June is Adopt-A-Shelter-Cat Month: 5 Tips for New Cat Owners

by on June 1st, 2011 at 7:00 am

Ready to adopt? Spontaneity and animal adoption don’t mix. Ensure that your household is prepared to handle the responsibilities that come with owning a cat, from feedings to cleaning the litter box. Before deciding on a particular breed, do your research! Some cats are friendlier with small children and other pets, and others may require more grooming and/or special care, so be sure to try and match your pet with your lifestyle.

Look past the kittens: If you’re focusing only on the baby animals, you may be missing out on a sweet, well-mannered older cat. While kittens require lots of supervision, patience and training, adult cats often arrive pre-trained (sans behavior problems) and ready to please.
Schedule a checkup with a vet: Many shelter cats need extra care in addition to regular vaccinations. Have them checked out by a vet you trust to ensure their good health.

Prep your home for your new furry bundle of joy: Stock up on basic supplies, like quality food, bowls, collar, litter box and toys in advance. In addition, make sure to cat-proof your home, removing stray items he or she may chew on and swallow.

Timing is everything: If and when you do decide to get a new cat, give your pet some time to acclimate to his or her new surroundings. Shelter cats may be especially nervous and anxious in a new home, but with time that skittishness should subside. Many shelters suggest adopting on a weekend or when you will have a significant chunk of unscheduled time to bond with your new pet.

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