You will need to be prepared to bring your new friend home. But what are the basics that you will need?

Food: Find out what brand of food they have been eating and get some. If you change their diet straight away it can upset their stomach so stick to what they have been on when they first come home.

Water: Cats are funny creatures and can be fussy when it comes to where they drink from. They don’t like their whiskers to touch the side of their water bowls and they need water in more than one spot. So wide opening water bowls are the best. Near their food and in at least one other place in the house is a great idea.

Litter box, litter and scooper: Every cat needs a litter box. If you have multiple cats then the best rule is to have one for each and one spare. Litter is a whole subject on its own. Use what you feel works for you. I like environmentally friendly litter that can be flushed or put in the green waste bin. (Check out the litter episode on my YouTube channel if you need more info)

Collar and ID tag: This is optional. If your cat is contained to your property you might feel you don’t need one. It’s more for if it escapes and someone finds them. Exactly the same for a dog.

Cat carrier: You will need a carrier to pick up your kitty and also to take to the vet from time to time. The hard plastic ones are the easiest to keep clean if you leave it out in the shed. Its important that the carrier not be bought into the house just when going to the vet. Cats are smart and if they see the carrier come inside then they know they will be going in it. So if you can leave the carrier somewhere inside the house, even let the cats sleep in it.

 

Grooming Products: this will depend on the type of cat you have so talk with your vet or breeder or rescuer as to what will be appropriate.

Enzymatic odour neutralizer: cats can have accidents and its important if they do that the area is cleaned with a enzymatic cleaner. These cleaners use enzymes to break down the uric acid into carbon dioxide and ammonia. These gasses easily evaporate removing the smell entirely. Soap, vinegar, baking soda, ammonia, chlorine, and hydrogen peroxide (to name the most common cleaners) simply are not chemically capable of breaking down the uric acid in cat pee. Just as a side note, if you use an ammonia based cleaning product in your home, cats think someone else has been peeing in their house and can pee to remark their territory. There is no point in telling your cat off if they don’t use the litter box. You need to work out why its not working for them and try to make the litter box more appealing. Perhaps they don’t like the litter your using. It might have been cleaned with something that they don’t like the smell of. So many reasons. If they keep peeing in an area, then put a litter box there and slowly move it to where you want them to do their business.

Cat tree and Cat Scratchers: Cats stretch and sharpen their claws. It’s a natural part of who they are. We need to give them a variety of alternatives to our carpets and furniture for them to use. A good solid cat tree is a must. There are many available on the market and some are great furniture pieces so its up to you how elaborate you go with this one. more than one is even better. Cardboard scratchers are also a great investment as they can be used then recycled once they get tatty. Again, its giving a cat an alternative place to scratch.

Toys and Cat Enrichment: working out what toys your cat likes will depend on the breed and personality of your cat. They might be stimulated by playing in a box or paper bag. They might need to run and jump so fishing rod style teasers might be needed. Talk with your breeder or rescuer as to what they like to play with.

Nail Clippers: This is optional but something that I feel will make your life with your cat so much more enjoyable. You can have your vet clip your cats nails but if you can become confident to do it and you do it from a young age you will find this a great way to avoid unintentional cat scratches. Cats claws get super sharp and if they jump up and dig the claws in it can hurt. It doesn’t hurt as much if those claws are blunt. If you’re not sure how to do it, get your vet to help you the first few times. Even the vet nurses can be helpful in showing you how. If a cat scratches you it is usually your fault. Cats hiss and scratch out of fear so don’t blame them if they lash out.

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