Adopting a cat (or pair of cats) 🐱

posted 3 years ago in Pets
Post # 16
Member
583 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

Just a thought on the more nervous kitty, my parents adopted a brother and sister pair years ago, and the nervy one was always nervous-of loud noises and new people etc. but he was perfectly happy and the soppiest cat I’ve ever met! He settled in ok, just took a little longer than the more confident sister, and was just fine around us. (I don’t think the neighbours’ tiny dog knew how wimpy he was though as it always ran away on seeing our huge but scaredy cat in the garden, haha) 

Post # 17
Member
126 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

rendezvous89 :  

adopt in pairs, for sure.

 

I’ve had cats my whole life- the single ones seem to get depressed and less friendly with time.  I don’t blame them! When you leave home the little guy will be alone in an empty quiet house.

 

If you don’t adopt at the same time, it will take work to make them get along.  Like a lot of work and cat socializing knowledge.  If they adjust to you while they adjust to each other it’s 100x easier.  Safe bet is to adopt from the same litter.

 

DONT LET THEM OUTSIDE.  It’s not worth it.  Even if you live in a gated community.  We lost 2 cats like that when I was little and it was so so heartbreaking.

 

Definitely do not tell the shelter if you are considering letting them outside.  At lot of them around here turn potential adopting families down for that.

Also in some communities, domestic cats wreak havoc on the environment (because they hunt everything).

Post # 18
Member
534 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

I adopted an adult cat and can’t recommend it enough! Kittens are so hit and miss. I’ve had a few and they were always demons in their “teenage” phase.

One thing I recommend is not to stock up on any “type” of thing too much. We got my kitty lots of cardboard scratchers and he never touched them! He likes the rope posts so now we just cycle through those. We also got him tons of crinkly foil balls to play with, but it turns out he really only likes toys that squeak. He doesn’t like the expensive dehydrated meat treats. He only likes the soft little morsel treats. Picky picky!

Post # 19
Member
153 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

Yay for adopting kitties! 

A few random tips I can think of:

– Get at least one litter tray and food bowl per cat to avoid competition 

– If you’ve got or plan to get a cat flap, I suggest getting a microchip one (we have the SureFlap one), otherwise you may find yourselves with lots of extra cats!

– Cats like their water to be located away from their food; something I’ve read and also found to be true with our cats. We’ve got a few water bowls dotted about the house for this reason. They also typically like bowls to be wide-brimmed so their whiskers don’t touch the sides.

– As PP have said, you may not want to spend money on expensive gadgety toys, beds et cetera, as cats just love to reject what you buy for them πŸ˜€ 

Side note: another PP mentioned that the shelter may reject you if you allow the cats to go outdoors – in the case of the one I volunteer for (a Cats Protection branch in southern England), having a (sufficiently safe) outdoor space is a plus. πŸ™‚ Might depend on the organisation of course!

Post # 21
Member
751 posts
Busy bee

rendezvous89 :  Sainsbury’s Pet insurance is pretty decent and the premium increases for age aren’t too bad.

You can get Feliway from Pets at Home, it’s cheaper than at the vets. I highly recommend it. 

If they do turn out to be scratchers, try sticking a couple of canvas bags out (like the asda or Sainsbury’s bag for life type shopping bags). Sometimes they don’t want to scratch posts

Post # 22
Member
7768 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

Yay kitties! My main advice is not to despair if it takes the kitties awhile to warm up to you. I think I had my first rescue cat for almost six months before she stopped running under the couch anytime I entered the room lol. But now she is my whore.

My second cat on the other hand was sleeping in the bed with me on night one, so who knows. Cats are weird. But wonderful creatures!! I luv kittehhhz

Post # 24
Member
47 posts
Newbee

Love the advice so far, I would just be add about flea treatments: if they are going outside then they will probably catch fleas from the grass, from foxes etc. so they will need to have treatment.

The easiest option is to take them to the vet every six months to have an injection. Alternatively you can do flea treatments at home, but don’t use off the shelf flea treatments as they don’t work. You will need a prescription treatment, I use advocate. Front line doesn’t work. The only thing is that it needs to be administered exactly every 4 weeks, and as you have 2 cats you need to keep them apart for the day while it soaks into their skin. If the other cat licks that area they will be terribly ill or worse so it’s important to keep them separated for that day. It has to be administered on the back of the neck so the cat can’t reach it themselves.

Alternatively you can comb them with a comb that zaps the fleas with an electric shock, but that is quite time consuming.

The cats also need to brushed every day to keep them from getting painful hairballs (they might still get them but won’t be as bad). Hairballs can cause constipation and vomiting. I brush my cats every evening as part of my bedtime routine and I find it very calming before I go to sleep πŸ™‚

Check their nails fairly regularly to see if they need trimming. The back feet should be okay but if the front paw nails grow too long then can curl round and pierce their paw pad. Don’t use regular nail clippers to trim them though, get proper cat nail clippers (they aren’t expensive).

If they aren’t brushed they can get knots and matted fur. If that happens cut out the knots with scissors as they are very uncomfortable.

Sometimes they can get a build up of earwax as it’s hard for them to clean their ears. You can wipe the wax with a wet tissue (it looks the same as our ear wax).

Be careful with flowers in the house, if anyone gives me lilies I am unable to keep them because they are poisonous to cats.

Make sure the toilet lid is down all the time in case they drink the water/bleach in there.

You are doing a wonderful thing adopting these cats and are doing so well.

Post # 26
Member
644 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: A restaurant on the beach

We adopted one kitten at 14 weeks old (Darcy) and then 6 months later we adopted an 8 week old kitten (Emily) whose mother and litter mates had already been adopted. Her family returned her because she ‘chewed on cables and had worms’. She did have worms but she doesn’t usually chew on cables so I’m not sure why they returned this sweet girl! After 4 days of acclimation the two of them became attached at the hip.

My biggest advice would be to take them to the vet as soon as possible and get them dewormed even if they aren’t showing signs of having worms. The vet will need probably request stool samples, so keep that in mind when scooping their litter. My FI’s family has adopted many cats in the past and at this point we just assume that all shelter cats have worms lol. Also, be careful what you leave in the sink if your cats dont mind water and like to be on the counter tops. Mine enjoyed quite a bit of bacon greese and tomato sauce before I caught them. 

As for toys, their favorite toy is the 6.5 foot tall cat tree I found on Amazon. Here is a picture of the loves of my life! 

 

img_4579

Post # 27
Member
924 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

I adopted my pair of rescues when they were five weeks old, and I also have an older cat who is nearly 20! Yep. 2-0. I’ve had her for ages. She’s deaf, but happy as a clam. 

I wanted to throw in a couple of tips/ideas (hopefully I’m not repeating anyone):

–definitely buy high quality cat litter, because the cheap stuff smells

–scoop the litter boxes often (daily if possible) to avoid any accidents

–invest in high quality cat food. It’s okay to start the cats on the food they’re familiar with, but you might want to switch them to something higher quality. Whenever you switch foods for cats, gradually mix in the new foods or they’ll get sick.

–if your cat ever acts strange and stops eating for an entire day, take them to the vet immediately. Cats can get hepatic lipidosis in about 3 days’ time and go into liver failure if they’re not eating. 

–splurge on an automatic feeder. Your kitties will probably harass you all night long for a snack, but automatic feeders keep that from being an issue. 

–speaking of them begging for food, cats only need about a quarter cup of food per day. They’ll act like they need three cups a day, though. πŸ˜› 

–never let the cat drink milk. It won’t hurt it, but the kitty will have some bathroom issues for a little while. 

–make sure both cats (especially the nervous one) have a “safe space” where you don’t bother them. For instance, if the nervous one hides under the bed, don’t bother it when it’s there. 

–playing with them when you first bring them home will help them relax and build up their confidence, so be sure to do that 

–if they’re misbehaving, spraying them with a water bottle is a good trick. Or if they get in your face or near your plate while you’re eating, blow a little air in their face. They don’t like that, so they’ll back from your food.

Good luck! I can’t wait until I have a house and not an apartment, so I can adopt a few more myself. 

ETA: if you put collars on the cats, make sure they’re the “break-away” collars. My indoor cat recently got caught on something and her collar snapped off. I’m glad she had the break-away kind on though. 

Post # 29
Member
20 posts
Newbee

rendezvous89 :  I’ve been fostering kittens/cats for the past two years. If you’re thinking about a kitten, I recommend adopting in a pair. Kittens love to play and it’s fun when they have a buddy. Personally, I always give preference to a family willing to adopt a pair vs. wanting a single kitten.

If you’re adopting an older cat – a single is good unless it is bonded with a buddy – then take both!

I like working with a foster based rescue because you get to learn a lot about the personality. ex. is the kitten/cat a vertical or horizontal scratcher?, favorite toys, favorite food, etc. (I had a litter of kittens that only ate Blue Buffalo wet food and my next litter wouldn’t go near the stuff!)

You’ll also need one more litter box than number of cats and put them in different locations in the home.

ETA – just saw your update! Congratulations! Beautiful cats!

Post # 30
Member
4643 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

camenae :  omg they are so cute!

babou :  Do u have pics of the cat condos you built, and how did you do it? I would love to try making some!

 

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