The first step to take when you get a new kitten is to allow a few days for it to adjust to its new surroundings and also for you to become acquainted with your new kitten’s health status. After a few days, you should bring your kitten to your chosen Veterinary clinic to be checked by the vet. At this stage you will be advised on all aspects of your kitten’s welfare and health care. This is the most important stage of your kitten’s life as the way you start your health care is the way you should plan to continue. Below are brief descriptions of the essentials that you need to be aware of when beginning with a new kitten. Further information can be found on our separate fact sheets or simply asking any one of our staff, after all that is what we are here for.
1. Vaccinations: Your kitten’s vaccination series begins at 9 weeks of age and finishes at 12 weeks of age with its adult shots. During this time your kitten should be kept away from public places. Your kitten is vaccinated against Cat Flu and Enteritis; two potentially fatal diseases. There is also vaccine for Feline Leukaemia available. Annual boosters are given thereafter to maintain your cat’s immunity.
2. Worming: Most kittens have Roundworms. These worms are harmful to children and can cause blindness. We recommend that you treat kittens every 2 weeks until 12 weeks of age and every 3 months thereafter to eliminate the threat of roundworms.
3. Feeding: This is very important to get right from the very start. Once weaned from the mother, milk should be discouraged and water encouraged. There is a huge range on foodstuffs available both tinned and dry, of variable quality. We strongly advocate the feeding of dry foods over tinned food. Do not feed cats anything other than cat food as cats have specific dietary requirements. There are some very good dry foods available on the market, that are easy to feed, less expensive and messy and very good for your cats teeth and bowel. The quality of the food that you choose is very important and will determine your kitten’s overall development.
4. Neutering: Unless you plan to breed from your cat, we recommend that you have your cat neutered from 5 months of age. Many new born kittens have to be put down as good homes cannot be found for them. Neutering your female cat will reduce the incidence of mammary cancer, eliminate womb infections, false and unwanted pregnancies. Neutering your male cat helps to reduce the kitten numbers. It also reduces them wandering, fighting, spraying, and inevitably transmission of disease.