Adoption, Cat How-To

Adopting a Cat? Here are the Things You Need to Know First

Welcome home, kitty!

Thinking about adopting a cat, but you aren’t sure where to look for information? 

Although information regarding cat adoption can be found at your local pet store and pet shelters, the best advice comes straight from the source–– other cat owners! They’re both familiar with the experience of adopting a cat, as well as how to give them a healthy, happy home! 

Cats come in different shapes, sizes, and temperaments, hence, you should do thorough research about the best type of cat for you before bringing a new kitty into your home. Kittens may be really cute, but they can be quite a handful and may require extra attention. 

We’ve collected some useful advice from cat owners from all over the world. Read carefully before you decide to become a mom or dad to a furry friend!

Learn How to Care for Them

Before you adopt a cat, be sure to check out various resources to learn about how they should be taken care of. It’s important you educate yourself on how to provide the care your cat needs.

When you nurture your cat, you’ll learn to nurture yourself. Your little buddy can help you love and respect yourself more.  Cats have even been able to aid in the healing process of physical and mental issues.

The purity, playfulness and authenticity of cats can teach humans a lot about life. Hence, people have found themselves better managing trauma, anxiety and depression after adopting cats.

Arrange Everything in Advance

Your cat will need its own personal space after moving in with you. This is where you can set up their litter box, bed, food and water bowls. The litter box and the bowls shouldn’t be close to each other though and they both need to be cleaned often to keep your kitty healthy and your house odor-free. 

Familiarize yourself with how to best manage the litter box, and how you can potty train your new feline roommate. This is an essential step, as an unclean litter box may cause behavioral issues and also spread bacteria.

Furthermore, check out this list, as you should eliminate all houseplants that may be toxic to your cat. You should also ensure all cleaning supplies are properly stored where your cat can’t access them.

It’s a Commitment

Before you visit the shelter, consider your daily schedule. Will you be able to feed your kitty on time twice a day? Will you be able to ensure it gets the proper medical attention as soon as it needs it? 

Your kitty can’t take care of themselves, so unless you live with a roommate or family members, the responsibility of your cat falls completely on you.  It’s important your schedule allows ample time to provide your cat with the care they need.

They Need Company

Despite how determined you are to have a single companion at home, your cat may thrive better if it has another feline companion in the household. People often complain about their cat’s aloofness, which causes the assumption that cats don’t like company, but in reality, cats love company.

They bond with humans, other cats, and other types of pets as well. Furthermore, having more companions will prevent your cat from developing velcro syndrome, which leads to excessive, clingy behavior. 

If you already have another pet in the house when adopting a new cat, you need to give your kitties plenty of time to get to know each other. The introduction process shouldn’t be rushed as it’s very important in establishing a healthy relationship for your pets. 

They Need Time to Adjust

Though kittens typically take more time to adjust to their new home, adult cats can also have a long adjustment period. However, cats that are typically more socialized and used to being around other cats and humans will likely settle in a little quicker.  

According to some cat owners, it took their cats around two weeks to get comfortable in their new environment. However, it can be a much longer process for others depending on your cats’ previous experiences and whether there are other animals present.

As a rule, you should ask the experts at the shelter and your vet advice on how you can make the adjustment process easier for your new cat. In addition, you should also ask your family and friends with cats about their “moving in” experiences.

Another point to be noted here is that the cat may be afraid of you due to past trauma. You have to gain its trust, and this may take some patience, but your kitty will become more and more comfortable as you give it love, attention, and plenty of treats of course!

How to Clean Cat Hair

Before adopting, be sure to check with your doctor if you, along with anyone else in your household, are allergic to cats. There are various ways to manage cat allergies, but it’s important to plan in advance, as once the cat enters your home their hair will be unavoidable. 

There is an easy way to minimize the amount they shed, though, and that is by giving your kitty weekly brushings. It may also be beneficial to give your cat a monthly bath and be making sure to always check for fleas.

In addition, you should get yourself a good vacuum cleaner, with which you can clean pet hair from the furniture in your home. Rugs and curtains should also be cleaned often to be rid of cat hair. 

Black Cats are Not Bad Omens

You may be familiar with the superstition that if you see a black cat, you will face some sort of misfortune. Guess what? It’s just a superstition!

Black cats are seen as symbols of good luck in many Asian countries. According to statistics, more black cats inhabit the Earth than cats of other colors, simply because of genetics. Their beautiful fur makes them look similar to black panthers, a connotation some people really love. Black kitties are cute, cuddly, friendly and whoever gets to care for one should consider themselves very lucky! 

Add to Your Emergency Contact List

After you have adopted a cat, you have to make some adjustments in your current emergency contact list by adding your vet’s number. You may also want to purchase books on how to keep your cat healthy and how to manage medical emergencies. 

Time to Adopt

If you’re thinking about adopting a cat, and are able to fulfill all of the above criteria, then you are in for a wonderful journey! Most cat owners agree that adopting their cats was the best decision they’ve made in their lives. Your new little buddy will have so much to teach you about love and life –– you’ll question why you didn’t adopt sooner! 

Author

Hi, this is Josh Cobbe, blogger, dog breeder, and dog food advisor at Petdogplanet. He spent his early years in the Los Angeles area before attending McGill University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, for his undergraduate training in biology ecology and environmental sciences.