Is there anything more exciting than the arrival of a new kitten? Excitement aside, the first few months of your kitten’s life are monumental in terms of physical and behavioral development. As the proud owner of a new kitten, settling your cat in and establishing the foundations of a long, happy and healthy life for your cat can seem a little overwhelming, so we’ve created a new kitten checklist to help you out.

Bringing them home

When you first bring your kitten home it’s best to set them up in a small, quiet room of your house so that they can acclimatise and familiarise themselves with where their bed, food, water and litter is (don’t worry you can move this elsewhere once the kitten has settled in). Once they’ve settled you can gradually introduce them to other areas of the house. It’s important to establish house rules quickly, so if you don’t want your cat to go into certain rooms, don’t let them wander in there just because they’re a cute little kitten!

You can make your kitten’s transition away from it’s mum a little less stressful by putting a soft toy, a ticking clock, and a piece of fabric with the mother’s smell on it. It’s likely that your kitten will miss mum for the first day or two, but you can ease the transition by giving it lots of love and attention.

What do I feed them?

Keep things consistent for your kitten for the first week or two by feeding them the same food they were getting before you brought them home. An ideal kitten diet consists of quality commercial dry food alongside good lean meat for protein. Tinned or canned food should only be given as an occasional treat and certainly not on a daily basis.

At around 4 months of age your kitten will begin teething and it’s important to provide them with something to chew on to promote good dental health and protect against bacterial buildup. Ideal chewing options include tough pieces of raw meat or raw chicken necks.

Toilet training…help!!

Most kittens are toilet trained by the time they leave their mum, so you generally won’t have to do much. If your kitten does need some guidance, the key is to confine your kitten to a small room with their bed, food, water and litter so your kitten knows where to go and doesn’t get confused. You shouldn’t have to do this for more than a few days as kittens tend to toilet train quite quickly.

Health care

Week one of kitten ownership should involve a visit to Vets in Cranbourne so we can check up on your new feline family member, answer any of your questions, and provide you with some advice in relation to care and nutrition. Kittens usually need to visit the vet a few times to get their vaccinations and boosters, worming treatments and of course de-sexing which is performed at between 4-6 months of age.

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