Cat Health, Cat How-To, Guest Blogs

7 Tips for Keeping On Top of Your New Kitten’s Health

Author bio: This guest blog post was submitted by Isa.

Cats are known to be low-maintenance pets. Apart from feeding them, there is not much else you need to do to keep them happy and content. They don’t always demand regular outdoor walks or constant cuddles. However, when it comes to kittens, it’s a different story. In their young formative months, kittens require more care and attention.

If you’re looking for a way to protect your kitten (and wallet) in the long run, look into Nationwide Pet Insurance. This insurance covers everything from accidents and injuries, common illnesses, hereditary conditions, procedures (such as surgeries and cancer treatments), and more. As an owner of a new kitten, expect the unexpected and protect yourself with Nationwide Pet Insurance.

In this article, we give you seven tips for staying on top of your new kitten’s health. With these tips, you’ll pave the way for a healthy companion for years to come.

Photo by Jack Price-Burns on Unsplash

1. Create a comfortable home for your kitten.

This is a crucial first step, even before you bring home your kitten. Any newborn pet deserves a loving home. A comfortable place will set the tone for a safe and happy upbringing. 

Prepare for their arrival by purchasing all their newborn essentials beforehand. If possible, give them a designated room or area in your house. Furnish it with their belongings, like a soft cloth or bed for sleeping, a scratching post, a brush or comb, exciting toys, and a litter box. The more comfortable your cat is, the less stressed it will be.

Having the litter box in their area will also help in potty training. Unlike dogs, kittens don’t need hours of repetitive training. As long as they are familiar with their litter box, they will learn on their own. 

2. Schedule your kitten’s first vet appointment. 

It is important to schedule a first vet appointment for your newborn kitten. It usually includes getting necessary vaccinations and checking for parasites, fleas, ticks, and worms. Apart from these mandatory procedures, it is also a chance for you to ask your questions. Get tips on healthy food, habits, and grooming tips for your kitten.  Going to the vet will also help establish a complete record of your cat’s health.

3. Invest in your kitten’s health.

Apart from regular vet visits, there are other proactive ways to keep their long-term health in check. Start early and invest in some form of pet insurance. This will allow you to anticipate and address future health scares without panic or worry. Plus, you can avail of certain health checks needed for a newborn kitten. The best part is it will help you cut down on pet-related expenses. Owning a pet is a financial commitment, so jump on the chance to save on any extra costs. 

Research pet insurance for your kitten, and get a policy while they’re still young. This is the ideal time to apply for one, as they are not yet suffering from any conditions and illnesses. Additionally, it will cost you less than getting your pet insured at an old age.

4. Practice proper feeding habits for your kitten. 

Like newborn babies, kittens are fragile and need special food to strengthen their bones. Here is a list of widely suggested feeding habits and food items depending on their age:

  • For kittens below 4 weeks old:

Newborn kittens cannot eat solid food. Ideally, they should be given their mother’s milk. As an alternative, you can feed them a nutritional substitute or a kitten milk replacer. It is best to consult your veterinarian for the right formula for your kitten. While cow milk might be an obvious option, it can cause tummy aches for baby kittens.

  • At 1 week old: Feed them every 2 to 3 hours
  • At 2 weeks old: Feed them every 3 to 4 hours
  • At 3 to 4 weeks old: Feed them every 4 to 6 hours
  • For kittens between 1 to 3 months old:

You can start feeding them solid food, but do it slowly. Experiment with different high-quality canned food and see how they react. At least three times a day should be good enough. If they show signs of hunger, you can add a few more feedings. 

  • For kittens more than 6 months old:

Check with your veterinarian for instructions on which kitten food is recommended for your kitten as well as a feeding schedule that works best for your growing kitten. They can also recommend a plan to transition to adult food.

Keep in mind that these are general rules of thumb. It is still best to consult a veterinarian for the best diet plan for your kitten. 

5. Have fresh water available at all times. 

Kittens need water for sustenance. Pour clean water into a shallow bowl for them to easily drink from. Check it throughout the day and make sure it is clean. Lastly, do not give them any other kind of liquid. Although you may be tempted to give them milk, water is enough to keep them hydrated.

6. Pay attention to your kitten.

While cats are naturally independent animals, baby kittens are still prone to accidents. With their tiny physique, they will try to squeeze their way into small openings or in-between furniture. Moreover, if you are not careful enough, you may accidentally step on them or lose track of where they’re hiding. 

7. Set aside some playtime with your kitten. 

Kittens are a lot warmer and needier than older cats. Bonding with them will make them feel at ease in their new home. Apart from pet toys, you can play with pieces of string or crumpled paper.

In Conclusion

A newborn kitten will bring joy into your home. Give them the love they deserve by taking time to practice these tips. By doing so, you will create a happy and supportive environment during their formative years.