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Please tell me EVERYTHING there is to know about kittens

(29 Posts)
IfIDidintKnowBetter Tue 31-May-16 10:34:40

Kittens will be with us in approximately 3 weeks time, they will be approximately 10 weeks old by then (exact date of birth not known by rescue centre). They will come to us de-flea (sp?), litter trained, weaned and wormed. When they are old enough we will take them back to rescue to be vaccinated and then at 5 months we will micro chip and neuter them (one boy one girl).

They will come home on Royal Canin so will stock up on that.

I work part time, term time only, so I will have a lot of time with them, but inevitably they will have to spend some time by themselves. Kind NDneighbour will have key and will keep a close eye on them.

I will kitten proof their space, visit from rescue next week will help me establish best area, but prob kitchen and access to downstairs toilet.

What is the best online shop to get all the essentials such as cat beds, water fountain, feeding bowls, cat tree etc etc. Or should I just use Amazon?

They will be indoor cats until they have their vaccinations. After that I am thinking, definitely indoor at night. As for day time, they will probably have the whole of downstairs minus one room and a catflap into the garden.

What does everyone think of something like this?

Thank you everyone and please do share your tips and advice, anything I can do to make the kittens adjust and be happy. Many thanks.

BeBopTalulah Tue 31-May-16 14:25:34

You sound like you've got everything organised! I kept my two in one room for about 3 days and they settled really quickly. Started exploring the house after that and slowly introduced to our dogs (who love them now). The worst part of it for me was the countdown to letting them out. They were literally CLIMBING THE WALLS to get out and I often had to sneak out of the house or keep them in one room while I took bins out etc. Ours are free-range day and night, but we live rurally so I feel that they are safe at night.

I also noticed that for the first few months the litter tray was DISGUSTING. We tried every litter available, but found that it needed completely changed and scrubbed a couple of times a day. That will settle down too. I think babies have particularly smelly/revolting toilet habits. I certainly couldn't have kept the tray anywhere but the downstairs bathroom.

We have never bothered with cat beds. A friend gave us one at the time and they've yet to sleep in it (and are now 2.5 years old). They will find plenty of wonderful and imaginative sleeping spots all around the house.

One of my biggest regrets is not getting mine used to wearing collars early on. They just refuse to keep them on now. I have a prolific hunter, and would love to be able to attach a cow bell to him somehow! (You will have all sorts dragged through the catflap at all hours). Maybe read up on 'dispatching' of various small mammals, birds, even seagulls grin

I'm so jealous btw...I'm not allowed any more at the moment. They are a joy smile

IfIDidintKnowBetter Tue 31-May-16 15:09:30

Thank you for your answer BeBopTalulah. We live in a reasonably quiet road but won't let them roam freely for quite some time yet, that's why I was thinking the cat kennel might be a good compromise. I'd love some opinions on that.

TimeIhadaNameChange Tue 31-May-16 15:21:45

I don't see the point in that kennel. They'd have less room than being in the house, and I think being closer to the temptations of the outside but not being able to interact with them thoroughly would frustrate the living daylights out of them.

Unless, of course, they are incredibly placid cats then you might, just about, be ok. But I honestly can't see my lass being happy in there unless she was asleep and didn't realise she'd been shut in.

lavenderdoilly Tue 31-May-16 15:28:09

Cats always find the cosiest warmest spot so you don't really need to help them on that. As they get a little older a litter tray per cat plus one if you can manage it. Let them explore at their own pace. Lots of hunting and killing toys - kicker toys are great. This morning our one year old killed a pink four fingered Wubba toy that she had forgotten about. Then she killed it again with much back leg kicking.she may kill it later after she has snooze in her cat.tree. have lots of fun and a bit of nose holding. Oh, and a Flying Frenzy toy.

zoop1 Tue 31-May-16 15:28:22

I'm not really sure about the kennel, but guess it depends on your location and circumstances. My preference is to "cat-proof" our garden, so that our cats cannot get out (and neighbours cats and predators cannot get in). That way we can enjoy interacting with the cats in the garden without worrying about them getting onto the roads, but I can appreciate that it may not be practical for everyone. If we couldn't confine them to the garden, they would certainly be shut inside at night, as this seems to the higher risk time for accidents.

For pet supplies, I have been happy with Zooplus and Petplanet.

Toddlerteaplease Tue 31-May-16 18:01:12

Zoo plus is the cheapest for Royal Canin by a long way. But make sure you choose the DPD delivery option. The other one is awful.

IfIDidintKnowBetter Wed 01-Jun-16 07:47:23

Thank you everyone.

Could someone please recommend a litter tray please? Initially, should I have one for both kittens or one each?

Back to the cat kennel if you wouldn't mind please. When we're away, ndn will come into my house and feed kittens and spend time with them. This I am perfectly comfortable with, she's always had our key and waters our plants when we're away.

There might be the odd day or two when our lovely ndn might be away herself and I will have to ask a different neighbour. This other neighbour I trust completely to look after our cats (we have looked after her 3 cats for the last 5 years when she's away), but I don't like the idea of her coming into my house with her three children to feed the cats and play with them for a while. If the cats where to live in the kennel in the garden for a couple of days, with plenty of sheltered spaces blankets, etc, this would mean my neighbour could come in via the side gate into my garden and wouldn't need to enter my house.

Is this a good plan at all?

lavenderdoilly Wed 01-Jun-16 12:11:22

On litter trays - pets at home or zooplus sell kitten starter trays - a bit smaller and not so deep. One between them should be fine to start. See how they go on. If one is more dominant as they get older, the shy er one might need its own tray.
If they are big enough to go out your alternative ndn could just put food in a sheltered spot in the back - a kennel if that works for you. A shed with a cat flap is another idea.. Remember other animals will be attracted to food left out even dry stuff. Consider a cattery for long absences. There are some lovely ones around - not just smelly moggy sheds. Cattery owners know what indulgent softies we are and pander to it. Google Jackson Galaxy - a US cat behaviourist who looks like a hell's angel and is great on cat tips. He's on YouTube and has a show on Animal Planet called my cat from hell.

MorticiaLiverish Wed 01-Jun-16 13:23:11

I'm another one who doesn't think that keeping two kittens in a kennel in the garden is a good idea. If they were mine, I would rather they went to a cattery.

IfIDidintKnowBetter Wed 01-Jun-16 15:31:19

I don't know I just feel that a cattery will be so much more stressful than an environment they're already familiar with...

So if there's a catflat from my kitchen door to the proposed cat shed and the cats can roam around the house as they please and also use the 'protected' outdoor space at will, say we're away for a couple of nights and I don't want anyone in my house, will it be okay to shut catflap for just those couple of nights/days? Is that bad?

Thank you for the advice on litter trays.

Can I ask about beds? This one has caught my eye:$ja=tsid:59156|cid:189934285|agid:18091943005|tid:aud-180466977205:pla-171275166565|crid:77627769325|nw:g|rnd:12596227835791449503|dvc:c|adp:1o3&gclid=CM7RxqyFh80CFRS6GwodqXMPkQ

Would love some opinions.

Minisoksmakehardwork Wed 01-Jun-16 15:51:03

We have this litter tray for our kitten, from zoo plus as it was cheaper than Amazon. Zoo plus was recommended by posters on here and is definitely worth looking at.

He was 8 weeks old when he came to us. Initially he couldn't use the flap so we just left it up until he got the hang of it (mean mummy put it down when he was in there pooping).

Merlin finds his own comfy spot to sleep on the washing basket but has a cheese shaped bed which he also uses and plays in a lot. We did let the kids get a toy each too.

When we first brought him home, we left the pet carrier in the lounge with his blanket in so he could retreat there if the Dc got too much for him. Now he finds his own hidey holes!

Re space, sounds fine. Merlin has free range of the house during the day and we shut him in the lounge at night - I'm not to keen on the idea of waking up with cat bum in face!

lavenderdoilly Wed 01-Jun-16 15:57:29

Cats will find their fave spot to sleep which may or not be a bed you have bought for them. A good cattery is well worth thinking about. I know what you mean about stress but it can be quite stressful if you are not where cat would expect you to be and it is where it expects to be iyswim.also, as lovely as your ndns are it can be a lot of pressure on them.

Toddlerteaplease Wed 01-Jun-16 21:12:07

I have a top entry litter tray from zoo plus. It was overpriced but I love it. If you don't want to put them in a cattery. Try a cat sitter. I have one who is a gem. It works out cheaper than putting them in a cattery and my two wouldn't cope in one anyway.

Fluffycloudland77 Wed 01-Jun-16 21:28:14

A good cattery is a godsend. Our highly strung Bengal settles well there.

joeythenutter Wed 01-Jun-16 21:32:33

Its a no to that kennel from me. Cats are not meant to be in a kennel even for a couple of days. Whoever invented this obviously has no idea of a cats needs. Personally if you cant put them in a cattery for a few days while away, then leave them round to a friend or family member if you dont want someone in your house. They need to be able to move about freely and do their own thing, find their own sleeping area etc.

Maybe cats arnt for you if you are going to be away frequently.

LilaTheTiger Wed 01-Jun-16 21:37:57

That cat kennel is a chicken coop. No. Really... 😂

IfIDidintKnowBetter Thu 02-Jun-16 07:41:04

Can I just clarify that the chicken coop kennel idea is mostly so that the kittens/cats have outdoor space IN ADDITION to roaming freely in the house, and my idea of locking the catflap into the house is only if my usual ndn cannot look after the cats if we're away, and a different neighbour, whose children I'd rather didn't come into my house, came in to help, and it wouldn't be for more than 2 nights?

TobleroneBoo Thu 02-Jun-16 07:54:20

They will dick about until gone midnight angryangryangry

IfIDidintKnowBetter Thu 02-Jun-16 08:22:33

What do you mean Toblerone?

IfIDidintKnowBetter Thu 02-Jun-16 10:17:21

Hello, me again. Right so I've been doing a lot of research and please correct me if I'm wrong but if I was to leave my 2 cats in a cattery while away, not only they would go through the stress of the car journey and staying in unfamiliar surroundings, but they would also end up in a cage. How can that be better to staying somewhere like this:

and have at the very least daily visits from neighbours and quite likely being let out in the garden for a while under supervision?

PLEASE this is a genuine question.

Glastokitty Thu 02-Jun-16 10:35:46

I have two cats and I can categorically say they would hate that chicken coop. I suppose it's doable if they can go in and out, but I know my cats would much prefer to be cosy indoors, and would only go out to get food, so it's kind of a waste. Also they would miss cuddles and human interaction.
Find a good cattery, the one I take my cats to is fantastic, all the pens have comfy armchairs and cushions and climbing posts, they even put TVs on for them to watch. Family cats can room together ( they get sofas, I've slept in worse places myself!). Oh and they obviously love cats, they play with them and fuss over them. My cats love it because they get spoilt rotten, they would be sad if left them on there own for more than a work day. ( my rag doll is happiest when we are all at home, work and school gets in the way of his dream life grin). Or hire a professional cat sitter if you don't want your neighbour coming in.

lavenderdoilly Thu 02-Jun-16 11:07:30

The best kind of cattery is one that is not like a chicken coop. Ours stays in a lovely narrow room with places in to sleep, climb, hide, perch, watch a garden and with lots of opportunities for human contact if she wants it. We get regular email updates and photos. It is clean. She has the food we send with her. We can bring her favourite toys and blankets. She doesn't like the journey there but it is not much further than the vets. I wouldn't keep her away from the vets because of the car journey. Don't rule it out and don't underestimate what pita it is to look after someone else's pet at their house even if you are a lovely person.

lavenderdoilly Thu 02-Jun-16 11:16:51

Oh and it's warm with plenty of fresh water available. I would stay there myself.

TobleroneBoo Thu 02-Jun-16 17:27:09

Haha sorry I was very grumpy this morning! Our two kittens ( had them for a month) were terrors last night until very late! Generally lovely but everything they could muck about with last night, they did, including pushing a lamp off my dressing table!!

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