we are getting two kittens in a few weeks. all advise welcome

(20 Posts)
oohnewshoes Sun 01-Jun-14 13:50:11

We are getting two kittens in 3-4 weeks time
We are very excited. Ideally I would like them to be outdoor cats for a majority of the time. Any tips on how to do this?? We have a large garden in the country and im worried about them straying.

Also I noticed a large insulated dog kennel with a cat flap on the front. Would this be appropriate? ?

I will take two weeks off when they arrive. Is that enough time to settle them??

Heading to the book shop tomorrow for a cat care book, but all adivse is very welcome.

Artandco Sun 01-Jun-14 13:56:17

I don't think cats really like being outside most the time do they?

Mine have always liked being out in the sun but as soon as it rains/ is cold they wizz back in and sleep on sofa/ next to radiator.

I would get a regular cat flap so they can come in and out as they like. I think you are supposed to keep them in 4-6 weeks so they learn home first and don't stray away

oohnewshoes Sun 01-Jun-14 18:25:40

Sorry artandco, I was under the impression that most cat were happy to spend time outdoors and a lot pf friends cats seem to sleep out doors (all be it in good housing)

Begining to panic now. Would have liked them to stay out side while I'm at work. Just shows how much research I have to do lol.

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 18:31:31

Hey - no need to panic. smile There's lots of experience on this board to help fill you in on things.

What sort of house have you got? And are you going to use a catflap?

(It's best to keep cats indoors at night as well - they don't mind at all once they get a routine and nighttime is more dangerous for them what with cars and predators etc.)

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 18:41:23

PS - have you ever had cats before? (When you were a child, say.)

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 19:02:30

PPS - have a read of this as a starter. It's reputable guidance. (Lots of useful links on the left hand side there as well.)

oohnewshoes Sun 01-Jun-14 19:11:21

Yes my grandparents had cats ( I spent a lot of time there on hols) they were mostly outside on a working farm. They were in the house most evenings and outside at night.

We have an acre garden, mostly lawn with hedging. Close to a main road which os busy at commuter times? Otherwise quite.

I had no plans for a cat flap. Would they not make it easier for burglars??

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 19:16:14

Ah - (working) farm cats are a different thing to home pets. Apart form foul weather, they're indeed mostly outdoors and in the farm buildings ratting/mousing etc.

I think a cat flap (a microchip one is best) is probably a good idea. They shouldn't give burglars any succour although (as with all doors/letterboxes etc) you wouldn't want to leave car or house keys within easy reach of them. They're not really very big openings at all.

Artandco Sun 01-Jun-14 19:20:16

I think most cats want human contact at various points of the day so even if happy to be out most the day will want to be in when your home.

You can get cat flaps which only work with magnet attached to cat flap so only you cat can get in. Burglars wouldn't fit in as they are tiny!

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 19:23:31

A microchip one is probably best if the OP can afford it, Art. Because that works with the microchips that the OP will be giving her cats, it means no need for collars and only the authorized chippees can get in - eg if another cat had a magnetic collar they could gain entry because the magnets aren't specific.

A main road which is relatively quiet at night is just about the most dangerous situation possible. When it's really busy cats are unlikely to try to cross it. However when it's quieter they may well, and it only takes one car to run them over. Also at night cars go faster and cats are less easily seen. I would definitely keep the cats in at night. Always.

And I don't really understand why you would want them to be outside during the day. Provide them with a cat flap, which you can lock at night, and let them decide for themselves. Cats always seem to prefer to be inside in winter at least and they do love human company.

You will also need to keep them in for at least three weeks, ideally four, when you first get them, to get them used to where they live. You must be very careful not to let them out accidentally when opening doors and you will need to keep windows closed.

And of course they MUST be neutered at five months old.

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 19:39:45

As an underlining of that first, my Mom had a cottage on what was supposed to be a quiet country road. Unfortunately, because it was quiet at night, cars used to come down it at night like bats out of hell and she lost maybe half a dozen cats (if I recall) through nighttime RTAs.

Fluffycloudland77 Sun 01-Jun-14 19:55:26

I'd get a cat flap, one with a brush seal to stop draughts like this.

Cats love human company, I tried locking mine out of the lounge & the look he gave me was filthy. He just likes being near us.

Artandco Sun 01-Jun-14 19:57:57

Cosie - they sound good, I've never heard of them

cozietoesie Sun 01-Jun-14 20:04:02

I think that most posters use the Sureflap - so have a google on that. They're not cheap (about £60-£70 online) but most people reckon they're well worth it.

thoughtsbecomethings Sun 01-Jun-14 20:04:10

I got 2 kittens 8 months ago they are absolutely gorgeous, but goodness they certainly have given us plenty of laughs and times of frustration. They spend most of the day outside and get them in at night. They use a cat flap. Good luck grin

Fluffycloudland77 Sun 01-Jun-14 20:06:00

I think they are getting more well known, it stops the neighbours cats coming in for a snack.

The horizon documentary on cats used hidden cameras in people's homes & they had no idea other cats came in, one lady adopted the cat going into her house because he was a stray who got on with her resident cat.

MrsMaturin Sun 01-Jun-14 20:06:30

I think you need to read a lot more about cats before you commit to having them OP.

Farm cats are a very distinct 'breed'. They live outside, are not particularly domesticated and hunt rather well. My parents have successfully domesticated four farm kittens but it was a long process and the cats, whilst adoring my parents, are still not keen on other people.

I assume that the kittens you have lined up are NOT from a farming background? You will need to keep them in for several weeks and long term yes they are safest in the house at night. I don't really get why people would want cats that they will then not allow in the house? The pleasure is in sharing your home with a mini tiger smile. One word of warning - you live in the country so near your home are shrews, mice, rats and baby and adult rabbits. A cat with decent hunting ability WILL treat that lot like a buffet. You cannot stop it, you cannot dissuade them. If that is unbearable to you don't get cats.

One of my parent's cats got a live cock pheasant through a cat flap once and a friend came out of her bedroom to find a coot running up and down the stairs.........

Marlinspike Sun 01-Jun-14 20:13:39

I second the catch- it-yourself running buffet. In the last 2 days we have had one rabbit (headless), the back end of a second rabbit, one mouse and 2 creatures of indeterminate origin as all that was left was a gall bladder ( or whatever the bit they don't eat is). You cannot be squeamish about dealing with their gifts, and there's no way you can stop them if they are going to be outside.

Fluffycloudland77 Sun 01-Jun-14 21:32:35

It will all work out fine op, the kittens will decide everything & you'll do as your told.

Just like the rest of us. I draw the line at sleeping on the bed overnight though, you could toast marshmallows off him.

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