ATTENTION: This site will remain up for some time,but we will be unable to update it after June 1, 2015. Enjoy it as it is our history, then visit our new site for updates and new kittens. It is a work in progress
New site donamaed.com
Also eventually donamae.info
Thank you, Donamae and Jim Dougherty
Taking Home Your New Kitten
Many of you have owned a cat before so this information will be only a
To those of you who have not raised a kitten before, the information will be
only a beginning. There are a number of good books on the market that are worth
your time in reading. Many problems can be best prevented, rather than fixed.
Your new kitten should be kept in a small area such as the bathroom off your
bedroom, where it is easy for it to find its litter and food. It will like to
sleep in its carrier with a nice fuzzy pad in it. You should buy a carrier
anyway to take the kitten to the vet. If you turn it loose in the house it may
not be able to find the litter and will go behind the TV, etc, and then develop
habits you must break. If this happens call me for directions. I have never had
any complaints about my kittens not using the litter, but you must make it easy
for them to find it.I have recently switched to pellet litter and love it.
almost no smell. you only use an inch, so it is very ecconomical. I replace it
as needed and use Clorox solution on the
litter box and let it dry, preferably in the sun. This will help keep down odors
better than anything else. Cats do not like perfumed litter. Also, never use
ammonia to clean anything around your cat because it makes the item smell like
urine to them and they will (guess what) on it. IF you can afford it and want
to, there are some wonderful litters made of wheat and corn etc that you can
experiment with. I do not recommend clumping litter because it sticks to their
paws and the kittens lick it off and get diarrhea. They may also get clumps in
their stomachs. It tends to track all over the house on cabinets etc. Remember
this is all just my opinion, you may have a different one.
The kitten is being free fed (this means a bowel available all the time) a
mixture of Walmart Maxium kitten chow, and Avapro. I don't like the dry food, I
agree with Elizabeth Hodgkins new book. Cats are carnivors and require as much
raw meet as you can afford. I am feeding 40 cats right now (11 rescues) and a
couple dozen kittens as well. So I cannot afford a diet of totally raw meat. I
wish I could. The kittens love it. I use raw chicken, rabbit (when I can get it)
and roast or steak what ever I can find on sale. Prefer organic meats. I add a
supplement called platinum performance. When not feeding raw, they get a night
time meal of Friskies, mine like the shredded one. Kittens get it 3 or 4 times a
day. and raw. I spend more on the cats than on us.
I suggest you use bottled water at least for a while, as a change in water
can also cause diarrhea. The kittens are used to well water.
If they are under 12 wks old they are being given canned food 2-3 times a day
as their teeth are not strong enough to chew enough dry food to gain weight and
grow properly. I use Friskies, or Iams cat gourmet chicken, or Fancy feast. Over
12 weeks I usually convert to one meal in the evening of canned food in addition
to the kitten chow.
Do not give too much Fancy Feast, I mostly reserve it for sick kittens, or to
mix medicine in. It is very strong flavored and they will get spoiled and not
want any other. A sick kitten also will usually eat Baby food chicken when they
won’t eat anything else. It is easy on their stomachs.
I also sprinkle about ˝ teaspoon of NuVet Plus feline supplement on their
food daily, I believe this helps with skin, coat, and immunity. I had one female
that had hot spots and skin problems for about a year and nothing I tried
worked. This company called and asked me to try this supplement, so I tried it
on her. Gingers skin cleared up and hair was growing back in a week of having
the supplement sprinkled on her food. Made a believer out of me. I had been
using a combination of things including blue green algae, etc.
The one thing you must watch for in a young kitten is diarrhea. You should
check the litter box frequently as this can happen for a variety of reasons.
Stress, change in food or water, or Girradia (from open toilet bowels) and the
list is long. It is not that important in itself and will probably run its
course and stop, but a young kitten doesn’t have any reserves and will dehydrate
quickly. Sometimes within about 12 hours. You cannot wait, they must get to the
vet immediately. You should force pedialyte by using a syringe and slowly
squirting it in the side of the mouth across the tongue, hourly. A kitten that
is dehydrating will have loose skin on the neck that when you pull up on it
doesn’t snap back quickly. They also will become listless; lose interest in food
and water. The kitten may die if not treated rapidly. Your vet can hydrate the
kitten and give you antibiotics and other medicines.
If the kitten should develop a cold, it will probably get well on its own,
however you must again watch for dehydration, and keep its nose clean and eyes
clean. If their nose plugs up squeeze some saline drops in it and then wipe
again. This must be done multiple times a day because they will not eat or drink
if their nose if plugged.
Our kittens do not have ear mites because we use Revolution on the whole
cattery once a month. However when they get to your house if you have other
animals who do, they will catch them easily. If they are scratching their ear
and shaking their head, look for mites.
The kittens have been wormed usually twice, before you get them. Worming
every six months is advisable.
Their shots should be complete, refer to the shot record included with your
packet. I do not give rabies vaccine, your vet must do that.
Do not let your kitten go outdoors. If it should get out now, it will crouch
down and be uncomfortable in the new environment. You should be able to quietly
walk over and pick it up, talking gently to it. Never punish it for coming back
to you or for getting out the door, it will only make it run from you next time.
If you allow your kitten outdoors and it gets comfortable out there, then when
it gets out on you it will run farther and you will lose it. Not fun to see your
expensive cat running down the street or in the street.
This is a show cat. If you have not purchased breeding rights you agree to
have the kitten neutered or spayed at the appropriate age. About six months for
a female and nine or ten months for a male. Males may be neutered earlier, but
may not develop their muscles in the neck and shoulders as much. Most will not
start to spray till this age, if they are not around a female in heat. Both male
and female cats will usually spray if not fixed. The urine from a male unaltered
cat has a strong obnoxious smell you will not be able to live with. The female
urine doesn’t smell as bad, but who wants it sprayed on the walls? Incase you
are interested in showing, you may show your cat in the altered classes and win
championships just like the unaltered ones. However some registries do not allow
declawed cats to be shown.
Declawing- I do not tell other people what to do with their animals but I
personally believe that declawing causes cats to become biters. I have seen
proof of this in the rescue cats that have come in to us. I suggest that you use
a nail clipper every 2 weeks to trim their nails from kitten hood so they are
used to it. This and a squirt bottle will help save your furniture. I also
recommend claw covers that have to be replaced about every six weeks as a viable
Be careful of any live plants you have in the house, the kitten may chew on
them and many are poisonous. There are some good articles on this subject; call
me if you need and cannot find them.
Remember antifreeze is fatal to cats and kittens, and they tend to like the
taste of it..
Remember also, any hole the kitten can get their head through they can get
the rest of their body through.
Look out for crickets. I know of at least two kittens that ate a cricket and
then died because it had already ingested cricket bait. The cricket manages to
crawl around for a day or two before dying and that is when your kitten gets it.
Do not let your kitten play with string if they start swallowing it, do not
pull it out, you can cut their intestine. Take them to the vet to get it out.
Same goes for foil, they will eat it and get a bowel obstruction and have to
have surgery. I had one female mother eat a small mouse toy which had something
wrapped with black tape as the center and she got a bowel obstruction.
Collars- use only the ones that are breakaway or have a stretchy insert. A
harness is better and must not be left on the cat unsupervised.
They will often chew electric cords. I spray mine with bitter orange
regularly to prevent this.