You may have trained several dogs in the past, but nothing can prepare you for raising your new feline friend. Cats are nothing like dogs. They require more attention during their growing years and more personal time playing with their owner. This article will highlight some of the main differences between the two.
Regular vet checkups for your cat are very important. Understand that cats require vaccinations in order to stay healthy, and the veterinarian needs to regularly check for any health problems. For the most consistent pet care, choose one veterinarian and stick with them. Your veterinarian needs to know about your pet’s history, and your cat will feel more comfortable if you always take her to the same vet.
If your cat is an outdoor cat or a cat that has a habit of getting outside, they need proper identification. The cat should have a safety collar and an ID tag. Safety collars that have elastic bands allow cats to get out of the collar if they get it caught on something. An ID tag or an implanted microchip can help your cat get returned if they’re lost.
Choose a high quality food. The key to a healthy cat starts with nutrition. Take a look at the ingredients label. If you look at most ‘popular’ commercial cat foods, you may be surprised to see the top ingredient listed is corn. Cats are carnivores, so look for a food with a real meat as the top ingredient. You may pay more up front, but these foods are often more nutritionally dense, meaning your cat eats less and the bag lasts longer.
If your cat is picky about drinking water, invest in a cat fountain. These battery operated or plug in fountains keep water circulating and aerated. Many cats prefer this. A cat fountain will help keep your cat out of the kitchen sink and the toilet. It will also help prevent your cat from pawing water onto the floor in search of fresh water.
Keep your cat indoors. Unlike dogs, it is nearly impossible to confine a cat to a yard. This can lead to many dangers for your cat, from cars, dogs, diseases from feral cats, and simply disappearing to parts unknown. Loose cats also be a nuisance to others, often killing songbirds and leaving unwelcome ‘deposits’ in neighbor’s gardens. If your cat really enjoys the outdoors, they can be trained to wear a harness and leash or you can invest in a specialty cat fence or screened-in porch.
Whenever you take your cat anywhere, use a cat carrier. No matter how gentle your cat is, it could become frightened. If this happens, it could bolt off and be quickly lost, injured or killed. At the vet’s office, your cat will be safe from unpredictable animals if you use a pet carrier.
While both animals are great to have and can peacefully exist with one another under one roof, don’t take adopting a new kitten too lightly. Plan ahead and have enough resources in reserve like cat food and such. If you are going to train your cat indoors, don’t forget to buy extra litter for the first few months because they can get messy.