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Once you've decided to give a cat a home, it's time to prepare your home and prepare to welcome your cat. You need to make sure you have enough time to make adequate preparations and purchase everything he needs.
Are you preparing to welcome a cat or kitten? Our expert advice helps you prepare your home for your pet.
Welcoming a new cat or kitten into your home is an exciting experience and can be the start of a wonderful bond. Adopting a cat also comes with many changes for both of you. Our guide to preparing for your new cat will help you make the transition as smooth as possible.
Did you know that you can prepare your cat for his new home before you even take him in? Cats are very dependent on smells and will adapt much more quickly if their new environment has a familiar smell.
To help your cat get used to your scent (and that of your new home), take a piece of clothing or blanket from your home and leave it with your pet for the last few days before adoption. When you come to pick it up, place the fabric in your cat's carrier. This will reduce his stress during the trip and help him settle in.
The most important thing your cat needs is a quiet, comfortable, secluded space of its own. This could be a guest bedroom or a cozy space in the corner of your living room. This will allow your cat to become familiar with a space before exploring the rest of your home.
Here is a step-by-step guide to setting up a space for your new cat:
Before you even think about letting your new pet out of his crate, you need to set up a safe space for him with everything he needs. The ideal is to have a quiet room, away from the activity areas of the house, so that he can relax before going on an adventure. The part must include:
Accessories you will need:
Remember: When providing beds, litter boxes, scratching posts, and food and water bowls, it's a good idea to include one extra. When more than one cat shares the home, provide one of these items per cat plus one extra. For example, two cats should have access to at least three litter boxes.
Ensuring the Safety and Health of Your New Cat
Before you bring your cat home, you should think about preparing him for the outside world. All cats adopted from must receive certain care including:
- a health check carried out by a veterinarian - treatment against fleas and worms - at least one vaccination against cat flu and feline enteritis - sterilization, if the cat is old enough - a microchip for all cats over 12 weeks old
Spaying is an important operation to prevent female cats from becoming pregnant and male cats from getting females pregnant. You should make sure your cat is spayed or neutered to avoid unwanted kittens. Neutering also has many health benefits, including reducing the chances of developing certain cancers and other diseases.
It is recommended that kittens be spayed or neutered at four months of age or younger, but they can be neutered at any age.
If your cat or kitten has not been vaccinated, you will need to take it to a veterinarian to have it done.
When should my cat be vaccinated?
The first vaccinations should be given to kittens at around eight to nine weeks of age. The choice of timing is important: too early, the vaccine may not be effective, too late, the cat may be susceptible to infections. Two vaccines are usually needed, three to four weeks apart. Cats will need a booster vaccine to maintain a high level of immunity.
Every cat is different and with a new home to get used to, your new feline friend may be a little nervous. When approaching your cat, pay attention to the following:
- make sure you get down to their level - hold out your hand - call him gently by his name - wait for him to come to you.
Once your cat seems confident around you, it's time to introduce other family members . Remember to do this gradually, with each family member greeting the cat one by one. It can be overwhelming for your new cat to meet everyone at once.
If you have children , they are likely to be excited by this new arrival, but it is important that they remain calm. Let the cat come to them, and when it does, show them how to gently pet and interact with it.
While cats and children generally get along well , even the gentlest cat will fight back if pushed or pulled too much. Also avoid picking up your cat at first. Wait until it is settled and knows you are not a threat.
Do you have other pets at home, such as dogs or other cats? By taking the time to introduce your cat to other animals, you increase his chances of getting along with them.
Gradual introductions are the best way to help your pets get along, especially if you already have a cat at home. Contrary to popular belief, cats much prefer to be the only cat in the house.
However, if there is no competition for food or sleeping space in the house, cats can learn to tolerate each other and can sometimes become good friends.
To introduce your cat to another cat in the house, you must:
It can take anywhere from a day to several weeks for cats to tolerate each other, so don't give up. To introduce your cat to your dog (or other pet):
Keep your dog on a leash and keep him calm before meeting your new cat. Never restrain your cat or force it to approach the dog.
Should I put a flea in my cat? If you are wondering if you should book an appointment to have your cat microchipped. The answer is yes !
Whether you've just purchased a kitten or adopted an older cat, you absolutely need to make sure your cat is microchipped or tattooed.
Microchipping your cat gives it the best chance of being identified and returned to you if lost or stolen. The chips are safe, easy to implant and effective. Unlike collars and tags, microchips do not come off and pose no risk of injury to your cat.
A small chip (the size of a grain of rice) is inserted under your cat's skin, usually by your veterinarian. This microchip gives your cat its own unique code. If your cat were to go missing, the microchip would be scanned using a microchip reader and compared to your details, which are stored in a cat microchip database.
In France, you can expect to pay between 60 and 70 euros and between 50 and 60 euros for a tattoo without anesthesia. The price may vary depending on your veterinarian and your place of residence.
Consult your veterinarian for further details, or contact a cat charity. Often, reputable cat charities and rescue organizations may be able to microchip your cat at a discounted rate. Does the law require cats to be microchipped? Currently, it is obligatory to microchip your cat. In the same way that the law prohibits dogs from not being equipped with a microchip, owners then risk considerable fines!
Purchasing insurance for your new cat is something to consider. Designed to help protect you against unexpected costs related to your cat, you may need it to cover vet bills in the future. It is important to carefully review your policy to make sure it meets your needs.
In addition to veterinary care, some insurance also covers the following:
Not all pet insurance offers the same thing and it is important to consider the type of coverage.
When shopping for insurance, consider the following:
Once your cat has been introduced to your family and pets and seems settled and content in your home, only then can you allow him to explore the world outside. We generally recommend a delay of three to four weeks, to ensure that it has spread its odor and is able to find its way home.
Has your cat been sterilized? If he hasn't been, don't let him out until the operation has been performed by your veterinarian. You will also need to make sure he is up to date on his vaccinations and has been microchipped.
If your outdoor cat is ready to venture into the garden, you can encourage him to come out for a supervised visit. Once he is confident with his environment, he will be free and happy to roam. The first time you let your cat out, do it before a meal - no matter how far she ventures, she'll be more likely to come back for her food when you call her.
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