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Kitten questions - lots of them too!

dtbmnec
May 28th, 2006, 04:53 PM
Hello all!

I made the leap about two weeks ago and got a kitten! His name is Leo, he's a barn cat, is NOW about 6 - 7 weeks old, is very playful, eats a ton, bites EVERYTHING (I think the only part of me he hasn't gotten in my knees and probably only cuz he can't fit them into his mouth!), and is a wonderful wonderful active kitten. He's all black but you can see the Tabby in his fur in the right light. Oh and he's got this conglomeration of white hairs under his chin/on his chest area (it's not actually big enough to be a patch...yet). After realising how much he's eating (but he's not fat!) I think I should change his name to Hoover...:eek: He's an indoor kitten with no way of getting outside on his own (no balcony/open windows).

Anyway, a wee bit more background (what I know of it): He's a barn cat that was taken from his mom faaaaarrr too early (at like 4-5 weeks of age). I got him for free from my boyfriend's parents (the boyfriend lives with me) and he's healthy and happy etc. so all is good in the world.

I am aware of the fact that he was taken far too early however because of the barn that the kitten was born in, there are quite a few places where his mother could hide him until he got old enough to fear humans (there have been many litters of kittens and unless they catch them early they don't catch them at all and when they do they don't take to humans very well). There's also another female cat who will litterally come out claws flying if you approach her or her babies and they can't catch her or her offspring. *shakes head* I wasn't too happy when I realised how early he was taken away, but did I have much say?

Now for the questions (yes I am aware that these could quite possibly be silly questions but I've never had a cat before and am known to be a bit of a worry wart!):

1. Food: He's mostly being fed wet....but I have enough cat food to last him the next forty years I swear! Anyway, I asked the vet and she recommended Science Diet and to only feed him wet. I went to the store and talked to the lady there and she said that Royal Canin (the super baby formula) is the way to go. So I've got both and am sorta feeding him both. He doesn't seem to have any issues with them (other than the fact that he eats more than my boyfriend does!) so I think all is good. I'm just not sure which food is better for him....and the wet stuff only comes in small cans and he's only supposed to be fed about half a can but quite often he'll finish off an entire can (entire cans are supposed to be fed for a 3 pound cat, he's tops about 2)! He is very active so I'm assuming because of that he'd eat more right? Normal or has he gotten to the catnip too early?

2. Playing/Biting: Kittens = Biting, yes I know and totally understand. I have toys coming out of my rear for him, we have fishing toys, a lazer pointer, 2 little catnip mice, 2 dingly balls for him to chase, a scratching post with little ball things on it, we have tinfoil balls, we have toys toys toys! So you'd think he'd be happy with not biting everyone's ankles and fingers....but no he always gets our ankles/toes/fingers. Eventually I am going to have to get him to stop nibbling on fingers and toes and everything else, but he's teething and doesn't seem to like his toys as much as me! Whenever he bites too hard though I've told people to tap him on the nose and say "Easy" in a loud voice (don't want to use NO which sounds like LEO). So far I've been the only one who's been doing it and I'm going to kill people for that but that's another matter. A few times after I've disciplined him for biting too hard he spits at me (or hisses or something, just really really short like). Am I doing something wrong here or something?

3. Remote Punishment: All well and good except he doesn't actually mind being sprayed with water (either that or he hasn't figured out that it can't actually rain inside the house). And I'm not sure how to "remotely punish him" when he's chewing on the various electrical cords (ones we can't get rid of/hide for various reasons) nor can I be in about six places at once either! I'd do the whole vinegar/lemon juice/smell cat doesn't like but on electrical wiring?! And ummm there's an entire mass of wiring behind my night stand and he likes going back there, and while I don't mind him actually physically back there I don't want him to chew!

*sigh* I'm so confused and want him to be a good kitty and grow up well adjusted and all that (which is going to be the real feat since his humans are nuts anyway!).:confused:

Advice, pretty please?

Megan

P.S. I just realised how long this post was....oh my....sorry.

Lucky Rescue
May 28th, 2006, 05:58 PM
Congrats on your new kitten! A few answers to your questions......and NO questions are "silly"!

I would feed mainly wet food. You will be getting him neutered in a few months, and wet food is by far the best for neutered males, if you want to avoid urinary blockages and crystals in the bladder.

My opinion is that Royal Canin is not very good food.

You are feeding him way too much, which can cause upset tummies and diarrhea. Feed him about 3 small meals of canned during the day, and leave out a little dry for him to nibble on.

Whenever he bites too hard though I've told people to tap him on the nose and say "Easy" in a loud voice (don't want to use NO which sounds like LEO). So far I've been the only one who's been doing it and I'm going to kill people for that but that's another matter. A few times after I've disciplined him for biting too hard he spits at me (or hisses or something, just really really short like). Am I doing something wrong here or something?

This is a tiny little baby. Kittens need to hone their stalking and hunting skills and that is normal. Punishment will NOT work on kittens, or on cats for that matter. As you've seen, doing this is met with aggression on the kitten's part. This, or fear of you, will most likely be the outcome of any punishment.

I'm so confused and want him to be a good kitty and grow up well adjusted

A tiny kitten taken from mom too early and raised in isolation from his own species is not going to grow up to be well-adjusted and will suffer from "Single kitten Syndrome". His inborn instincts are to stalk, pounce, attack etc and they are being thwarted and punished. Kittens raised this way can mature to be shy, fearful or aggressive. Plus, if you decide to get another cat down the road, yours will probably be totally unable to relate to or accept his own kind.

I STRONGLY urge you to get another kitten the same age, so yours can learn to be a cat and have a playmate. Then you can enjoy his antics and not worry about spraying a 7 week kitten with water (which he does NOT understand.)

Kittens are most active during the night when you are sleeping and need the company of their own kind. Two kittens together are not only great fun to watch, but will teach each bite inhibition in a way that they understand and are easier to care for - no more bitten fingers!

So important is it for kittens to have playmates and companions of their own kind that many rescues, including ours, will not adopt out a kitten into a home where there is not another cat or kitten.

dtbmnec
May 28th, 2006, 08:13 PM
Thanks for the reply...

I've considered getting another one, however I'm worried about the costs (I'm a student and so is the boyfriend). I'm not going to "skimp" by not taking them to the vet etc. because I've already taken the little guy (heh he didn't like it....come to think of it I don't know why he would...). I'm currently lacking a job (though I'm on my way to get one) and I'm prepared for the costs of A kitten. I'm worried more about the vet bill than anything (spaying/neutering two cats, shots for both cats etc.) and I'm not sure if Leo's vet will give a "cut rate" on any of it (ie. if I brought in two kittens for their second shots instead of 80 bucks each I'm paying like 70 or 75 each). I don't even want to think about him or his playmate getting really sick either....

Leo wasn't my idea....I was going to wait for another year or so before getting a kitten (I would be out of school and on to a full time job at that point and better able to afford him) but the boyfriend fell in love with Leo and didn't want him sent to the SPCA (his sisters were brought there last week). I love Leo to bits and wouldn't change him for the world but...You see the dilemma...and if I get a little playmate for our little Leo: boy or girl? (I'm not even gonna think about names yet cuz the boyfriend and I had such a time agreeing on Leo!)

I shall have to do some more thinking on the subject...I'll talk to the vet's office tomorrow and see what they say about any "cut rates" (heck I'd take even 5 bucks off total!) they can give me. At this point I'm gonna have to buy a kitten from the store since the boyfriend's parents haven't been able to catch any kittens from the other litter yet.

I did think about adopting a kitten from the local SPCA however I really don't care about the microchipping that they'd do and this package that comes with? I dunno have to look into that some more too... About the spay/neutering: I'm not sure I want a kitten that's already been neutered until they are older (like 6 months is when Leo is due) because their immune systems can handle it better....

At your rescue, when you get a young kitten and give/adopt them out in one of these wonderful packages do you spay/neuter before 6 months or do you say "come back to us when he's about 6 months old and we'll pay for it then" kinda thing?

I don't want him to be shy.....I want him happy and cuddlyish (to a certain extent of course, I don't expect him to be at my whims, it IS totally the other way around anyway!) and not afraid of humans....and he's going on a diet! It is rather hard to stay mad at him....

I know its all jumbled in there and stuff and I'll come back later to put it into some semblance of organization but right now a major migraine is being a pain.

Thanks

Megan

Brat
May 28th, 2006, 08:32 PM
My family cat is almost 6 now. She grew up without any other animal friends and she is now quite mean around any other animals and a lot of humans too. She doesnt want to be touched, she doesnt play.. It's kind of sad.

A few months ago I adopted a kitten and decided 2 months later to get him a friend. Well, I ended up getting him two friends :) These little guys have never bitten me, they are extremely affectionate, and afraid of nothing. I absolutely love it. I can see the difference between how they are growing up and how my family cat grew up.

They also live with a 100 pound Husky/GS which I'm sure helps.

There are only a few things that drive me nuts. They are up at night and tearing apart the place. Bouncing around, climbing counters, dropping plants. But these are things that I sort of needed to adjust to. )Placing the plants higher, tie wrapping the electrical cords behind the tv, etc.) One of them is picky with the litterbox and will take it upon himself to decorate my carpet with what he thinks would look nice. The other two don't mind the litter at all. They talk to eachother a lot more as well which is cute and can get annoying when you're trying to sleep ;)

I know the vet costs are a little higher but I truly believe that having a companion for your kitten is the right path to socializing him.

Lucky Rescue
May 28th, 2006, 08:48 PM
I agree with you - people shouldn't get pets if they cannot afford to care for them properly!

and if I get a little playmate for our little Leo: boy or girl?

It doesn't matter, but neutering males is usually a lot cheaper than spaying females, since spay is major surgery, boys often can be much better pals than a male/female combination since females often don't like their rough play. Speak to your vet about a good rate to have two kittens done at the same time.

At this point I'm gonna have to buy a kitten from the store

PLEASE - never buy a cat at a petstore. These kittens come from unethical and irresponsible people breeding cats to make a few bucks, when cats are way overpopulated and dying in shelters and on the street every day. And since these people couldn't care less about the cats they bred, you could get a very sick kitten this way.

Please go to a shelter or rescue for a kitten or go get one of Leo's sisters. A rescue is very good costwise: Kittens are usually dewormed, deflead and spayed/neutered and the adoption fee is much less than you would pay to have this done yourself. Feeding two cats costs very little more than feeding one and cats do not need expensive food from the vet!

About the spay/neutering: I'm not sure I want a kitten that's already been neutered until they are older (like 6 months is when Leo is due) because their immune systems can handle it better....

That's not true. A little kitten recovers from the surgery nearly instantly, where an older kitten or cat will take longer. I've had lots of kittens sterilized, and they act like nothing happened the very next day! PLUS, a 6 month old male could start spraying, and certainly will start stinking when he urinates - not pleasant at all.

At your rescue, when you get a young kitten and give/adopt them out in one of these wonderful packages do you spay/neuter before 6 months
Our vet recently started performing pediatric s/n, so now we have all kittens done before they are adopted. Previously, we would make a vet appointment for adopters for when the kittens were around 4 months old and made sure it was done.

Also, indoor cats do NOT need annual vaccinations I don't believe in this, have never done and believe it can be detrimental to a cat to have it done.

To find kittens, you can go to www.petfinder.org and type in your location.

Here's an example of kittens needing homes at the high-kill Hamilton- Wentworth shelter:
http://search.petfinder.com/petnote/displaypet.cgi?petid=6375844


http://wwww.petfinder.com/fotos/ON112/ON112.6375844-1-x.jpg

Oh, and how about a pic of Leo?:)

LM1313
May 28th, 2006, 09:56 PM
I highly recommend getting Leo a playmate! :) My kittens are from the humane society and were dropped off "too soon" at about seven weeks old. I taught them not to bite by never playing with them with my fingers and shouting "OW!!" whenever they bit or scratched and then withholding play for a few minutes. They are now ten months old and don't bite or scratch. :D

Also, two kittens will be able to play with each other late at night when they get the urge instead of trying to wake you up to play. ;) And when you aren't around, they'll have a friend to hang out with. Plus they'll be able to live out their kittenish urges (biting and pouncing) on an appropriate target, another kitten, instead of your fingers or friends. :)

My pair are males from different litters and are best buds!

Here are my boys at seven weeks:

http://www.superpony.com/Images/Kitties/10_21_05/KittenLove1.jpg

And a few weeks ago:

http://www.superpony.com/Images/Kitties/04_01_06/hmm.jpg

Don't worry about them getting neutered early . . . my boys were neutered at seven weeks old, weighing less than 2 pounds apiece, and they got over it SO quickly. The very next day they were bouncing around and chasing each other like nothing had happened! Personally, I think it's better for them to get neutered early and get it over with. :)

BTW, I feed mine Natural Balance venison kibble, as Booster (the siamese) gets EXTREMELY stinky, runny poop whenever he gets food with chicken in it!

~LM~

Lucky Rescue
May 28th, 2006, 10:02 PM
Don't mean to hijack this thread, but how stinkin' adorable are they??? Look at how they love each other....awwwwwwwwww!:p

She grew up without any other animal friends and she is now quite mean around any other animals and a lot of humans too. She doesnt want to be touched, she doesnt play.. It's kind of sad.


Yes, my brother's cat, who passed away at 16 last week, lived without other cats from the age of 6 weeks. She was frightened of everything, and terrified of any other animals. If she saw a cat, she would just freak out. Sad.:(

LibbyP
May 28th, 2006, 10:04 PM
I have to agree with Lucky Rescue on many points:) . If at this time you do not feel capable of affording two kitties then find a friend/neighbor or family member who has a friendly kitty for play dates, on a regular basis. This way your Leo will get the socialization he needs so when you do bring a new member into the home he won't flip out.:sorry: but do not go to a pet store, when there are sooo many kittens/juniors/adults out in shelters and rescue that need and deserve a good forever home. Alot are already spayed/neutered shots up-to-date etc...Oh ya as far as being spayed/neutered at an early age is awesome:thumbs up (in my eyes) I've had all my animals done as early as 12wks some of them, the recovery was much easier, didn't have problems with spraying, dominance, going into heat, etc...another thought what about fostering?

dtbmnec
May 28th, 2006, 10:44 PM
Awww they're soooo cute! All of them! I want to take them all home as my own!

As for the vaccines I'm only gonna get the beginning ones (the ones they need, the rabies etc.) I didn't know we were supposed to get Annual ones and well since they aren't gonna be outside chances are they aren't gonna get much. Yes I know I can track stuff in on my shoes but its a lot less likely than them being outside.

If I'm getting another one I'm gonna try for one of Leo's sisters/brothers or I'm gonna see if I can get one from the SPCA but at the same time the SPCA is a wee bit more than I thought it would be! What I'm wondering is if I go there and NOT ask for the microchipping then it might lower the cost a bit. Worth a shot right? I had no idea about the pet stores, though apparently the local dogs that they have are from breeders. (??)

The only issue is that the only litter left is the one where the mother attacks if you come close to her. The kittens aren't really sociable either (though Prince, one of my friend/ex-roomate's kittens from that mother, turned out really really well) and are a bit more of a challenge. That also has to take into consideration that we actually manage to catch any of them!

I agree with the whole not being able to afford a cat then don't get one. I hadn't realised that if I get one kitten I should actually be getting two. No one told me! I do have money (I've got a student loan) and again I am searching for a job so I'm not totally up the creek here! Oh and the boyfriend is paying half and half. There are just soo many things for me to consider right now and its soo difficult to decide (and on a Sunday its hard to find any information at all)!

As for the biting thing, I seem to have been a bad girl myself and used my hands for play :sad: I mentioned Prince earlier, and we did that with him and yes he bites during play but never any other time. He's a very nice cat and loves people (he was brought up alone too) and is very active (he's also an outdoor cat who's now an indoor cat). He's a nice cat and I wish I could have kept him and I should have but he's got a family.

Leo is actually extremely good about staying asleep for most of the night. I've been impressed actually! The only time he wakes me is when he wants food, usually at 7am! lol

I'm gonna try getting a picture of the beast however he's really really active and the only thing I've got is a webcam/camera and getting him to stay still is hell! lol I shall try because I have to show my friends, too!

Fostering? What do you mean?

Megan

P.S. Usually I do shorter posts...but wow! I'm a talker. I love my kitten sooo much!

Edited: for other posts being added while typing....tee hee

LM1313
May 28th, 2006, 11:35 PM
I had no idea about the pet stores, though apparently the local dogs that they have are from breeders. (??)

Don't believe them! Pet stores will lie about where they get animals because people respond a lot better to "Oh yes, we get them from local breeders" instead of "Oh yes, they're shipped in from a puppy mill where the mothers live in filth and neglect!" :( No good breeder would EVER sell a puppy or kitten to a pet store because they want to screen people to give their critter a wonderful home, whereas a pet shop will sell an animal to anyone, ANYONE, with money. Also, many pet stores will kill the animals if they start to lose their puppyish / kittenish looks before someone buys them. :( I know someone who got a pet store in England shut down after she reported them for killing unwanted animals (either "too old" or ill)--from kittens to parrots--by putting them in bags and slamming them against a brick wall, then leaving them to bleed to death!

I'd love to see a picture of Leo, he sounds gorgeous. I love black animals. :love:

~LM~

dtbmnec
May 28th, 2006, 11:42 PM
I know I know I'm double posting bleh! The only thing is I couldn't wait!

I checked out that petfinder site and OMG I want to take them all home! lol I am seriously debating getting either Coal http://search.petfinder.com/petnote/displaypet.cgi?petid=6032243 or Omenhttp://search.petfinder.com/petnote/displaypet.cgi?petid=6181766, but if I get another black one I'm afraid of getting them mixed up!

I'm just not sure if I want to get a male or female! The boyfriend figures we should get a female cuz then we only have to fix the one (which I think is a wee bit irresponsible and it seems to be better to have them fixed either way) but I'm just not sure! There really isn't any way for them to get out unless people are super stupid (they have to go out our door, one of the doors on the ends of the hallway, and then out a third door to get outside)

Megan

BTW piccies in my other welcome threadhttp://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=27110

abudamunky
May 29th, 2006, 01:22 AM
either way u would need to get both fixed a female in heat is NOT fun to listen to for a week straight. plus she's in a lot of pain and it'll bring all the neighborhood toms around. the male will spray b/c the neighborhood toms will come around and it's kinda kinda what boys do ("this is mine!")
some kitten can be weaned as early as 4-5 weeks. it depends on the mommy and etc. my mom's 8 wk litter doesn't nurse much where as my litter at 10 wks still tries to nurse. some momy kitties don't produce a lto of milk or just are not 'interested' in nursing.
as for answering your questions:
1-i mix my kitties wet and dry food (since there were 8 of them until a few days ago i'd feed a whole can mixed w/ about 1/4 cup dry food and they loved it) although it does make the litter box smell more...:yuck: ..wet would be best for little leo now since he's teething but you can get that friskies food that is kinda crunchy but soft on the inside. whatever your choice, kitten food is the best to go for his first 6 months.
2-i can't begin to count the scar from the tons of cats i've had over the years. you can't really teach a kitty not to bite at this young, if he continues after a year then start the 'discpline'/nose tapping. my kittens especially love to climb up my pants legs....:eek:
3-i've never been able to get the spray bottle to work. after a litlte while they will just stare at it like nothing happened. i find the best is to start them off by making loud noises (clapping, "hey!", etc) and it works, but if u don't start it young they won't learn. they'll look at you like you're retarded or something.:confused:
i hope this helps and you enjoy leo and all his fun antics.

dtbmnec
May 29th, 2006, 02:38 PM
Thanks for the replies guys...

Apparently the boyfriend went out to the store and while he was there asked whether we should get a boy or girl kitten....they suggested a boy....

Ooh and I sent out an email to one of the shelters about two of their little black kittens that they have! I'm waiting for a response back and I know it was wordy and all that but I hope its soon! I'm looking at either one named Storm or Skylar.

Here's Skylar: http://search.petfinder.com/petnote/displaypet.cgi?petid=6225319

Here's Storm: http://search.petfinder.com/petnote/displaypet.cgi?petid=6351632

If I had to only go by names I'd probably choose Storm (that and my friend's always dreamed of having a black wolf/husky/malmute named Storm and to her this would be the next best thing!). Ooooh I'm so excited!

I talked to my vet and for the shots anyway they'll give me 10 percent of the cost off. I'm not sure how good/bad that is though and I might go see another vet (but I so love this lady cuz she was soooo enthusiastic!)

Oooh I can't wait for a response back! I hope the kitties are in a place that is easily accessible for me (I'm reliant on the bus system, though I'm sure I can blackmail my friend into driving me if absolutely necessary)!

I'm just soo worried that the new kitten won't get along with Leo....:( Oh and if I get another black kitten I'm afraid I'm not gonna be able to tell them apart! lol (Which when I actually THINK about it there won't be a problem because they will have different personalities! Duh!)

I'm such a worry wart....

So anyway if I get this new kitten, how would I introduce them? I mean I could keep Leo out of the bedroom for a while but he might be quite put out by it (we've locked him out on some occasions when we didn't want to be interrupted and he's been meowing and pawing at the door for like 20 minutes till he decides to go to sleep in the living room). I hope only the one litter box is gonna be enough because we really haven't room for two! (1 bedroom apartment) and I'm gonna have to get a new scratching post (Leo's been quite aggressive to the one he's got) of course I'm soon gonna have to get a bigger one anyway cuz Leo's getting bigger!

I promise in a few hours I WILL stop running around like a chicken with its head cut off...I'm just excited (and worried)! Jeez by this point you guys must think I'm a total moron....or a total airhead....I'm really not!

Megan

jesse's mommy
May 29th, 2006, 02:47 PM
I don't have cats so I'm not sure how good this advice is, so cat people (ha ha :p ) please correct me if I'm wrong. I don't think you are going to have too much of a hard time introducing the kittens because they are still babies and probably want to play more than they want to protect their territory. I don't think you've had your first kitty long enough (or is old enough) to have established territory boundaries. I think they will get along just fine. Congrats and good luck! Obviously we expect tons and tons of pictures!!!

Lucky Rescue
May 29th, 2006, 03:22 PM
Oh this is good news.:)

Don't worry about introducing kittens this age. Just put them down together and start dangling a toy for them to play with. That's all!

Please let us know when you get your new kitty!

dtbmnec
May 29th, 2006, 04:25 PM
Wow you guys must think I never shut up! lol

Got an email back from the shelter and Storm's on hold for someone else :( :) I was really really hoping to get him, but oh well!

Skylar's still available and they sent me a picture of another kitten Pong:
http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y254/dtbmnec/pong.jpg

Ooooh he's so pretty!

I want them all! lol

"Skylar has been vet checked, vaccinated, dewormed & flea/mite treated and is available for an adoption fee of $65. He will require 2 additional booster vaccines and must be neutered before 8 months of age, which would be the responsibility of the adoptive home. He's trained to the litter pan and is used to clumping litter. He's eating Nutro Ntural Choice dry kitten formula and has been provided with canned growth food from the vet, Medical a/d diet."

What's a medical a/d diet? or who is it or whatever? just a type of formula? *confuzzled*

So why can't I take them all home and go bankrupt and live off of society and feed my millions of cats again? lol jk jk

So yeah I gotta show the little guys to the boyfriend, Arron is his name by the by, and then I'm gonna see if we can take a look at Pong and Skylar and see which one we like best/chooses us! Oooooh I'm so excited!

(I would probably insert a dancing smiley at this point but you guys don't seem to have any!)

Oh boy if I get one of them I'm gonna end up with two little rippers gnawing at my ankles and making cooking difficult! (Leo seems to have a foot fetish....he falls asleep on people's feet/slippers) They do get underfoot now don't they?

:D :D :D :D

Megan

Lucky Rescue
May 29th, 2006, 04:50 PM
Oh how cute! And he looks closer to your kitten's age, which is better.

He's eating Nutro Ntural Choice dry kitten formula and has been provided with canned growth food from the vet, Medical a/d diet."


As I said, don't bother with medical diets and all that crap. Friskies canned food from the grocery store is fine, plus cats like it better!

must be neutered before 8 months of age

8 months?? Not a good idea, since a male could well start spraying by that age. 5 months tops I would do the neutering.

dtbmnec
May 29th, 2006, 05:02 PM
Well if I get the new one soon enough then I'll take them both in at the same time for their boosters and neutering.

I think the before 8 months thing is like the outside limit or something....I'm definately doing it before either of them start spraying....Somewhere in about 5 months as you said.

The vet had said somewhere between 4-6 months for Leo anyway, and when I posted earlier yesterday I just used the time on the outside.

Oh I hope they like it here! I'm confused about the whole taking them outside thing....I've heard you can "train" cats to go for "walks" so that they get some outside time but with the supervision and without worrying they're gonna get hurt. My old roomate tried taking her kitten, Prince, out for walks at one point (before he just sorta ran free...stupid I know...but he's an indoor cat now) and it seemed to consist of him running up trees a lot! (oh and trying to make friends with kittens that kept hissing at him and attacking dogs about 50 times bigger than him! Prince always hated dogs and would attack on sight :eek: ) So erm is that a good idea (the taking a cat for a walk) or a bad one or what?

Megan

chico2
May 29th, 2006, 05:02 PM
Megan,having read all your posts and replies,you certainly sound like a wonderful young lady,with a lot to offer these little guys.
I have 3 male cats,I would definitely get another male kitten if I were you and I envy you:D
Males generally are more laid back,than females..
The little black/white one is adorable,but then again,they all are...:love:
I have one black cat(Chico)one brown tabby(Rocky)and the baby(Vinnie)is all white.
Seeing you are young and your lifestyle will probably change in the future,you are aware kitties can live up to 20yrs,that's a long commitment to make and I hope they would be with you for their life-time:thumbs up
Did you also know,not to use clumping litter for kittens,but the regular claylitter or an alternative.

chico2
May 29th, 2006, 05:08 PM
Megan,you can take cats out for a walk,but you need a catharness and when they are little they can easily squirm out of anything.
When they get a little older and have had their shots,you can start training them to go out on a lead,not necessarily for a walk,like a dog,but just go outside with you.

dtbmnec
May 29th, 2006, 05:12 PM
Oh yes I know all about the squirmy.....Prince was infamous for it....we left him tied outside with a harness for two minutes while we went inside for a drink to come back out to an empty harness....he hadn't gone far but it was still a bit of a shock....

Still I think it would be good for them to have some outside time (maybe climb up a trunk of a tree or two)....either that or I'm on crack and you guys can start freaking out about it! :p

Wasn't thinking for right now but later on in life....:)

About the cat litter....ummmm no?! I wasn't aware of that....*sigh* why don't people tell me these things? Bah! Anyway, thanks for telling me....is that Arm & Hammer stuff ok for the kittens or not? I mean it doesn't really matter either way cuz I'm still eventually gonna use it right? You can never have too much cat litter!

As for the lifestyle changing....well I do want to go on a few trips (when I get actual money I don't have to pay the bank with) to other parts of the world and while it would be nice to take them on it, I'm not sure if that's gonna be what's best....the future for me is still really really vague....I know I'm graduating by this time next year and I know I'm getting a full time job (duh) after that and I know that eventually kids will be in the picture....I do want to travel but there are cat sitters and things like that and if I have to go anywhere overnight or anything I know my friends will take care of them for a night (not trusting them with more yet until they've proven themselves) but again when I say I want to travel I'm not talking every other month or going for more than 2 weeks tops....I will keep them with me as much as I can and if I can't bring them to wherever I'm going (or for once want a nice holiday alone without anyone or anything...and don't tell me after having kids I'm not gonna want that!) I'll find someone reputable and nice and will call and make sure that the cats are ok....oh fiddles it all sounds so complicated now....*sigh*

I know I won't be able to leave these little guys, cuz they are MINE (and the boyfriends....I guess :p) and it'll take something really really bad for me to let them go to other homes permanently or whatever (think major car accident and I CAN'T care for them or I suddenly become deathly ill from cats or something)....

Megan

dtbmnec
May 30th, 2006, 01:54 PM
Oooooh I got an email back from the adoption agency! They're gonna let me see the two kittens sometime this week and they sent me the application and I filled it out! YAY!

*does a dance*

Arron likes Pong better (the black and white one) and figures that we would better be able to tell them apart! lol

I'm not sure which one I like better....guess I'm gonna have to wait until we meet them!

Does anyone have any idea of what toys would be good for Leo since he seems to like things that fight back? I'm trying to get him to stop attacking feet and hands and its almost working...one step forward, 12 back kinda thing! lol ahh well its gonna take some patience...:) (and from the looks of my hands....much road mapping! lol)

Megan

chico2
May 30th, 2006, 02:54 PM
Megan,as for toys,we all go out and spend tons of money on toys,only to see our cats ignore them.
Kittens play with anything,as I am sure you know by now:D a string with something hanging off it is great,or just plain rolled up paper..anything is game when you're a kitten..
I got this neat tunnel-contraption from a friend and my cats love it..
I did not mean,if you have animals you cannot travel,of course you can,we've travelled a lot in our lifetime..you just need someone dependable to stay with your cats.

chico2
May 30th, 2006, 02:57 PM
Love this pic,Vinnie snoozing in the new toy:love:

LM1313
May 30th, 2006, 03:05 PM
It is possible . . . :D

http://www.superpony.com/Images/Kitties/04_30_06/Walkies3.jpg

Basically, you have to let them get used to the harness inside first. I did it by putting the kitties in the harnesses, feeding them treats for a few minutes, then taking them out of the harnesses. Probably best to wait until they're bigger to actually take them outside, but you can certainly start getting them used to the harness right now . . . even if just by taking it out and then giving them a treat when they sniff it. :)

I wouldn't worry about introductions at this age, little kittens adapt to each other quickly! :)

If you get a female, definitely spay her--she only has to sneak out once to become pregnant! Plus being unspayed will give her a motivation to try to get out.


Those kittens you linked to are SO adorable!! And it's great that you like black cats because they have a harder time being adopted. (Weird, I know!) :)

Does anyone have any idea of what toys would be good for Leo since he seems to like things that fight back?


KITTY WAND!!

My cats go NUTS over them, to the extent that Booster diligently worked out how to open the cabinet they were in and I had to move them, LOL. Basically they're a plastic wand about two or three feet long with a string on the end and a toy attached to the string. You wave the wand so the toy creeps, leaps, flies, or skitters about. :)

Also, the top ring thing from around milk jugs. They LOVE that. I always watch, though, because after a while it's chewed to pieces and I don't want them swallowing it.


Also, you know what a cheap, wonderful, washable kitty bed is that comes in all colors of the rainbow? Fluffy toilet seat covers!

dtbmnec
May 30th, 2006, 04:49 PM
KITTY WAND!!

My cats go NUTS over them, to the extent that Booster diligently worked out how to open the cabinet they were in and I had to move them, LOL. Basically they're a plastic wand about two or three feet long with a string on the end and a toy attached to the string. You wave the wand so the toy creeps, leaps, flies, or skitters about. :)

Also, the top ring thing from around milk jugs. They LOVE that. I always watch, though, because after a while it's chewed to pieces and I don't want them swallowing it.

I bought one from Walmart....it was destroyed within 4 days (the little bugger SNAPPED the elastic!)....he now carries around the feather thing on the end! lol I bought one today that makes noise and Leo looks like he's been in the catnip he's so happy! He's gonna destroy it before the other kitten gets to take a swipe!

I haven't seen milk jugs around here in ages! I always preferred the milk jugs to the bags (recyclable and all that) but I can't seem to find any jugs. Even the 1 litre ones are in boxed form now instead of jugs! Oh how I miss those!

Chico: That looks like a wonderful toy! Vinnie is soooo cute!

What kind of scratching posts do you guys like? I've got a small one that I"m going to need to replace soon (damn Leo destroys stuff! lol its those little kitten claws) because a) I'm getting a second kitten and b) it'll be too small soon anyway c) Leo will perch on the top of it and look quite forlorn that there isn't any more! I'm looking for a cheapish multi-level one if you guys know anywhere to get them. And are the ones with the carpet fabric better or the ones that look like rope's been attached to them?

Megan

LM1313
May 30th, 2006, 05:43 PM
I use a cardboard scratcher like this one:

http://images.amazon.com/images/P/B000084EES.01-A31HQPYOMSLDNF._AA280_SCLZZZZZZZ_V53584932_.jpg

There's a hole on either side big enough for a young kitten to run through. ;) You can get replacements for the scratching part, it fits in there in a frame. I also set replacements around in different rooms for them. They like the cheapo cardboard ones more than the fancy scratching posts with perches that I spent too much money on! Silly buggers! :D

jawert1
May 30th, 2006, 06:13 PM
When I had my kitten, I discovered that she would ignore the things I bought her and go for whatever was free or garbage (paper bags, cardboard boxes, etc). My ex took a few scraps of wood (2x4's) and some carpet remnants and would make her scratching posts, which she loved. If you know of a carpenter/contractor willing to let you take such items, it's worth it and free :)

jesse's mommy
May 30th, 2006, 07:46 PM
We rescued a kitty a few months ago and the kitty loved boxes. I would bring some boxes home from work and the cat loved to sit, pounce, and scratch it. I would have loved to keep the kitty, but it just wasn't possible at the time. :sad:

dtbmnec
May 30th, 2006, 10:51 PM
Well I did it again! I got Pong, who will now be known as Pawz! OMG he's so cute!

He's not doing much at the moment (we did just bring him home) and he wanted to sleep before playing with Leo much his dismay! So Leo is currently chewing holes in my hands while Pawz sleeps in his new bed....

He hasn't cried once since we brought him home nor did he cry on the way up (we had to take the bus). I am impressed and surprised! I thought he'd cry since Leo meowed the entire time in the car to our place!

I shall give more updates tomorrow when kitties are up and about!

Megan

Brat
May 30th, 2006, 10:59 PM
Pawz is absolutely adorable. Congrats! and I'm glad you took everyone's advice. Those little boys will be best friends for as long as they live! You will sit for hours watching them play and clean eachother. It's lovely :D

LM1313
May 30th, 2006, 11:04 PM
Congratz on your new fuzzball of joy! :D

dtbmnec
May 31st, 2006, 01:55 AM
So far so good! Pawz is adjusting and it looks to be just fine! I think he knows where the litter is and he knows where food is so all I have to do is wait until the little bugger gets underfoot like Leo and I know I'm set for life! lol

I was having doubts when all Leo wanted to do was play and Pawz was still trying to figure out what had just happened! I separated the two of them for a little bit to give Pawz some more time and about a half hour ago I heard Pawz crying cuz he was lonely. I tossed Leo out of the bedroom and they've now curled up and have gone to sleep near each other!

Oh they look so content....either that or they are great actors and really do hate each other :p lol. We'll see how tomorrow goes!

Now the only thing that would make this more perfect (besides winning the lottery) is if they chose to sleep IN the bed I bought for them....not across the bloody room from it!

Megan

P.S. I was right about the wand that I just bought from the petstore today....its been mangled! Once again little Leo has shown how strong he is by breaking the string in TWO places, yes TWO! Ahh well I'll just have to do it all by hand then (the toy on the end of the string does still work!) Leo and Pawz seem quite interested in the toy so I think all is good in the world!

abudamunky
May 31st, 2006, 02:31 AM
as for 'cat houses' or mutli-leveled scratching posts....try finding some one who is good in woodworking and get some sheets of wood and cheepy carpet and make you own house. much cheaper and that way u can get it arranged how you want, levels, ramps, posts, etc.

chico2
May 31st, 2006, 08:12 AM
My husband built one for our cats,seen in the background,but I bought this blue one on sale for $59 at Petcetera.
No,it's not a catroom,it's my computer-room:D

LibbyP
May 31st, 2006, 10:03 AM
chico2 I love the blue one!!! But I'd be afraid that my :crazy: cats wouldn't use it:mad: . Hi dtbmnec, Pawz is too cute good choice:thumbs up , not to worry they will become the best of buddies and use the bed together, move it around the room to different spots and see what they think ie: sunshine, by the window etc... one word of caution when playing with toys that have feathers, friends of mine kitten was playing and deceided to eat a part of the feather and well lets just say it didn't come out the other end, it wasn't a good thing a trip to vet emerg and tons of $$$ later, so when you are not home pls but that toy away where little kitties cannot get it. My cats REALLY like the fake mice(they toss them up in the air, and carry them around the house moaning-both are Siamese) Oh and the tiny balls that have the bell inside are a fav also, have FUN, two boys double the trouble;)

dtbmnec
May 31st, 2006, 11:47 AM
Well they're both alive this morning! lol no I didn't think it would be that bad!

I tried feeding them two different foods but in the same water/food dish (the ones that sorta connect kinda thing?) and Leo decided that he liked the Medical better than Science Diet and kept sticking his head into Pawz's food dish! Apparently we need a bit of work still....

Leo seems to be quite the player while Pawz just fights back....Leo doesn't seem to understand that Pawz, while playful doesn't ALWAYS want to play with him! I tried separating them last night for a bit, to give Pawz some more time to get to know the place, but as soon as I did I got lonely meows from both ends! Recent Update: Pawz is quite the player....when Leo is distracted with something else! lol

I haven't yet seen Pawz go to the bathroom, though he very well may have while I was asleep....all seems to be good (he did manage to get a few bites of food before Leo took over!) :) They both love the window sill and like lying up there :)

Pawz is still vaguely afraid of us humans.....then again if I was knee high to a fly I would be too! So long as we don't make any startling movements he seems to be ok. He even cuddled up with the boyfriend last night a bit! He keeps starting whenever I cough or sneeze though!

lol Pawz is still having some minor issues with the hardwood floor too! He's also decided that the carpet piece we have in front of the kitchen sink is his scratch pad....shall have to remedy that one or buy a little scrap from a store for him....or we just need to continue having Leo stand on top and maybe he'll start using the post....well if Leo lets him....

Minor issues but all goes well in the house of two kitties!

Megan

chico2
May 31st, 2006, 04:42 PM
Megan,you should definitely have 2 food-dishes,each kitty have their own.
My 3 cats even eat in different rooms,then Vinnie(my 3y old)will go and finish them off:evil:
Did you put Pawz in the litter-box to show him where it is??
It's all new to him,so give him time,give him lots of cuddles,but don't leave out Leo,soon Pawz will get used to his new good life.

dtbmnec
May 31st, 2006, 05:40 PM
Chico: yep I showed him where the litter box was and he's been using it.

I'm thinking that we're just gonna use one of our plates to feed these guys off of for now. As for the food itself, well Leo seems to want the Medical and Pawz seems rip raring to eat the Science Diet....I'm just afraid that if I completely switch out the food to one or the other the cats'll get sick....I"m mixing them in together at the moment but I want them on one kind and well at the moment I'm running low on the Science diet (Leo eats like a pig....pssh). I've got like 6 cans of the Medical stuff too!

hehehe one thing I did notice today was that BOTH kittens stick their tongues out! Sometimes as the funniest times too!

They also sleep a heck of a lot (because of the heat) though I'm really wishing we'd moved into a place that has air conditioning! We're gonna get a fan and we have an A/C unit on the go but it still gets sooo hot in here. I change out the water twice a day so that its nice and cool (no icecubes though cuz I don't have a tray yet). I can't afford black out curtains at the moment so I'm not sure what else I can do to keep them cool! Suggestions are definately welcome!

Pawz is already up and about a lot more, though he is still a bit skittish. He's a coming around though!

They are such a cute pair!

Megan

rainbow
May 31st, 2006, 07:43 PM
Congratulations on the new addition to your family. :highfive: From your posts you sound like a very good mom. :thumbs up

I would just like to add that Science Diet and Medi-Cal are not very good. Check out the food forum here for some better choices. :pawprint:

dtbmnec
May 31st, 2006, 08:39 PM
I would just like to add that Science Diet and Medi-Cal are not very good. Check out the food forum here for some better choices. :pawprint:

Hmmm really? Well the Medical came with Pawz so I didn't have much choice on that one....Science Diet was recommended by my vet. I did also buy some Royal Canin dry food for the little guys and when Arron's parents let us have some Iams food....his sister bought us the kitten stuff but we have some dry adult stuff too...

Vet also told us to keep the kittens on wet food since there's no real reason why we should get them on the dry (other than the fact that it smells a wee bit better).

I'm so confused....

Megan

LM1313
May 31st, 2006, 11:00 PM
The best foods will have real meat as the first few ingredients. Not-so-great foods will have grain as the first ingredient, or meat as the first ingredient followed by two or three different types of grain, meaning that the total grain content is still more than the total meat content.

A good diet helps an animal's health and results in less poo and firmer poo. Now, I will say . . . it's perfectly possible for an animal to be on a "crap" food and retain its health. Your pet won't keel over dead just because you feed Friskies (which is the only food my parents' cat will deign to eat, incidentally.) Genetics will matter more than the food--good food just helps.

But I'd avoid Science Diet and Royal Canin, which are quite expensive considering they're grain-based. For the price of them, you can get a really great meat-based food instead. Iams is also an unnecessarily expensive grain-based food. Some meat-based foods are Nutro Max and Natural Balance. I tried Nutro Max, but it gave Booster the stinky poo from hell--I think he might be allergic to chicken. So now he's on a venison-based food from Natural Balance.

About dry vs. wet . . . I've heard that wet is good for male cats because it helps prevent them from developing urine crystals once they're mature. :)

~LM~

Lucky Rescue
May 31st, 2006, 11:20 PM
Vet also told us to keep the kittens on wet food since there's no real reason why we should get them on the dry

WOW - I like your vet!! Most of them don't seem to know that cats are carnivores. You got lucky.

I agree 100% with the canned food.

dtbmnec
May 31st, 2006, 11:49 PM
Yeah the boyfriend's family has given me a lot of dry stuff....some of it is adult stuff too (which so far as I can tell doesn't hurt the kittens just doesn't give the exact(ish) quantities of what they need at that age)....I can't say I mind the wet food....it does smell a little more but well, it makes more sense to buy the wet anyway!

Nutro Max is sold at Petcetera but Natural Balance isn't....gonna have to find them too....probably should wait till I'm done all the gazillion other food I have first!

It seems that just about everyone that I've met and seen have diffirent opinions on which food to give them! lol and in the process I've managed to acquire a large number of differnet kinds! the cats are gonna be totally confused as to what I'm feeding them!

The kitties have definately become friends! They haven't touched the cat bed but I'm sure its probably because if they sleep in there they'll probably die of heat! Come winter-time I'm sure they'll love it!

Megan

chico2
June 1st, 2006, 07:28 AM
Megan,you seem to be doing great,the 2 little guys nust be wonderful to watch..
My cats have always have a varied diet,their main meals have always been canned food and nothing fancy either,they will only eat"Fancy Feast",however I constantly change the dry food which is around 24/7 and it has had no ill effect on the cats.
Right now,they are on Solid Gold for cats and they love it.
I got a bag of Medi-Cal free when I had Vinnies teeth cleaned and I did not like the ingredients,so my semi-tame Crows got it:D
Babies like yours,should probably eat 3-4 times a day,but not a whole can:D
My grown cats split a small can twice a day.
I wish you had a digi-cam,so we could see the little guys.

Jleew
June 16th, 2006, 05:23 PM
I've grown up with cats my whole life and here is my experience. cats that get taken away from their mothers too soon may have a problem with sucking. we had a siamese cat once that would suck holes through wool clothing. we used to have to put all of our doll clothes up cuz she suck holes through them. the remark that was made about female cats not playing rough is false. my female cats can be worse than the male for their antics. we had one cat that was on his own for most of his life (our other kitten we got at the same time had to be put down after six months because she woke up paralyzed. apparently a ticking time bomb just waiting to happen) and he was not shy or mean at all. he wasn't too keen on small children other than my sister and me, which i believe is because a lot of children don't know how to handle cats. he would play and stalk and was incredibly social and nosy when people came over. when we got our dog nine years later simon had no problem adjusting to him. though at that time simon was fairly old and had been through a lot (had feline urinary disorder and a growth) he would chase our dog around the house a lot. really it all depends on how you socialize with your kittens and cats. i practically mauled our cat (and got a few good nips from it) but he was always cuddled with shown affection and grew up quite well. so for anyone else that is worried about needing two don't guilt yourself into thinking that you're doing wrong to your kitten. also with the food, dry food will not hurt your kitten and actually helps their teeth. that is what we have always been told by our vets.

LM1313
June 16th, 2006, 06:14 PM
I've grown up with cats my whole life and here is my experience. cats that get taken away from their mothers too soon may have a problem with sucking. we had a siamese cat once that would suck holes through wool clothing.

My Siamese boy does that too! Only instead of sucking on clothes, he sucks on the neck fur of Remy, my other kitty. Remy doesn't mind and it doesn't hurt him, so I just leave them be.
Here's Booster happily sucking away . . . I did "rescue" Remy a minute later for fear of him being squashed by Booster's big butt. ;)

~LM~