Published on Jan 22, 2020

Kitten Background Images

License Info: Creative Commons 4.0 BY-NC
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The first step toward having a good pet cat is choosing a healthy kitten. Visit a litter of kittens about two weeks before they are ready to leave their mother. They will be six weeks old. Ask permission to pick up the kittens and be very gentle when to do so. Make sure that a kitten has clear, bright eyes and a shiny, full coat. Check the skin under the fur for any problems such as sores, rashes or bald spots. You want to choose a kitten that has healthy skin.

Next, make sure that the kitten is neither too thin nor too fat. A kitten that is either all skin and bones or has a bloated belly is likely to have an infection. Do not select such a kitten. Also check the kitten’s nose and ears for any sign of discharge or infection.While you are checking for signs of physical health, take note of the kitten’s temperament. Carry the kitten to another part of the room and watch how it behaves. Is it nervous or scared? Does it respond to gentle petting by growing calmer? You want a kitten that adjusts quickly to you. This is a sign it has been handled by the owners of the litter, which is important in preparing the kitten for living with people.

It is extremely important to start out with a friendly cat. A scratching, hissing or terribly frightened kitten will grow up to be a difficult cat at best. At worst, the kitten will never become a friendly, loving pet. After you have chosen a kitten that you like, make arrangements to pick it up when it is ready to leave its mother (when it is about eight weeks old). A day or two after you get your new kitten, take it to a veterinarian (an animal doctor). The vet will give it the first in a series of shots to protect it against common cat diseases. Tell the vet if you intend to let the cat outdoors. If you do intend to let it out, the kitten may need a shot to protect it against rabies.

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The vet will also examine the kitten for signs of disease. Bring along sample of the kitten’s dropping so that the doctor can check for worms.

If the vet gives you medicine for the kitten, make sure that you or one of your parents understands how to give medicine. Ask the vet or the vet’s assistant to show the proper method. Give the medicine to the kitten exactly as directed by the vet. Twice a day is not good enough if the kitten is supposed to get medicine three times a day. Young kittens like to eat every few hours, about four times a day. At each meal, serve a saucer of fresh milk alongside a small dish of dry cat food. For one or two of the meals, mix in canned food (meat or fish). If the kitten gets diarrhea, switch to powdered milk. If the diarrhea continues, reduce the amount of milk and the number of meals at which it is served.

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