The 7 Kitten Care Tips You Need to Know

kittenhood

Spot Pet Insurance is thrilled to provide cat parents with insights provided and written by Sarah Hodgson, a renowned author, pet trainer, and IAABC-Certified Associate Applied Behavior Consultant for multi-species households. Offering an alternative to the reactive/dominance-based approach, Sarah encourages her audience to look at the world through their kitten’s eyes, using food and fun to encourage cooperation and connection. SPOT is proud to connect with Sarah Hodgson, a veteran in Dr. Marty Becker’s Fear Free® movement, to offer a well-balanced approach to pet training.

The #1 Secret to Raising a Happy Kitten?

If you provide your kitten with a calm, loving, supportive relationship, they’ll reward you with nurturing behavior in turn as they grow.

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When navigating your relationship with your kitten or rescue cat, consider the role you want to play in their lives. Cats, like children and puppies, reciprocate the care and treatment they’re given during kittenhood. Many kittens grow up viewing their parents as animated squeak toys, hunting their pant cuffs and fingers. While these behaviors are cute at first, they lead to an unnecessarily assertive kitten and a hyper-aroused, predatory cat who is less relaxed in your presence.

Another dysfunctional role that some cat parents fall into is that of the predator — larger animals who chase, yell, and make alarming sudden movements. Cats who see their parents as predators live in a hyper-alert state, always on the lookout for danger around every corner. Cats under this level of stress are more likely to act out, mark, and release their tension in destructive ways.

Take the third option and leave the dysfunctional predator-prey relationship behind. Play the role of a nurturer instead. Below, all 7 insights on how to build this type of relationship.

Kittenhood Insights

Spot is thrilled to provide these kitten-raising insights from Sarah Hodgson, author, trainer, and pet behavior expert. Offering an alternative to the reactive/dominance-based approach, Sarah encourages her audience to look at the world through their kitten’s eyes, using food and fun to encourage cooperation and connection.

Take a Walk in Your Kitten’s Paws

1 kittenhood
Like kids, kittens need to eat, drink, play, potty, and sleep to feel regulated and happy. Establish a schedule (or borrow mine) to organize your kitten’s day and help you nurture your kitten…

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Consider Adopting Two

2 kittenhood
While you’ll often hear that cats are independent and prefer to live solitary lives, nothing could be further from the truth. Cats engage in social bonding, often coming together to groom, play, and rest. Many rescues now refuse to adopt out a solo kitten, preferring instead to adopt kittens in pairs or into a home with other cats…

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Make Sure You’re Providing the Essentials

3
When raising a kitten or adopting a rescue cat, outfitting your home with their needs in mind will go a long way in helping your new companion feel safe and satisfied.

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Learn to Translate Catlish

4
Kittens are famous for their charming meows and purrs, but cat communication goes far beyond vocalization. Your kitten will start communicating with you from the second they come home through what I call Catlish — the subtle body language all cats perform.

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Potty Train Your Kittenh

5
Litterbox training a cat is similar to potty training a child: your goal is to teach your kitten to potty in the same place in your home each time they need to go.

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Condition Good Habits

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Kittens are like kids — they’re super curious and have lots of energy. They prefer to spend their days playing, exploring, and making mischief of one type or another.

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Find Your Kitten’s Next Best Friend: Their Vet!

7
One of the most important relationships for you to establish is with your kitten’s veterinarian. To ensure a positive association, plan as many social visits as possible before your kitten’s first vet visit.

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