A little furry ball of fluff came into your life, so what are you going to do with it? A cat is a wonderful companion for anyone, but you’ve got to know how to handle one. They aren’t dogs, after all! Here are some great tips for dealing with felines.
If you replace an old scratching post, your cat may be unhappy with the new one. Save money on scratching posts. Wrap your old scratching post with some sisal rope to spiff it up. Your cat will be happy not to lose its favorite old post. You will save a little cash.
Never have your cat declawed. Many people misunderstand declawing, thinking it is the simple removal of a cat’s nail. This is not true. In fact, the veterinarian must remove the top knuckle along with the claw during the procedure. This can result in arthritis pain later in life and many behavior problems, such as biting. There are many alternatives from scratching posts to glue-on claw caps that can protect your belongings from a cat’s claws without resorting to such a harsh surgical solution.
Have your cat spayed or neutered. Pet overpopulation is a growing problem, with millions of homeless cats and kittens euthanized every year. Besides the problem of too many kittens and not enough homes, unfixed cats can have a multitude of behavior problems. Males who are not neutered at a young age often start spraying to mark their territory, and females who are allowed to come into heat yowl incessantly as they try to escape to find a mate. Kittens can begin to breed as early as 4 months of age, so get your new kitten spayed or neutered as soon as possible.
Consider getting your cat a scratching post. Scratching is something that comes extremely easy to cats; it is part of their nature. Don’t force your cat to play with it. Rather, interest him in it by spraying catnip spray on it, or by dangling a string from the top. Soon he’ll get the idea that it’s there for a reason!
Having a hard time giving your cat a bath? Try this. Take an old window screen and put it in your sink or bathtub. Put your cat in, and he will claw the screen and stay there. Then start washing, but do don’t dilly dally. Use a cup to help you to pour warm water on your cat unless you have a movable shower head.
Give serious thought to spaying or neutering your cat. Your vet can give you the pros and cons of both, but if you plan to keep your cat for a long period of time you should consider this operation. Cat overpopulation is a real problem, and you can do your part.
Have patience with your cat. Remember that your cat is not a dog, and may not be as easily trainable as one. However, if you are being clear in your commands and gently encouraging them, you’ll find that your cat responds the way you want him to. Just be patient.
If your cat’s scratching post looks old and worn, don’t throw it away immediately. Cats love them! When you bring in a new post, the cat may ignore it.
When you introduce a new cat into your home, you have to be careful with how your other cat reacts. Try giving the new cat a little space in one room at first, and then introduce him to the rest of the house. Make sure to have different litter boxes at first too. If you ease the new cat in, it will go more smoothly for everyone.
If you have more than one cat, it is a good idea for you to give them each their own food bowls. Place them far apart so that each cat has their space. If you provide just one bowl for the cats to share, it may cause larger cats to bully the smaller ones.
If you are adding a kitten to a household that already contains a dog, it is important to socialize the kitten to the dog at an early age. At first, constant supervision is essential. Let the kitten and dog spend time together while you hold the kitten, letting them explore and get used to each other’s smells. When socialized early, cats and dogs can live happily and peacefully together.
If your cat is bitten by another cat, try to get him to the vet within 24 hours. The vet can put him on antibiotics that will protect him from infection setting in, and causing serious health problems. Cat bites can trap bacteria under your cat’s skin, forming an abscess, or other dangerous infection that can cost you hundreds of dollars to treat later.
If your cat has bad breath, a trip to the vet is in order. Bad breath in cats can be a red flag for tooth decay or more serious conditions. These include diabetes, stomach problems and lung disorders. So, if your cat’s breath smells worse than the food he eats, get to the bottom of the issue before it gets out of control.
Let your cat give birth in a large space. It will take about three to four hours for all of the kittens to come out, so be patient. If more than five or six hours have passed, and you think that kittens still remain inside, then you must get in touch with your vet.
Now that you’ve read this article, you have some ideas for how you can best take care of your cat. These unique creatures can enrich your life, but only when they’re happy. Your cat may never seem satisfied, but if you use the tips in this article, he may purr a few times!