How To Take Care of a Kitten
Don’t let the cuteness of a new baby kitten fool you, these lovable critters can be a lot of work. Kittens are normally done with their weaning period at 12 weeks of age, so you shouldn’t be bringing home a kitten that is younger than 12 weeks old. A healthy kitten will have pink ears, pink gums and clear eyes. Keeping your kitten healthy while it’s growing is an important part of raising a cat that will live a long and happy life.
Just like any young pet, kittens need some guidance. Letting a kitten roam around your house doing whatever it likes will only result in messes and frustration, so begin acclimating your kitten to its new home as soon as possible. At first, a kitten should have its own little space like a part of a kitchen, a bathroom or even a spare bedroom or den. Fill this room with the kitten essentials: a litter box, food, water and toys. This will keep the kitten occupied, while also beginning to teach it that it needs to pee in the litter box.
If you have other pets or children in the home, you’ll want to gradually introduce them to the kitten after the kitten is showing signs of being comfortable in its new environment. Pay close attention to the kitten, not leaving it alone for long periods of time and giving it plenty of loving and affection. After all, you’re its new parent. Playtime helps the kitten build muscle and develops a strong bond between you and the kitten. Also make sure that anyone else that lives in the home plays with the kitten when it’s young so that it begins to form bonds with all members of the family.
Once your kitten is comfortable in its room, you can begin doing a little bit of training. Litter box training is important, and starting this training at a young age will only help the kitten, and save you the trouble of cleaning up messes around the house. Spending a lot of time with your kitten, especially after it eats and drinks, will allow you to know when your kitten is about to do its business. If you see that your kitten is about to urinate, gently lift it and place it in the litter tray or litter box that you have set up. Reward a kitten with praise and treats when it uses the litter box to encourage the repeated behavior.
You can also get your kitten used to grooming while its young. This will lead to a much easier time down the road when your adult cat needs to be groomed. Brush your kitten’s fur and teeth regularly so that it becomes comfortable with this kind of touching. You can also touch your kittens paws a lot so that it gets used to paw touching for future nail clipping and other grooming.
The key to raising a happy and healthy kitten is making sure it’s comfortable in its new home, and that you are spending enough time playing, grooming and training the new kitten. Your kitten will grow up in no time, and you’ll have a fun and lovable cat if you put in the time and effort when it’s young.