CARE & TIPS
FOR YOUR KITTEN OR CAT
KITTEN & CAT
Owning a kitten and cat can be an extremely rewarding experience, but it also carries with it some responsibility. We hope these notes will give you some help for your kitten and/or cat for lifelong wellness!
When should my kitten and cat be vaccinated?
There are many diseases that are fatal to our feline friends. Fortunately, we have the ability to prevent many of these by the use of very effective vaccines. In order to be effective, these vaccines must be given as a series of injections. Ideally, they are given at 6 – 8 weeks and 12 – 14 weeks and some kittens may require another vaccination at 16 – 18 weeks to cover Feline enteritis, Feline rhinotracheitis and Feline calicivirus (cat flu). Then an annual vaccination is given each year for your cat’s life. Depending upon your cat’s lifestyle additional vaccines available for FIV (Feline immunodeficiency virus and FeLV – Feline Leukaemia virus). This is a proactive way of keeping you cat free from disease.
Veterinary suggested worming regime for kittens and cats
Intestinal worms are common in kittens. Kittens can become infected before they are born or later through their mother’s milk. We recommend an all wormer purchased from Caloundra Vet Surgery to be used at two week intervals, from six weeks of age. It is important that the wormer is repeated since it is usually only the adult worms that are killed within 3 – 4 weeks, the larval stages will have matured and will need to be treated again.
Intestinal worming regime:
6 –12 weeks of age – worm every 2 weeks
12 – 24 weeks of age – worm every 4 weeks
24 weeks (6 months) onwards – 3 monthly
Another parasite that can be harmful to your feline friend is Heartworm. Heartworm in cats is becoming increasingly diagnosed. Transmitted through a mosquito bite, it can be fatal.
For prevention of heartworm in cats we suggest Revolution or Advocate as a topical treatment. These are a squeeze-on heartworm treatment once a month that protects for most intestinal worms, heartworm, fleas and a few extra things such as ear mites. Caloundra Vet Surgery also uses Milbemax, an oral tablet for your cat which helps to prevent heartworm and intestinal worms and for heartworm prevention. This must be given monthly.
My kitten/cat has fleas!
We suggest Advantage, Frontline, Advocate, Revolution or Comfortis. We are here to help you decide on what product you would like to use, so at anytime please do not hesitate to ask. Prevention is the key in having a flea-free environment. You must always use a product that is only used for cats, as they are very sensitive to a lot of different drugs that dogs are ok with. Rmember to follow the manufacturer’s and Vet’s guidelines.
FOOD FOR YOUR CAT
What is the best food for my kitten or cat?
Diet is extremely important in the growing months of a cat’s life. We recommend feeding a high quality premium kitten dry food. Premium Vet foods provide the extra protein, minerals and energy required by kittens to grow up strong and healthy. If you choose to give your kitten scraps, make sure that at least 90% of its diet is a good premium kitten food. Consider supplementing the diet with raw bones such as chicken wings or neck. NEVER feed cooked or partially cooked bones.
HAVING YOUR CAT NEUTERED
Why and when should I have my female kitten/cat speyed?
The female cat comes on heat about every 21 days once she is sexually mature and this usually occurs from 6 months of age onwards. This can be quite annoying if your cat is kept indoors as she will be very vocal calling for a mate, and will try to escape at every chance during this time. During this period she is attractive to any neighbourhood male cat and this can cause considerable nuisance. Speying is the removal of the female reproductive organs. We recommend speying your cat at 6 months of age.
Why and when should I have my male kitten/cat desexed?
Male cats attracted to a female cat in heat will travel great distances often across busy roads to find her. Male cats are more aggressive and more likely to fight. Male cats are also very territorial and will begin to spray urine both inside and outside the house as a means of marking territory. Desexing will help deter these and also the unwanted kitten scenario. Desexing can be performed after 5 months of age.
Microchipping and Cat Council Registration
Permanent identification for your cat can be achieved via placement of a microchip, a small device the size of a rice grain, implanted with a sterile needle under your cat’s skin. Each microchip contains a unique identification number that links your cat back to you via nation wide computer database. In accordance with the Animal Management Cats and Dogs Act 2008, all cats born after 1 July 2009 must be microchipped and registered.
Click here for a downloadable PDF version of this information sheet.