Top Ad 728x90

Adopting an adult cat: tips and best practices

Unlike a kitten who has only known his mother and who has everything to learn, an adult cat has a life experience that must be taken into account when preparing his arrival. Explanations and advice.

Adopting an adult cat: advantages

Attracted by their cute faces, many adopters turn to a kitten or a young cat. However, adopting an adult cat has the advantage of being more relaxing because the feline is less turbulent and its daily life is already punctuated by phases of rest, meals and play. His character is forged, so you will know right away if he is calm, active, cuddly, fearful... The only possible disadvantage is his past (mistreated, lost...) that you do not always know and that can make his adaptation longer than that of a kitten. But rescuing an adult is a source of unparalleled happiness.

Choosing an adult cat in a shelter

It's a great initiative to offer a second chance to an adult cat. When you visit the cattery, trust your instincts and if your attention is drawn to a resident, see how he reacts: Does he approach you easily? Does it let you pet it? His behavior gives clues about his character. To confirm your choice, ask the shelter's staff to tell you if the animal can adapt to your lifestyle: the presence of young children, a garden, other animals... Depending on the reasons for the abandonment (moving, death of the owner...), you can obtain information on the animal's background (age, health, understanding, habits)... By combining your desires with the staff's advice, you will meet the animal that suits you.

Preparing for the arrival of an adult cat

To help the hairball acclimatize, you'll need to provide it with a space conducive to its well-being. The cat is indeed a territorial animal whose domain is generally divided into four zones with distinct functions:
  • Play. The choice of the living room - where the family often gathers - is ideal to install its toys: balls, mice, scratching post, cat tree, corks or other bits of string;
  • Meals. Provide bowls for fresh water and food that are easy to clean. Put them on the kitchen floor or at a height accessible to the animal;
  • Natural needs. A regularly cleaned litter box should be placed in a quiet (away from traffic and noise) and well-ventilated area, such as a balcony or bathroom;
  • Sleep. Even if cats sleep wherever they want, choose a strategic and cozy place (near a radiator, for example), without any passage or draught, to set up his basket.

Provide other basic accessories

In addition to the equipment mentioned above, you will need additional accessories such as
  • A transport box for travel;
  • Toys to develop its physical and mental capacities;
  • Litter and a scoop;
  • A blanket to protect your couch or bed from its hair;
  • Hygiene products (nail clippers, brushes or grooming gloves, shampoos);
  • Possibly soothing pheromones or essential oil blends that will make it easier for her to adapt to her new home.

Let the adult cat acclimatize

When you arrive home, open the carrier and let the cat grow naturally, at its own pace. Respect its behavior and don't force it to do anything; it will come out when it feels ready. Little by little, it will start to find its feet by exploring every corner. With a soft voice, indicate to him the zones which are reserved to him: basket, litter box, bowls, toys... When he will have discovered his territory, let him come to you. Do not hesitate to caress him. If he is afraid, let him hide in the place of his choice, he will eventually come out to eat or go to his litter box. Be patient, play with him when he wants to and let him sleep when he wants to. If you have a yard, don't give him access to it. When he gets used to the inside (allow a month), you can allow him to go outside. For the food, ask the shelter to plan a gradual transition with the food you have chosen for him.

Introducing the new cat to a fellow cat

If you already have a cat, it will naturally have the status of leader and may consider the newcomer as a threat (for its resources: food, cuddles, games ...). Don't panic if they growl, spit or paw at each other. Try to intervene as little as possible and do not take sides with the second cat. If things get really heated, it's best to isolate the newcomer in a room of the house, surrounding him with all his accessories (bowls, games, basket, litter box). This will allow the two felines to get to know each other through the door. When you feel they are ready to live together, bring them together. It may take days or even weeks for them to get used to each other. If they don't play together, it doesn't matter, the important thing is that they agree to live under the same roof, even if they don't care.

Antioxidant requirements in the cat's diet

The cat is a strict carnivore and its feeding behavior is different from that of the dog. This is why, when you have a cat and a dog, you should not make the mistake of feeding them in the same way or at the same frequency. The cat absolutely needs proteins but not only, and to eat little at a time but over a period of 24 hours, it must be able to make up to 15 or 20 small meals. It remains to know how to balance his diet so that his daily ration perfectly meets his needs. This is the key to keeping him healthy. To do this, the kitty must receive essential nutrients, including antioxidants. What are they used for and which cat foods are rich in antioxidants? Let's find out.

What is the role of antioxidants?

The term antioxidant means "one that slows or reverses the process of oxidation". Among the antioxidants present in cat food, we find :
  • Carotenoids such as:
    • Beta-carotene,
    • Lycopene,
    • Lutein.
  • Vitamin A,
  • Vitamin C,
  • Vitamin E,
  • Polyphenols, including dicaféylquinic acid or cynarine, which is extracted from artichoke leaves.
Antioxidants are molecules that interact with free radicals in the body. Their role is fundamental to :
  • Fight against oxidative stress responsible for cellular aging,
  • Stabilize free radicals,
  • To slow down the process of peroxidation which, if it is too important, damages the healthy cells,
  • Participate in the maintenance of an efficient immune system.
Giving antioxidant food to your cat helps his body to limit the impact of free radicals, which are largely involved in the pathogenesis of degenerative diseases. This is a serious topic that should be of interest to all cat owners.

A diet rich in antioxidants for the good health of your cat

When a small cat's diet meets its antioxidant needs, the animal is less exposed to the risk of infection and cellular damage due to aging is delayed. But for the best long-term results, it is essential that the cat receive all the necessary antioxidants, not just one, through a perfectly balanced diet of high quality. Indeed, the antioxidant balance helps prevent cell damage.

We can therefore include in the cat's home diet foods that are rich in antioxidants, such as
  • Lettuce,
  • Pumpkin,
  • carrots,
  • Blueberries,
  • Cranberry,
  • blueberries...
It should be noted, however, that for a cat, vegetables should not constitute more than 15% of its daily ration and fruits 5%.

Finally, a cat can and should eat cereals such as corn, which is rich in antioxidants. Contrary to popular belief, cats are quite capable of digesting the starch in cereals very well. For a perfect digestibility, it is highly recommended to buy cat food containing a balanced rate of corn for example from a manufacturer using the extrusion cooking method.

The method of manufacture is important for all foods given to a cat, as it can degrade the antioxidants, which are very sensitive to heat, but can also be oxidized by light or oxygen. This is why it is important to pay attention to the choice of industrial food that you buy for your little friend. Ideally, you should contact your veterinarian to get all the dietary advice you can and ask him or her about the best food products for cats.

Dermatitis in cats: symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and prevention

Sometimes called eczema, dermatitis is a skin inflammation that causes severe itching in cats. If left untreated, the animal will scratch a lot, which exposes it to the risk of superinfection. But in some cases, the cat may suffer from asthma attacks in connection with allergic dermatitis. Spotlight on this dermatological disorder.

Dermatitis in cats: causes and symptoms

This condition of the superficial layers of the skin can be caused by :
  • An allergy to flea bites: we speak of DAPP (Allergic Dermatitis to Flea Bites) which manifests itself rather in autumn.
  • A contact allergy (plastic, nickel, etc.),
  • A food allergy: fish, beef, chicken and dairy products are the main foods that can cause allergic dermatitis in cats,
  • Ringworm,
  • Parasitic dermatosis,
  • An autoimmune dermatosis,
  • An allergy to a medication,
  • Hormonal imbalance.
Cats with miliary dermatitis develop skin lesions such as crusts or papules, usually in very localized areas. The signs appear mainly around the mouth, on the paws or on the back, but may also appear on the neck. The cat frequently licks itself to relieve the itching and even pulls out its own hair from biting.

The veterinarian can also identify atopic dermatitis. This is more commonly known as atopic eczema. The cat scratches in an untimely way to the point of inflicting lesions and one can notice hot zones with red spots where the itching is virulent. Vesicles then yellowish crusts appear and finally, a film forms on the lesions. The skin then becomes very dry, and at any time in the case of chronic atopic dermatitis, the itching reappears.

Be careful, itching accompanied by oozing patches may be due to an eosinophilic granuloma. This is an autoimmune disease that is triggered by an external cause, such as the cat's infestation by a parasite.

Feline dermatitis: diagnosis and treatment

Identifying the cause of dermatitis in cats is not easy, especially if the origin is a food allergy, because the reliability of the tests is not 100% guaranteed. The veterinarian therefore sets up an eviction diet with the animal's owner. This consists of eliminating one food at a time to check whether or not the symptoms of dermatitis continue to appear. This diet should be followed for at least one month.

In general, to identify the cause of a dermatitis, it is necessary to proceed by elimination but a blood test may be necessary to check the immunoglobulin level, especially when atopy is suspected.

A treatment is in any case essential to heal the lesions and then to relieve the itching. An antiparasitic is prescribed when necessary.

To prevent dermatitis, it is very important to fight against any parasitic infestation. Deworming, flea control products, regular cleaning of the cat's environment, treatment of all pets that may contaminate each other, are all precautions to be taken. If the allergy is to food, it is necessary to be patient because with an eviction diet, one does not obtain convincing results quickly. And when you have to reintroduce the evicted food, it is very important to keep a close eye on your cat in order to react as soon as possible if the symptoms of dermatitis reappear.

Loss of milk teeth in kittens: everything you need to know

Just like humans, the cat's first teeth will not be permanent, they are called milk teeth. Indeed, these teeth will be replaced during the kitten's growth by teeth more adapted to its needs, these are the permanent teeth.

But how does the loss of milk teeth in a cat occur? Should we worry about it? Should we intervene? All the answers to these questions can be found in this article.

The appearance of the milk teeth in the kitten

Before talking about the fall of milk teeth in kittens, let's first talk about their appearance. Just like humans, kittens are born without teeth. Until he is about two months old, he only feeds on the milk provided by his mother, and this by sucking. He does not need teeth at this age.

However, the first milk teeth will appear from the second or third week. Even if they are not yet useful for eating, they will be used to learn to hunt by playing with his brothers and sisters, among other things by biting them.

Also, until about three months of age, the kitten's jaw is not yet developed enough to accommodate permanent teeth, which are larger than the baby teeth.

Loss of baby teeth in kittens

By the third month of life, the kitten's jaw is large enough to accommodate permanent teeth. They will then start to grow, loosening the baby teeth as they come in (except for the molars, which are permanent from the start), a process that will last until the kitten is about six months old.

The incisors will first take their place during the third and fourth months. They will then be followed by the canines, which will gradually emerge from the gums between the fourth and fifth months, and finally, the premolars will come in between the fourth and sixth months. At this point, the kitten will have 30 permanent teeth that will serve her throughout her life.

Between the kitten's third and sixth months, it is not unusual to find a baby tooth on the floor. It is not essential to keep it, you can throw it away, or if you wish, keep it as a souvenir.

The kitten's behavior during the loss of its milk teeth

Just like for human babies, the loss of milk teeth, and especially the growth of his permanent teeth, is a real ordeal for the kitten, since it can cause him more or less strong pains (but nothing insurmountable, rest assured).

His behavior may be slightly disturbed during this period, we can then observe him doing unusual things. It will be possible to see him drooling or bleeding slightly from the mouth, and he will be much more irritable because of his pain.

In addition, he may have trouble eating and, like teething babies, will have a compulsive need to chew. So don't hesitate to provide him with all sorts of toys that he can put in his mouth to relieve himself.

Finally, some cats may try to pull out a tooth with their paw, but it usually doesn't work. In any case: don't worry, it's not dangerous for him.

What to do when your cat loses his baby teeth

First of all, there's no need to panic. It's a completely natural stage in a cat's life. You'll just have to be more careful with his jaw than usual, such as not pulling on a toy in his mouth.

If you can, feed your cat food, which he can chew much more easily than kibble. If you can't replace the kibble, then wet it to make it softer.

Also, respect his moods. Try to soothe him when you can by cuddling and petting him, but avoid forcing him when he's in a foul mood.

Finally, avoid cleaning your kitten's fangs during this time, so she doesn't associate brushing her teeth with pain. This may make it harder for her to accept it in her future life, if she ever does.

Top Ad 728x90