A lot of people think that cats are not as affectionate as dogs, but that is simply not true. Your cat can be a wonderful friend to you, and any cat owner knows that. You just need to know how to properly care for this wonderful animal. Here are some effective ways to care for your cat.
Choose a high quality food. The key to a healthy cat starts with nutrition. Take a look at the ingredients label. If you look at most “popular” commercial cat foods, you may be surprised to see the top ingredient listed is corn. Cats are carnivores, so look for a food with a real meat as the top ingredient. You may pay more up front, but these foods are often more nutritionally dense, meaning your cat eats less and the bag lasts longer.
Make your own enclosed litter box from a large tote box with a lid. Use a coffee can lid as a pattern to cut a door in one side of the tote. Place the coffee can lid fairly high up on the side of the tote. Trace around it with a permanent marker. Cut out the circle with tin snips or a box cutter. Add litter. Put on the lid.
Whenever you take your cat anywhere, use a cat carrier. No matter how gentle your cat is, it could become frightened. If this happens, it could bolt off and be quickly lost, injured or killed. At the vet’s office, your cat will be safe from unpredictable animals if you use a pet carrier.
The cat’s litter box should be placed in the right spot. Don’t put it close to your cat’s food or in an area that gets too much traffic. The area should also be well ventilated so that it doesn’t smell too badly. Not only will your cat appreciate it but you will too.
When training a cat, take the proper approach. Encouragement works better than anger. If you are trying to teach a kitten to use a litterbox, for instance, yelling will only frighten a small cat. When the cat starts to go outside the box, gently place them in the box so they learn.
Do you have more than one cat? If so, then you should have more than one litter box as well. Having one for each of your cats will give them multiple spots to go. If the odor gets too much you can add a little baking soda to the litter to freshen it up.
Let your cat exercise their hunting instinct. Cats are natural born hunters; however, this does not mean you need to allow mice to invade your home. Hide treats and toys throughout your home, and your cat will have a blast hunting down their treats. You can also find feather and laser toys that your cat can chase and pounce on.
Never try to teach a cat how to work a litter box. They do this by nature and don’t need to be taught. While some folks think you should pick up your cat and place their paws against the litter, this can actually be traumatic.
If you have a kitten, a very important part of raising him is to get him socialized. This means making sure he is comfortable in many situations. These include: handling by humans, grooming and nail care, vet visits, and other social situations. The time to do this is between ten and twelve weeks of age.
Sometimes cats can have problems with arthritis when they get older. This makes it harder for them to get around. You can buy them a heated bed to lay in to help ease the discomfort. It is also a good idea to talk to the vet about any medications that might help out.
Beware of panting. For dogs, panting is completely normal. Sometimes when cats are upset or too hot they pant, but there are other reasons they can pant too. Take the cat to a veterinarian, especially if they’ve experienced previous breathing problems.
You do not have to spend a bunch of cash on fancy toys for your cat to play with. Simple things like feathers and string are great for them to play with, and they are very economical. While you can still buy fancy toys if you like, you may get more benefit from them than your cat does.
Once your cat starts to age, they may have to go to the vet more often than they did before. To make sure that your senior cat is in optimal health, you should take him to see the vet at least twice a year. Make sure that you follow any advice given to you during the visit.
Feed your kitten a variety of cat foods to avoid a finicky cat later. Pick different textures and different brands on a regular basis and your kitten will learn to enjoy new tastes. This can also avoid feeding problems if your usual brand is no longer available in your area.
If you will be out of town or gone for more than a few hours, make sure to hire a pet sitter to take care of your cat. Most people think of pet sitters as necessary for only dogs, but they are important for cats too. You need someone to check in on your cat, make sure he eats and give him some love while you are away.
Take your new kitten to see the vet as soon as possible. There are many issues that can plague a kitten, and you want to make sure that you are on the safe side. If you are worried about the cost of care, you should look for volunteer pet clinics in your area.
Caring for a cat can take some time and patience, as cats will typically express pleasure and displeasure about the way things are going. However, the information here can help you to care for your cat in an effective way that keeps you both happy. Your friendship can last for years to come.