We're probably getting a rescue cat soon. What do we need to buy and how much will upkeep cost?

(312 Posts)
QueenStromba Sun 10-Feb-13 16:45:08

We're moving soon and have found a flat that we're close to signing the contracts on where the landlord is willing for us to have a cat. If it all goes through we'll be getting an adult cat from Battersea. What do we need to buy and where is the best place to buy from? So far we're thinking:

Transport cage
Litter tray
Scratching post (which will probably be ignored in favour of the sofa)
Cat toys
Food and water bowls

I'm thinking a cat bed would just be ignored in favour of climbing all over us while we're trying to sleep, the sofa, the laptop, whatever point on the carpet the sun is hitting. Should we get one anyway?

Also, neither of us has owned a cat as an adult (we both had them as kids - DP for longer) so we have no idea how much it costs to feed them (is it a whole tin or half a tin a day?), insure them and how much vet bills will cost. How does microchipping work? Is it just the one off cost or is there a yearly charge or just a charge if you change any details etc?

BIWI Wed 13-Feb-13 14:11:53

Oh that profile is really sad - hopefully you will be her last and best home. She looks lovely.

Ponders Wed 13-Feb-13 14:35:07

ooooh, exciting

& Sophie does look lovely, QS

fingers crossed for you all smile

She looks like she'd make a lovely 'flat' cat.

BagCat Wed 13-Feb-13 16:42:03

Awwww, she is very pretty indeed smile

She's had a rough start in life hasn't she. I hope you get her and give her a good life.

<baleful stare at own cat who won't make friends with other cats sad>

QueenStromba Wed 13-Feb-13 17:30:47

She's lovely isn't she? I just know that DP won't let me talk about a specific cat even after we've signed though. It's going to drive me mental having to wait until Saturday morning to go to Battersea!

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 08:54:44

Aw. Sophie is now showing up on the website as rehomed. Hope she found a nice family or that they reconsider before they take her home so we can have her. The only other two indoor cats on their website at the moment both say "Prospective owners will need to speak to a Battersea vet prior to rehoming". Would someone who's never had cats as an adult be able to cope with say pills or injections every day? Do cats get better at complying when they're used to it or would it be a struggle to get it done every day?

It depends on the tablet, mines ok with antibiotics but won't eat milbemax wormer anymore. Some medications can be crushed into food safely.

Injections they take really well, I give injections at work and the trick is to go in fairly swiftly because once your under the dermis it doesn't hurt as much.

There's loads of cats on that site I wouldn't mind having.

Ponders Fri 15-Feb-13 10:43:02

awww - shame about Sophie

you could try other animal shelters, QS

Wood Green (though most of theirs are kept at the 2 centres outside London)

the Mayhew

Celia Hammond

Cats Protection

RSPCA

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 12:15:00

We're still going down to Battersea tomorrow. They probably have more cats than are on the website and if not we can sort out the registration and have them call us if a suitable one comes in. They may well be willing to give us a sensible outdoor cat once they've seen the flat anyway.

I've filled out the web form for Cats protection and am filling out one for the Mayhew now. Getting a pair from Celia Hammond also looks like an option if nothing else works out - their website says they're willing to house young cats in pairs to indoor homes if they haven't been outdoor cats before. DP will need some persuading on that one even though he's happy to get a second cat to keep the first company when I finish my thesis and get a job.

BIWI Fri 15-Feb-13 12:35:30

Have you been to Battersea before? We went when we were getting our cats (13 years ago now - so it's possible things may have changed!). They interviewed us, and questions I remember them asking was if we had any idea how much it would cost to keep a cat - so might be worth having that up your sleeve - e.g. cost for annual vaccinations, insurance (if you can get any/want to take it out) and weekly food

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 12:48:19

I was thinking:
Food: £3-£15 a week depending on if they'll eat own brand tins or insist on Sheba pouches
Insurance: £8-15 a month depending on age
Vaccinations: £50 a year
Frontline: £50 a year
Litter: £20 a month

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 12:49:53

Oops, meant to say that I haven't been before but they still do interviews and home visits so I'm expecting a proper grilling!

We pay £35 a year for vaccinations using purevax which is meant to be better, I forget why.

Chick crumb has cost me £5 since the beginning of January. The rise in home chicken keeping has made it readily available and it doesn't smell. It is also flushable which cat litter isn't so no nappy bags to buy either.

Frontline isn't working out for everyone these days so Advocate is being used more, plus stronghold or there are flea injections they can have too. Advocate worms them too. I get ours off an online pharmacy using a private px.

I personally wouldn't get a young cat to be a house cat I'd go for a cat who isn't interested in going out. If the cat isn happy they shred furniture and wee where they shouldn't.

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 14:07:47

I've just realised something from the Mayhew questionnaire. I'm allergic to cats when I've not been around them for a while but it goes away after a few days of being around them so when I go to the homes my eyes are likely to start streaming like mad and I'll have a sneezing fit or two. Are they likely to believe me that I'm actually fine once I've been around them for a while or will they just not let us have a cat?

You don't have to tell them.

Dh is the same, he's ok with our cat. The cat sleeps on the bed too.

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 14:16:51

I'll dose up on piriton before we go then smile

All the shelters have many, many more cats than are on their website.

As for how diffcult it is to medicate - it really all depends on the cat. If your cat loves a particular food then its generally very easy to crush up or hide a tablet in a little bit of that food. This is more of a problem with cats who will only eat dried food as then you can't hide the pills. Some cats just let you open their mouths and stick a pill in. With other cats you might lose an eye trying it! Injections are really, really easy, even with difficult cat. A vet will show you how and then really anyone can do it.

Celia Hammonds certainly do home quite a lot of indoor cats (or 'flat cats' as we call them), the problem is that West London is outside our catchment area as we always do homechecks. We do, very occasionally, home outside that area, but there are so many shelters in your area, for example the Mayhew, that it would probably be easier to try those first.

Ponders Fri 15-Feb-13 16:21:53

Effipro flea treatment from vetuk.co.uk - £9 for 4 doses

I don't know if the warnings about Frontline also apply to this

Advocate is worth the extra though, I think - it seems to be more effective more quickly and after the last dose it was nearly 2 months before we started scratching again grin

Ponders Fri 15-Feb-13 16:33:10

oh, cat litter here is £3-4 a week; that's with the relatively expensive crystals, & 2 cats who wee a lot (or maybe just one who wees a lot, I can't tell who's responsible but I usually only see one drinking regularly). with just one cat, who might well not wee as much, your monthly litter cost would probably be much less

one of my DDs has always been a bit allergic to cats & hers sometimes flares up when she visits, but we keep antihistamines here & she takes one if it starts & that knocks it on the head, so taking some before you visit is a great idea smile

really looking forward to hearing how you get on!

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 17:27:20

Thanks guys! I'm so excited about tomorrow.

I've been to boots and got some nasal spray and eye drops to go with my piriton. It feels really deceptive but I don't want them thinking that the reaction I'll probably have to a hundred cats after not being around one for years is in anyway indicative of how I'll be after a few days with my new master.

BIWI Fri 15-Feb-13 17:57:30

I don't know if you've seen this, but just to get you in the mood!

QueenStromba Fri 15-Feb-13 18:18:50

I'll definitely explode if I watch kittencam for too long! I'm going to try to not think about cats for the rest of the day in fact.

The main thing is to not touch your eyes after fussing them.

QueenStromba Sat 16-Feb-13 13:24:17

We've had our interview and they're going to send someone out to assess the flat once we move to see what type of cat we can have. She didn't seem to think the outside space situation was too much of a problem, she just said we'd need at least a one year old. She also suggested we get unpacked and settled in before we come back for rehoming which is a great incentive to get the flat sorted quickly. We went up to have a nosey at the cats and I didn't react to them so maybe I've grown out of that allergy. They were all lovely so picking one will be a hard decision, especially if we don't need to get an indoor cat.

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