Your New Cat

It will take a few days for your new cat to adjust to a new home. Be very encouraging and supportive while your pet makes this transition and develops a relationship with you and other household members. Set up a routine and try to keep changes to a minimum while the cat adjusts to help develop a sense of security.

If you have adopted a small/young kitten, they have been accustomed to being in a small space such as their cages at the shelter.  Open spaces may overwhelm them and they may get lost in your home if left unattended.  While the kitten is at home alone, it is a good idea to place them in a smaller room such as a laundry room or bathroom.  Have food, water, litter and toys available for them at all times.  Make sure that the litter box is low enough for your kitten to be able to get in and out of it with ease. They are used to having these necessities close to them here at the shelter.  For this reason, keeping these items on the main level of your home, all together, will help the kitten understand where everything is.  (These can be moved slowly to a more convenient location as your kitten grows and becomes comfortable)

VACCINATIONS - Your cat has been vaccinated with FVRCP-C vaccine. This vaccine begins the protection process against feline rhinotracheitis, calici virus, panleukopenia and chlamydia. Please follow your veterinarians recommendations for a vaccination schedule to provide your new pet with the chance to build up an immunity to these diseases. One of the most important preventative medicine programs for your cat is periodic vaccination for serious, infectious diseases. Vaccinations are given to a cat to prepare his or her body for battling these diseases. However, one vaccination does not give lifelong protection. With kittens, an immunity (resistance to disease) must be built up, thus a series of two to three vaccination boosters (depending on the vaccines used) is necessary at an early age.

KITTEN vaccination schedule:
first vaccination of FVRCP-C (your kitten has received this)
second booster of FVRCP-C (needed - at your veterinarian within 3-4 weeks of the first vaccine)
third booster plus rabies vaccination (needed - at your veterinarian within 3-4 weeks of the second vaccine)

ADULT CAT vaccination schedule:
As soon as possible your cat should receive a rabies vaccination.
One month after first vaccination - booster of FVRCP-C

After the above vaccination schedules have been completed, yearly boosters are necessary for all cats in order to keep the body prepared to do battle with the infectious diseases.

RABIES - Rabies is a fatal viral disease. Suffering from this disease is a painful, prolonged, horrible way for an animal to die. That alone should be enough to make sure all animals are vaccinated against rabies. However, the fact that brings rabies to the height of public concern is that it can be transmitted to humans.

BE AWARE - YOUR CAT HAS NOT RECEIVED A RABIES VACCINE AT THE SHELTER.

The rabies vaccine must be administered by a veterinarian.   We recommend that you discuss all necessary vaccinations with your veterinarian within 7 days after adoption.

DEWORMING - Your new cat has received one dose of Milbemax deworming medicine. To be sure that your cat does not have any parasitic worms left in his or her system, we advise that you have a stool sample tested at your veterinarian's office.

NEUTERING (castration or spaying) - The main reason for neutering your kitten is to help control the ever-increasing problem of pet overpopulation. Neutering at an early age can also prevent or reduce the risk of several behavioral and health problems at a later age.

MALES - When your pet is neutered at a young age, many behavioral traits that are seen as problems in the adult cat do not develop (ie: roaming, and spraying (urinating to mark their territory)). Doing your part in controlling the pet population is only part of the reason for neutering your male cat. There are also health benefits to neutering. It will prevent or reduce the risk of some common problems seen in older unneutered cats; prostatic enlargements and infections and testicular tumors. If you neuter your cat at a later age the health risks are still reduced and some of the problem traits may diminish.

FEMALES - If you have adopted a female cat or kitten, please have her spayed at a young age (if a kitten) or right away if she is an adult. Female cats often come into season (heat) monthly. When they are in heat they are very vocal, and exhibit uncharacteristic behavior that is often disturbing to their owners. They are also extremely attractive to any male cat for miles around! Even if you keep your female indoors she may still attract local male cats to your property. Prevention of pregnancy is the main reason for spaying a female cat, but the procedure is also performed to prevent or reduce the risk of uterine infections, as well as mammary, ovarian and uterine cancer.

NUTRITION - Proper nutrition is the basis of your cat's good health and well being. During the growth stage the aim is to feed a diet that provides the proper nutrients needed for optimal growth of a healthy pet. Start your cat or kitten out on a complete balanced diet to avoid the need for supplementation. For young kittens a diet of dry food and water should be available at all times, with canned food being offered at least twice a day for the first few weeks in in their new home.  Adult cats may be stressed during the transition of a new home and would therefore benefit from a small amount of canned food until they feel more comfortable.  Do not feed your new cat or kitten milk. Many kittens, once weaned from their mothers, cannot tolerate cows milk. The result is diarrhea, therefore eliminate milk from their diet.

We do not guarantee an animal's health and recommend that you take your new cat to your veterinarian within 7 days after adoption for a check up, advise on basic health care and fecal examination (test for intestinal parasites). Do not forget to take your Humane Society Certificate with you for your cat's first check up at the veterinarian's.

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Cambridge & District Humane Society