Cats are fun, cute and fluffy — but getting a cat or kitten is also a big responsibility. Take a look at our expert advice and tips on how to keep your feline friend happy and healthy.
- Food plays a vital role in your cat’s health. A cat needs a diet that contains essential nutrients — think proteins, fibre and fats.
- Good quality, ready-made food will help provide a well-balanced diet.
- Unlike dogs, cats are ‘nibblers’ and prefer to graze throughout the day.
- Also, make sure that your cat always has access to a bowl of fresh water.
- It’s important to keep your cat well-fed, properly wormed, regularly treated against parasites and fully vaccinated.
- Grooming, stroking and playing with your cat will help you to build a strong relationship.
Playing and hunting
- Kittens and cats need to play — this includes hunting and stalking.
- Playing with a paper or cloth toy is a positive way for your cat to be active and express its natural instincts.
- It’s also important you join in these games so it can learn to control its biting and scratching.
- Cats are very clever at keeping an illness well hidden, until it gets serious.
- If you notice a change in behaviour or habits, ask your vet for advice.
- Look out for signs such as loss of appetite, excessive drinking, vomiting, diarrhoea and scratching.
Cat-proof your home and garden
- Before you get a cat or kitten, scan your home for potential dangers to your new feline friend’s health and safety.
- Always check ovens, washing machine drums or spin dryers. They are amusing hiding places – especially for kittens.
- Keep all heavy and hazardous items including sewing needles, books and vases out of reach.
- Also check the garden — many plants are toxic to cats.
Cats make excellent companions — just make sure you’re ready for the commitment. Good luck!