Are you considering getting a new cat pet for the apartment? But how can you arrange it so that neither the cat nor you miss anything while living together? In this article you will read everything there is to know about making your life with your kitten an easier, safer, and happier place for everyone involved.
How To Take Care Of A Cat?
If you are preparing for the arrival of a new cat pet at home, it is good to know what all such care for a cat actually entails, and to be prepared.
In addition to quality food and water, a comfortable crib and a cat toilet, your cat also needs to grind its claws somewhere (better on a scraper than on the couch) and go crazy with toys. Last but not least, it needs your closeness.
Food And Water
The basis of good care is quality cat food, which has a high proportion of meat and is rich in vitamins and minerals. You can combine dry granules with meat pockets , cans , pâtés, or even cakes for a reward. It is better to dose the food several times a day in smaller portions.
However, because a cat does not have as much movement at home as an outdoor cat, it may tend to gain weight or be obese.
It is therefore advisable to give dietary granules for cats to less active cats or to use a food dispenser, which will confiscate the cat and at the same time limit its calorie intake. The cat should also have constant access to fresh water at home. A handy feature is the water fountain for cats, with which they can play and at the same time follow a drinking regime.
Beware Of Poisonous Plants In The Apartment
As part of the preparations for the arrival of a new cat at home, we recommend that you find out what plants you have at home and check that they are not poisonous for cats (poisonous plants include, for example, lilies, oleanders and narcissus).
The cat specialty is sometimes biting the leaves of plants, which in some cases can be very dangerous to their health. On the contrary, eating fresh grass leads to healthy digestion in cats – you can solve this at home by planting cat grass or herbs beneficial to cat digestion.
The cat needs some warm, soft and peaceful place to rest and sleep – and at best, it has not just one, but several. There are many possibilities – from classic pillow beds and hanging beds to the radiator, through cat houses to tall cat rests.
Each bed has some advantage. The pillow is soft, the heat is warm when it is heated, in the cocoon it is like in a hiding place and everything can be observed from a height on the resting place, which cats love.
However, it is not uncommon for your cat to sometimes create some litter on its own – for example, by drilling into a blanket, duvet or hiding in a closet “lined” with clothes.
The cat toilet should be located in a quiet place so that the cat is not disturbed by anything and at the same time has privacy when performing the need. The toilet should also not be located near food and water bowls.
There are several types of toilets (open, covered, smart) and bedding (lumpy, silicate, natural) – but it is essential that the type of toilet and bedding for cats is suitable for the cat itself, so you may have to try more options from the beginning.
If you are taking a new cat home, it is not a good idea to find out from the owner what type of toilet and bedding the cat is used to and to use it flexibly.
The cat toilet should be cleaned regularly every day, then it is advisable to change the litter completely about once a week. This will prevent an unpleasant odor that will not only please your sense of smell, but also your cat's sense of smell.
Most cats get bogged down when their toilet isn't clean, and some may even decide to do so elsewhere. You can read more about how to teach a cat to go to the toilet below.
To avoid scratching your legs from a table or a damaged seat, buy a cat a scraper . It is very important not only for grinding the claws, but by scratching the cat also marks its territory.
There are several types of scratchers, but the most suitable is the one that exceeds the cat and has a solid base so that it can lean properly into it. The scraper can be obtained separately, in the form of a scraping surface mounted on the wall and in the form of a roller, or within a resting place.
The advantage of the resting place is that it performs not only the function of a bed, but usually many scratchers at once, and is very stable. The more scratching surfaces a cat has available, the less likely it is that your furniture will have an “accident”. You can read more about how to teach a cat to use a scraper below.
Yes, cats also take care of their beauty, so sometimes they also require our care to enhance their appearance.
Although they manage a large part on their own – they grind their claws, clean their hair regularly – but that is not always enough, and therefore you should indulge in the comfort of your home “beauty salon” from time to time. This should include, first and foremost, regular trimming of the claws, using special pliers.
Even though cats use a scraper, their claws often remain sharp and need to be trimmed to prevent them from overgrowth. When trimming the claws, you should be especially careful not to cut too deeply and injure the nail bed (the darker part of the claw), as this will cause bleeding.
Another “salon” activity is hair care – combing and washing the fur. For a healthy and shiny coat, it is always good to comb the cat from time to time, so you can prevent the hair from falling out or, in the case of long-haired cats, shaggy hair.
But what about washing cats? Cats living in an apartment usually manage their own hygiene and therefore do not need our help. This is different for show cats, which require increased care for the hair that the spa includes.
It can also happen that your cat gets a little dirty and will simply need a bath. How to proceed in such a case?
How To Bathe A Cat?
As we wrote above – it is usually not necessary to bathe a domestic cat at all. It is generally recommended that you bathe your cat only if you are going to an exhibition or if it gets dirty outside. She manages normal hygiene with an overview on her own.
But what to do if you already have to bathe your cat? If your cat is not used to the bath from an early age, it may be possible to force it to sit in the bath calmly at the beginning and to scratch you during the bath without desire.
Everything is done better in pairs, so it's a good idea to invite another person to help. What do you prepare for the bath and how do you do it all without harming you and your cat?
Preparing the cat: Do not forget to cut the cat's claws (don't hurt you) and comb your fur before bathing. It is not a bad idea to get tired of the cat before the bath, for example a favorite game, or to choose a time for bathing after the bath, when the cat is calmer.
Preparing the bathroom: Get an anti-slip mat (or towel) in the bathtub to prevent the cat from slipping and, if necessary, any cat toys to distract yourself. Soak a few inches of pleasantly warm water in the tub, and if you are buying a cat for the first time, also put a bucket of warm water aside.
Cats usually do not have a very strong stream of water in love, so it is better to water the cat during the bath (it is convenient to take clean water from a bucket using a crucible). Next, prepare a towel, a fur brush and put on suitable clothing – long sleeves. After moving the cat to the bathroom behind you, don't forget to close the door!
Bath: Carefully place the cat in a prepared bath with water. You can try to unwind it with toys. However, it is important that you speak in the calmest possible voice throughout the bath and do not fight the cat in case of complications. During the bath, wash the cat with water from a bucket (or, if it is no longer afraid, running water) from the neck down to the limbs, in the direction of the hair. You can use a special shampoo for cats when washing.
Drying: Try to dry the cat's hair as much as possible with a towel. In the case of long-haired cats, it is good to comb the clean fur dry. And you're done! As a reward, you can give your kitten a good treat and maybe another bath will be even more pleasant.
In addition to proper food and the above-mentioned care for the appearance of the cat, you should also think about regular visits to the veterinarian as part of the health of your cat. Vaccination and deworming of a cat is the basis of good disease prevention.
At the same time, it is very advisable to let the cat be neutered, even if, for example, you will never look outside for other cats. Around the 5th month of life, a cat matures sexually and sexually, which is manifested by frowning – such a kitten often suffers from the fact that it can not go out for cats.
It's the same with a male cat, they usually mature around the 6th month and start to mark their territory with urine around the apartment. Therefore, it is advisable to have the cat living in the apartment neutered to avoid possible complications.
The cat is a playful creature. So don't be fooled by the fact that he often sleeps (about 16 hours a day), so he's not interested in the game – on the contrary! Especially with a cat in the apartment, it is necessary to play regularly, ie at least 15 minutes 1-2 times a day.
Many problems associated with the behavior of cats arise precisely because of the absence of play, because cats are bored and lack the development of so much natural instinct of hunting. They can then create mischief in the apartment or suffer from mental health problems.
The selection of toys on the market is very wide, so you can gradually find out what your cat likes best. Is he more of a “bird hunter”? Buy her a toy with feathers . Or does he prefer things to move on the ground, so is he more of a “mouse hunter”?
She will enjoy various balls and mice. Cats also like to catch a laser light , but they often win with a simple string or box, so you can sometimes try to make toys for your cat yourself. In short, there are a huge number of possibilities and you and your cat will not be bored when discovering them.
Remember that a cat should be able to entertain itself when you are not at home, so it is important to give it a view from the window – watching the surrounding events, especially flying birds, cats love and can spend a lot of time doing so.
However, always pay attention to open windows and balconies – you should secure them with a net so that the cat cannot fall down and hurt itself.
Leave a toy available to the cat at home, such as a mouse, with which it will be able to play on its own. There are also various interactive and electronic toys that will keep the cat entertained for a long time. However, thin and long things, such as a string, string or ribbon, should be avoided – the cat could swallow them.
A resting solution in the form of a high climber can also be a good solution to help the cat spend time when you are not at home. Here he can not only relax, grind his claws, but also play with a hanging toy, for example, and have fun climbing.
So it is definitely good to always think that the cat needs not only peace to sleep every day, but also time to get really crazy so that it does not get bored and have movement.
The basis of effective education is to create a strong bond between you and the cat. Your cat should not be afraid of you, it is necessary to build trust in it, and the same is true vice versa, in the direction of the cat.
In addition to petting and playing together, we should be able to raise the cat, especially in cases where he behaves aggressively, destroys the furniture or does his need elsewhere than in his cat toilet. However, many problems can be prevented or prevented, we will look at the most common ones together. But first the question – how to approach the education of a cat?
How To Raise A Cat
Once you have a new cat family member at home, it is important to focus on raising the cat in the first hours and days. In the first moments in the new home, of course, we let the cat examine all possible corners of the apartment, but at this moment we should also watch whether the cat does not start with inappropriate behavior (for example, biting a plant, jumps on the kitchen counter, attacks you).
In case of unacceptable behavior, say a scolding word to the cat in a strong voice, such as “no”, “you must not” or “yuck” (a term that the cat was used to from the original owner can be used) and move it to another location.
It is important to choose only one scolding word (but not the cat's name!), Which you will then use in case of inappropriate behavior, the cat will understand it more easily.
The key period in raising a cat is the period of childhood, when the kitten learns the basic habits of imitating the mother and social behavior through siblings.
You should therefore take your kitten home at the earliest from the age of 3 months, when he is already fully prepared for a new family and has acquired basic abilities and skills – he can perform the need in a cat toilet, he is used to receiving food from a bowl, grinds his claws on a scraper , has developed social skills.
It is also possible to use a clap or some other sound when scolding, which indicates your reluctance. However, you should never physically punish a cat, it would cause fear in it and would break the trust between you.
In addition to admonition, part of proper education is of course also praise – for good behavior (grinds claws on a scraper, performs the need on the toilet) always praise the cat in a warm voice, again using a single expression, such as “good” or addressing the cat – “good Eliska “. Caress the cat, or reward it with a bow.
As we mentioned above, you also need to give your cat a regular game and create opportunities for her to apply her hunting instincts – otherwise she is in danger of getting bored and depleting her energy, for example in your seat.
A good number of different toys, scratchers and a climbing frame or resting place are therefore a good prevention against inappropriate behavior.
The cat's upbringing is therefore based on admonition, praise and reward, it should be started as soon as possible. Remember that corporal punishment does not solve anything, but rather disrupts your relationship with the cat. Let's take a closer look at the two problems associated with cat behavior – performing needs outside the toilet and scraping furniture.
How To Teach A Cat To Go To The Toilet
The first days with a new cat are marked by learning, exploring and creating new habits. So let the cat overlook everything in the room and get acquainted with the new environment. If the kitten does not notice her toilet during the first surveys, help her find it.
For example, you can place her on the toilet and indicate to her that she can rummage in it (for example, by gently taking her paws to dig through the litter).
This is usually not a problem, especially if you have the same type of toilet and bedding at home that the cat was used to with its original owner.
However, in the first days in a new home, one or two accidents can occur, when the kitten makes a need outside the toilet. If this happens, it is not worth punishing or stressing the cat – take the feces on a shovel and bring them to the toilet, together with the cat.
Most likely, he will bury the mound and will already remember where to carry his need. If this problem persists, be patient and repeat the same procedure. If you notice that the cat is just about to perform the need outside the toilet (crouches down and raises its tail easily), you can gently lift it and move it to the toilet.
However, there may be a situation where a cat “peeks” out of the toilet, regularly. Many things can affect this problem, such as changing the bedding, relocating or soiling the toilet, a new member of the household or even health complications.
It may take a while for you to find the cause of the problem. But there are a few tricks to teach the cat to “pee” outside the toilet:
- Increase the number of toilets. Especially if you have more cats at home, it is necessary to keep in mind that each cat needs its own toilet.
- Change the location of the toilet. The cat needs peace and privacy to carry out the need. The toilet should not be near food and water bowls.
- Change the type of bedding or toilet. Cats generally tolerate clumping rather than silicate litter . However, it is good to mention that cats are more conservative creatures, so at the same time it is not recommended to change the type of litter regularly, but to stay with the tried and tested.
- In the case of a covered toilet, try removing the door. This can also help the cat in the accessibility of the toilet.
- Adjust the size of the toilet to the size of a cat. The cat must not feel cramped on the toilet.
- Don't forget to clean your toilet regularly every day. Then change the whole litter once a week. A point that should definitely not be underestimated!
How To Teach A Cat To Use A Scraper
Perhaps the most common problem we encounter in the apartment in connection with the cat's behavior is damage to the furniture. To avoid this problem, it is good to always have enough areas in the apartment where the cat can grind its claws, in the form of a scraper . But what to do if, instead of a scraper, the cat likes the seat more, for example?
If you catch your pet directly “at the act” as he grinds his claws on the furniture, reprimand him and move him to the scraper. Then mark the scraper on the scraper with your hand or cat's paw.
The use of various herbs that attract cats can also be an effective helper. Such an herb is, for example, valerian or catfish. You can apply the herb to the scraper in the form of drops or spray and watch how the cat reacts to it.
In the case of a positive reaction, when the kitten rubs against the scraper and possibly also uses it, you can repeat the application of the herb until the cat gets used to the scraper.
However, if your cat still prefers furniture to a scratcher, try wrapping this favorite piece of furniture with a rustling cloth (such as aluminum foil) and placing a scratcher near it.
When the cat gradually gets used to grinding its claws on a scraper, do not forget to properly praise the cat, or give it a reward in the form of a mash.
A kitten living in an apartment needs not only your care, plenty of fun and a good upbringing, but especially a home where she feels safe and well alongside her owners. When you give it to her, she will repay you with her unlimited farting love.
Thank you for reading, and we hope you've enjoyed this article!