Owning a cat is a great decision you can make because those creatures can be wonderful companions. While owning a cat is cool, it is even more important to be prepared to raise them, to avoid the common mistakes most new cat owners make. This simple yet effective cat owner’s guide will see you through all aspects of pet care. The guide will take you through the process of cat selection, training, and grooming procedures.
Get the Right Cat
There are many factors you can consider when choosing a cat to adopt or purchase at the pet store. You may want a cat that is dog-friendly, energetic, with low hair-shedding levels, in this case, you may want to choose top breeds such as Cornish Rex, Devon Rex, or Sphynx, just to name a few. If you want a gentler, less energetic cat with low hair-shedding level, then you may want to go for breeds like Burmilla, and Aegean cat. Make sure you know the type of personality you want in a cat.
Feeding and Drinking
Cats do eat small meals throughout the day, hence you should make fresh water and food available 24 hours throughout the day. Make sure the food container is located away from the litter tray, and decant the food and water into an easily-washable full-size container that will allow the cats to eat or drink without the whiskers touching the edges. Make sure you choose stainless or ceramic drinking troughs for the cat and avoid plastic containers. If you find it difficult to get your cat to drink frequently, you can choose a fountain water dispenser to attract them.
You should be informed about the kind of food your cat will enjoy but it is possible to change her food by mixing 80% of old food with 20% new one. After 4-5 days, you may want to mix 60% old food with 40% new ones and after 2 weeks you may give them 100% new food which must be recommended by the pet store.
It is important to choose cat food based on their age and needs and to avoid nutritional deficiencies and allergies, please contact a veterinarian before feeding your cat with homemade meals.
Provide Comfortable Bed, Scratching Post and Litter Box
Cats can sleep up to 20 hours a day, hence they need a comfortable place, otherwise, you will find them sleeping in your flower pots or any other cool place. Choose an elevated site where they can monitor and control everything happening around them. Most cats will prefer the nest type of bed because it can serve as a shelter and resting place.
The scratching post is one of the most popular cat accessories because it allows them to file their nails and also mark their territories. Getting a scratching post near their bed will prevent them from scratching your curtain, furniture, and clothing. The scratching post can be located in a corner of the home and it must be high enough so that the cat can stretch her body fully.
There are different kinds of liter trays you can choose; the main options are the closed and unclosed liters. The closed tray liters are more comfortable and can help prevent odors. Most cats will rather prefer the uncovered tray liters because of the freedom to move in and out freely. Make sure the edges of the liter are low to facilitate easy exit and entry and it must be located in a very quiet place in the home. Depending on the number of cats you own, you should have a litter box for each cat.
Pet Grooming Essentials
Grooming is very important to keep your cat very healthy. If you are lucky to have a low hair-shedding cat species, you may not spend much time caring for her fur. It is important that you accustom the cat to regular grooming procedures by starting with a very short grooming session of between 5 and 10 minutes when the animal is relaxed. Offer treat after the short grooming session to encourage the cat for a longer grooming session.
Regular brushing helps to remove dirt, and dead hair thus eliminating tangles and other sticky substances. Make sure you brush the cat along her natural hair growth and be gentle when you reach the belly and chest region. A fine-toothed metal comb should be run through the cat’s fur, from head to the tail tip and make sure you pay attention to fleas and other bugs being removed from the fur. Make use of soft rubber brush to remove the loose hair and if the cat has long hair, use a wide-toothed comb to brush the hair and slowly untangle any knot.
Just like many pets that grow longer nails quickly, cats also require nail clipping, to keep their nails shorter and to reduce the risks of injuries. Make use of Cat Clippers to trim the nails. You can do this by placing the cat on your lap, and then make use of your forearm to drape over the neck of the animal and then the hind to ensure that the cat stays in your lap. The Cat Clippers must be held in the right hand and make sure you cut ¾ at least of the outer nail.
Bathing your cat at least twice a week can keep the animal healthy. Make sure you use recommended cat-friendly soap and clean water to clean the cat thoroughly and make use of a dry towel to pat the cat dry.
Just like dogs, cats also need some timeout to exercise to keep their weight in check. Brisk running and walking in the park or around the home for about 1 hour should be enough to keep the cat mentally stimulated. Since cats are mostly indoor pets, they should be allowed to roam freely without the need for a leash and collar.
You need to pay attention to the needs of your cat. A cat that suddenly withdraws from active social lifestyle could mean that she is sick. Wounds, allergies and regular scratching of the feet, hair, and back may also be a sign of a serious issue.