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Caring For Your Kitten

There are many things a cat owner needs to do to insure that a kitten is healthy and that it remains healthy including taking a kitten to it's first vet visit, feeding and grooming it properly and giving it plenty of playtime and love.

Time for the first vet visit:

The first vet visit can be traumatic if not prepared for in advance. There are a few things that a cat owner needs to do in order to be prepared for the visit to the vets.

You will need to have any medical history that came with your kitten such as a record of dewormings or vaccinations. A detailed record of what the kitten is currently eating, a fresh stool specimen, a suitable cat carrier and a list of any questions you or other family members have about the care of the kitten. You will also need information about any pet insurance that you may have. It will be important to arrive about fifteen minutes early for this first visit, as you will need to fill out paperwork on your new kitten.

After the paperwork is done, a staff member will call your kitten's name and you will be escorted to an examination room. The kitten's temperature, and weight will be taken and recorded. The weight is important because young kittens (under 6 or 8 weeks of age) can weigh less than a pound and small weight fluctuations can be significant indications of health. Knowing weight changes from one visit to another is one way the vet can tell if the kitten is experiencing a health problem. Weight is also used when determining the proper dosage of medications.

The vet will conduct a physical exam that will include listening to the cat's heart and lungs. The vet will take a look at all the body parts from nose to tail including the eyes, nose, skin and mouth and throat. The vet will examine the teeth and look at the genitals. Sometimes the owner is surprised at the announcement of an unexpected sex as it is often that those selling them make a mistake in the sex of a young kitten.

The vet will determine that all is well with the neurologic and musculoskeletal systems of your kitten, and will make a general assessment of the body condition. A check for parasites will be conducted usually by combing the kitten and by checking the stool specimen you provided.

Nutritional needs will be discussed and the vet will take the time to answer any of your questions regarding care of your kitten.

Any needed vaccinations will be given and any parasite medication dispensed.

Ask your vet about proper grooming needs of you kitten and to show you how to groom your kitten.

Time to Eat:

Three-week-old kittens are ready to begin eating softened kitten food so by the time you buy your kitten at 6 or 8 weeks of age the kitten will already be used to eating solid foods. It is best to continue to feed the same kitten food that they kitten is used to eating so be sure to ask what this is, from the person you are getting the kitten from. Make sure you establish regular feeding routines to help your kitten stay in good health. Your kitten's diet is an important factor in his overall good health.

Your kitten will want to have its very own dishes (preferably not plastic) in which to eat food and to drink fresh water from. Make sure your kitten has fresh water each day.


Kittens love to play and will respond well to kitten toys such as balls, feather lures, flashlights, and just about anything that you can find around the house to amuse them with. Never leave a string or yarn or piece of rope with a kitten unsupervised as a kitten can become entangled in these easily. Supervise a kitten while it is playing with anything with feathers as they can swallow these and choke. A kitten will love to play in a paper bag if you cut out some holes in it. An empty spool of thread also makes an excellent kitten toy. You will find that playtime is an excellent chance for you to bond with your new kitten.

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Jason Burton is an expert on cat care and has had a lifelong love for all animals. To learn more about proper cat care and tips on how to best care for your cat visit []

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