5 Simple Ways to Care for Your Cat at Home
Many of our residents are proud cat owners, or are considering bringing a fluffy feline into their home. While our community pups get more face time in the office, we love our cat residents equally and care just as much about their health and wellbeing at home.
If you’re a new cat owner or are making the choice to bring a new cat or kitten into your apartment, there are certain basic cat care tips that will help to give your fur-baby an extra special welcome and many cozy days ahead in her space. Cats tend to be more low-maintenance than dogs, but they do need love, attention, play, exercise, nutritious food, clean water and a comfortable place to rest throughout the day.
Even if you’ve owned cats for years, it’s important to remember the basics when bringing a cat into a new home, and we’ve highlighted a few ways that you can make your cat’s transition as smooth as possible.
It’s important to feed your cat high quality, nutritious food that is appropriate for their age, activity level and health needs. Your veterinarian can help you to choose just the right food for your cat, and if it’s time to change brands or from wet to dry, they can help you to ease your cat’s transition without negatively affecting their health. Cats need to drink a lot of fresh, clean water throughout the day, and it’s important to keep water available and accessible at all times. If you plan to be gone for long periods of time during the day or week, consider a water fountain style bowl that can refresh their water supply regularly without your having to be there.
Cats are fastidious animals who tend to be meticulous about their grooming habits and coat care. You likely won’t ever need to bathe your cat, but you will need to regularly brush and comb your cat’s fur to help reduce shedding, keep tangles and debris out of their fur and to reduce hairballs.
Indoor cats require the use of a clean, regularly emptied litter box. Place their litter box in a clean, quiet space, and scoop out litter at least once a day. Most cats do not want to use a dirty litter box, so you may need to scoop out twice a day depending on how many cats you own. Each week, dump out and thoroughly wash your litter box, and avoid making changes to the box or moving it to a new location without doing so slowly to help your cat transition.
Flea & Tick Control
Even indoor cats can get fleas, believe it or not, and these bugs can cause your cat major discomfort and become a nasty nuisance in your apartment home. Begin your cat on a monthly flea and tick control medication as soon as you bring them home, and consult your veterinarian to choose a brand that is right for your pet’s age and size. Do not miss a month of medication, and watch your cat’s fur for any signs of itching, irritation or fleas to help prevent an infestation.
Cats need to scratch, but that doesn’t mean you have to deal with tattered furniture and cut up arms and legs. Cut your cat’s nails every 2 weeks, and provide your cat with an appropriate sized scratching post to help them get their scratching out. If you find that your cat is continuing to scratch furniture or people in your home, consult your veterinarian for additional tips and techniques.
Let’s face it-some cat’s see an open front door and feel the urge to bolt through it every chance they get. It’s important to keep your cat properly identified through a collar with tags and vaccination history, and through microchipping.
Cats should never receive any medications that haven’t been specifically prescribed to them by their veterinarians. Be mindful of plants, essential oils and other cleaning products that you may bring into your home, that might attract your cat’s attention. After cleaning toilet bowls, make sure to properly flush out any harmful cleaners, and put all lids down to keep your cat from being poisoned. Remember that your cat is curious much like a child, and will want to explore and even drink products that draw their attention, so keep anything even potentially dangerous out of reach and locked away.
Sleep & Play
Cats need lots of sleep and a lot of play, and it’s essential that you provide a comfortable space and environment for them to do both. Provide your cat with a soft, comfortable bed that can be easily washed, and place it in a clean, cool spot where your cat can rest easily. When your cat is up and about, keep toys on hand that they like, including laser pointers, balls with bells inside, balls of aluminum foil, feathers on the end of a stick and soft, plush mice that jingle or squeak.
Filed Under: Pet Friendly Apartments
Mira Roberts studied writing at New York University, graduating with a BA in English Literature before pursuing a career in media, marketing and management with PARADE Magazine, Portfolio Magazine, AltDaily, skirt! and lululemon athletica. A full time mother, writing instructor and part-time freelance writer, Mira lives and laughs with her family in Norfolk, VA.
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