Nikarl Siberian Cats and Kittens

Cat Care

Caring For Your New Kitty Friend

A NEW HOME & INTRODUCTIONS

As soon as you take your new kitten home, put her in her own quiet area, like a guest bedroom or bathroom, with a litter box, food and water, toys, a cozy bed and her carrier with door opened.   Place a cushioned pad and/or soft blanket in the carrier. Your cat’s carrier should be perfectly clean, inside and outside, like it was when it came from the store!  Carriers should never be stored in cold or hot areas and must be cleaned after every use.  I recommend keeping it available as a resting place at all times with a clean blanket inside.

Allow your kitten to have time to adjust to his/her new home!  She will need your attention, affection and reassurance, along with a peaceful environment and supervision when roaming free in your home.  Put your kitten in her safe area when working on projects and when having visitors.  Hold off introducing your new kitten to other pets and very young children. Your kitten may want to sleep with you.  If she is older than ten weeks, this is okay. You would not want to smother your kitten while you sleep.

When you take your kitty out to the family room or living room, carry him in a baby blanket and hold him in your arms.  (Besides providing security for the kitten, it protects your skin from little claws.)  Let him become accustomed to the sounds in your home.  You will know when he is ready to explore without trying to hide in fear.  If he becomes fearful, put him back in his “safe” area where he can “hide” securely in his open carrier or in his bed or condo.

When introducing your new kitten or cat to another pet, keep the new kitty in the carrier and place near the pet. Be near to supervise and remove new kitty if stressed. This may need to be done several times before pets can begin a tolerable relationship where they can be introduced without the carrier. Then, you should hold the new kitty securely in a blanket on your lap. This is also recommended for introduction to young children.  Interchanging blankets between the pets can sometimes help with transition as they become acquainted with each other’s scent.

SAFETY

Do not let him get under or behind an appliance or furniture.  Not only can this make it difficult for you to pick up your kitty, it can be dangerous if the kitty climbs inside an appliance where there is wiring and or a motor…or becomes trapped and suffocates.  I advise a lot of caution!  I always advise not allowing cats/kittens in basements, as there can be many hazards, such as sump pumps, holes, crevices and hiding places not recommended for kitties. Also, the dampness of most basements is not good for anyone, and can cause respiratory illness and fungal infections. And, the dreary darkness can certainly cause depression.

REMEMBER ALWAYS to check appliances before closing doors to be sure kitty is not inside! This should be done every time before a door to anything is ever closed!  Cats have died from being shut inside appliances when their caretakers did not notice them going inside.

It is also very important to confine kitty when expecting visitors, entertaining guests or when workers are expected to keep him safe.  Many pets have been lost or killed after escaping outside during guests’ visits…and most cats are stressed around other people visiting their home. They are happier, more relaxed and safer in a closed room away from activity.

DANGEROUS FURNITURE:  I adamantly advise extreme caution for pet parents who have Lazy Boy or other recliner style chairs and couches.  Sofa-sleepers are also dangerous to pets, especially cats and kittens.  Caution should also be taken with rocking chairs, wheelchairs and gliders. Recliners and hide-a-beds can be death traps for kittens.  

ALWAYS KEEP KITTY INDOORS! There was a time when I walked my cats outside on a harness & leash…but that was before certain dangers existed, such as viral diseases (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, Feline Leukemia, Feline Peritonitis, Coronavirus, etc.). There is also the threat of Lyme disease from ticks…and other diseases from fleas and other parasites; and dangerous pesticides that can be in the ground & grasses. And, if kitty becomes familiar with the outdoors, there will be the risk of escape through opened doors for the rest of kitty’s life.  A recommended safe way to go for a walk with your kitty is a cat stroller. They usually enjoy the fresh air and are safe from outdoor dangers, including dogs and cruel people.

Children should be supervised when playing with an animal.  Kittens are very fragile! Mishandling can cause injury or even death.  A kitten can die instantly from being picked up incorrectly.  And people should be cautious and move slowly as kittens can dart under feet. Also, too much noise and excitement can bring stress that could lead to illness.  Encourage children to play with kitty with interactive toys!   When kitty does not want to play, let him rest, maybe take a nap on your lap, or hidden away in your bedroom on your bed (with litter box, food and water nearby).

Cats and kittens should never be chased!  If kitty goes under or behind furniture and you want her to come out, use gentle words and a toy.  No more than 2 people should be coaxing the kitten out.  If a cat is shy and hides in a new home, be patient with her.  Talk to her regularly and try to coax her out of hiding with food, treats and toys.  Give her time to become accustomed to your voice and her new environment.

Remember to “kitten-proof” your home!  Put safety plugs in electrical outlets. Protect wiring from potential chewing. And check kitty toys for safety! Cut off loose or tiny parts that can be ingested. Some toys, like those with feathers or foil, should only be for interactive play between you and Kitty!  After playtime, put in cabinet or somewhere out of reach of children and pets. Never allow kitty to ingest feathers or other parts of toys.

Always keep plastic bags away from pets!  They are attracted to them and can get caught inside and be suffocated. Some cats like to lick them, which is toxic.  Photos also should be kept away from cats.  Be aware of rare unusual eating of non-food items (Pica), such as some fabrics.  Many house plants and cut flowers are toxic to animals if ingested.

Hair bands, rubber bands, bells, staples, pins, tacks, nails, aluminum foil, Styrofoam, feathers, yarn and string are not toys. Do not leave these and other small items accessible to pets! Never leave out gift wrappings, ribbons, string and plastic bags.  Allow no access to electrical wires!

NEVER leave a cat or kitten in a room with a tub of water! She could jump or fall in and drown!  It is difficult, if not impossible, for a pet to get out of a slippery bathtub and will exhaust himself trying, and then drown. For this same reason, never allow pets to have access to a pool. ALWAYS keep toilet lids down!  Not only is it a drowning hazard, toilet water is not safe for drinking.  (Would YOU drink it?)

Never spray cleaners or other products around pets or their food.  Rinse clean dishes well.                                        

FOOD & SUPPLEMENTS

Siberian cats are carnivores and are healthier when fed a high meat protein diet! (Avoid foods that use grain proteins as the main protein source.) Although I feed raw organic meat occasionally to my cats, I advise pet owners to use caution in the feeding of strictly raw diets. (Venison, elk, beef, lamb, and buffalo can be treats and cooked to rare.) Raw meat can sometimes harbor some harmful bacteria, so I recommend sautéing in a little olive oil with no seasonings. Also, I recommend only organic meats, and no raw or undercooked poultry! NEVER give cats bones! No ham, bacon, sausage or lunch meats, as these contain nitrates and a dangerous amount of salt!   Pets should never have chocolate as it is toxic to them! 

Keep dry food (Wellness Kitten or CORE) always available, preferably in a ceramic dish, and make sure it is fresh and clean. Do not wet dry food. Give fresh water in clean ceramic dish every day!  Feed quality canned food twice a day.  

If you have a house dog, set up a place for kitty’s food & water that the dog cannot reach.

Diarrhea:  If kitty develops diarrhea or a loose stool, add a teaspoon or more of pumpkin and probiotic to the canned food. (I do this quite regularly, as the probiotic is healthful and the pumpkin is good fiber.) Cats usually like the taste of pumpkin. (NO pumpkin pie filling, only pumpkin.)  Continue with dry food and a cooked chicken diet. (Organic chicken is highly recommended.) Also, fill a second water bowl with Smart water, which has electrolytes. If stool remains loose longer than a day, consult veterinarian.

Dry foods: Wellness CORE; Wellness Kitten Health; Now Kitten Food; Also, EVO; Fromm Kitten formula or Surf and Turf; Organix; Raw Instinct ; Natural Balance Ultra & other holistic foods can be added to Wellness dry. Wellness CORE is preferred brand.

Recommended canned foods: Wellness CORE; Wellness Kitten; Wellness Chicken,  Wellness Turkey, Wellness Chicken & Herring; BG (Before Grain) Chicken, Quail & Chicken, Turkey;  Fromm Duck & Chicken Pate; EVO Chicken & Turkey; Newman's Own;  Natural Balance (Ultra & Turkey & Giblets); Pinnacle (Chicken, Lamb, Turkey formulas).  In canned foods, give Seafood occasionally (no tuna) and Beef rarely. Some cats prefer one brand/flavor food at a time without mixing, while others like 2 varieties mixed.

Canned pumpkin can be used regularly in the canned cat food mix. This provides fiber in the cat’s diet and helps with both diarrhea and constipation. One half to one teaspoonful mixed with half of a 5 ounce can of cat food is suggested. Add a few drops of Pet Tinic and oils.  When mixing food for a litter of kittens and mama-cat, mix two heaping tablespoons of pumpkin, 2 tsp. Bene-bac powder, two 5.5 oz. can CORE, one 5.5 oz. can BG chicken or other suggested canned food, few drops of organic flax oil and/or few drops of Grizzly Salmon Oil and .5 cc of Pet-Tinic drops.  Mix well and serve.  Assist baby kittens with spoon or clean-finger feeding. 

In people food, I suggest that you share your dinner of quality cooked seafood, red meat and poultry with your cats. I advise caution with salt and bones. I occasionally bake fresh chicken for my cats with olive oil and a sprig of fresh organic rosemary. (NO salt, garlic or onion.)  Store chicken and broth in refrigerator, covered, and dice up for kitty’s servings.

When heating food for kitty, I recommend warming it by setting dish of food inside another container of hot water and stir, or heat over low temperature on stove. Food can be warmed in microwave about 6 seconds, stir well and make sure there are no “hot areas” in the food.

Canned food mixture: Kittens, 3-6 weeks old: FOUR TIMES A DAY; 7-24 weeks old: TWICE A DAY; three times a day for smaller or “runt” kittens until 4 to 6 months old. After 6 months of age, twice daily for canned food, along with serving of lightly cooked meat (organic) one or more times a week (optional).

When feeding canned food, give only one rounded teaspoonful or tablespoonful on plate twice a day for adult cats that are eating dry food; two to four times a day for kittens, depending on how young the kittens are and if they are eating dry food. (Weaning kittens: Give Now dry Kitten Food or Royal Canin Babycat dry food to 3 to 4 week old kittens, along with Wellness Kitten Health dry food in separate bowl and feedings of KMR Second Step mixed with canned Wellness Kitten or CORE.) Do not store canned food in cans; transfer to glass or Pyrex container, cover and refrigerate.

Twice a day I feed canned food, sometimes 2 varieties of cat and/or kitten foods together in a ceramic dish. At times I add a teaspoonful of canned pumpkin (not the pie mix, just pumpkin) for fiber, especially if kittens have loose stools or constipation. Then, I sometimes add ¼ to ½ teaspoonful of Viralys per kitten/cat. I also usually add a few drops of Grizzly Salmon Oil or Cod Liver Oil or sprinkle on Missing Link once daily.  Seven times a week I add a probiotic, such as Bene-bac.  I give each kitten and cat about one heaping rounded tablespoonful of food in a “dollop” on a plate twice a day. Occasionally, especially when trying to encourage a kitty to eat more, I add canned chicken or baby food chicken, turkey or lamb.  For cats needing extra calories or not eating much, I add one-fourth inch strip of Nutrical or Forti-cal gel and sometimes Science Diet “a d” formula canned food (available from your veterinarian). Four to seven times a week I add a vitamin/mineral supplement (Felovite II or Pet Tinic drops) to their canned food.  Follow directions for amounts on containers.  

For easy feeding, give Wellness CORE canned food twice daily from can. Only add few drops of oil once daily. 

There are many brands of cat and kitten foods on the shelves and offered online, but I highly recommend that you stay with grain-free Wellness and other similar holistic foods. Purchase a small variety of canned food. If a particular food causes loose stool, hold it back for a while from the kitten and try a different brand. Lamb and Rice, Chicken and Turkey products are usually more easily digested. I do not recommend tuna. Other fish varieties are okay occasionally. No Corn! No Wheat! No Gluten! Animal “by-products” also are not recommended!  (Some holistic dry foods may contain small amounts.)

Keep Wellness CORE dry food (and/or Wellness Kitten Health dry and/or NOW kitten food dry) always available and keep it dry. Shake the bowl and top off daily with fresh. Change once-twice weekly. Dump old crumbled food and give clean bowl of fresh dry food.

For ill or recovering cats: Give about ¼ to 1 inch of Nutri-Cal, Nutri-stat or Vita-Cal once a day, more if not eating. This can be placed on your finger and scraped onto roof of cat’s mouth.  Some cats enjoy taste and will eat it off a spoon or your finger.

(For Breeders) I also have given a tiny bit (a “dot”) of Nutrical once every day for about 5  days to infant kittens in large litters, especially tiny runt kittens; and 2 - 3 times daily to weak or less active kittens. I also give 2 supplemental feedings a day of Pro-Biolac by Vet Solutions or KMR for first 2 weeks or more. At 3 weeks, I start adding KMR 2nd Step to the formula and feed three to five times a day. I give Mama Cat all she wants of canned food and allow her to finish what her babies do not eat, unless it upsets her stomach or causes her diarrhea.

I sometimes add ½ inch of Felovite to Mama Cat’s canned food once or twice a week, as well as daily probiotics. Consult with a holistic veterinarian about additional vitamin/mineral supplements for lactating queens. With nursing kittens, always check mama cat’s teats to make sure the fur has not formed matted rings around them, making it difficult or impossible for the babies to nurse. It is recommended that the fur on the mother cat’s tummy be trimmed prior to birthing, especially if she has medium or long fur.

HEALTH and VETERINARY CARE

Remember to make an appointment with your veterinarian immediately, and take a stool sample with you at your first visit, along with veterinary record. Your kitten should be seen by your veterinarian within 3 - 6 days after going to your home, unless otherwise instructed. CHECK VACCINE SCHEDULE ON CAT/KITTEN’S RECORD BEFORE ALLOWING VETERINARIAN TO GIVE ANY SHOTS!  KITTENS SHOULD BE VACCINATED WITH ONLY TWO OR THREE FVRC (killed virus vaccine only) three to four weeks apart! These may already have been given. OVER-VACCINATING CAN CAUSE SERIOUS ILLNESS, EVEN DEATH!

No rabies vaccine for at least five months and never at same time as FVCP! NO FeLV OR FIP VACCINE!  Most reputable veterinarians are against the F.I.P. vaccine, as it has been known to cause the virus. No vaccines at times of stress.  No vaccines for 2 to 3 years after first one-year booster! No “modified live” booster vaccines!

GROOMING

It is highly recommended that owners set up a regular schedule for kitty’s grooming. Daily is best, but 4 or 5 times a week is usually adequate to keep fur free from mats and loose fur. Use tiny combs around face, ears and head area. Your veterinarian or assistant can show you how to trim nails. Wipe ears and eyes with proper products and sterile pads. Good grooming is part of responsible pet care.

BEHAVIOR

If your kitten or cat is not playful, even a little mischievous, you should be concerned about a possible health problem. Play is a necessary part of a kitty’s physical and mental well-being. A large portion of their play is exploring…and jumping up on objects, such as furniture and counters.  NEVER HIT YOUR PET!

If there are areas that you wish your cat to stay away from, you can train him with a squirt of water from a spray bottle, along with a firm “No.”  Sometimes the firm No, along with the sound of a clap of your hands, is enough to deter the behavior.  Be consistent!  Never scold your cat for a behavior that is permissible sometimes.  Cats are very smart and can usually learn the rules quickly.  They can even learn tricks!

If your kitten or cat ever starts “play-biting” when you play with or pet him, it is recommended that you discourage this behavior with a firm “No” while holding your hand very still. This is normal behavior, especially for kittens that are teething.  If he persists, and you are unable to sooth him by cuddling him in a blanket, give him a “time out” in the bathroom (or other room) with his litter box, food and water, bed and toys.  Another training tool for “play-biting” is a product you can put on your hands sparingly called Bitter Apple or Bitter Orange that can be purchased from your veterinarian (or pet supply store).  Highly recommended is interactively playing with your cat with toys to help him release energy and to deepen your bond with each other.  I also recommend “Petstages” toys without feathers.  Many of these toys are great for cats to chew on. Check toys regularly and discard if torn or broken.

REMEMBER ALWAYS that animals should NEVER be hit or kicked!  Physical “punishment” is cruel!  Besides causing physical and emotional pain, as well as the possibility of serious, even life-threatening injury to the pet, it will create fear and mistrust!   It is also a serious crime!  People who love animals and who are devoted to their pets will have the compassion, gentleness and loyalty to be caring, kind and supportive through any difficulty or illness. A bond can only be formed with tenderness, affection and constant unconditional love.  Any person without this kind of love for animals should never have pets.

If a kitten or cat is ever not wanted, I must be informed immediately and will take the kitty back.

If I ever become aware that an animal is being abused, neglected or wrongfully used for breeding, I will pursue legal action, if necessary, to have the animal removed from the home, as well as any offspring and other pets.

NEVER leave your pets in the care of anyone who has an anger management problem!

Animals are precious gifts! They want only to be loved and responsibly cared for with gentleness and they will give their loyal, loving friendship for the duration of their lives. The rewards of a beloved pet are priceless!

Siberian kitties need attention and affection regularly and need to be a constant part of the family. If there are no humans home during long periods, a second kitten is recommended.

Please keep me updated on your kitten’s development with messages and photos. Remember that I will always be available with advice, recommendations and assistance with any questions that may arise. If I do not have the answers, I will search for them or refer you to someone else who may. The kitty that will become a part of your family began life as a part of mine.

People who adopt a kitten or cat from me can receive a 40% discount on a pet portrait or 25% discount on a person/family portrait. I can create a detailed portrait in black & white or color from your favorite photos.

Cherish your new precious friend!

http://www.nikarl.com             nikki@nikarl.com             419-832-1500  

If you ever have any questions, you are welcome to contact me: 

nikki@nikarl.com 


Nikarl Remy

Seal Point and White
Born April 8, 2009



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