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Kittens 101

June 21, 2023

Congratulations on your new family member!
For the first few days, take things very easy, your new kitten will be confused by leaving their mum and siblings and we don't need to add any more stressors. Stick to the same food that they are used to and just let them get used to the household routine. 

Cat Carrier
Please choose a carrier that can easily be dissassembled and the top lifted off. If we can avoid dragging them out of their safe spaces this can really reduce stress at vet visits. If you can take off the door then we recommend keeping the carrier in the home for the cat to use as a hiding space. If it is familiar and smells right then it will be a lot less scary when they are shut in for a car ride.

We want to establish good eating patterns and a balanced diet early. Every household has their own preferences, but at this stage we need to avoid creating a fussy cat or worsening any joint issues with an unbalanced diet. We recommend feeding a good quality kitten biscuit for at least 50% of the kitten's food intake, and a kitten wet food for the remainder.  Rather than looking at branding, check the sides and back of the packaging. We want to see the words 'Complete and Balanced' and 'meets the recommendations set by the AAFCO'. You do not need to exclude any specific ingredients as food allergies are incredibly rare at this age.  Kittens still have developing gut flora so keeping it simple and introducing new foods gradually will help minimise any tummy upsets.
Long term cats can easily be maintained on biscuits, but we recommend boys also receive at least some portion of their diet as wet food to increase their fluid intake as boys are more prone to problems associated crystals forming in concentrated urine.

In our area we recommend that kittens receive 3 vaccinations between weaning and 16 weeks of age, at roughly 4 week intervals and not finishing before 16 weeks of age.

  1. A F3 vaccination at weaning (feline calicivirus, feline rhinotracheitis virus and feline panleukopaenia virus).

  2. An F3 (indoor cats) or F5 (cats who go outdoors, also covers feline chlamydia & infectious leukaemia) at 12 weeks. We try not to overvaccinate cats as there is a slim link between the FeLV adjuvant and increased incidence of injection site sarcoma.

  3. An F3 or F5 four weeks later (16 weeks)

  4. Thereafter we recommend annual vaccination and vet check for all cats. 

  5. We have a low local incidence of FIV in our area and encourage cats lead an indoor +/- cat enclosure lifestyle so we don't routinely carry the FIV vaccine. If we get sufficient numbers then this product can be ordered in.

Parasite Control
Please give your kitten an intestinal wormer fortnightly until it is 12 weeks old. From there you can start a monthly 'all in one' spot on product to cover fleas, heartworm, lungworm and intestinal worms. Good options include Moxiclear, Advocate and Revolution.
Every now and again it is worth also giving them a tapewormer or intestinal wormer depending on the product you are using. The new Nexgard Spectra SpotOn for cats is a true all in one and no tablets are required for parasite prevention

Toilet Training

Kittens are wonderful in that they come already toilet trained by their mum! Find out what kind of kitty litter they are used to and make sure they have familar litter in easy access when they first move in. Show the kitten where the tray is and they will use it happily as long as it is accessible. 

Per the Cat Act, all cats need to be sterilised, microchipped and registered with the Council by 6 months of age. Only breeders registered with the Council are excempt from this. We can arrange to sterilise your kitten any time after they reach 1.2kg, with the majority of kittens being sterilised between 5 & 6 months of age. 

In WA, all cats need to be microchipped to be registered with the local Council. We can do this at any of your kitten visits. If your kitten was microchipped whilst in the care of your breeder then please make sure the chip details are correct and the kitten is now in your name on the national database.

Kittens can be clumsy and make foolish choices, like climbing inside your furniture or eating hair ties. For this reason we recommend setting up some sort of emergency financial plan. This may be a structured insurance policy, credit card or savings account. 

You have a teenie tiny hunter. With social anxiety. As they develop they are going to want to practice those hunting skills and we would prefer they were not chewing on you or our wonderful native animals. Look into enrichment early and set up your household in a way that will keep your cat confident and content into the future. A great resource is Home - Fundamentally Feline. YouTube is also a great resource for DIY options.


Kittens 101: Resources
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