8 Tips for New Cat Owners
24 September, 2013

If you have never owned a cat before, you will be really surprised and excited about bringing your new feline friend into your life.  Cats are great pets, companions and will add so much joy to your life.  The sound of their purring and all their adorable quirks and traits make them wonderful pets.

But, don’t be fooled.  Even though cats are typically lower maintenance than dogs, they do require some effort.  Below are some 8 quick tips to help new and current cat owners.

1.  Cats still require some effort

Cats are indeed independent by nature, but they’re not quite able to take care of themselves. Before you adopt, make sure that your lifestyle can make room for a feline. Cats work well with those who have a busy lifestyle, but make sure it is a cat this is used to or OK being alone.  You can get a sense of how the kitten or cat acts at the shelter where you are adopting.

2.  If you are never home, think of adopting a second cat.

What if your circumstances change after the adoption? Or if you work long hours and still want a friendly face to greet you at the door at the end of the day? Adopting a buddy for the cat to play with can be an excellent solution.  You can leave food out all day for your cats and never worry about his or her being alone.

3.  Make sure to neuter or spay your cat

Before you bring your cat home, take your feline friend for a checkup at your veterinarian. Also, schedule your cat to be neutered or spayed as soon as his or her age allows it. This will help your cat from being a miserable feline that tries to claw its way through the windows or spraying your furniture.  It also contributes to trying to contain the overpopulation of stray feral cats.

4.  Do Not Declaw!

We all lover our furniture to be unscratched; however declawing is not the answer.  Get a scratching post to divert the scratching or even pads for your felines’ claws.  Declawing is painful and inhumane for out cats!

5.  Buy a good litter box and quality litter.

Make sure to buy a good, closed litter box and high-quality litter for your kitty.  Covered boxes can allow your cat more privacy and clumping litter is easier to maintain. Keep the box clean for the comfort of your cat and your home!  Empty the litter box daily and clean it thoroughly on a weekly basis.

6. Cats love toys and Catnip!

Toy mice, string, feathers, and even empty grocery bags make for great amusement.  Cat toys don’t need to expensive (they can even be homemade), just make sure there’s enough to keep your cat happy, active, and mentally occupied.  Catnip and those little freeze-dried chicken nuggets are excellent tools for cat snacks, training and rewards.

7.  Feed your cat a high-quality cat food

Your veterinarian can recommend a high-quality food for you kitty that contains protein first and very few fillers and additives!  The better your kitty is fed, the healthier he or she will be and everyone will be rewarded.

8. Think about pet insurance.

While cats are much less likely to be at the Vet than dogs, a low cost monthly pet insurance is a good plan.  Just as in car insurance, it is better to be safe than sorry.

And there you have it!  Cats are great friends, companions and full of love and life.  They can live from 18 to 20 years old if you take good care of your feline friend!

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