In 2019, National Pet Owners surveyed how many % of Americans have a cat in their house as a pet? The result is astonishing; approximately 68.9% of Americans have at least one cat in their home.
Many people are becoming new cat parents. Before owning a cat as a pet, a new pet parent should know what rules need to be followed. Otherwise, the cat will not be able to grow properly and will remain depressed always.
Will you love to see your furry friend's sad face? Cats are playful, energetic pets and always want attention. So how much does it take to take care of a cat?
As a pet parent, you will always want to spend quality time with your furry friend indeed. So, keeping this point in mind, in-depth information has been shared in this article for what do you need to take care of a cat?. Follow the step by steps to care for your cats.
Let’s get started.
Table of Contents
What do you need to take care of a cat? While Bringing a New Cat Home?
Buying a few supplies is mandatory before bringing your new cat home. It is significantly necessary because your cat will get familiar with the supplies if you bring those prior to your cat’s arrival.
So, what are the mandatory supplies, and what do cats need to be happy? Actually, how to take care of a cat for the first time. Have a look from below.
A cat carrier or crate is a good cat supply whether you plan to go outside or not with your cat. Gradually make your cat familiar with the carrier. Make sure it is made of sturdy materials, easy to access, and well-ventilated.
Cat Litter Box
A cat litter box will help your cat to take their potty breaks inside the home. Avoid choosing a litter box that challenges your cat to get in and get out. Also, install it in a safe, calm place.
However, when selecting the litter box, make sure it is easy to clean. Besides, buy a litter scoop too that will help you to clean the litter box. Remember to buy 1 litter box for each cat.
Without eating food, no one can live and stay healthy. Your cat is also no exception. Never force your cat to eat the food. First, let the cat get used to the home environment and start providing food whatever he likes. Also, if the change is required in the diet chart, do it gradually.
After your cat has settled down to the home environment, consult with a veterinarian, get the best diet chart for your cat. Just remember to change your cat's food habit slowly; if the change requires 7 – 10 days, take it.
Kittens love to take a nap in a soft and comfortable place. However, they may like to rest in your bed, but they still need their bed. So, it would be best to buy a soft and comfortable bed for your kitten. Also, ensure that the bed comes with a washable feature.
The softer the bed is; your kitten will be more encouraged to use it. The best dog and cat bed whcih is the best dog beds for corgis.
You will find a wide range of cat beds in the market; the MEOWFIA Premium Felt Cat Bed Cave will definitely meet your kitten’s requirements. This bed is made of 100% merino wool from New Zealand.
The thick layer of wool ensures maximum comfort and durability. More importantly, for hotter days, it can be used for padded mats, and on cooler days, the bed can take the shape of a cave. This bed is suitable for cats and kittens up to 12 lbs.
Bowls for Food and Water
Can you use any best cat bowl to offer food to your kitten? You can’t, so buy bowls for cat food and water. Choose water and a food bowl according to your kitten size. Don’t buy a large bowl for your small kitten.
Consider installing a water fountain in the water bowl. Also, keep your cat’s food and water bowl away from each other because cats often don’t like to drink water kept near their food source. So here are the cat & dog water bowls for sloppy drinkers.
What to Feed a Cat?
Cats are categorized as carnivore animals, so in order to ensure optimum health, they require animal protein. When choosing the food type, you must be cautious enough to select according to your cat’s age.
So, before buying a food type, take an appointment with a veterinarian to ensure that your cat gets the correct ratio of vitamins and proteins. This section will learn what food type you should offer to your cat according to age.
How to take care of cats and kittens
At this time, picking the right food type is crucial because it is the growing stage of your cat. You should provide well-balanced, high-quality, premium kitten food to your cat.
Adding meat or fish will take variety in the diet chart. However, it would be best to provide raw meat to your kitten once s/he becomes 20 weeks of age.
Before that, you must avoid providing raw meat because, at that time, their immune system is not robust enough to digest raw meat.
Removal of plaque may happen from your senior cat’s mouth because of the raw meat strap. Cooked meat or wet canned food is a good option in the beginning.
Moreover, adding a few moist foods to the diet chart will surely be a good idea. Moist food promotes your cat’s urinary tract health.
For adult cats, the diet chart should also contain premium cat foods, high levels of protein. Before buying, look at the package label to learn about the ingredients of your cat food.
If you are in frustration or dilemma or not so confident, don’t forget to consult with a veterinarian. You can offer fresh or cooked meat or fish to your adult cats. Ensure your cat is getting an adequate level of protein. So, add protein-rich food like meaty bones or raw meat.
At the same time, be careful buying cat food full of preservatives. These types of foods are harmful to the growth of your adult cat’s health.
Don’t forget that a wrong diet chart may lead your senior cat to multiple health issues. Whenever your cat faces a health issue, consult with the veterinarians without fail. It is significantly essential to learn how to balance between underfeeding and overfeeding.
Depending on your cat’s size and age, you have to know how many servings need to provide to your adult or senior cat. Generally, adult cats love to eat smaller meals throughout the whole day.
For this reason, 3 – 4 servings will be an ideal choice. Better urinary tract health is confirmed with frequent eating of smaller meals.
If you are looking for the best cat food for your adult cat, buy Hill's Science Diet Adult Indoor Cat Food. Its natural fiber supports digestive health, and high-quality ingredients make litter box clean-up easy.
Your cat will enjoy eating this food because it is full of easy-to-digest ingredients for a flavorful, nutritious meal. Additionally, the kibble size is approximately 9.5 mm X 8.4 mm and triangle-shaped, which means your cat can easily swallow this Chicken Recipe Dry Cat food.
Food that Cats Shouldn’t Eat
It would be best if you didn’t offer all food types to your cat. Unfortunately, in terms of cat food, there are many misconceptions.
People unknowingly provide human foods to their cats that they think are good for cats’ health. However all human foods are not suitable or ideal for cats. So, what food types to avoid feeding your cat? Let’s learn from below.
You might have seen images or cartoons in picture books where cats are drinking milk or other dairy products. But this is not the actual case; cats and dairy products are just not made for each other.
Cats' stomachs can’t tolerate milk and dairy products. So, avoid giving your cats foods like cheese, milk cream, etc. These foods may lead your cat to vomit or have diarrhea.
Never make a mistake in providing chocolate to your cat. Caffeine and theobromine are 2 significant ingredients of chocolate, and these are toxic items for cats. If your cat eats these foods, your cat will get affected by the below symptoms.
- High level of body temperature.
- Increasing heart rate.
- Heart failure
Many homeowners love to become pet parents of both cats and dogs. If you have both a cat and a dog in your home, your cat may often taste dog food. The bad news is; that occasional nibbles can harm your cat.
Malnutrition may happen if your cat mistakenly eats dog food because the cat and dog's diet chart is entirely dissimilar. Taurine, Vitamin A, and arachidonic acid are the most required vitamins for cats, but these are unavailable in dog food.
Your cat may develop the below severe condition if s/he eats dog food.
- Skin issues, dull coats, and night blindness may arise because of less vitamin A-enriched food.
- Degradation in vision, heart issues, lethargy if your cat doesn’t eat taurine-rich food.
- The problem in the kidney and liver is due to a lack of arachidonic acid.
Garlic and Onions
These 2 food items are a member of the allium family, which can cause anemia in your cats. Cat’s red blood cells can be damaged if they eat powder-form, raw or cooked garlic, or onions. As a result, a cat will be attacked by diarrhea, vomiting, or abdominal pain.
What Cats Really Like to Play with and Why
Playing with toys is significantly essential for the well-being of your cat. Applied Animal Behavior Science researched the cat’s playtime. According to the research, the more the toy resembles real prey, the more the cat reacts.
So, if you are still looking for cat toys to make your cat energetic and out of boredom, below is a quick discussion of what cats like to play with and why.
The truth is, many cats are too responsive to multiple household items such as bottle caps, jug rings, newspapers, etc. They are also fond of different practice balls. You also can make cat toys using several unused items for your cat.
From the name itself, you can get an idea of it. Simply take a piece of paper, crumple it, and give it to your cat. Your cat will love the crumpled paper sound. S/he will push and play with it throughout the room. Just keep an eye on your cat from cutting the paper.
Otherwise, you will feel as if you are in a football stadium because you will find confetti in your room.
A String Piece
This is one of the simplest cat toys and the easiest way to entertain your cat. Simply hold one side of the string and pull it on the floor. Your cat will follow it and try to catch it.
However, ensure storing it in a safe place because your furry friend may swallow it after the play.
Ping Pong Ball
You and your cat will have a great time playing with ping-pong balls. Playing with is also straightforward. Simply throw the ball against your interior or exterior wall or floor.
Your cat will show interest in catching it. Ping-pong balls twist a lot, and often your cat will face a hard time seeing them.
They will be required to jump high and low during playtime. Your cat will look like a gymnast. However, be careful with the ping pong ball's size because it can be swallowed by your cat if it is too small.
You may think that dogs love to play fetch, why should I play it with my cat too? The truth is, cats also love to play fetch. Select any toy type that can easily be carried by your cat in his/her mouth. Here is the best tennis ball alternative for dogs.
Then throw it and teach your cat to bring it back to you so that you can throw it again. If your cat successfully plays the game, give them a treat or pat them on their back. This way,
your cat will show more interest in playing fetch.
When researching for the best cat toys, we found that the YVE Life Cat Laser Toy is one of the best toys surfing the market. You can easily place it in a high place to avoid collision with pets.
The most important feature of this cat toy is, it comes with 5 adjustable random patterns, which makes it an ideal toy for playing in all kinds of rooms. Operating the toy is a breeze. You don’t need to face much hassle to operate it because of its automatic turn-on/off feature.
The toy automatically turns on every 3 hours and turns off after 15 minutes. The laser head is much more durable to provide long-term service. Grab this toy to make your cat’s playtime much more enjoyable.
How to train a cat to use the litter box?
The most common question of every pet parent is how to train their cat to use the litter box. You will love to hear that litter box training is not a challenging task. To develop a good bathroom habit for your kitten, follow the below pointers.
- Required Items:
- Litter box
- Kitty litter
- Treats and toys
Step-by-Step Process on How to Litter Train Your Cat
- Place the litter box in a position where your cat can stay calm. Show the box as soon as the litter box is installed. Make sure not to change the box position; this will confuse your cat.
- After your cat wakes up from the naps or eating meals, set him/her in the litter box. Also, if you notice that your cat is behaving as though s/he needs to go, pick him/her up and place it into the litter box.
- Whenever you see that your cat started using the litter box, praise and gift him/her.
- Accidents may happen, and your cat will often litter here and there. For this, don’t scold him/her. If you do so, the training may become more challenging.
Even your cat might not feel interested in using the litter box if you give him/her any punishment. Simply help your cat to find the litter box and complete their bathroom there.
Litter Box Maintaining Tips
The litter box needs to be cleaned every time, without fail. As a result, your home will remain free from cat smell. Also, your cat will have a more pleasant experience using the litter box.
- Use a scoop to remove the cat’s litter from the litter box. When required, replace the soiled litter, especially when the litter can’t control the odor's spreading.
- After changing the litter, cleaning, and disinfecting is necessary. You can use a mixture of warm water and soap. The solution of white vinegar and water is also a good option. However, it is advisable not to use bleach or other harsh chemicals.
- Suppose your kitten had an accident outside the litter box; clean that area with an enzyme cleaner. This way, the odor will be eliminated quite easily. Generally, if cats find litter outside of the litter box, they feel encouraged to litter in the area.
- Since enzyme cleaner removes odor, cats feel discouraged to go to that place. If you are looking for the best cat litter box at an affordable price, look no further and buy the
Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan.
It is ideal for large cat breeds and multi-cat households. The litter box features a large opening and built-in bag anchor for easy scooping and adding litter. Moreover, its front door prevents tracking.
Furthermore, its overlap mechanism prevents leaks caused by urinating. To ensure optimum ventilation, it is equipped with a carbon-impregnated filter. The cleaning and maintenance of the box are so simple with its easy access door.
Similarly, it is easy to disassemble and made from BPA-free material. It comes with a carrying handle for convenient transport. Additionally, it consists of slider locks for extra security.
Overall, with all the exceptional features, this litter box will meet your cat’s requirements.
How to Groom Your Cat?
Grooming a cat is straightforward, and many can do it quite comfortably at home with the right tips. This section discusses the proper grooming of your cat. what do you need to take care of a cat for your body and overall health? Make sure your cat is sensitive so be careful.
Check your cat's ear to identify the excessive buildup of wax, debris, earwax, inflammation, or sores. Moreover, ear mites are another concern that leaves reddish discharge in the ear. Due to ear mites, cats tend to scratch their ears.
If you ever observe any symptoms like redness in your cat’s eyes, be sure something wrong is there. Your cat’s eyes should be clear and bright always. And how to remove your pet’s urine check here for the best pet urine removes cleaner.
Gently touch the nose of your cat. If it is smooth and moist, be happy to hear that your cat has no health issues. On the other hand, if you get any bumps, discharge of anything, or other wounds, don’t be late to consult with a veterinarian.
Coat and Skin
The Health condition of your cat can easily be understood simply by looking at your pet’s coat and skin. Parasites, licking, or scratching on any particular area are signs of infection on your cat’s coat and skin. The issue should be taken care of without making it late.
Paw and Nail Care
Cats should need healthy feet to climb, scratch, and make aerobatic jumps. Remember to investigate your furry friend's paw if you see s/he aggressively cleaning his/her paws. Regular checking will help your cat to stay healthy against any sores, swellings, cuts, or splinters. Make a plan to cut your cat' snails from time to time.
Dental Care of your cats
Many health risks may arise if your cat doesn’t have healthy and sharp teeth, tongue, gums, and palates. Regular brushing of your cat’s teeth will help to get rid of all dental problems. It is the best dog toothbrush and toothpaste.
Choose a small and soft bristle cat brush. Then get your pet used to the idea that his/her teeth need to be brushed. Gently start massaging the gums.
What are the Basic Cat Health Care Tips?
Preventative care of your cat is significantly important, even if you don’t see any health concerns. National Cat Health shares 10 points that need to be maintained regularly.
- Regular grooming is the key.
- Ensure fresh water and food.
- Keep an adequate number of litter boxes in your home.
- Make sure your cat is not urinating outside of the litter box.
- Train your furry friend to scratch on an ideal surface.
- Always carry your cat in a cat carrier.
- Daily brush your cat’s teeth.
- Regular scheduling of a cat-friendly veterinarian is always beneficial.
- Neuter your cat.
- Play with your cat daily.
To Sum Up
So, we have learned a lot about the rules that every cat parent should know to ensure their furry friend's proper health. Most of us love to spend time with our pets. what do you need to take care of a cat that you already got an idea about?
Quality time will be guaranteed when your pet is healthy, strong, and happy. Hopefully, with the above in-depth discussion, you and your cat will have a great life together.