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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?

QueenStromba Fri 29-Mar-13 19:21:07

How do we get her to scratch the things we want her to rather than the carpet? She knows she's not supposed to scratch the carpet because she runs away sheepishly if we catch her in act and stops if we hear her and shout oi at her. We've ordered some feliway to spray on the spots she goes for but how do we teach her to scratch the things she's allowed to?

QueenStromba Sun 31-Mar-13 17:15:13

I'm guessing nobody has the answer about how to teach her what she's allowed to scratch then?

There's definitely life in the old girl yet. She spent about an hour tearing around the flat this morning. She even spent a good 15 minutes playing with her dangly fish toy that has never interested her before smile

cozietoesie Sun 31-Mar-13 17:32:54

Well after a lifetime of scratching Siamese I would say that you can't teach them anything. Just offer. See if you can get a carpet sample or two (preferably good quality - they generally prefer a high end item) and anchor it under a piece of furniture. It might work.

Seniorboy has a 'scratching chair'. It sits in the Sitting Room. Absolutely a mess. If SS ever come to call, I'm doomed.

QueenStromba Mon 01-Apr-13 19:23:29

We'll look into getting some carpet tiles or some cut offs then, thanks. We found a little mat that battersea gave us when we got her and put it down where she'd just been scratching and she had a couple of scratches at that which we praised her for and rewarded her with dreamies. Maybe she'll get the idea.

We've started transitioning her onto to Butcher's Classic today. She's been having a forkful in half a pouch of Whiskas this afternoon which is going down well with no signs of digestive issues. A forkful just happens to be how much each bit of our ice cube trays take too smile

Given her previous digestive issues I think we'll keep her on that for tomorrow and then start give her three forkfuls in a pouch (not all at the same time) for a day or two, then four etc. Does that sound ok?

thecatneuterer Wed 03-Apr-13 14:46:19

I really think you should get some of those scratch boxes we talked about. I've found that when they have those around they prefer to scratch those to just about anything else.

cozietoesie Wed 03-Apr-13 14:57:43

Have you got a link for those thecatneuterer? I thought the chair would see Seniorboy out but he seems to be winning !

QueenStromba Wed 03-Apr-13 15:16:11

This is the scratch box cozie. We got something very similar for her and she's shown no interest in it. I think we'll get her some carpet tiles since carpet is the only thing she really scratches - she's left our fabric sofa alone.

cozietoesie Wed 03-Apr-13 15:22:51

Ah - thanks, QS. I got him a flat scratch thing with the hope of extending the life of the chair but he paid it no attention apart from biffing the springy toy once or twice. I may go back to carpet myself because he had that when in our last house. It's just that the chair is 'his' but I think it's going to outlast him. (He could scratch for GB.)

thecatneuterer Wed 03-Apr-13 15:25:08

I haven't found the flat scratching things to be very good. But a good 9.5 out of ten of the cats I've ever come across just love those scratch boxes. They really are worth a go.

QueenStromba Tue 09-Apr-13 16:03:56

It's our one month anniversary today smile

In some ways it's like we've had her forever but we're still really excited about having her. DP and I often turn to each other and say "We've got a cat!". I really don't know how we managed for so long without her.

We're on day 10 of the food switchover now and we're nearly up to a pouch in half a tin of butchers. I'm happy to say that Rice hasn't seemed bothered by the change at all, she's eating really well and hasn't had a dodgy tummy unless you count one 5am episode of spitty sick (why is it always at 5am?).

She has four pouches left which will probably last another week. I'm getting quite fed up with the changeover at this point though - I can't just get DP to feed her if there isn't already some mixed up because he won't know how much of each to add since I've been doing it. It's hard enough remembering how much she should have with just one of us doing it!

cozietoesie Tue 09-Apr-13 16:40:58

All goes well then. That's excellent, QS.


In my experience, they're not necessarily always sick at 5am. Just at the most inconvenient time they can be.

thecatneuterer Tue 09-Apr-13 16:50:40

Doesn't time fly! It only seems like a couple of weeks. I'm so glad it's going well. As your DP come round to the idea of an indoor cat now? I think it must be quite comforting to know that you'll always know where she is and she can't come to much harm.

thecatneuterer Tue 09-Apr-13 16:50:59

'Has' not 'as'

QueenStromba Tue 09-Apr-13 17:21:50

Three out of four observed sickness episodes have been between the hours of 4 and 6am. Even if we count the three unobserved sicks as happening at a sensible time of the day that's still almost half of all puking occurring at 5am plus or minus an hour. There is definitely a significant correlation between 5am and Rice throwing up. When it happened the other day she was actually lying on me when she started the retching noise so I leapt up but she had spit up on DP's side of the bed before I found something to shove in front of her.

DP's happy we had to have an indoor cat because otherwise we wouldn't have Rice (he's a soppy git just like me). I think he thought it was a bit cruel to keep a cat indoors but he realises now that it's worse to let a cat out when you're close to a main road. It helps that the only time she shows real interest in going outside is when there are pigeons near the window - she seems perfectly happy to just treat the outside like cat telly otherwise. She mithers at all of the doors when they're shut other than the front door which doesn't bother her in the slightest.

I'm really glad we had to get an indoor cat and not just because I'm completely in love with Rice. There have been so many sad threads on here in the last few weeks that I'd be freaking out a bit if we had to start letting her out now.

cozietoesie Tue 09-Apr-13 19:33:19

Ah - that just means she's worked out that that's the most irritating (likely to get attention) time for you and your DP!

QueenStromba Sun 14-Apr-13 15:25:35

She gave me a heart attack yesterday. She vanished - we searched the flat to the point of checking inside the oven and couldn't find her. I was convinced that in a rather unRice-like show of acrobatics she'd jumped through the top of the sash window. We eventually found her under the sofa bed in the office. Bloody typical cat pulling a disappearing act the first time we open a window wide enough for her to fit through!

thecatneuterer Mon 15-Apr-13 01:36:35

Cats are brilliant at hiding in houses aren't they? So many times I've been absolutely convinced that a cat I've been trying to keep in has escaped, even though all windows and doors were shut . And I've searched absolutely everywhere and been convinced that the cat must have sneaked out when I opened the door without me seeing. And then, lo and behold, a few hours later there they are. I have no idea how they get to be so good at hiding.

QueenStromba Fri 19-Apr-13 11:45:09

I think she must have been hiding from the roomba because she hasn't done it since.

She's now entirely on Classic for the wet food although that was supplemented with some bin chicken last night. Can anyone recommend a small cat-proof bin?

QueenStromba Sat 20-Apr-13 21:27:16

Gah! Just as we had Rice weaned onto Butcher's Classic our local Sainsbury's has stopped selling it. I've checked all of the other local supermarkets and nobody has it. We've had to resort to an online shop from Sainsbury's - I'm worried now that they won't have it. If they'd stopped stocking it three weeks ago then we would have put her on something else. We have enough in the freezer to wean her onto something else but I just can't face it.

thecatneuterer Sat 20-Apr-13 21:50:43

Oh no. I get it from Pets at Home and they frequently have offers on it. At the moment its £10 for 24 cans. You can also buy online from Pets at Home. My Sainsburys, Tescos and Morrisons all sell it. Why don't you put a comment in the customer comments box at Sainsburys and suggest they stock it again?

QueenStromba Sat 20-Apr-13 22:00:46

I will definitely email them to complain, I guess they'll just say that it's not popular enough here to be worth the shelf space though. My £2.74 three times a month is unlikely to make them change their minds unfortunately.

I've ordered 48 tins which should do her a good while but I'll go to pets at home for it next time - what flavours does the 24 pack have? I can't find any info on it anywhere.

thecatneuterer Sat 20-Apr-13 22:05:51

I've just had to go to the cupboard to check. It's:
6 of each of: haddock; ocean fish; chicken; beef

So no good if she only likes either the meat or the fish.

QueenStromba Sat 20-Apr-13 22:30:57

Thank you smile

She'll eat meat and fish but I think she prefers the fishy ones - I still feed her a mix though because I don't want her to get bored or fussy. I got chatting to a guy in the queue at Morrisons yesterday who had a cat that would only eat Sheba trays - apparently he started out eating anything but just got fussy. I think I'll keep trying to source the 6 packs because she'll get two extra flavours that way - trout and game.

QueenStromba Thu 25-Apr-13 18:06:01

Rice woke us up at 6am puking, not just a spitty furry type puke but the type with mostly digested food. She seemed ok other than that so I went out to get some much needed sunshine this afternoon. I came back and found that the living room door had blown shut in the wind so Rice had been trapped inside and had puked in the same way as she had at 6am. Was that just a protest puke or should I take her to the vet since she's puked up food twice in the space of 12 hours?

cozietoesie Thu 25-Apr-13 18:59:21

Do you know when she'd eaten each time, QS ?

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