You have been dreaming about a cat for a long time. You have imagined how he lays on your knees, growls and keeps you company. Finally, you have decided that you are ready to bring a cat home. That’s great!
However, whether you will adopt an adult cat or buy a kitty from a breeder, you need to prepare your house and your family for this new, exciting chapter. If you don’t have any experience with pets, don’t worry because it’s not so difficult if you prepare in advance.
1. Would you like to adopt or to buy a cat?
There is a difference between adopting and buying a cat. Adoption demands more awareness. Why? If you adopt an adult cat, this is an animal with a past. Most frequently, shelter carers don’t know the story of each cat but we can assume that their past wasn’t easy. You can also adopt a kitty if you prefer to take care of a pet from his early life stage of life.
If you plan to buy a cat, pay attention to the pet’s breeder. Be aware that there are backyard pet breeders where animals are neglected and kept in terrible conditions, Always check certificates and license of a breeder.
2. Visit a pet store
Before you become a cat owner, visit the local pet store. We have prepared a list of essential items and supplies which we recommend you to buy in advance.
- Bowls for food and water. If you buy or adopt a kitty, choose the smaller bowls.
- Cat litter box. Make sure that the litter box is big enough because your cat needs to feel comfortable there.
- Warm bed. Yes, cats also need beds where they feel safe and where they can rest.
- Grooming brush. Help your cat to look gorgeous.
- Nail clippers
- First-aid supplies
- Collar and ID tag
- Harness and leash if you plan to take your cat outside.
- Cat scratching post
3. The variety of food
When it comes to food, it’s easy to be confused because there are so many types of products for cats. The choice is not only between a dry or wet food but also between frozen and freeze-dried, grain-free food, food for sensitive pets and many more. You need to observe your cat and check if he enjoys his meals. If not, change the type of food or the brand.
Also, you can additionally buy probiotics and supplements. Probiotics will help to digest properly and to better absorb the nutrients from the food. Supplements and vitamins will enrich the cat’s diet in essential ingredients. Find out more about each type of cat food and special diets in our previous article.
4. Veterinary care and vaccines schedule
From now you are responsible for taking your pet to the veterinary center and to monitor his health and every alarming symptom. Make sure that your cat gets routine health check-ups.
Do not ignore unusual behaviors and signs. It’s better to consult a vet than to read online about which illness can be signalized by which symptoms. If something is worrying you, take the cat to the doctor.
Moreover, remember about the vaccines. The vet will tell you more about the essential vaccines and the vaccines schedule.
Also, cats can be infected by internal and external parasites, for example, hookworms, tapeworms, and roundworms. It’s extremely important to give them the deworming pills regularly.
5. Cat needs fun!
Although cats don’t need as much physical exercise as dogs, they also should stay fit and healthy in order to lead a long life. Having fun and playing with your pet is the best method to give him entertainment and physical activity. Buy a variety of toys like balls, plush mouse and egg-cersizer. Make sure that each toy is safe for animals.
Cats love to scratch something with a rough surface like a scratching post which will be a perfect choice. Not only is it great entertainment for a cat but it’s also the best method to keep his nails in good condition.
6. Prepare your child for a new family member
Not every animal accept children. Sometimes it can be a long process of socializing especially when a child doesn’t know how to treat the pets. If you adopt a cat from a shelter you can ask if he accepts children. But first and foremost, talk to your child about respecting animals and teach empathy and compassion. Always react when you see that your child treats the cat as a toy. Do not allow a child to tease the animal. In case of any problems between them, you can consult a behaviorist who will help you solve this problem.
7. Be ready to clean the litter box regularly
The litter box is a must-have especially when your pet lives indoors. In the beginning, it can be a little strange to have such a product in your house but later on, you will get used to it. The most important thing is to clean the litter box regularly. Protect yourself wearing gloves because the cat’s litter is full of bacteria and there is a risk of diseases.
Cats are obsessed with cleanness and they won’t pee or poo in the dirty litter box. It’s your task to make it clean every day.
Bringing a cat home for the first time is both amazing and challenging experience. You can’t predict how he will react to a new environment and new people around. But what you can do is follow our tips and prepare yourself and your house for a pet’s first visit.
This will be a great adventure and a new chapter but make sure that it’s not just a moment or a whim. The cat is a living creature who needs to feel wanted and secure. Don’t treat him like a toy or a gift for some occasion. Good luck!