You want to go among the cat owners – how nice! To make sure you and your cat have a good time, here are some important food for thought and information.
Does a cat fit into my life?
Basically, you should ask yourself how a pet fits into your life. It wants attention and appreciates a regular daily rhythm. Do you live in a small city apartment or can you offer your house cat an outdoor run? Who can take care of the cat when you are on vacation or on a business trip?
Most cats appreciate the company of their own kind and are only rarely pure loners. So it can make sense to take in two cats to keep each other company. With littermates, this usually works fairly well. However, there should be enough retreats so that the animals can avoid each other.
Should it really be a puppy? An adult cat can also have its attractions. Check out the local animal shelter.
The domestic cats known as “European Shorthair” (EKH) are certainly the most widespread. Of course, you can also purchase a pedigree cat from a reputable breeder. Here you should find out in advance about the special needs of the animal (e.g. long-haired breeds have to be brushed regularly).
Where can I find my dream cat?
Don’t choose your new roommate based on the cuteness factor or even the price. Look at the attitude of the puppies and parent animals. It is best to contact professional, reputable breeders – if you are unsure, ask your veterinarian for trustworthy contacts. Purebred cats at a “bargain price” should make you suspicious! These are often not vaccinated, and some also bring behavioral disorders or hereditary diseases with them.
There are only a few things that you absolutely need to move in the kitten. This includes a properly sized pet carrier, two bowls for food and water (ceramic or glass dishwasher safe are best) and a litter box. Cats are very clean animals and even small kittens learn to use the litter box properly within a very short time. Always keep them very clean – cats are sensitive! If your kitten doesn’t like using the toilet or refuses to use it at all, it may help to use a different cat litter than what you have been used to.
Many cats appreciate an elevated place to sleep, also in combination with a den. From there they have a good overview of what is happening in the apartment and at the same time feel safe. A scratching post that offers such a space is a good option for this. But it can also be a well-padded box or a “homemade” cave – your cat will show you if she likes it. It is not uncommon for cats to choose their sleeping place themselves, sometimes much to the chagrin of the owner.
You don’t necessarily need to buy toys: balls of wool on a string are also great for crafting. The kitten also likes to chase paper balls across the room, so playing is very important at the beginning. As cute as the kitten is, you should set some rules right from the start and make it clear to the new roommate, for example, that curtains are not a climbing tree. Cats also learn this very quickly if they implement it consistently!
The kitten at the vet
When the kitten moves in with you, make an initial appointment with the vet. Plan enough time for this: the kitten can look at the new environment without stress and your veterinarian will advise you on all important things. What kind of feeding does the young cat need in order to grow optimally? Which preventive treatments make sense? For example, the animal should be regularly treated for internal and external parasites. A series of vaccinations is also useful, incidentally also for indoor cats that are not allowed to go outside.
If this has not already happened, the kitten will be marked with a microchip and given a pet ID card in which all important information is noted. This is useful if your kitten runs away or if you plan to travel with your pet.
Your veterinarian will also be happy to help you with questions about training and, of course, with all animal health concerns.