New Home FAQ
Congratulations and thank you for sharing your heart and your home with a 30A Cat!
Introducing your new cat to your current cat or dog should ideally take a week or more. You can find some great articles using the link below, on how to establish a calm transition. Adoption failures are primarily due to rushing this process.
Who is My New Person: Your kitten probably bonded with the foster family and is now confused…leave your smelly shirt in their sleeping area for the first few nights…approach quietly and gain their trust by easy interactions. Remember that a few short weeks ago, they were living in the wild…they need you to be patient.
Verbal: Use simple repetitive phrases or commands in a light, positive voice. Talking to kittens frequently puts them at ease. Kitty Verbiage: ARE YOU HUNGRY?, TREAT, NO, PLAY, READY!??, GOOD BOY, GOOD GIRL Using basic words helps them anticipate events, lowering their stress and help you to connect to them. Encourage interaction even if on a simple level. “CHURU” Creamy CAT Treat is a great way to bond!
Safe Zones: Create safe spaces for kittens to lay or hide inside where you never pick them up, but randomly you may walk up and pet them very briefly. This encourages them to sleep and relax out in the open rather than seeking hiding spots under beds or in closets. Smaller space is best until they have confidence.
Safety: Many kittens die of hypothermia or drowning! Toilet Lids CLOSED! Put a post it note on lid! Clean floors…THEY MAY EAT ANYTHING…exploratory surgery can cost up to 4k and kittens die. When you leave them home alone…do a safety check and make sure they are not stuck in a closet….USE a water spray bottle near front door to deter them from trying to get out.
Water: Access to fresh clean water daily is critical to good health.
Toys: Naughty or destructive behavior usually stems from curiosity or boredom. A variety of toys can redirect their energy. Your interaction gets them involved in playtime. Using the word PLAY is a stimulating signal for them and redirects their focus. Using the word NO, coupled with a quick snap of the fingers and a pointed finger tells them to STOP what they are doing as it could cause harm to them or destroy furnishings. Keeping a long range water spray bottle nearby for the hard to STOP behaviors, may be needed temporarily. Try to avoid them seeing you shoot them as they can associate it with you as a negative interaction, Furniture sticky tape also discourages scratches: scratch post is a must! Always inspect toys for choking hazard and damage over time. Kittens love to have access to a dedicated ‘toy box” with all their favorite past times. Never use your hands as toys. This teaches them to bite humans….not fun when they are full grown. Especially critical for kittens raised as only in a litter.
Human Meal Time: It is tempting to want to feed your kitten from your plate as they will become interested in human food quickly. Warning, they will progress to getting on counters and licking your plates clean if left unattended after tasting human food. Best bet is to feed them their food near the time you sit down to eat or have a bag of treats nearby to satisfy their curiosity in mealtime, while continuing to bond with you.
Litter Boxes: If you home has multiple levels or multiple cats, consider multiple boxes. Keep them cleaned daily! Cats will start going outside the box if too many cats are using it or if it is dirty!
Clicker Training: Use the (Dog) clicker for treats and mealtime. This way your kitty will come out from hiding willingly. Use the clicker to find them before you leave home and reward them for coming. Never chase or corner them so you build their confidence in you.
FAQ Foster Medical Topics:
1). My new cat/kitten acts sick or has diarrhea.
Transition can cause stress on digestive system. INTAKE and OUTPUT is how we understand if your kitten is not feeling well. Monitor their food intake and always look closely at their stool…color, consistency, smell and frequency. If you are fostering, please contact your adoption coordinator with questions as we have certain vets that work with us prior to the adoption process at rescue prices. IF YOUR FOSTER KITTEN NEEDS IMMEDIATE MEDICAL ATTENTION…please attempt to contact us so that we may assist in getting them proper care at one of our ER locations.
2) My new cat/kitten is not using the litter box.
Frequent cleaning is imperative. Multiple litter boxes for multiple cats. Multiple levels of a house may require multiple litter boxes until your kitty understands and remembers your floor plan. Most of our kittens start out with the pine litter but transition to other types readily.
3) My new cat/kitten is not eating the food I have.
If your cat/kitten was adopted from the Pet Supplies Plus location, it has only received dry food since it came to the store. Prior to that it was given canned and dry daily. There may be an adjustment period as it adjusts to new flavors and feeding times. Kittens should have access to water and dry kitten food for the first year. We encourage supplementing with canned kitten food at least for the first year as they may need the additional fluid and nutritional support as they were born in the wild. Don’t over feed and leave canned food out to spoil. Eating this can give them an upset tummy. Adding a splash of warm water to cold canned food can encourage them to eat. Never microwave kitten food and your baby could get burned. We discourage offering any dairy products or human food to cats or kittens. Many human ingredients are actually toxic to cats.
4) Medical Records: You will receive your cat/kitten medical records on the day of adoption.
If you are a “foster to adopt” due to a young age of kitten…your adoption coordinator will work with you on establishing a neuter/vaccine date in order to finalize your adoption. We highly encourage getting a chip for your cat/kitten as it is the only way they can speak to the strangers who are lucky enough to find them when they are lost!
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