We have KITTENS!! Pics and a couple of questions...

(21 Posts)
PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 12:39:58

DH and I got two adorable 8- week old kittens on Sunday smile They are rescue kittens and we are delighted to have given them a home, even though they will have to be indoor cats as we live in a flat. (Before I get flamed, we live abroad in an enormous city, in a country with a terrible record on animal welfare. They were found as newborns having been dumped under a bush and have since lived their whole lives indoors) Anyway I have a couple of questions please :
Their food (royal canin dry) seems to smell really strongly. Is there a way we can minimize the smell? It is very pungent in the flat because we can't leave windows open in case the cats get out.
We are using Arm and hammer litter, which is clumping. It says on the pack to remove the clumps daily, refresh the litter and then change the whole thing only once a month! Can this be correct?
Re their food, is it OK just to leave food out constantly, or should they have set feeding times?
Thanks in advance smile

MycatsaPirate Tue 27-Sep-16 12:54:00

Gosh they are so cute!!

No idea about the food, each cat tends to have their own favourites and some they can't tolerate. I'm sure someone else can help with that.

We use the Oko cat litter as it really doesn't need to be completely changed at all (or very rarely). You just scoop and bin. It clumps and is very lightweight and seems to stop the smells escaping from the trays.

My cats (we have four) all eat different wet food but we leave dry food out constantly and water. I'd definitely look at getting them dry food as it's good for their teeth, stops plaque build up but at 8 weeks old I'm afraid I have no idea on what they should be eating at this point.

PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 13:31:47

Thank you. We don't use wet food at all. The food they are on is royal canin kitten food and they seem to love it smile we were wondering though if it might be possible to just feed them morning and evening, leaving the food down for a set time, and then take it away- or would that be cruel?

NoSquirrels Tue 27-Sep-16 13:46:38

My cats are fed morning & evening on dry food with none down in between, and totally fine on that schedule - they're not kittens, though. You may need to feed smaller more frequent meals -- am clueless on tiny cute furballs that young, having always rescued slightly older cats.

babyboomersrock Tue 27-Sep-16 14:13:42

Just a word of warning re dry food. I fed my two cats on it for many years, after starting them off on wet food - I was out most of the day as they got older, so I left dry food down all day.

I honestly think they become addicted to it. I haven't checked ingredients recently (sugars?) but mine were on things like Iams and they seemed to be constantly going to their bowls to "top up" - not really the natural behaviour of a cat, which would normally eat a couple of times a day as it caught prey.

They got fat, despite having access to the outdoors during the day. And then the older one got diabetes. I did some reading and discovered that there's a possible link between dry food and the development of diabetes so I immediately changed them to high quality wet foods (Applaws etc). Sadly, my poor boy didn't respond to the regime of twice-daily insulin injections - he never felt satiated and would miaow for food constantly - after a year of watching his quality of life decline, I let him go.

I would never rear a cat on an exclusively dry diet now. Cats have trouble processing carbohydrates and most dry foods are high in carbs.

As for the tooth-cleaning properties - I asked my vet and he asked me if I'd ever watched cats eat dry food...he's right! They don't chew it; they may snap through bigger nuggets but their teeth aren't being cleaned. He also reckoned that the ingredients sprayed on to the surface (to make it palatable after so much processing) probably contained sugars of some sort, so were likely to do more harm than good.

I know we have to compromise. Few of us can manage to feed an entirely natural diet after all - but I would hate to see another poor cat end his days as my Rowan did. He had always been a lean, fit active cat while on wet food - it was only when I changed to dry that he became fat.

However you decide to feed them, make sure they have access to lots of fresh water at all times and try to keep their weight down, especially if they're going to be indoor cats. Enjoy your kittens!

YesItsMeIDontCare Tue 27-Sep-16 14:18:36

You can get mesh screens for windows so you can open them and kitties stay safe.

Dry food - Royal Canin do one specifically for indoor cats I think. Claims to reduce odours if it's the one I'm thinking of.

PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 14:20:07

Thank you - that's definitely given me food for thought (pardon the pun!). At the moment we were advised to keep them on dry food to keep their tummies settled, but to introduce wet food gradually.

PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 14:20:27

Sorry to hear about your lovely boy sad

PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 14:23:31

Thanks for the recommendation re food - we'll check it out smile

Toddlerteaplease Tue 27-Sep-16 15:55:30

I put dry food out twice a day and they graze on it. I only do a full clean of the litter tray once a month. My litter is brilliant so that's all it needs. They are so cute. Their ears are like sails!

Toddlerteaplease Tue 27-Sep-16 15:56:57

Mine are on Persian food which has barely any smell and is specially for indoor cats as many Persians are.

PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 15:58:55

Thank you ;) we are totally in love with them already! I was reading about indoor cats and it suggested not leaving them to graxe because it would make them fat - but maybe as a PP suggested, because they are kittens, they need to eat little and often.

PollyCazaletWannabe Tue 27-Sep-16 16:00:18

Is the Persian food suitable for other types of cats? The problem we may have is that it may be unavailable in our country (China) but it's worth knowing anyway - thanks!

babyboomersrock Tue 27-Sep-16 16:45:53

OP - I forgot to add - your kittens are beautiful! And how lovely that they have each other for company.

Hope you have many years of fun together flowers

Toddlerteaplease Tue 27-Sep-16 20:44:53

I would assume it's available, it's Royal Canin. The also do another one for indoor cats. And ones for weight loss etc. Must admit mine are a little chunky but I measure their amounts and have cut down a bit.

pinkblink Tue 27-Sep-16 20:51:06

You can buy cat biscuits with low/no carbs which are meant to be better, we feed our kitten applaws biscuits (available all day) and raw meat once a day

PollyCazaletWannabe Wed 28-Sep-16 00:22:34

Thanks to all! Any more tips about having kittens would be greatly appreciated. I have owned cats before and so has DH, but never such young kittens.

GardenGeek Wed 28-Sep-16 00:47:49

Kittens so young need to eat multiple meals per day (at least 4 meals at 8 weeks). So definitely leave the dry food out all day.

Sorry to upset the apple cart but we were always advised never to use clumping litter until much later (at least 4 months)

Btw your stripey one looks exactly like my bengal x siamese boy when he was younger. Only time will tell if he has the bengal in him (strange cat behaviours - likes water, weird chirping/ chattering sounds at birds etc.), but he definitely has siamese with those ears. Little cuties you have there!

Iliveinalighthousewiththeghost Wed 28-Sep-16 10:25:29

Aren't they little sweeties. I love the picture of them both together.
Are they from the same litter.

PollyCazaletWannabe Wed 28-Sep-16 15:48:45

Yes, they're sisters smile

EachandEveryone Thu 29-Sep-16 00:34:44

Mine is four months now and I never thought i was a cat person but god i love her. She came on Royal Canin dry and wet. She still prefers wet so I feed her half a tin of wet twice a day and Lilys organic dry once a day. I like her to have wet food they say its good for hydration. Im just finding my way with her. Also a flat cat so far. I use catsan litter it comes all in one and i dont notice a smell. I change every week because i thought you had to but reading this now im wondering if its too much? Buy a massive cat stractch post mine loves hers from zooplus. It really was a great buy. Enjoy them! Im missing the kitten phase already.

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