Taking Care of your Cat

Cats can be one of the most lovable and playful pets to have. They bring a sense of radiance to the house and fill it with joy. Surveys conducted in the past have documented those families with cats in their house score higher on the happiness index. It isn’t surprising that cats are the most preferred pets to keep; by the single occupant. But keeping a cat at home means taking on a big responsibility. The health of the pet in the house is an indicator of the general health of the entire family.

Cat care begins the moment it is brought into the house. It should be introduced to its litter box as soon as possible as this gives it a sense of comfort. It feels that it owns its little space in the world. The children of the house will be very keen to get friendly and play with the cat. But they must be told that the new member must given time to settle down and get used to the place. Another prospective problem is if there are any other pets in the house. A dog could be a problem because it is not possible to judge the reaction of the other animal towards the new entrant into its territory. It will be best served it the dog is kept on a leash initially. The family should be very clear about the "incoming-outgoing" policy for the pet, before the pet arrives. Will the family be comfortable with the pet going out of the house as she pleases? Will the pet be accompanied by a family member? If the cat can leave and enter whenever she likes it is imperative that a cat door is installed before she is brought into the house. Keep it locked for the first few days; open it once the cat gets accustomed to the place.

The feeding dish and water bowl must be easy to clean. Plastic and aluminum are the most popular choices. The design of the dish and bowl should be such that is it is stable and does not keel over when a little pressure is applied. Choosing the right litter box could be a tricky job because the cat will not like any litter box that you offer. It has to feel and smell right. It could mean multiple trips to the local pet specialty retailer. The dimensions of the litter box must correspond to the size of the cat. Kittens might find it difficult to get accustomed to big boxes. A litter pan could be used in the case of a kitten. Once she grows up the pan could be placed inside a litter box. After sometime the pan could be removed. Cleaning the litter box is very important as an unclean litter box can be a breeding ground for bacteria and other insects. The usage of disinfectants could result in the cat never using the litter box again because of the smell. Ideally it should be scrubbed clean with soap and water.

Clipping the claws is necessary because it will prevent the cat from injuring herself on anyone else. But it is not a simple task because there is a vein called the quick that grows in the claw. Cutting this would lead to bleeding. It must be done with a lot of care using clippers recommended by the vet.

As a rule cats are not very fond of water. If brushing and combing does not clean her then the bath option is to be exercised. While bathing the cat wet her from head to tail and then apply a pet shampoo recommended by the wet. Avoid getting lather in the eyes or ears. Rinse thoroughly so that none of the shampoo is left behind. Dry her with a clean towel and keep her indoors till she is completely dry. The cat should be combed regularly to avoid the occurrence of fleas. While combing powder can be used separate hair that gets entangled with each other.

While traveling the temperature inside the vehicle must be monitored and regulated to suit the needs of the cat. If she is exposed to extreme heat, she could suffer irreparable damage. Ventilation must always be there.

The choice of vet must be made prior to the arrival of the pet. Ideally the vet should take personal interest in the cat and he must be situated at a convenient location in case of an emergency. It would help to go to the vet that is most preferred by people living in the neighborhood.

Article by: Anish Chandy - www.buzzle.com