New Cat Checklist
- Food and Water Bowls: Stainless steel or ceramic bowls can help to reduce cat acne (black itchy scabs) found on a cat’s chin. These should be cleaned often to prevent bacteria build up.
- High Quality Food (appropriate for the cat’s age): Your local pet store can help you to decide which food is best for your cat and your budget. You may chose to portion out your cat’s food or allow them to free feed. You should have water available to your cat at all times.
- Litter box and Litter and Litter Scoop: There are a wide variety of litter box and litter types available. Pick one that fits for your household and if you have more than one cat, you should be adding extra litter boxes. Scooping the litter box each day helps to keep the litter clean and will encourage your kitty to continue to use the litter box. Many cats will not use a dirty litter box. Litter boxes should also receive a deep cleaning now and then.
- Break-Away or Safety Collar With ID Tags: Please consider putting a safety collar and ID tag with your information on your cat. If the cat gets out, this collar will signal that the cat is an indoor pet who does not belong outside. If someone finds him/her then they will be able to get in contact with you. This should help to ensure that your cat is not dropped off at a shelter.
- Carrier: Anytime your cat has to leave the house, for a vet appointment, or other reasons, they should be secured in a carrier. By securing your cat in a carrier you are ensuring they they are not able to run from you if they are frightened. This will help to keep them safe.
- Scratching Posts: By providing your kitty with a scratching post(s) this will encourage them to scratch on the designated post, rather than on carpet or furniture. There are several varieties of scratching posts available, you may need to try out a few different styles before finding one that your cat prefers.
- Grooming Essentials: Nail clippers and brushes are essentials for any cat owner. Your veterinarian can teach you how to trim your cat’s nails and can work with you on recommending the best brush type for your cat’s coat. Although your cat does a good job of grooming on his/her own, brushing your cat can help to remove tangles and debris from his/her fur. Keeping your cat’s nails short can make scratching less damaging.
- Bedding: Making a bed available for your cat can give them a safe space to nap. They will likely chose to sleep elsewhere, but it is a good idea to give them an option of their own bed.
- Toys: Cats can be very playful by nature. Providing them with a wide variety of toys provides them with exercise and entertainment.