Monday, June 17, 2013
Adopt a Shelter Cat!
June is National Adopt a Shelter Cat Month!
Some questions you may need to ask yourself first to make sure you are ready to adopt a cat. Remember, adopting is a lifelong commitment!
Ask and Answer these questions to make sure you’ve thought this out.
1. Why do you want to adopt a cat?
2. Do you want an adult cat or a kitten? Why?
3. Are you prepared for a lifelong commitment?
4. Can you afford pet care, for a lifetime?
5. Is your entire family ready?
6. Are your other pets ready?
7. Are you prepared to cat proof your home if it isn’t already?
8. Are you prepared to dedicate training until your cat is well adjusted? (litter box, scratching post)
9. Will your lifestyle allow time for you to spend quality time with your cat?
10. If you travel, are you prepared to spend money on professional services to care for your cat?
There are many more questions but these are the most important to ask yourself before making such a big commitment.
Bringing a new cat home. What to do first?
1. Make sure that you have cat proofed your home. No tinsel, string, plastic, shoelaces lying around. These can be deadly if ingested and twisted around intestines. You’ll need to watch closely for your new cat’s personality traits for a while to see if he/she will be a foreign object eater.
2. Purchase a cat bed, water and food bowl, litter box (or two), grooming tools, (Nail trimmer, combs, brushes)
3. Cat scratching post/s and cat towers.
4. Catnip! J
5. Familiarize yourself with common household plants and remove them at once if in your possession.
6. Familiarize yourself with common household medications that are harmful or toxic and make sure they are up high and preferably locked away out of reach.
7. Establish a Veterinarian if you don’t already have one. Make sure you have the clinic hours and telephone number handy.
8. Make certain you know the location of your nearest Animal Emergency clinic, telephone number, route and address.
9. If your new cat is not already properly identified with tags or a microchip make sure that you commit to taking him to the Veterinarian to have a microchip implanted and then to purchase a breakaway collar and id tags.
10. Lastly, make sure that you have a plan for how you will introduce your new cat. If you live alone with no other animals this should be simple! If you have children and/or other pets you will want to educate yourself on the best approach to an introduction. Your new cat may be somewhat nervous and apprehensive the first few weeks.
Most cats that are adopted from the pound, a Shelter or Rescue, come already vaccinated with at least one vaccine. No matter the age of the newly adopted cat it is still very important to bring your cat to your Veterinarian for a medical visit. Your veterinarian will be able to inform you of any medical concerns and establish a health protocol to follow. Don’t assume that since your pet came from a reputable shelter that they don’t still need a medical exam. Often shelters do have vet checks prior to placing cats for adoption but not always within a short time-frame of when they are actually adopted. Many changes can occur in that time.
Thank you for thinking about adopting a cat this month!
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PET EXPERT TIP OF THE DAY
- Never, ever leave your dog in the car;
- Make sure your dog has unlimited access to fresh water;
- Make sure your dog has access to shade when outside;
- Take walks during the cooler hours of the day;
- When walking, try to stay off of hot surfaces (like asphalt) because it can burn your dog's paws;
- If you think it's hot outside, it's even hotter for your pet – make sure your pet has a means of cooling off;
- Keep your dog free of external parasites (fleas, ticks) and heartworms – consult your veterinarian about the best product for your pet;
- Consider clipping or shaving dogs with long coats, and apply sunscreen to your dog's skin if she or he has a thin coat.
PET EXPERT TIP OF THE DAY!
Household pet tip for dogs from Blue Ribbon K9 Academy:
Train your dog to use a pet door by putting a dab of butter on the bottom edge of the flap. Have another person hold the dog on the side with the butter and you stand on the other side with treats. Your dog will lick the bottom of the flap, pushing it open while you encourage it through and offering treats. Happy Training!
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