There are few things more exciting (and distracting!) than the arrival of a new kitten. A potential trip out will suddenly make you paws for thought and wonder whether it’s really where you want to be versus playing with your new addition to the family. All conversations will now be sure to start with a kitty anecdote…the cat is now officially in charge!
While you are keenly awaiting the big arrival, put your adrenaline to good use and make sure you have everything you need, and that your home is safe and ready for exploring paws.
Young kittens will amaze you with their uncanny ability to squeeze into the tiniest of spaces, so you’ll want to seek out any possible escape routes and make sure they are blocked off. Keep reachable (or jumpable) windows closed, and be mindful of any places they could climb and potentially fall.
Have a think about any potential safety hazards and dangerous objects too such as electrical cords, medicines and sharp objects. Cheeky kittens can get up to all sorts of mischief; even a reed diffuser can be a great source of entertainment! Lillies in particular are toxic to cats, so stock your vase with some alternative flowers instead. Also, don’t forget to keep the toilet seat down (women of the world – rejoice!) as curious kittens have a knack of jumping inside and can easily get stuck.
There are a few basic kitten supplies you’ll need such as toys, bedding, food and water bowls, a litter box, litter and a scratching post. Playing with your kitten (especially if you didn’t have a sister to chase around like our feline muse, Frankie, did) is an important part of their development and a great way to bond. Frankie has a personal preference for anything on a string and we love this Love Bug Bee Toy from House of Paws. If you want to make sure you’re welcoming your new kitten in style, why not go for a wicker pet pod, which will double up as a stylish bed in their favourite room in the house.
Cats are very territorial and can form strong bonds with their mother and littermates. Like us humans, they are all different; some will settle into their new home straight away, while others might need a little more assistance. So when the long-awaited day finally arrives don’t be disheartened if your kitten jumps out of the carrier and hides in the smallest space they can find. If possible, it is a good idea to try and be at home for a few days after your new kitten comes home so that you are on hand while your new fuzz ball is settling in and starting to explore…which of course also allows more time for staring in wonder and the pursuit of the purr-fect picture of your new arrival! While the temptation to scoop them up and cuddle them forever more may be all encompassing, kittens do like their space too so make sure they’ve got plenty of time to explore on their own.
Your new family member won’t have seen much of the big wide world, so it’s a good idea to keep them in one room for a few days so they don’t get too overwhelmed. Cats follow their noses and feel relaxed when around a familiar scent so once they’ve had a few days in their new environment, they’ll be ready to explore (or if you’ve got more than one kitten, likely sprint at high speed around) the rest of the house. Depending on the size of your home, you may want a few scratching toys scattered around so your beloved Heals sofa survives unscathed! We like this Cat Scratching Sphere from Prevue Pets, and the Scratchy Paws Turquoise Cat Scratcher, available through Etsy, which also doubles up as a bed.
Keep checking our Cat Tails for more handy tips and helpful advice on looking after your kitten. Any great welcome home advice we’ve missed? We’d love to hear your stories of mischief and mayhem – let us know or leave a comment below!