3 Cats and a Newborn!!!!???? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 12:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi All,

My DP and I are expecting in March and my DP has 3 cats that shed a lot!!! Is this an issue with a new born??? Allergies? Breathing? Negative reaction? Hair in the air? I know all about the cat litter issue which I have been placed in charge of. But is there any serious concern about having animal and a new born specifically 3 Cats that shed a lot!!!??????

Anyone?

Jon
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#2 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 12:23 PM
 
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I had six cats when my babies were born. One cat is a long furred cat. I kept taking him to the pet salon to get shaved every few months. He still does in the summer. My husband cleaned the litter box everyday, and kept the litters fresh. We switched to clay litters during this time, since it is cheaper. We installed air cleaner for the house, took most of the carpets out, and replaced with wood floor where we could. All the cat toys were replaced and renewed often. I took all their pet beds out and used old blankets to lay out in a shape of doughnuts, or plastic bucket with rags inside for them to sleep in. These 'doughnut' blankets were washed often. The covers/sheets on the couch were also washed often. I didn't have the time to wash the cats as often as I did before my babe was born, but when I did, I use very well diluted dish washing soap and rinse the cat veeery well. The dishwashing liquid soap gets the grease off the fur the best. I often wiped the cats with Listerine to keep the coat clean.

Since, we moved, and now the cats are in the basement. We still have air exchanger for the house and no carpet at all.

Also, I make their 'tree house' with with cardboard boxes, yarn, hemp rope, tree branches and whatever I can find, nailed and glued with glue gun and duct tape. It’s cheaper to make one than to buy a cat furniture from a store. It is easy to replace, and can make one to fit into the space and size that is allowed in your house/room.
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#3 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 12:37 PM
 
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wow so I had 6 cats when my youngest was born and 4 when my oldest was born and honestly there was no problem at all we even have 2 dogs. As long as you do regular house cleaning like usual it is not a big deal.... honest. I think I worried a bit too until I had my baby and brought him home. The cats generally stayed away... they didn't really like him. Don't worry you'll be ok.
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#4 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 12:53 PM
 
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Originally Posted by greencat View Post
I often wiped the cats with Listerine to keep the coat clean.
.
Maybe I'm misunderstanding but that seems cruel. Cats groom themselves constantly and listerine tastes awful. I can't imagine it would benefit the coat that much.

With a baby coming, ideally you would do the same things you would do for yourself to keep the air fresh/house not smelly. I have dyson that is awesome for cat hair. Minimizing carpets is a good idea, but don't run out and get new ones if you can help it as new carpet is very toxic and much worse than cat dander.

Lots of people keep their cats - its really nothing to worry about as long as you use common sense

XM,: mama to ds (5/08), dd (9/10) and ds (6/12) ! whale.gif :C.H.S & M.

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#5 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 01:07 PM
 
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Yop, I think you have the point exactly. Keeping the house clean to keep the allergen down is the key However, I never broadcasted the fact we had six cats with the fear of DHS knocking on my door. The word 'animal hording' is now know (Thanks to Oprah), but just to avoid people's negative attention and stereotype.

I did, however test myself for Toxoplasmosis, although you can acquire it from raw meat. All my cats are exclusively indoor-pets, and never go outside to avoid getting disease (like FIP), worm, ticks, flea, ear mites, and car accident. Being an indoor-pet will prevent them from hunting our pretty native birds or getting injured by wild animal as well

So, keeping you and cats' health are the important thing to keep in mind.
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#6 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 01:17 PM
 
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A mouth full of Listerine does taste awful, indeed.

What I do is to take about a 1/4 teaspoon of Listerine on my hand, spread it in on my palms, and pet my cat's body with my wet hands, just to keep the dander down. This is a grooming tip of professional feline breeders, and they do this often at the Cat Shows. (I used to be one.) The Listerine dries up fast (unless you bathe the cat with it), and it won't hurt their gum for sure!
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#7 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 02:37 PM
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There's no need to wipe the cats down with listerine (OMG! In fact that could be dangerous, cats absorb chemicals quickly through their very thin skin) or anything, cats naturally keep themselves quite clean. If you have a long-haired cat you should be grooming it anyhow to avoid matting. Other than keeping the litter boxes away from the baby, and the cats off the baby's sleeping area while the baby is in it, there's nothing special you need to do.

A child is less likely to develop allergies when they are exposed to cats and cat hair than they are if they are kept in a surgically clean space anyhow. Dirt, dander, and fluff are good for kids, unless they develop a specific allergy later on.
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#8 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 03:24 PM
 
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I really hate to be put on my defensive side on the MDC.
The use of Listerine is an option when you have problem with cat dander with multiple cats residing. I am not going to discuss further about its use is safe or cruel to the animal, but I trust you would use your best judgment for your be-loved Cats.

Thank you,
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#9 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 03:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by whalemilk View Post
A child is less likely to develop allergies when they are exposed to cats and cat hair than they are if they are kept in a surgically clean space anyhow. Dirt, dander, and fluff are good for kids, unless they develop a specific allergy later on.
:

From everything I've heard and read, kids that are exposed to a little dirt and dander are acually less allergy-prone than kids that are kept in a super-clean environment with no exposure to normal things like animals, dirt, and dust. I'm not saying it's healthy to have a messy home or have the kid covered in cat hair, but otoh children should be exposed to the world - let them pet the cat, play in the mud, get dirty. http://www.cnn.com/2006/HEALTH/condi...ies/index.html
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#10 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 07:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by whalemilk View Post
A child is less likely to develop allergies when they are exposed to cats and cat hair than they are if they are kept in a surgically clean space anyhow. Dirt, dander, and fluff are good for kids, unless they develop a specific allergy later on.
: I have always heard this and never gave it a second thought when DS was born. We had 2 cats at the time, but I did make sure the cats could not get near the baby only for the chance of suffocation.

wife to DH 2/03, mama to DS 3/03 & DD 1/09
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#11 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 08:13 PM
 
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We have three cats and have for years. DD is now a toddler and we have another on the way. I don't do litter, but that's about the only issue.

We vacuum. We dry mop the hardwoods. DD has had cat hair on her hands or even rarely in her mouth, but it's never been a real issue.
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#12 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 09:59 PM
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Mmmkay but I maintain that it's probably not good to swab a cat down with anything alcohol based. They'll want to immediately wash themselves off (defeating the purpose of swabbing them in the first place) and if they consume too much of the substance, they could become very sick or die.

Not to mention it's just plain not necessary. A child with no allergies is not going to have a problem with cat dander. Allergies to environmental things like dander take time to develop, it's highly unlikely that a newborn would be bothered by the presence of normal, healthy cats.
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#13 of 13 Old 09-04-2008, 11:20 PM
 
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I just remembered about cats and crib. If you are going to have a baby bed/crib for your babe, you may want to look into a mesh 'hood' that you can put over the crib to prevent cats from jumping into the crib. I did not have a crib, but my cats took turns sleeping in the car seat when I forgot to put a big ball to prevent them :

For that matter, they also loooooved the bopper pillow : It is now theirs (in the basement.) They also chewed binkies and other soft baby toys that I forgot to hide : May be your cats won't do these annoying things, but these are the few things I had to deal with...

Above all, I wish you happy moments with your baby
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