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Padme and Prudence are 8 week old kittens that we brought home yesterday. I pretty much know nothing about caring for cats aside from filling water dishes and food bowls for our outdoor cats as a teen living at home. DH has grown up with indoor and outdoor cats his whole life but I think his mom did most of the kitty maintenance. Two of DH's sisters are vet assistants and are full of 'do this and do that'. They aren't concerned about natural living, so I am hoping to get some advice so I can be the best cat owner I can be. I have some questions...please dont laugh if they are dumb <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"><br><br>
Is getting shots for kitty good or bad? SIL took the whole litter to her vet yesterday for their first shots. She's going to tell us when we are supposed to take them for their next ones. I delay and selective vax my kids, so I feel weird about giving my kitties shots.<br><br>
We are going to have them spayed when they are a little older. Is there anything to know about that? My outdoor cats as a teen were always spayed we kept them in the house to heal for a few days, I think.<br><br>
What kind of kitty litter should I get? We bought Feline Pine yesterday.<br>
How often do I scoop out the litter box? How often do I completely change out the litter?<br><br>
Food. The IAMS dry kitten food that they gave is to take home reeks. Does all cat food smell this bad? Its smelling up the whole east end of the house. Whats a good food brand for for kitties? I am a vegetarian, but I don't plan on feeding growing kittens veg kitty food. I am undecided whather I will at all. Wet cat food? Yes or no? If yes, when and how much?<br><br>
Any advice about cats on the furniture? Do you let your go in all rooms of the house? I intend to keep them out of my office and away from my WAHM inventory (which is already in bins). I need to add to my website that I have 2 cats now, in case someone is worried about dander and allergies.<br><br>
We have all tile floors ecxept in bedrooms. So I imagine with 2 cats I will need to be sweeping and mopping more often.<br><br>
What do you do about guests with allergies?<br><br>
What about fleas? My SIL suggests we use Advantage. Yuck. Will I have problems with fleas if the kitties live indoors all the time. What do you do about fleas if you have indoor/outdoor cats?<br><br>
Um, I think thats it. Any thoer advice? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mamaBlue</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Padme and Prudence are 8 week old kittens that we brought home yesterday. I pretty much know nothing about caring for cats aside from filling water dishes and food bowls for our outdoor cats as a teen living at home. DH has grown up with indoor and outdoor cats his whole life but I think his mom did most of the kitty maintenance. Two of DH's sisters are vet assistants and are full of 'do this and do that'. They aren't concerned about natural living, so I am hoping to get some advice so I can be the best cat owner I can be. I have some questions...please dont laugh if they are dumb <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"></div>
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None of these are stupid questions. As a long time kitty mommy, I will try to give some advice.<br><br>
[/QUOTE]Is getting shots for kitty good or bad? SIL took the whole litter to her vet yesterday for their first shots. She's going to tell us when we are supposed to take them for their next ones. I delay and selective vax my kids, so I feel weird about giving my kitties shots. [/QUOTE] Well, some may disagree with me but I am in favor of cat shots. They get out and into so much that we cannot control and they are really hard to clean that it can only keep them safe. It is much different from kids.<br><br>
[/QUOTE]We are going to have them spayed when they are a little older. Is there anything to know about that? My outdoor cats as a teen were always spayed we kept them in the house to heal for a few days, I think.[/QUOTE] Get them spayed asap or get ready for more kittens. The vet will tell you how long they need to rest. My kitties have always been guys (coincidence) and they were all ready to go after a day or two.<br><br>
[/QUOTE]What kind of kitty litter should I get? We bought Feline Pine yesterday.<br>
How often do I scoop out the litter box? How often do I completely change out the litter? [/QUOTE] Feline pine is a good choice. My rule is check daily, scoop what you see, change it when it smells really bad (anywhere from once a day to once a week depending on your cats and how often they use it.)<br><br>
[/QUOTE]Food. The IAMS dry kitten food that they gave is to take home reeks. Does all cat food smell this bad? Its smelling up the whole east end of the house. Whats a good food brand for for kitties? I am a vegetarian, but I don't plan on feeding growing kittens veg kitty food. I am undecided whather I will at all. Wet cat food? Yes or no? If yes, when and how much?[/QUOTE] There are so many brands of food it is ridiculous. Iams is kind of corporate now, not very natural. I would go to a good pet store, a small local one where you can get good advice and see what they have. Some cats need special food, like they have bad skin or allergies. We use Royal Canin for both the cats and the dog and love the way they all look great and are very healthy. We give wet food only as a kitty treat since it smells really bad. We leave food out all day for both dogs and cats and always have and only have had one fat cat in many years. I think that is just in his genes!<br><br>
[/QUOTE]Any advice about cats on the furniture? Do you let your go in all rooms of the house? I intend to keep them out of my office and away from my WAHM inventory (which is already in bins). I need to add to my website that I have 2 cats now, in case someone is worried about dander and allergies. [/QUOTE] My cats love to have a spot or two around the house just for them. An old, clean towel or an old pillow on a chair or in a window box is great. Keep directing them to their spot and keep it clean. I wash their beds about once a week or every 10 days. The dog has his bed, also. IT takes some training but they eventually get the picture. Cats like sunny, warm spots. Don't put their spot on your furniture or bed as they can't tell where their spot ends and your couch begins.<br><br>
A good vacuum is essential as well as a lint roller (the tape kind).<br><br>
They need clawing areas. We have two short rope scratch posts and two cardboard scratch posts. Keep their claws trimmed, cutting them when they start to get ridiculously rounded. Keep directing them to their scratching posts every time they start to scratch your furniture or rugs. They need to scratch so they need to have a spot to do this or they will ruin your good stuff.<br><br>
A good way to train them to stay away from whatever you don't want them to touch is to have a spray bottle of water handy. Give them a quick squirt to remind them "no" otherwise they don't understand no. Make sure they don't see it coming or see that you did it. (Hide it behind your back when you are done.) Give the bottle a shake beforehand and they will start to learn that sound and know it means do this and you get a squirt so stop doing it. This really works.<br><br>
[/QUOTE]We have all tile floors ecxept in bedrooms. So I imagine with 2 cats I will need to be sweeping and mopping more often.<br><br>
What do you do about guests with allergies?[/QUOTE] Get a good vacuum for the floors. As for the guests, there is not much you can do except clean when they come over and then warn them the cats are there.<br><br>
[/QUOTE]What about fleas? My SIL suggests we use Advantage. Yuck. Will I have problems with fleas if the kitties live indoors all the time. What do you do about fleas if you have indoor/outdoor cats? [/QUOTE] I was just doing some research on this and my vet confirmed what I found. Advantage is not the best because it does not kill all the life cycles of the fleas and it only lasts three weeks. We use Revolution or Frontline. This is another tricky topic with natural families but my dh is a biologists/toxicologist and he says the risk of the cats getting seriously sick from the flea killers is higher than the risk from the pesticide by itself so it is better to kill the fleas than risk getting them. We live in an area where cats do not go outside in winter very much at all so we only use it on them from spring thru summer. We make sure to do it no a day when we are going to be gone all day and then avoid them for another full day so we minimize our exposure. I recall having fleas in the house when I was a kid and it sucked. Kill 'em early.<br><br>
[/QUOTE]Um, I think thats it. Any thoer advice? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">[/QUOTE]<br><br>
You don't have to spend a lot of money on toys but they do need them. THey love a foil ball, a piece of string tied to a stick or just the stick. My fat guy goes nutso for those little bouncey balls that you get for a quarter from a vending machine at the grocery store. And, a good grooming comb is essential for getting extra hair off them and checking for fleas. I brush mine weekly. And, I never bathe them. They do it themselves.<br><br>
You will love having two. They are soooo cute together. They will bathe each other and snuggle together and just be really, really cute.<br><br>
Don't bet on keeping them out of your wah stuff. Cats love to hamper. Especially when we are on the computer.<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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I am assuming from the title of your thread that these are going to be indoor cats and not outside cats.<br><br>
As an owner of many cats over the years I can only tell you what I have done and do. Mine have always been indoor only meaning they NEVER go outside.<br><br>
I chose to vaccinate my kitties only when they were kittens. I saw no point in continuing it because their risk is so incredibly minute being indoor cats. Many states require rabies but again mine are never out and are not at risk and no one's ever come knocking at my door checking.<br><br>
I would recommend spaying whether indoor or out. Cats in heat are not fun.<br><br>
As far as litter goes if yours are happily using the felinie pine then continue using it. Some cats are picky and will let you know in some unpleasant ways. I scoop as is necessary both for smell and cleanliness. I've always used one litter box even with four cats but some cats don't like to go after one has just gone or if it's too dirty so you may have to adjust accordingly with either more frequent scoops or two boxes.<br><br>
I can't comment about cat foods because I just use plain old Cat Chow and kitten chow when they were babies. I've never had problems but there are definitely "healthier" foods out there. I can say that I would stick to dry. It's easier, more cost efficient and better for their teeth.<br><br>
My cats have freedom in my home. I guess it makes sense if you don't want them in your bed to keep them out or like your inventory just so it doesn't get ruined or filled with hair. I have those perches you can attach to the windows because they really do love laying in the sun or getting the fresh air when the windows are open. I don't mind them on the furniture because they love to lay next to me on the couch and with two young children it's not till I usually sit down that they get my undivided attention.<br><br>
Sweeping and mopping more often :LOL Yeah, I guess it depends on how anal you are. Some cats shed fur more than others. I am just so used to it that it really doesn't bother me. I actually find more of my hair on things than theirs so go figure.<br><br>
It's hard with people with allergies. You can clean and clean but it mainly depends on their sensitivity. Many people will take an allergy pill before they come over cause they know and they do fine. Of course I put the cats in another room while they are here because if someone doesn't like cats or is allergic to them you can be sure the cats will cling to those people :LOL<br><br>
I'll be honest when I lived up north I never ever had a problem with fleas...not with dogs or cats. I moved down south and it's horrible. I have dogs so I cannot say if my kitties would have a problem with fleas down here if they didn't pick them up from the dogs. I use Frontline for all my animals when fleas become a problem. The stuff works great.<br><br>
The biggest way to cut down on the shedding is by brushing them daily. As for cat toys, I found most of them to be a waste of money. They can have more fun with those plastic rings around gallon containers of milk or juice, those little 10cent gumball machine rubber balls, and pieces of tinfoil crumpled up.
 

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Yay! kitties!<br><br>
We have four cats ourselves. I am probably going to echo the same things as PP, but the more the merrier , eh?<br><br>
Shots: for cats i think it is important to give them some shots. ours havev;t had any in awhile. in this state (GA) rabies is mandatory. but you dont have to give them shots everyyear or anything.<br><br>
spayed: yes! as soon as they are able! i think they recover better when really young anyway, although they are more distressed by the wooziness i think. they will be fine by the next day, but make sure they don;t get too crazy for a few days (jumping up high and such).<br><br>
litter: we use regular old clumping litter, but i iwsh we could get them to use something like swheat scoop or some other. i may try to wean them to it anyway.... i'm afraid of the chemicals in the litter getting in their system via paws. do a daily scooping and then once a week or so, clean the whole thing out. make sure that they have at least one box per cat. some recc. having one more than you have cats, as they can get very picky about the box.<br><br>
food: IAMS, while better than some discount brands, isn;t welcome here by DH b/c they test on animals. we use a small brand sold at red bandana pets stores (all natural foods). see if you have one of those nearby. at first i was off put by the price of natural foods for cats. then i thought... its ALL they eat. and with only 2 cats, esp. kittens, a bag will last a good while. the local health food stores will carry them too. you can get a good size bag for 7 bucks.<br><br>
i agree with the other posters.... don't buy cat toys. mine LOVE those milk rings. they like to bat them, then carry them around in their mouth. scratching posts GOOD. OH! i can't say enough about the water fountains they sell for cats. the water is continually running and fresh. good investment.<br><br>
the great thing about cats is that they don't really need as much... i love them for their independence. they will bring you great joy!<br><br>
Sara
 

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I never gave an update! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> The kitties are wonderful and not nearly as scary as I had thought! :LOL They adjusted to their new cat food no problems. (I don't remember the name of it though - some holistic brand where the kitten food is in a purple bag.) They are using the kitty litter just fine - I was kind of worried because Feline Pine looks weird. We keep thir box in the hall bathroom and I scoop out the funk everytime I'm in there. I completely change the litter about 2x a week. Otherwise I think its smelly. We haven't had any potty accidents except someone has pooped in the bathtub twice. They aren't really into playing with any toys, just each other. We about one of those window shelf kitty bed thingys - Padme loves it. They have a scratching post that they love. They zoom over to it, scatch it all up, and then zoom away. Its funny.<br><br>
They be getting fixed as soon as they are old enough. My SIL's vet is going to do it and is going to give us the family discount. Yay! And we have decided to use Frontline on them. I haven't bought it yet though. I will next time I have to buy litter of food from the local pet supply shop.<br><br>
They are a lovely addition to my family. I am so glad we have them. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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Yeah! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/jumpers.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="jumpers">:
 
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