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FutureStarrAdopting a cat
Last night, I got a flyer in the mail that pitched a cat adoption. How could I resist?Cats are territorial, and coming into a new home leaves them feeling really uneasy. There’s all that unexplored space, and who knows what may lurk there. Do him a favor and provide a small area to call his own for the first few days or weeks. A bathroom or laundry room works well. Furnish the room with cat amenities, such as food, water and a litter box. You’ll want to spend time with your cat, so make sure there’s a comfortable place for you to sit as well. Be prepared should be your mantra when bringing a new pet into your home. Cats are particularly sensitive to new surroundings and some may hide under a bed or in a closet for days or even weeks.
A cat’s claws need to be worn down, and they do this by scratching on things. Since you prefer that it not be your chairs and sofa, provide your cat with a socially acceptable scratching place. Some types are made of corrugated cardboard and lie on the floor; others are posts which have to be tall enough so that the cat can extend himself upward to scratch. You can encourage your cat (once he has arrived) to use the post by sprinkling it with catnip or dangling a toy at the top. He’ll get the idea. You’ll probably want a scratching post in each room where there is soft furniture, perhaps blocking access to it. You can also install sticky tape (available at pet supply stores) to corners of upholstered furniture to dissuade scratching. Don’t miss these tips on how to cut down on kitty’s scratching, how to choose a scratching post, and facts about declawing cats. As your cat adjusts, she’ll show signs that she wants to explore outside her safe haven. Make sure other pets or family members won’t startle her while she gradually expands her territory. She may be ready to play, so you can furnish some toys. Many cats like feather wands from the pet supply store, but homemade toys are often favored. A wad of a tissue paper to bat around or a paper bag to hide in can be fun. For more ideas on how to keep your cat entertained see Keeping Your Cat from Getting Bored.
A cat’s claws need to be worn down, and they do this by scratching things. Since you prefer that it not be your chairs and sofa, provide your cat with a socially acceptable scratching place. Some types are made of corrugated cardboard and lie on the floor; others are posts that have to be tall enough so that the cat can extend himself upward to scratch. You can encourage your cat (once they have arrived) to use the post by sprinkling it with catnip or dangling a toy at the top. They’ll get the idea. You’ll probably want a scratching post in each room where there is soft furniture, perhaps blocking access to it. You can also install sticky tape (available at pet supply stores) to corners of upholstered furniture to dissuade scratching. Don’t miss these tips on how to cut down on kitty’s scratching, how to choose a scratching post and facts about declawing cats. Now, you are ready for your cat’s homecoming. Preferably, bring them home in a cat carrier. It will feel safer for them. They have seen a lot of excitement, so take them directly to their new room. (Make sure the toilet lid is down if they are to acclimate in your bathroom.) Close the bathroom door before opening the carrier. Do not pull the cat out. Allow him or her to come out on their own and begin to explore their new home. Now, leave the room. Yes, leave…remember you are giving them time to acclimate. Go and prepare a small amount of premium quality cat food. Quietly place it next to the water bowl. Ideally, you would restrict their exposure to the whole family, but naturally, everyone is going to want to see them. Remind everyone of the ground rules you’ve set up. (Source: www.petfinder.com)
The centre will then arrange a home visit so that they can give you tips on things to think about before your rescue cat comes home. They can advise on environment, food and toys, and give any tips you may need on caring for your cat to keep them safe and happy. For example, as well as a comfortable bed, your cat will also need a snug hiding place for when they want to get away from the world - especially while they are settling in. With the steps above, you may be wondering, “How long does it take to adopt a cat?” The timeframe can depend on the shelter you’re adopting from. Necessary steps will need to be handled, such as contacting references and processing your application. Rescues that require a home visit will also need to schedule and complete that process before you can bring a pet home. All in all, time can range between a couple of hours to a few days. It’s important to remember, though, that these steps are put in place to help protect both animals and adopters.
Welcoming a new cat into your home is a momentous occasion and the start of a rewarding pet relationship. Although cats won't require regular walking like dogs do or cleaning of cages or tanks like smaller animals, they do need daily care and attention. You'll also be committing yourself to regular health care that includes basic immunizations and checkups to provide your feline friend with a happy and healthy life. Know what to expect when adopting a cat and you'll be ready for a memorable and positive experience. When you first bring your cat home, minimize your cat's space so it's less overwhelmed. You might confine your cat to one or two rooms for the first week or so, placing everything your cat will need in this space. Spend time with your cat to get acquainted. It can take a few weeks for a cat to fully adjust to a new home. If you have other animals, realize that the introduction of a new pet will require adjustments from the other pets. Animals naturally determine which one is dominant, so supervise the pets as they're getting to know each other. Keep a dog on a leash at first to control it so it doesn't overwhelm or show aggression to the cat. Cats tend to accept each other without much drama, especially if they are spayed or neutered. Don't forget to give your other animals extra love and attention during this time so none of them feel slighted. (Source: www.grove.co)