremely helpful. We are probably going to look at getting a young...ish cat from a rescue centre around September time as we both have a bit of time off then.
    We have decided that a cat flap is definitely going to be needed but unfortunately we have a double glazed sliding door to have it fitted to and we are not sure if this is going to be possible.
     

  12. What about a window? cheaper than doing a door lol!
     
  13. PennyH

    PennyH PetForums Senior

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    We have 2 kittens - they are 3 weeks apart in age - and they adore each other.
    They play together and sleep together.
    Because we also have 5 dogs, when we are out, the kittens have the run of the upstairs and the living room. The dogs (and budgies) are in the dining room and kitchen.
    The kittens sleep in a 4ft dog crate in the bathroom at night so they are safe all the time. They love it and have their litter tray, bed and food and water trays in there at night.
    I don't think the dogs would intentionally hurt them, but it is better safe than sorry until they are fully grown and more able to jump out of the way (we have stair gates between all rooms and at the bottom of the stairs too, so kittens have an escape when the dogs get too much)

    I would definitely get 2 kittens together if you can.
    You could feed them wet food twice a day, and leave dry food down for their mid-day meal (so long as you leave them plenty of fresh water)

    Good luck!
     
  14. Dozymoo

    Dozymoo PetForums VIP

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    Hi there,

    It is possible to put a cat flap into a double glazed door but it can be quite expensive. You can get cat flaps which can be fitted into solid walls. That may well be a cheaper option worth considering.

    Good luck in whatever you choose to do! xx
     
  15. dave2506

    dave2506 PetForums Newbie

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    No, we actually got them last week! My wife works for a private school so their summer term ended last Friday - therefore the kittens only had the first day in the house by themselves and to be honest this was the perfect opportunity for them to quietly explore the kitchen and get used to their new home.

    They had their first vaccinations yesterday and the vet commented that they seemed the healthiest and most content rescue kittens he had seen for a long while :D They are apparently not too keen on the carry box any more though!
     
  16. dave2506

    dave2506 PetForums Newbie

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    We will also be having to put the cat flap into a solid wall as our doors are double glazed glass and would be too expensive to reglaze. My parents used to have a "cat tunnel" in the wall and the cats used it with no problem at all.
     
  17. Aud's_Mum

    Aud's_Mum PetForums VIP

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    Brilliant advice BBM :thumbup:
     
  18. princessx87

    princessx87 PetForums Senior

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    Hiya welcome to pet forums :D

    i think it also depends on the cat / kitten themselfs!!

    I have got 2 dogs, 5 cats and now 4 kitten running around the house :D
    But i wouldn't have it any other way..

    The kitten sleep most of the day anyways while they are this young, the only time they are active is when its grub time, then its a few hours of fun.
    "Our older cats",Have now become indoor cats, one so much so, she "HATES" Being outdoors, so we have never had any problems with them.

    The other two any how are outdoors, and they can sometimes be a problem, I.E: raining, storms, ect..

    So it all depends on the nature of the cat / kitten. :001_rolleyes:

    I think some of the other posters are right that it might be better to get 2 older kittens / young cats. This might show their nature before you take them home.

    Good luck in you search....!!

    P.S: Just seen on the rescue and adoption pages on pet forums two cats needing a home... Sounds like that could be a match??
     
    #18 princessx87, Jul 3, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2009
  19. Gooch

    Gooch PetForums Newbie

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    Thanks for your help but I am still not sure whether I can put a cat flap in to a sliding double glazed door because I'm not sure whether I'll be able to open the door fully once it is installed. I guess it depends on how far the profile of the cat flap protrudes from the glass. If I could get hold of one with a slim profile I guess it would still be possible.

    Has anyone else had this problem?:confused:
     
  20. Dozymoo

    Dozymoo PetForums VIP

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    Then a wall flap may well be your best bet. Apparently it is not too much trouble to fit a cat flap in a brick wall. You can buy tunnel extensions for many cat flaps to account for the additional depth of the opening. A shop around on the interent might bring up some interesting results for you. :)

    Admittedly I don't have one myself (my girl is an indoor cat) but my friend had a wall flat fitted a few years ago without too much trouble.

    xx
     
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