Animal Information

What should we look for in a new kitten?

Thinking ?f g?tt?ng ? n?w kitten? Wh?n ??u g?t ? pet, th? responsibility t?w?rd? ?t ?? n? l??? th?n th?t ?f caring f?r ? child. If ??u ?r? ??n??d?r?ng g?tt?ng ? n?w kitten th?r? ?r? th?ng? t? ??n??d?r b?f?r? ??u bring ?t home.

S?m? cats ??n live ?? long ?? 20 years ?? ?t ?? n?t ? decision t? t?k? lightly. B???d?? b??ng ?bl? t? commit t? t?k?ng care ?f th? cat f?r ?t? lifetime, th?r? ?r? ? f?w ?th?r important decisions th?t ??u w?ll n??d t? make.

– Allergies ?r? ?n issue f?r m?n? people. An allergy t? cats ??n b? brutal wh?n there’s ? cat ?n th? home. N?th?ng ??n break th? heart ?f ? child quicker th?n introducing ? n?w pet then, finding ?ut th?t ?t ??nn?t stay. M?k? ?ur? th?t family members h?v? h?d ?t l???t ??m? exposure t? ? cat prior t? bringing ?n? home.

– M?n? cats live t? b? ?r?und 20 years old. That’s ? long time t? b? obligated t? ? pet. F?r m??t ?f th??? years, th? cat w?ll b? mature ?nd b? ? w?l??m? member ?f th? family.

– Kittens ?r? babies too! Introducing ? kitten ?nt? ? home w?th ? small toddler ??n b? ?n appealing idea. K??? ?n mind th?t babies learn fr?m th??r play. Wh?l? b?th ? toddler ?nd ? kitten ?r? ?t?ll babies, th?? play v?r? differently.

Reasoning w?th ? toddler ?? ? challenge, but ?t ?? mu?h easier th?n tr??ng t? reason w?th ? kitten. Y?u m?? find th?t ??u kitten w?ll learn ??m? unacceptable methods ?f play. Kittens naturally u?? th??r claws dur?ng play. Toddlers naturally bang ?nd chew ?v?r?th?ng ?n sight.

Th?? difference ?n th??r natural methods ?f play ??uld b? ?n issue ??n?? th? toddler w?ll unknowingly teach th? kitten t? play roughly. If ??u choose t? introduce ? kitten ?nt? ??ur home w?th ? toddler, b? prepared f?r ? kitten th?t plays b? scratching ?nd biting.

– Kittens grow quickly. Th?t cute baby th?t caught ??ur eye w?ll ???n b? tearing thr?ugh ??ur home, climbing th? curtains ?nd clawing ?t th? furniture. Th?? w?ll leave ??u l??k?ng f?r alternate ways f?r th?m t? “play”. C?n??d?r ??m? options early ?nd save ??ur??lf ??m? frustration.

– Kittens ?r? tough t? train. Th?? ?? n?t b???u?? th?? ?r? n?t smart ?n?ugh t? learn. Y?u m?? h?v? ? great deal ?f luck teaching ??ur kitten t? d? ?n? ?r tw? things. Cats h?v? ? natural attitude. Th?? ???m t? kn?w wh?t ??u w?nt fr?m them, but th?? h?v? th??r ?wn w?? ?f d??ng things. Y?u ?r? th?r? f?r th??r convenience ?nd ??u ?h?uld kn?w it.

– Kitten-proofing ??ur home. Th? items th?t attract ? kitten ?r? d?ff?r?nt th?n th? items th?t attract ? child. Kitten proofing ?? ? matter ?f protecting ??ur home ?? w?ll ?? th? kitten. L??k ?r?und ?t th? type ?f th?ng? th?t m?? l??k l?k? ? toy t? ? kitten.

An?th?ng th?t m?? b? hanging, ?r trailing, ?f ?t moves th?n it’s ? toy t? ??ur kitten! An? ?nd ?ll loose wire ?nd cables n??d t? b? secured. Y?u m?? choose t? u?? cable tacks ?nd attach th?m firmly t? walls ?r ?l?ng th? baseboard, counter top, u? desk legs, etc. Th?? ?? ??rt??ul?rl? important w?th ?n? items th?t m?? harm ??ur kitten ?f th?? ?h?uld fall.

Trailing plants ?u?h ?? ivy m?? ?l?? n??d t? b? secured, ?lth?ugh ?f kitty ?? attracted t? ? plant, th?? ??uld b? ?u?t ?? hazardous t? th? plant ?? th? kitten!

Th??? days, mini-blinds ??m? w?th 2 cords ?n?t??d ?f ?n? continuous cord. Th?? change w?? due t? th? hanging hazard ???????t?d w?th th? single cord. Check window treatments, lamps, ?nd ?n? ?th?r corded features ?n ??ur home t? ensure th?t th?? won’t attract th? attention ?f ??ur n?w kitten.

Small shiny objects th?t ??n b? batted ?r?und w?ll ?l?? attract ??ur kitten. K??? th?ng? l?k? jewelry, paper clips, rubber bands, thumb tacks ?nd tread ?nd yarns put ?w?? ?ut ?f kitty’s reach.

Kittens ?r? small ?nd fragile. L?k? toddlers, th?? h?v? n? concept ?f danger. Al?? l?k? toddlers, th?? ?r? fearless. T?k?ng th? time t? Limit th? potential hazards ?n ??ur home w?ll create ? safer environment f?r ??ur kitten.

Yet, t? avoid ?n? heartache ?r hefty vet bills later, ??u n??d t? b? ?ur? ??u ?r? bringing home ? healthy cat. Th?r? ?r? ??m? key th?ng? ??u ?h?uld l??k ?t b?f?r? bringing ??ur cat home:

  1. Coat: Y?ur cat ?r kitten ?h?uld h?v? ? smooth ?r unmated coat. Th?r? ?h?uld b? n? fleas, ticks, ?r ?th?r pests ?n th? coat.
  2. Ears: Y?ur cat ?h?uld h?v? clean ?nd dry ears w?th n? waxy buildup, redness, ?r black powdery substance.
  3. Eyes: Y?ur cats eyes ?h?uld b? clean ?nd bright. Th?r? ?h?uld b? n? discharge. Th? th?rd eyelid, kn?wn ?? th? haws, ?h?uld n?t protrude.
  4. Nose: Y?ur cats nose ?h?uld b? mildly moist, but th?r? ?h?uld b? n? discharge.
  5. Mouth: Th? teeth ?h?uld b? clean ?nd white, ?nd th?r? ?h?uld b? n? bad breath. Y?ur cats gums ?h?uld b? pink, ?nd th?r? ?h?uld n?t b? ?n? inflammation.
  6. Anal area: Th? cats anal area ?h?uld l??k clean. Th?r? ?h?uld b? n? signs ?f diarrhea, n?r ?h?uld th?r? b? ?n? inflammation.
  7. Abdomen: Feel und?rn??th ??ur cat. Th? abdomen ?h?uld feel rounded ?nd firm, ?nd th?r? ?h?uld b? n? lumps (which ??uld b? ? sign ?f ? hernia).
  8. Breathing: Listen t? ??ur cat breathing. Breaths ?h?uld b? ?v?n ?nd th?r? ?h?uld b? n? wheezing.
  9. Movement: Watch th? cat f?r ?n? signs ?f lameness.
  10. Size: If ??u ?r? g?tt?ng ? kitten, th? smallest ?f th? kittens u?u?ll? w?ll exhibit m?r? health problems.


  1. Rachel

    October 21, 2016 at 12:21 pm

    Very good tips here! The small, shiny objects tip is spot on, too! Even my adult cats are still drawn to shiny objects.

  2. Hindy Pearson

    October 22, 2016 at 2:30 am

    Lots of helpful info. Too many people make rash decisions when it comes to bringing home pets, when they should be giving it more thought so they’re prepared for the care required.

  3. Robin

    October 22, 2016 at 9:41 pm

    When it comes to bringing home a new kitten, it can be so easy to forget what a difference their lack of life experience will make. I just got a new kitten back in June. He is a wonderful little guy! It had been 9 years since I had a kitten in my home and there was so much that I had forgotten. Having my 9-year-old cat around to help me has been a huge blessing. Kittens come with a ton of energy and curiosity! Trying to stay a few steps ahead of them is not as easy as one might think!

  4. Talent Hounds

    October 23, 2016 at 8:22 am

    Good tips- I think people often look at an adorable little kitten and forget that they need a lot of attention, training, and care- for 19 years in our case with our cat Nala (a tiny rescue kitten).

  5. Sweet Purrfections

    October 23, 2016 at 4:39 pm

    I remember bringing Truffle home 5 years ago after no having a kitten in 15+ years. There were a lot of challenges.

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