четверг, 2 октября 2008 г.

New kittens))

Cats have a natural instinct to eliminate in sand or soil, and kittens also learn from observing their mother. Kittens usually start learning to use the litter box at 3 or 4 weeks of age, so by the time you bring your kitten home, she will likely be used to using a litter box.

You will not need to train your kitten to use the litter box in the same way that you would housebreak a puppy. However, it is important to make sure your kitten knows the location of the litter box in her new surroundings. Make sure the box is not in a noisy or hard-to-reach place. Soon after you bring your kitten home, take her to the litter box at a quiet time. Place her into the litter box, gently take her front paws and show her how to scratch at the litter once or twice. Don't worry if she jumps right out again. Place her in the box at the times throughout the day when a cat would normally go to the bathroom: first thing in the morning, and after meals, playing, and waking up from a nap. Remember that cats prefer privacy when using the litter box, so once you see that she has used the box, leave her alone.

Most cats will make the adjustment to a new litter box without any problems. However, if there are any accidents, don't scold or punish your cat. Yelling or using a squirt bottle will only confuse and scare your cat, and she won't understand why you are upset. Instead, clean up the accident with an enzyme cleaner to remove stains and odor. Then go back to square one, placing the kitten in the litter box frequently until she starts using it. If the accidents continue, or if you are noticing any diarrhea or straining, have your kitten examined by your veterinarian to rule out any possible medical problems. Cats with urinary tract disease or intestinal parasites may stop using the litter box.

How much would it be ?

Woman holding Siamese catCats can make great pets for the right people and are one of the favorite pets in America today. While the cost of owning a cat is much less than that of a dog, there is still a significant cost and is most likely much more than the average pet owner thinks.

We may argue, "I love my pets and cost is not a consideration so what does it matter?" The reality is cost does matter and directly influences both the type and quality of care that an animal will receive. Every day I see animals that are denied basic levels of care and veterinary treatment because of the failure of the owner to recognize that pets cost money. No pet should suffer as a result of poor financial planning and lack of commitment of their owner. High veterinarian costs are often blamed for the lack of care, but in reality, medical care is a necessary expense and is often a small part of the total cost of owning a pet. Owning a cat is not a right but a privilege and by recognizing that pets can cost a lot of money, it will help us to be more prepared and provide better care to these animals.

Cats are different than dogs in the sense that they can lead a semi-wild life and cost the owner virtually nothing. There are tens of thousands of these 'pets' living on the farms and the back streets of America's cities. These animals are often infested with parasites and deadly viral diseases and survive by hunting which takes a tremendous toll on wildlife. Their quality of life is very poor and most do not live more than a few years. Everyone knows of these cats and their 'owners' and I do not consider their quality of care to be adequate enough to even consider it here. The following chart lists the cost of owning a cat from three perspectives: the lowest cost of adequate care, the high-end cost of care, and the cost of care for my own cats. In addition to listing the cost of owning a cat for the more expensive first year, the cost for owning the cat for the remaining 13 years is broken down as an average yearly cost and then totaled at the end showing how much it will cost to own a cat for 14 years.

A clue on how to name a cat

Avoid names that sound like commands

When choosing a name for your new pet, choose one that does not sound like a common command. Pets rely on 'sounds like' rather than 'means' when they try to understand what we are communicating to them. As a result, names like 'Rum,' 'Puff,' 'Joe' can end up sounding like 'come,' 'off,' or 'no!' Your cat will not know which way to turn when you call.

Avoid names that sound like other names

Just as your cat's name should not sound like a command, it also should not be similar to the names of other household members (human or animal!). This would result in confusion for your cat, and the cat's namesake.

Keep the name short

Other things to consider are the length of the name. In general, shorter names with one or two syllables will be easier for your pet to recognize than longer names.

Try to use "hard" consonants and vowels

Hard consonants, such as 'k,' 'd,' and 't' are easier to hear and distinguish than soft consonants such as 'f,' 's,' or 'm.' The same is true for vowels. Thus, names such as Katy, Deedee, and Tiger are ones that a cat will often recognize and respond to faster than Fern, Shana, or Merl.

Choose a name he or she can grow into

If you are naming a kitten, remember he or she will grow into an adult, so you want to choose a name appropriate for each stage of his or her life.

Be willing to call the name in public

Finally, be sure to pick a name you will feel comfortable calling in public. A name you think is personal and cute may take on a different connotation when called in your yard in the event your cat gets outside. Also, don't choose a name that appears funny and may make people laugh at your cat.

Some of the most popular cat names in North America are:

* Callie
* Max/Maxwell
* Missy/Mitsy
* Morris
* Princess
* Pumpkin/Punkin
* Rusty
* Sam/Sammy/Samantha
* Sassy
* Shadow
* Simon
* Smokey
* Tiger/Tigger

There are many books and web sites devoted to naming cats. Have fun exploring!

Introduce a newcomer to others!

If you are bringing your new cat into a home with other cats, keep in mind that there are diseases and parasites that cats can transmit to each other, and some of these are fatal. There are also certain parasites such as roundworms, that people can get from cats. Roundworm eggs are passed in the stool and are so small they cannot be seen without a microscope. Roundworms are especially a concern for young children, who often put their fingers into their mouths after playing with pets. Before you bring a new cat into your household, take it to your veterinarian for an examination and stool sample check. Your veterinarian will be able to tell you what vaccinations your cat needs and check your cat's stool for intestinal parasites. Your veterinarian can also perform blood testing for feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV). Then you can bring your new cat home without concerns about compromising the health of other cats or people in your household.

Keeping the new cat in a quiet, separate room is especially important if there are other cats in the house. The other cats will quickly become aware of your new cat's presence. The cats will usually sniff at each other under the closed door. Do not be surprised if there is some initial hissing. Help the cats get used to each other's scent by rubbing a towel over each of them in turn. Feeding them on either side of the door that closes off the room the new cat is in is also helpful. They will start associating the smell of the other cat with a good thing (food). After a few days, take the new cat out of its room, put the old cat in that room with the door closed, and let the new cat begin to explore the rest of the house for a few hours each evening.

The next step is to let the cats see each other, yet still keep them separated. An old screen door or a piece of Plexiglas works well for this. Another option is to prop open the door of the new cat's room, just enough so that the cats can see each other and put a paw through, but not enough that they can get through the door. After a few days of this, try feeding the cats together, but at opposite ends of the room. Monitor the cats during this time, and separate them except at mealtime. Each day, move the food dishes very slightly closer to each other, until the cats are eating side by side. The idea is for the cats to associate each other with the pleasant experience of eating. It is not unusual to hear occasional hissing, but this should decrease as the days go by. If things do not seem to be improving, try decreasing their interaction for a few days.

Once the cats seem comfortable with each other, you can move on to the final step. Open the door all the way, allowing the cats to come and go as they please. Monitor them closely, in case they fight. Do not leave them alone for any length of time until you are sure they will get along well. Make sure there is at least one litter box per cat. This helps to prevent a more dominant cat from stalking the other and keeping him from using the litter box.

Before u take a new cat home

Making some plans ahead of time will make the transition to a new home much easier for you and your cat.

First, make an appointment with your veterinarian to have your new pet examined. If possible, schedule the appointment so you can take your cat to the veterinarian immediately after picking him up.

Cat in a carrier, ready for the trip to his new homeMake sure you have a sturdy travel crate for the cat to ride in. Most of the time the trip home will involve a car ride. When cats are nervous, they may feel more secure in an enclosed space. An unrestrained cat can be a real driving hazard, especially if she climbs down by the pedals, or jumps onto your shoulder. Having your cat in a carrier can also be helpful in case the cat vomits, urinates or defecates, which some cats will do if they are nervous.

The sense of smell is very important to cats, and it will make them more comfortable to have something that smells like their former home. For kittens, it is especially helpful to take a towel or blanket the kitten has been sleeping on with you to his new home. Make arrangements ahead of time with the breeder or shelter, possibly bringing them a towel for the cat to sleep on for several days before you pick her up. Place the towel in the carrier for the ride home, and leave it in the carrier for your new pet to sleep on the first few days.

To limit the number of changes your new pet will need to experience the first day, before you get the cat, find out what food and litter the cat has had, and try to get the same brand. If you want to change brands later, slowly (over the course of a week), mix the new brand in with the old brand.

Before you bring your new cat home, put his food, water, toys, scratching post, and litter pan in a quiet room you can close off, perhaps a spare bedroom. If the new cat is shy, fearful, or you have other cats, the use of the product Feliway may be helpful. Feliway is a product that was designed to help reduce anxiety in cats. It contains pheromones from the cat's face. Pheromones are chemicals which are used to communicate with other members of the same species. You may notice that a cat often rubs her face and chin on vertical surfaces. She is leaving a scent there which contains these pheromones. The pheromones from the face have a calming effect on other cats. You may wish to spray Feliway in the cat's new room, in the cat carrier before and after you pick up the cat, and around the house, if you have other cats. Alternatively, you can purchase a plug-in form of the product to use in the house.

Special care

Animals in shelters are undergoing considerable stress. They may not be used to cages or other animals. They are missing their old territory, and in many cases, their loving owner who had to give them up. They may have been moved from their home, to the shelter, and now to a new home all in a very short time. Think of how moving is stressful for you and how hard it is to lose so many familiar things. The animals are experiencing the same thing. They may need extra patience, assurance, and guidance. They may need your presence more than other animals who have come into your home.

woman holding a kittenBonding with your new pet is very important so spend as much time with her as you can. Play with her and be with her as she explores her new surroundings. Have her sleep in the same room as you. If your new pet is a dog, have her sleep in a crate next to the bed, or tied to the bed with a short rope.

Having a crate for your new pet is a good idea. You may think, 'but she has been caged in the shelter; I do not want to cage her again.' A cage in your home will be more like a den to your new pet and keep her safe while you are not around to monitor her activities. Some animals may find the space of a whole house overwhelming and find comfort in a small cozy place they can call their own.

Depending upon the physical condition of your new pet, special nutrition may be necessary. Some animals may be too fat, others too thin. Some may have had very poor nutrition in their previous home. Ask the shelter what they fed your new pet and continue feeding that for a week or more as your new pet adjusts. Then if you want to change the diet, do it slowly.

In most cases, the shelter will try to bathe and groom your pet before you receive him. They may have limited time and facilities, however, so you may need to spend more time grooming your pet at first. Make it a happy and fun time. It will be a good time for you to bond to each other.

Take training slowly. Your new pet has a lot of adjustments to make. Train with patience, affection, and quiet firmness. Consistency is very important. Be sure you, and all family members, use the same commands in the same manner.

There are many books available for sale and in the library that provide excellent information on adopting and raising animals from shelters. It is well worth your time to read these - even better if you read them before the adoption.

Adopting pets from shelters

Adopting pets from shelters can have many rewards. Many people say they are so happy that they could save the life of a wonderful animal by giving him a new and loving home. It is estimated that 4 to 6 million cats and dogs are euthanized in America's animal shelters every year. Shelters are filled with animals who were and could continue to be great pets, as well as animals who, with a little training, can become a cherished member of the family.

Animal shelters provide a wonderful mix of adoptable animals. Some are purebreds; others are virtually one of a kind. Animals are also of various ages. Many people prefer to have an older pet so there are no surprises about how big he will grow or the type of coat he may have.

Adopting an animal from a shelter is generally less expensive than acquiring an animal through a breeder or pet shop. Of course, you need to remember that the real financial cost of a pet over her lifetime is not her purchase price, but the food, grooming, health care, toys, etc. If you do not have the money to buy an expensive pet, you need to carefully look at your finances to be sure you can afford any pet, and still provide the care she needs.

While it varies with the shelter, you can usually get good information on the temperament and personality of the animal you are interested in. You may even have access to his health records, and a good description of his life in his former home.

Many shelters now neuter and spay all animals before they can be adopted as pets. Others may provide you with a certificate that will pay for a portion of the surgery. Most of the animals have also been wormed and vaccinated. Most animals will be house trained, and many dogs, for instance, have some basic training.

Flea control conrionue

The best flea control is always flea prevention. Repellents are a cornerstone of prevention. Pyrethrins and permethrins have flea repellent activity. (NOTE: Permethrins should NOT be used on cats.) Using products containing these insecticides will help keep fleas away and prevent a flea problem from developing.

Regular use of insect growth regulators/development inhibitors will reduce the risk of fleas becoming established in the indoor and outdoor environment.

Before they are allowed in their house or kennel areas, pets should be given a flea bath after they have been boarded, played with pets from other households, or visited places where other animals have been.

Flea control is complicated by the fact that there are many wild animals which serve as 'reservoirs' for flea populations. Fleas can infest over 50 species of animals worldwide. In the United States, coyotes, fox, raccoons, some rodent species, skunks, opossums, rabbits, and ferrets can all harbor cat fleas. Flea control is also hampered by the evidence that some fleas are developing resistance to some of our flea control products, especially organophosphates. If there is a severe problem in your geographical area (some areas in the southern United States), treating the environment with pyrethroid-containing compounds may be indicated.

Flea control

Flea control in the outdoor environment generally involves treating the yard and kennel areas where fleas are most likely to occur. Fleas tend to like it where it is moist, warm, shady, and where there is organic debris. They will also tend to be where pets spend more of their outdoor time. So be sure to concentrate on areas such as patios, under porches, dog houses, etc.

Rake away any organic debris such as leaves, straw, grass clippings, etc., to disturb flea habitat and allow any flea and tick product you use outdoors to penetrate.

If you are going to treat your yard, we prefer an environmentally safe spray containing fenvalerate for this purpose. There are also sprays which contain insect growth regulators which can be used.

You may need to treat the yard every 7 to 21 days depending on the product. Regardless of the product used, remember not to spray when or where runoff could go into lakes or rivers. Read the label on all insecticides thoroughly and apply them as directed.