Kittens: Essential Info
When you introduce a new kitten into your home it is a very exciting time, full of surprises and changes. We hope you will entrust the Park Veterinary Practice with the care of your kitten. You can arrange free consultations with a veterinary nurse if you have any queries regarding nutrition, behaviour, as well as all other aspects of general health. Our Kitten Packages also offer excellent value, providing all the essentials you need for the first 6 months of your kitten's life.
Here is a list in a nutshell, of the issues you need to consider to keep your new kitten happy and healthy:
- First vaccination : At 9 weeks
- Second vaccination : 21-28 days after first vaccination
Your kitten can go outside 14 days after his/her second vaccination
- Worming : Your should worm your kitten every 2 weeks until he/she is 12 weeks old, then monthly until 6 months old. Thereafter worming should usually be carried out at least every 3 months for the rest of your cat’s life if he/she is an outdoor cat. Some prescription-only flea preparations (see below) also protect your cat against most worms, so ask us for advice about what you should use.
- Flea treatment : This should be administered just before your kitten starts going outside, or earlier if fleas are found on him/her. Flea infestations can cause anaemia, and fleas can transmit tapeworms to your pet and people. You have several options as to how to apply flea treatment:
1. Using a spot-on – every month on the skin in the back of the neck. The product that we recommend also protects your kitten againts most worms. Take a look at our video on how to apply the spot-on.
2. By injection – every 6 months
3. Using a capsule – every month in food
- Microchipping : This can be done at any time, but it is usually performed at the second vaccination or when your kitten is neutered. Our microchips contain a temperature sensor that allows us to read the body temperature through the scanner. That means no more thermometers up the bottom!
- Neutering (castration or spay) : We recommend neutering at 6 months for tom cats and 5 ½ months for queens. Please note that female kittens can fall pregnant as early as 4 months of age or when their weight reaches 2.5kg. Neutering earlier than 5 ½ months may sometimes be indicated.
- Nutrition : We recommend a dry, complete diet. Your kitten should be fed 4 times daily until 12 weeks of age, then gradually weaned to two meals daily. Each cat in the household needs his/her own feeding bowl.
- Handling : The more you handle your kitten the more he/she will be amenable to you and to any possible treatment (e.g. looking into eyes, ears, mouth, regular grooming, etc)
- Dentistry : Tooth brushing is very effective to keep his/her teeth clean (ask our nurses all about this!). If that does not work for you, there are alternatives. Please speak to a nurse to find out more.
- Insurance : We strongly recommend pet insurance to all our clients.
- FAQ: Here are answers to some of the other most commonly asked questions.
Below is a checklist so you can keep abreast of what your kitten needs and when:
- First vaccination : 9 weeks
- Second vaccination : 12 weeks
- Flea treatment : Before kitten goes outside
- Worming : Start at 6 weeks
- Microchipping : Often done at second vaccination or neutering
- Neutering: 5½ - 6 months