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  #1  
Old 26-08-2011, 12:21 PM
Bronte Bronte is offline
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Default How to take care of a 3 month old kitten, recently acquired

Could anyone recommend me a website on how to take care of a male kitten. Pester power got to me. But as I come from the countryside cats just 'arrived' and got milk but generally took care of themselves.

The kitten has slept in my child's room the last couple of nights, as a young cat cannot be left alone for long periods of time. It's trained to go to the toilet in a box with cat litter (is that what it's called) I want to put this box at the bottom of a 3 story house, will the kitten know to go down that far (so far I've kept it close to where he is) At 7 months I can get it neutured, it this wise? When can I leave it to sleep outside, when can I leave it into the garden (without the fear of it getting lost) Any general advice gratefully appreciated.
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Old 26-08-2011, 12:35 PM
gipimann gipimann is offline
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I found the following 2 sites which might be helpful:

http://www.caravetgroup.com/Top_Tips...fault.466.html

www.whiskas.ie

From my own experience, I got a kitten (also male) at 3 months, and for the first week or so, I left him to sleep in the shed overnight (yes, on his own). He'd come from a farm, so wasn't perturbed by the shed. He was allowed outside once vaccinated, and I introduced him to his own garden by putting a lead and collar and walking him around it! Sounds weird, but it worked - he stopped and sniffed everywhere, and after a very short while he knew where home was, and never seemed to get lost. I did this again a few years later when I moved house, and he settled to his new surroundings within a day or two. Once I'd done that, I left him outside (with a small house for shelter) during the day when I went to work. I also cut a catflap into the shed so he could go in there if he wanted to.

I had him neutered just before 6 months old - as a result, he never sprayed any of his territory (or mine!), which was a blessing!

I can't help on the litter tray, because my cat never used one - he always did what he needed to do outside!

Best of luck with the new arrival!!
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Old 26-08-2011, 12:37 PM
Scotsgirl Scotsgirl is offline
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Hi Bronte,

Best of luck with your new kitten!

If you move the litter box straight down to the bottom of the house, the kitten might get confused, so I recommend moving it a little bit further away each night. Put it out in hall tonight, then move it down to next landing in a couple of days, and then move again, until it's where you want, but show the kitten each time where it is. They are normally very clever, but just to be on the safe side place as it's so young, I would do it this way.

I would recommend getting it neutured as it's keeps them from wandering, getting into bad fights (though not always) and spraying. Some will spray a bit even after neuteuring but most cats won't.

I had a kitten once and it eventually figured out how to use the cat flap (as I have older cats). By that time it had been in several months and was a lot bigger, so I wasn't too worried. It was so small it couldn't even get out of the garden for a while, so was well adjusted. Do you have a walled garden?
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Old 26-08-2011, 01:46 PM
ACA ACA is offline
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Tom cats prefer a dirt-box to be really clean, so keep an eye and remove 'doings' regularly otherwise he'll find somewhere else more to his liking! Cat flaps are a gift, moggie can come and go as he pleases without disturbing you in the middle of the night
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Old 26-08-2011, 02:09 PM
Plek Trum Plek Trum is offline
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There's also a wealth of advice over on boards.ie if you post in the Animal section there. Very enthusiastic folk who are very helpful with advice. Best of luck with the kitty - I have 2 just over a year old and they really do become part of the household!
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Old 27-08-2011, 03:15 PM
hfp hfp is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronte View Post
as I come from the countryside cats just 'arrived' and got milk
contrary to popular belief you shouldn't feed a cat milk, it's actually very bad for their digestive system.

I would strongly recommend you get a second litter tray, the usual advice for this is to have one per cat, plus one additional, or more depending on the size of your house. Mix some of the litter from your existing tray in with the new one so that your kitty associates the new tray with toileting.

Frontline is pretty much the only flea treatment recommended by vets, make sure you treat your cat regularly, prevention is better than cure!!

Scratching post(s) is a must if you value your furniture at all, and even then, be prepared for scratchmarks!! Even my leather sofas haven't been immune!!

You should absolutely get the cat neutered, tom cats can be responsible for hundreds of unwanted kitties, and unneuteured toms can also be very aggressive.

Cats should not be allowed outside until they have received all their vaccinations, my personal preference is to keep them inside until they have been neutered to avoid any little pregnancy accidents, but maybe I'm overly cautious!!

Check out this website for further advice as well

www.fabcats.org

Enjoy!!
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Old 27-08-2011, 05:23 PM
Sue Ellen Sue Ellen is offline
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The DSPCA give this advice.
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Old 28-08-2011, 01:07 PM
flossie flossie is offline
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I got kittens when they were very young, and initially made sure they had lots of warm places to sleep - blankets in lots of corners - to allow them to feel safe. NO MILK! Cats cannot tolerate lactose. Whiskers have a specific kitten milk which is safe for them but normal cows milk can lead to sickness, diorreah, and damage the stomach. At 3 months they should only need water.

Feed the kitten dry food, specifically for young kittens. Mine eat Red Mills or Royal Canin (think it;s blend 36). The dry food helps ensure no plaque build up and keeps teeth clean and healthy.

Gradually move the kitten box away from the area to where you want it.

Worm the cat every 2 weeks while it's a kitten, then it can change to 3 monthly. Drontal or one of the more specialised ones are good. Fleaing should be done monthly.

Highly recommend neutering/spaying - as well as calming them down, it also reduces risk of cancers etc. considerably.

I kept my cats locked out of the bedrooms whilst young, so that they weren't used to going in there. If the cat is going in your sons room, make sure you teach your son to wash his hands regularly.

Lots of gentle handling to get them used to you.

If you have other animals do gradual introductions. I was lucky, my dog loved them and they are best friends now (cats even come for walks with us over the fields!)
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Old 02-09-2011, 10:37 AM
Bronte Bronte is offline
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Thanks for all the great advice and tips. Never knew milk was bad for cats. Will be going to vet soon on advice, and shots etc but it came from a very good home where everything was taken care of, including them de fleaing the day before we collect it.

Luckily there's a city vet just on my street. Kitten uses litter box at bottom of house now and sleeps with child at top of the house. The harness also is working very well to introduce the cat to the garden. It's very shy and timid there at the moment. When do you think I could take it off the lead? It escaped today when workmen came but my OH managed to find it. Lucky for us as we have a road to the front of the house.

The biggest surprise is how much our child loves it already. It has brought great joy in that regard. And thought responsibilities. Also was surprised my OH who 'hates' cats has taken to it and even minded it the second day at home. So absolutely delighted with our kitten. And only 2 toilet accidents so far.
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Old 02-09-2011, 11:33 AM
Sue Ellen Sue Ellen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronte View Post
Never knew milk was bad for cats.
I hear that all the time alright but the wild cat that we feed will not drink water. Milk or nothing else for many years now.
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Old 03-09-2011, 10:27 PM
hfp hfp is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bronte View Post
And only 2 toilet accidents so far.
I said it before, but if your litter tray is on the ground floor, and the cat sleeps on the 3rd floor, I would really recommend you get another litter tray that's closer to where the cat sleeps, especially if there's any doors that could be accidentally closed in between. You may not think that 2 accidents is very much, but cats are very hygienic, and its unusual for them to toilet in an area where they can't bury their business. Once a cat has toileted an area, they associate the smell with that, and are more likely to repeat offend. I would recommend washing the area with biological washing powder if practical, or you can buy specialized sprays. What smells clean to you, will still have a residual smell for the cat. Am talking from experience unfortunately - my cat emptied his bladder on my bed, after being prevented from getting to the litter tray by another cat that had come through the cat flap. An extra litter tray is much cheaper than a new mattress!!
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Old 04-09-2011, 03:17 PM
myate myate is offline
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re: letting the kitten loose outside on it's own. If you're neutering it (anytime from 6 months), keep it inside until that is done. Then whenever you want to let it outside do, but stay with it...you'll find yourself running around trying to keep it in the garden or whatever! After a week or so, just let it go, it probably won't go far at first, and will come back where it knows the food is! The first few times you'll worry, but it soon becomes normal!
I wouldn't let a cat sleep with anyone, as it soon becomes used to it and will expect it all the time! It's no problem leaving a kitten at 3 months on it's own after a few days...you'll find they'll sleep a lot when they're on their own anyway, then go crazy when people are around!
The above advise worked with 2 rescue cats....works with our new maine coon too, bar going out, which she will never do unless on a lead!
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Old 05-09-2011, 08:07 AM
Bronte Bronte is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hfp View Post
. You may not think that 2 accidents is very much, but cats are very hygienic, and its unusual for them to toilet in an area where they can't bury their business.
Oh he buried it alright in the laundry basket. I did thoroughly clean but your'e right about disinfecting to put him off again. In relation to the 3rd floor and doors preventing the cat from getting to the litter tray, that seems to be ok and will be getting a cat flap installed soon and also have closed off rooms on 3rd and 2nd floor at night. But now I'm wondering if I have to wait until he's 6 months.

Our neighbours have two cats I think male and female who came to investigage the kitten. The male was very nasty, normal I assume with 2 males. Would he attack the kitten?
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:52 AM
myate myate is offline
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The neighbours cat could well attack the kitten, especially if he thinks your garden is his patch! It's rare they'll have a full on fight, as one (the kitten more than likely) will run away. I'm dealing with that right now as our 5 year old cat deals with our new maine coon kitten and she's not impressed still, after almost 3 months!
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Old 05-09-2011, 12:49 PM
Scotsgirl Scotsgirl is offline
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Bronte,

I would be very careful letting your kitten out near the male cat next door, until your kitten is bigger. Some male cats can be particularly vicious and are able to do serious injury. The kitten might not be able to get away.

I have a very large male (neutered) cat that ended up being badly attacked a few times by a local cat. The vet counted 12 puncture wounds on the poor fella after one particularly bad assault (and they were just the ones he could find!). I think if he had been a small cat it could have killed him.

I don't want to worry you, as most cats though maybe unfriendly and do a bit of growling at each other, don't do a full on attack, but I would be very careful with a small kitten until they get a bit more used to each other.
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Old 18-10-2011, 12:38 PM
Bronte Bronte is offline
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Another question about the kitten who is nearly a cat now. It's amazing how quickly they grow. He is now 5 months and we are going away for 6 days. I can put him in a kennel but he's very happy and content in the house, if someone visits for 5 out of the 6 days would that be ok? Cat's don't get lonely like dogs so it's not like he'd be pining away. I think a kennel will just put him in a cage and feed and water him but it would be a strange environment and he'd prefer to stay where he's used to.
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Old 18-10-2011, 12:53 PM
Scotsgirl Scotsgirl is offline
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Hi Bronte,

Delighted all is going well with your kitten. I agree with you on the kennel front. Cats are much happier in their own home. They can get lonely so best if you can get someone to call in twice a day for feeding and even sit a while with it and watch tv. They love the company.
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Old 18-10-2011, 12:57 PM
Mel Mel is offline
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I would think that's ok as long as someone does visit, there's dry food and water available all the time and the cat flap is there so he can get out if necessary.
They can get a little lonely, so leaving a radio on while you're away can help.
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Old 18-10-2011, 01:14 PM
Bronte Bronte is offline
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I'm going to the vet today to get 2nd shots so I'll ask advice there too. Radio is a great idea. There is no cat flap yet as I've to wait until he is neutered. I'll probably also have workmen at the house when I go (waiting on an ordered item for bathroom) so that will be extra hustle and bustle. Cat is already used to them as they've been doing some ongoing repairs.
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Old 18-10-2011, 01:18 PM
Scotsgirl Scotsgirl is offline
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Bronte,

I would be very careful the workmen don't let the kitten out by accident and close the door when they leave, leaving it stuck outside. Do you think they will keep an eye on it?
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