Another great source of useful tips is Jackson Galaxy's Cat Mojo videos. Take this video as an example:
We sincerely urge you to think twice and work hard to find ways of keeping your cat. Rehoming a pet is stressful to both the owner and the pet, and the process can be very long and challenging given the particular situation. If you really run out of options, please consider rehoming your cat with our help.
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Bringing home a new cat or kitten is always exciting. You cannot wait to introduce the new addition to your family and friends; and you are already looking forward to years of happy companionship. The way you introduce your new cat to your household can make a big difference in how well it makes the adjustment.
Check out this great article on tips for Cat-Proofing your home and making the new kitty's transition as smooth as possible!
Also learn about poisonous plants that need to keep away from your kitties! Cats are curious creatures but sometimes that curiosity can be dangerous so be aware!
Already have a residence cat? Cats are notoriously territorial, but when introduced properly, two cats (even adult cats) can be friends and keep each other company. Learn the tricks from Jackson Galaxy: click here.
Owning a pet means many years of commitment. From basics to logistics, the costs can add up quickly. Check out this guide that not only identifies common expenses, but also provides helpful cost management strategies including a Pet Cost Calculator to help estimate pet ownership costs. The hope is to help you make smarter, well informed decisions so every pet can receive the love and care it deserves.
Do not let them outdoors immediately. Give the new cat at least 2 months inside first. Allow them time to adjust and get used to their new home. Slowly introduce them to the outdoors. Just don’t open the door and let them out.
Cats do not have to go outside ever and will be just as happy. It’s usually the humans that want them to be outdoors. An outdoor cat can become an indoor only cat and be content for the rest of its very long and healthy life. Reconsider an indoor cat. For one thing, they live longer and stay healthy. They won’t get hit by cars. Your vet bills will be less. Birds will thank you and coyotes won’t. Check out this wonderful article about how to keep your indoor cat happy!
If you want to keep your cat an indoor only cat, that is GREAT! However, make sure your cat or kitten knows his/her outdoor home space by using the same protocol below just in case they accidentally get out.
There are some different circumstances with cats: if they were barn cats or all the time outdoor/sometimes indoor cats. However follow the same protocol below to give your new family member a better chance of finding his/her way home or staying near home.
Before they go outside:
First, thank you for adopting the poor kitty who's been hiding in the litter box or under whatever cover she can find during your first meet. Now that she’s safe and in your house, with a caring, responsible human companion, how do you get her out from under the bed so she can begin her new life?
It is not uncommon we come across such shy cats and kittens, take them into foster care, and they gradually warm up to the foster home and parents, often with the help of more outgoing foster mates. However, moving from a familiar foster home to a strange environment can be traumatizing. The most fundamental idea to keep in mind is that socializing your shy cat takes a great deal of patience. Cats don’t always understand that we are trying to help them, so take it one step at a time.
All kittens and cats have a first requirement: to feel safe. Thus it will be best to confine such kittens to a room where you can sit with them each day while they adapt to their new surroundings. They need to have a kitty cave to sleep in and retreat to if frightened. Here are the steps used to gain their trust and socialize these wonderful kittens, just in case they need a little refresher:
- keep them in a confined space, like an unused bedroom
- enter with food & keep the bowls near you so that they must approach on their own
- remain in their presence several times each day
- speak softly to them and let them sniff your unmoving hands
- if necessary, place drops of "Rescue Remedy" in their water and wet food
- use toys to gently play with them
- hand feed them treats like freeze dried chicken
- offer your hand to let them rub the sides of their face and ears
- gradually reach out to touch them on the sides of their face and under the chin
- do not raise your hand over their head until they trust you
- never grab them by the scruff
- place your hand under their chest and lift gently, raising a little higher each day
- lift the kitten with one hand under the chest and one hand supporting the hind quarters
- hold the kitten to your chest for about 5 minutes while stroking at the speed their mother licked them
- lift and place the kitten on your legs, lap or chest
- encourage the kitten to climb onto your lap on their own; feel free to use bribes
- lots of cuddling, patience and loving kindness
Finally, please keep the food and water for the kittens as far away from their litter box as possible. Cats are fastidious creatures and they prefer clean, cool water. Drinking lots of fresh water is very important for supporting their health.
In general, you may find the first FVRCP vaccine is given at 6 to 8 weeks of life (definitely at 6 weeks if the kitten is not with its mother), and repeated every two to four weeks until the cat is 16 weeks old. After that, the FVRCP shot may generally be given annually, but occasionally there are reasons to deviate from this schedule.
The standard annual vaccine is the three-in-one FVRCP, which stands for feline viral rhinotracheitis (FVR), calicivirus, and panleukopenia virus. The first two types of virus cause upper respiratory illness. Panleukopenia is a life-threatening disease in which cats suffer severe diarrhea as well as depletion of bone marrow and white blood cells.
Most cats should get the rabies vaccine every year or every third year. The only exception is a cat who lives exclusively indoors and couldn't possibly get out. In some states, even indoor-only cats are required by law to be inoculated since a cat can always slip out the door, and a single exposure to an animal carrying the rabies virus would be enough. What's more, if your cat bites someone and a report is made to public health authorities, you might have to surrender your cat to have his brain tested for rabies unless you can prove he was vaccinated.
In addition, proof of an up-to-date rabies vaccination may be needed for travel.
The rabies vaccine is safe and effective. It's an extensively tested preventive measure for a terrible disease that's fatal to cats and humans.
When and where your cat gets a vaccine will depend on what your veterinarian advises based on his or her experience as well as on the recommendations of groups such as the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners.
ADULT: If the cat is already an adult when the vaccination program begins, standard practice is to give two vaccines one month apart and then re-vaccinate annually. Most vaccines are given either under the skin or in the muscle. A few are delivered in the nose.
Protocols for rabies vaccines are thoroughly spelled out in regulations set by a state's veterinary medical or public health board. Specifications include which brand to give at what age and what site (for example, in the muscle). Generally you start when the cat is 16 weeks or 6 months old, repeat in one year, and then move to a schedule of once a year or once every three years, depending on state law.
The stray cat outside may very well belong to someone and it could be lost. If it is friendly, then chances are it does belong to someone. No tag or collar? Stray cat looks pregnant? If you think it may be pregnant, then chances are it is. Capture the cat or kitten and bring it into a vet or shelter. Ask them to scan for a microchip. Vets rarely charge for this. At the same time the vet or tech has a chance to quickly check out the cat and can give you some health advice. They can tell you the sex and approx. age as well. Many times they are willing to help if you step up and ask for it.
If the cat or kitten has a microchip, then you have found their owner. It’s that simple. If the kitten or cat does not have a microchip then the situation is different and other steps need to take place.
You have found Baby kittens and hopefully the momma cat: PLAN ahead before attempting to capture. Make sure you have a setup and a plan. In this situation, capture the momma cat first. Bring her inside and give her a quiet room with privacy. She may very well try to get out, maybe jump out a window, so take precautions and prepare. Once you have momma cat you can get the babies. Reunite them asap. Feed momma cat wet food. She may not be too friendly at first so have her food, bedding, litter box preset for her in the room. Once you reunite them, the babies will go right to momma and vice versa.
You found baby kittens and no momma: Do not take the baby kittens away from their momma ever. They need their momma. Watch carefully for a momma cat. If you know for sure there is no momma cat then capture the babies and bring them inside. One way to make sure there is no momma, capture the babies in a cage and have the cage outside. Momma cat will hear her babies and come get them. At that point you can capture momma by using a live trap. There is no perfect way to do this because all animals react differently to stressful situations. You need to remain calm and patient. Do not start this capturing at night unless you have time to finish it up at midnight as it may take that long.
If you capture a female cat and you notice she has nipples that are slightly enlarged, then she has babies somewhere. Look for the babies and if you do not find them, let the momma go and she will show you where they are. You just have to hide and watch her. Set food out for her. Wet food is the best.
What to do after you have captured momma cat and kittens or just kittens? Make sure they are safe and warm. Give them food. DO NOT give kittens MILK. It makes them sick. Feed a dry food and a wet food. Give wet food especially to the kittens as they may be dehydrated. Dehydration will kill a kitten very quickly. Call a shelter or rescue group and ask them what to feed them. They will always give you good advice.
That adult cat in your hood: Chances are the adult cat, even the older kitten in your hood has not been fixed and will soon either become pregnant or get another pregnant. It is never good just to think the problem will go away, because it won’t. It will become your problem especially if you begin to feed a stray cat and do nothing more to save it. Feeding is a good thing, but stepping up and dealing with the situation saves the cats. It also saves you from collecting and becoming a hoarder. Follow the above advice about capturing them.
You can’t keep the stray or you need help with babies and momma? If you cannot keep the stray, call your animal control and several rescue groups. Some may be able to help by taking them in as fosters. Not all can take them in as there is overcrowding, especially during kitten season. Of course they can also help with advice and that is always free. Preventing overcrowded shelters begins with you taking the right steps. It becomes everyone’s problem when others do not spay and neuter their pets. Unfortunately that is a reality we see every day.
Spay and Neuter: There are several low cost spay and neuter clinics. Some as low as $10. Do research and yes it takes effort. Check out these sites for more information of the clinics. www.catadoptionteam.org. www.feralcats.com www.meowvillage.fatcow.com/meowvillage www.oregonhumane.org/about_us/overview.asp
These websites can lead you to the low cost spay and neuter clinics in Oregon.
LIVE TRAP: Ask your veterinarian, feed lot, shelters, rescue groups for a live trap you can borrow. Many times they are willing to help in this way. Just return the traps. Tell them you will put down a deposit. You can always purchase your own and share it with your neighbors.
Are you feeding all those stray cats? Well they do multiply and before you know it you have many cats on your property. Most of the cats go untreated for medical issues and they suffer greatly. You are not doing them any favor by just feeding them.
If you are just feeding them, it would be far cheaper to bring them into the low cost clinic and have them fixed! Think about it and do the math. $10.00 for a spay/neuter vs. months (years) of feeding 15 strays. If you are feeding stray cats, by law those cats are legally considered yours. If you really want to help them, then take the steps. It is not always simple and fun, but it is rewarding knowing you helped save a life.
Watching cute kittens: Are you watching and feeding the cute little stray kittens because you think they are cute or you are in love with them? If you wait too long to call for help and these cute kittens become 4 months old and are fearful of people, you have done them a great dis-service. Please note: The sooner you ask for help and do something to help them, the better chance these kittens have in being placed in foster homes and shelters. Please do not become a hoarder. It’s not pretty nor is it healthy for any animal.
Studies show that approximately 15 percent of the population is allergic to dogs or cats. An estimated one-third of Americans who are allergic to cats (about two million people) live with at least one cat in their household anyway. In a study of 341 adults who were allergic to cats or dogs and had been advised by their physicians to give up their pets, only one out of five did.
What's more, 122 of them obtained another pet after a previous one had died. It's clear the benefits of pet companionship outweigh the drawbacks of pet allergies for many people. Living comfortably with a companion animal despite being allergic to him requires a good understanding of the allergic condition and an adherence to a few rules.
All cats and dogs are allergenic (allergy-causing) to people who are allergic to animals. Cats tend to be more allergenic than dogs for allergic people, although some people are more sensitive to dogs than cats. Contrary to popular belief, there are no "non-allergenic" breeds of dogs or cats. Even hairless breeds may be highly allergenic.
Dogs with soft, constantly-growing hair—the Poodle or the Bichon Frise, for example—may be less irritating to some individuals, although this may be because they are bathed and groomed more frequently. One dog or cat of a particular breed may be more irritating to an individual allergy sufferer than another animal of that same breed.
The source of irritation to pet-allergic humans?
Glands in the animal's skin secrete tiny allergy-triggering proteins, called allergens, that linger in the animal's fur but also float easily in the air. Allergens are present in the animal's saliva and urine, too, and may become airborne when saliva dries on the fur. The severity of reaction to these allergens varies from one person to the next, ranging from mild sniffling and sneezing to life-threatening asthma, and can be complicated by simultaneous allergies to other irritants in the environment.
If your or a family member's allergies are simply miserable, but not life-threatening, take these steps to reduce the symptoms:
Reprinted with permission. Copyright Humane Society of the United States. All rights reserved.
There are dangers for your pets during the Holidays, and even after the Holidays.
Tinsel while not toxic, is very attractive to pets, particularly cats. The shiny, dangling