So you have decided that a cat is right for you and that you are
right for a cat. Now here are some of the more practical things you will need
to care for your new feline friend:
Carrier: A carrier is necessary for safely transporting your
cat or kitten It will keep her safe in the car and give her a sense of
security. Make sure the carrier is large enough for your cat. A cat carrier is
required to collect your cat from Galway Cat Rescue to bring her home for the
Litter box: A litter box, litter and a scoop are essential. Make sure thelitter box
is large enough for your cat; if you have selected a kitten, make sure the
box-sides are low enough that he can easily get into the box. You will probably
need a lower-sided, slightly smaller litter box for the kitten-months, and then
will need a larger litter box as your kitten becomes an adult cat. Line the box
with approximately one to two inches of litter. If you have adopted a kitten,
use non-clumping litter until he is approximately four to six months of age.
Kittens can be messy and clumping litter will adhere to his or her fur. The
kitten will then attempt to groom himself and will ingest the clumping litter,
which can cause stomach upsets, illness and/or intestinal blockages.
Make sure the box is deep enough so the litter stays in the box and doesnít
spill onto the floor. Droppings should be removed daily using a litter scoop.
Keep the litter box in a quiet, but accessible area (i.e. not next to the
washing machine) and away from the catís food.
Kittens usually require the litter box to be in a very obvious and easily
accessible area. When they have to eliminate, kittens arenít usually able to
remember that the litter box is down the stairs, and in the back storage area
of the basement, and they canít always íhold ití until they get there.
Once the kitten is using the litter box reliably, you can gradually move the
litter box to its permanent location. Just be sure he knows where it is when
you move it - you can
take him to the boxís new location, and place him in it as a reminder. Cats
have an incredible sense of smell, and will usually be able to follow their
nose to the new litter box location.
Adult cats are usually quite capable of locating the litter box on their own.
If you want to be certain that he knows where it is, you can take your new cat
to the litter box and gently place him in it. Thatís usually all it takes, and
as long as you keep the litter box and area clean, you generally wonít have any
litter box problems.
Food and water: Feed your cat or kitten with a complete and balanced diet. We
recommend a mixture of try and wet food. Offer your cat fresh, clean water to
drink on a daily basis. Provide both food and water in clean dishes. Contrary
to popular belief, cats should not be given milk as their main source of
hydration. In fact, giving your cat milk can cause indigestion and
Bedding: Most cats enjoy having their own bed, or a cozy place to nap like a
little basket. While they may discover these cozy spots on their own, it is
still good to provide them with their own bed initially. This doesnít have to
be an expensive plush bed; something as simple as a cardboard box lined with a
cushion and soft washable material such as a blanket will work just as well. Be
sure to wash the bedding often. Place the bed in a quiet, draft-free spot, away
from the heavy traffic areas in your home.
Scratching post: Cats use scratching posts to stretch, mark their territory
through the scent glands located in their paws and/or to clean away dead scales
from their nails.
Toys: Kittens and older cats love anything that moves or rolls - basically,
anything that catches their natural curiosity and instinct to stalk and pounce.
This could be anything from a rolled-up ball of paper, to string or a bouncy
ball. The key is to make sure the toy is safe for your cat or kitten.
Collar and Tag: The collar should be a safety collar, which has an elastic
panel that will allow your cat to free herself if the collar becomes caught on
something. A tag should carry your phone number in case the cat gets lost. We
recommend to get your cat microchipped. A small microchip is placed in the
scruff of your catís neck. The chip has a specific number, which allows any vet
to access your contact information, such as name, phone number and address,
through a database. This can be essential for your cats safety.