New Kitten Checklist: 15 Things You Need Before Bringing Your Cute Kitten Home
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Check out our new kitten checklist which details everything you need to buy before bringing your new pet home!
Things to do Before Bringing Your New Kitten Home
- Find a breeder or consider adopting from a rescue centre
- Register with a local vet
- Find the best deal on pet insurance
- Book time off work to bond with your new kitten
- Choose a name for your kitten; check out male cat names or female cat names for inspiration
- Buy essential cat supplies
- Make changes to your home, such as installing a cat flap
- Set up your kittens’ bed, food and toilet areas. These all need to be in different locations.
- Kitten proof your home and garden to get rid of hazards.
Supplies for a Kitten: New Kitten Checklist
Preparing Your Home
Things to Ask the Breeder
- Ask your breeder to provide some bedding that your kitten and the mother have been using. Your kitten will be calmer traveling home and will settle in with a familiar smell that’s reassuring.
- It’s also wise to ask about kitten food and litter. Carrying on using the same products will be beneficial to your pet.
New Kitten Checklist: Essential Items
Here’s a list of the things you’ll need for your new kitten. Prepare your home before your new pet arrives with these essential and optional items:
1. Kitten food
Choosing a kitten food can be confusing as there are so many different varieties. Ensure you select a healthy food that’s formulated especially for growing kittens. Your kitten should be fed food that’s right for his age and stage of development. It’s a good idea to buy at least one week’s supply of food before bringing your kitten home.
As kitten food is an ongoing expense, you can aim to find a brand that’s healthy and meets your budget.
- Ask your breeder to recommend food. Your kitten has already been eating solids, and choosing the same brand will help your pet settle in.
- Seek advice from your local vet, who will be able to recommend a kitten food that meets the health requirements of your pet.
2. Food and water bowls
Ceramic cat bowls are available online or from your local pet shop and are inexpensive. It’s best to avoid using your own bowls for your kitten. Messy eaters may require a plastic mat placed under the bowls to help keep your home clean. This will make cleaning up spills a lot easier.
3. Litter box, litter, and a scoop
Cats are generally clean animals, and most kittens learn to use a litter tray early on by copying their mum. Your new kitten will likely be litter trained when he arrives at your home. Have a litter box set up before your pet arrives.
Related Article: Types of Litter Box
There’s a large selection of litter trays, covered litter boxes, and automatic litter boxes available. Most young kittens will easily transition to using a different litter box and litter. If you want to keep things the same, you can ask your breeder which type of litter your pet has been using. Litter is another ongoing expense. It’s best to choose a good quality litter that’s safe for kittens but is also within budget.
A litter scoop is another essential item. These are available in either plastic or metal, and both have their benefits. A plastic scoop is cheap and easy to use but can crack or break, especially if used roughly. You may find that you need to replace a plastic scoop often. Metal scoops cost slightly more but are robust and unlikely to break.
4. Kitten bed
Young kittens will fall asleep anywhere, often in odd places. Choose a soft, warm bed for your kitten, so he has somewhere comfortable and peaceful to take a nap.
5. A cat tree or scratch post
A cat tree or scratching post can help save your furniture from little claws. Training a kitten from a young age not to use the furniture as a scratching post will allow you to raise a well-behaved pet. If you have enough space, you may like to invest in a cat tree. These allow kittens to not only scratch but to climb and exercise. If you’re short on space, a scratch post will work just as well.
6. Cat carrier
A cat carrier will allow you to transport your kitten home safely and can also be used for trips to the vet. Choose a carrier that’s large enough for a full-grown cat. Make your kitten comfortable by placing a blanket inside.
7. Kitten toys
Kittens are curious, energetic creatures that love to play. Play helps a young kitten develop its chasing and pouncing skills. A few fun and entertaining toys will keep you and your kitten amused for hours. Playing can also help your kitten relax and will reduce stress.
Related Article: How to Make an Interactive Kitten Toy
8. Kitten Treats
Kitten treats can be used as rewards when training your kitten or provided as a snack in the afternoon. Choose a healthy kitten treat; you may like to ask your local vet for advice.
9. First aid kit for cats
Pet stores sell first aid kits designed especially for cats and kittens. Hopefully, you won’t ever need to use a first aid kit, but it’s best to be prepared. Ensure your kitten is living in a safe environment to help reduce the likelihood of accidents. Add your vet’s phone number to the first aid kit so that it’s on hand, and always seek medical help in an emergency.
10. Non-toxic cleaning solution
When cleaning your home, it’s best to use non-toxic cleaning solutions. Choose chemical-free brands that won’t harm your new kitten but will help keep your home fresh.
New Kitten Checklist: Optional items
If your pet is to have the freedom to venture outdoors when he’s older, you’ll need to have a cat flap installed. It’s a good idea to get outdoor cats microchipped for identification purposes. Here are some optional items you may like to buy for your cat:
11. A brush for grooming
Kittens will groom themselves from a young age. You may like to buy a grooming brush if you’re getting a long-haired kitten. Regular brushing will ensure your pet’s fur doesn’t become matted.
12. Kitten collar with an ID tag
If you plan to let your kitten outdoors, he’ll need a collar with an id tag. Choose an adjustable collar that’s a comfortable fit. A quick-release collar is the safest option as it will come undone if your kitten becomes trapped.
13. Cat flap or cat door
A cat flap will allow your kitten to come and go as he pleases. It’s best to wait until your kitten is about six months old before letting him outside unaccompanied. Your pet will be mature enough to explore without getting lost and will also be fully vaccinated at this age.
14. Cat Fence or Netting
Cats are curious animals that can be protected from unforeseen dangers by installing a cat fence or netting. Pet fencing can help secure your garden and keep your cat off busy roads. Some fences will make a warning beep to scare your cat away as he approaches the barrier. If you have a balcony, you can make it secure using netting.
15. Kitten harness
A kitten harness is necessary if you don’t have a garden but would like to take your pet outdoors. Your kitten can go for a walk with you in a quiet location. Bear in mind that kittens that have spent most of their lives indoors will likely be timid when venturing out.
A no escape kitten harness will stop your cat from getting lost if he’s scared by a dog or sudden noise. Choose an adjustable harness and ensure it’s comfortable and well-fitting.
The above new kitten checklist will allow you to get your pet off to a good start in life. Make your home kitten-friendly, so your pet is safe and well cared for.
If possible, take some time off work to settle your pet into his new surroundings. Enjoy your new kitten, as he won’t be this small and cute forever.
Related articles: Warning signs when introducing cats