Are you thinking of adopting or buying a kitten? Shelters have a large number of unwanted cats and kittens who are in need of homes. Please check with your local cat charity who will be able to help you rehome a cat or kitten. At a young age, kittens can be quite impressionable. They are just as much work as an adult cat if not more. Think about what type of kitten breed you would like, as cat breeds carry different temperaments.
Kitten preparation checklist
Once you've decided which kitten you would like - make a list for before you make any arrangement to look after them. A good starting point is to ensure that you get your feeding bowls, mats and water bowl along with a suitable cat or kitten bed. Think about where you would like to place these items and whether your kitten will be close to you or in the same room as you so you can keep a close eye. A kitten checklist will help you prepare even before you bring your kitten home.
Get your litter tray ready including the type of litter/substrate. If you are adopting a cat used to littering outside, consider building a latrine (an outdoor designated toilet area) For a more extensive list - read our article here.
Kitten-proof your home
As kittens are very inquisitive and so small, they will want to explore any corners and crevices. Even the tiniest of openings would excite a kitten, so almost baby-proofing your kitten quarters will keep them safe and still stimulated. You may also want to keep your kitten in a certain area of the home such as the living room or bedroom where you spend most of your time. You will then be able to supervise them and give them enough attention.
Create a quiet environment
Build a quiet space where they can feel safe and comfortable. Reassure them that they are home and are welcome to explore and enjoy the surrounding area. If they feel overwhelmed or frightened, they will try to hide. Try and find the trigger/cause of what is scaring them.
Socialising your kitten
A kitten is naturally inquisitive and very playful but if you notice abnormal behaviour such as constant hiding, hissing, or not coming close, then see your vet as soon as possible. If you would like to try and help socialise your kitten with other animals or older cats then read this article.