EnchantedTails Bengal Cats
Holly Erickson
St. Helens, OR
(503) 396-5448
 
E-Mail: EnchantedTails@aol.com
Web: http://enchanted-tails.com


 

RECOMMENDATIONS ON CAT CARE

 

NEW HOME
Upon arriving home with your new cat/kitten, put your new arrival in a room where he/she will feel secure. I would not recommend the bathroom. A bedroom would be a good choice. Provide your cat/kitten with plenty of food, fresh water, a litter box, and a comfortable bed in which your cat/kitten will feel safe. Cats/kittens seem to “ask” to come out and explore the rest of the house when they feel ready.

If you have a multiple cat home, it is suggested that you quarantine your new arrival for a period of time. As your cat/kitten becomes more comfortable in his/her new surroundings, gradually introduce the new cat/kitten to the resident pets. Expect some hissing and growling for a few days prior to new friendships. It may take an older cat one or two weeks to one or two months to adjust to his/her new home.

FOOD AND WATER
Have dry food and water available at all times.  I happen to mix three kinds of food together. I wouldn't expect you to do that! You can pick one of the brands......or two if you'd like. If feeding one of the foods, I suggest Simply Nourish Kitten dry food. Second choice is Purina One Kitten Dry Food, if you have purchased a kitten. You can get the Adult food of these brands if you adopted an adult cat.


1.  Purina One Kitten (Not Purina Kitten nor Cat Chow, etc.) (Available at PetsMart, PetCo, Walmart)

2.  Simply Nourish Kitten Food (Available at PetsMart)

3.  Nature's Variety Instinct or Simply Nourish Kitten No Grain Food  (Available at PetsMart)


I have cut back on feeding wet food, however occasionally, this cat receives 1/2 to one full can of wet food. I feed Fancy Feast Gourmet Chicken, Fancy Feast Classic Liver and Chicken, or Fancy Feast Sliced Chicken Hearts and Liver Feast. ProPlan Kitten or Adult Chicken and Liver (PetsMart or PetCo) is another favorite.

Note: some of these cans are a larger size than the regular small cans. When I say 1/2 to 1 full can, I am referring to the small cans. If you get the larger can, then adjust the portion.

Additionally this cat/kitten may have been eating a supplement of raw turkey strips and raw beef strips on occasion. If you are uncomfortable with raw, you can boil some chicken and/or turkey (no seasonings) and cut it into small pieces.

IMPORTANT: If you choose to change brands of food, switch the diet gradually, adding small amounts of the new food to the familiar food to avoid loose stools. Do not give kittens milk.

Stainless steel or glass bowls are recommended over plastic. Plastic can harbor bacteria. Wash out the water bowl daily, as the bowls can get a bit of a slimy coating. My cats like me to dump old dry food daily too. It is not as appealing to them once it has sat out for a day.

KITTY TREATS!!!
My cats LOVE, LOVE, LOVE freeze dried Chicken by Whole Life. If the kitten/cat doesn't eat it at first, just add a little moisture to a piece. My cats have climbed to our highest cabinet and opened the door to get to the chicken treats :) The product is a tad expensive, but the cats all say it is worth it! Contact info for Whole Life: 877-210-3142 or http://www.wholelifepet.com

CAT LITTER
My cats and I prefer Fresh Step clumping clay litter. Scoop Away is good too. 

Clean the litter box at once a day. I clean mine twice a day. Cats do not like to use dirty litter boxes. Every two to four weeks, I suggest you dump all the litter and clean the box with a bleach solution mixed with 10 parts water.

A general rule of thumb is one litter box per cat. With a young kitten, the litter box needs to be placed in an easy to get to location. If you have a large house, then I suggest adding another litter box.

When purchasing a litter box, think of a full grown cat, not a kitten! Make sure the box is large enough that a full grown cat can turn around in it and their rear end is not forced outside of the litter box!

If you change brands of litter, and the cat does not like the new litter, he will let you know by not using the box! Time to go back to the old litter or try a different brand.

Should you ever have a litter box problem, and it is not due to any of the above causes, have your cat checked for a urinary infection or worms.

Cats want to use the litter box. If they don't, they are telling you something is wrong.

TRIMMING NAILS - DECLAWING
Declawing is unnecessary if you keep your cat’s/kitten’s nails trimmed. Begin trimming your cat/kittens nails on a regular basis now, so they become accustomed to it. There is a link on my website on the "Links" page which demonstrates how to trim a cat's nails. Declawing can break the spirit of your cat and encourage biting as a way to defend itself.

VACCINES
Your cat/kitten will have received FVRCP vaccinations appropriate for age. This vaccinates against Rhino, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia. The current recommendation for vaccine boosters is a booster at one year old, then no more frequently than every three years.

This kitten has not been vaccinated for RABIES. If a cat is indoors only, rabies vaccinations may not be necessary. It may be required by some states, however, or if you ever need to board your cat.

We are a Feline Leukemia (FeLV) negative cattery. While not every kitten born here is test for FeLV, every cat that has ever come to us, beginning with my very first cat in 1999, is quarantined until the cat tests negative for FeLV. Therefore our cats have never been exposed to FeLV and remain FeLV negative.

Discuss with your veterinarian whether you want to vaccinate for Feline Leukemia (FeLV). Long time breeders advise that several kittens have died or have had serious reactions to the vaccine over the years. This vaccination can stress a kitten’s young and developing immune system and potentially cause them to break with other diseases and/or have a difficult time fighting off viruses they may encounter. The latest research reports that once a cat tests negative over the one year mark, they are unlikely to contract the disease even if exposed. This seems to be a disease more highly transferrable to kittens, but if you keep your cat indoors as agreed to in the Sales Agreement, your Bengal kitten will not be at risk, as it is only passed on by body fluids.

Avoid over vaccinating! Over vaccinating may increase the risk of a vaccination site sarcoma. In other words, the cat may develop cancer at the vaccination injection site. So weigh all the risks and discuss vaccinations with your vet.

For more information, see the American Association of Feline Practitioners 2006 Feline Vaccination Guidelines at http://www.catvets.com/uploads/HTML/VaccineSummary.html

ACTIVITY LEVEL
Bengals are active, playful, and curious cats. That’s what makes them so much fun to live with! You may need to do a little “child-proofing” around your house. If you have a favorite vase or object that you couldn’t bear to have knocked over, better move it until you get an idea of your Bengal’s activity level. If your kitten/cat is enjoying something you'd rather they not, the best method is to divert their attention to something else more appropriate. Try some to the following toys. These are my cats favorites: toy mice, feather teasers, balls, and balls of rabbit fur.

BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION
Should you ever encounter an undesirable behavior with your Bengal that you are unable to solve, hopefully I will have some suggestions that may work. If that doesn't work, there is an excellent Certified Cat Behavior Consultant, Marilyn Krieger,  who can help resolve cat behavior challenges using a combination of positive methods including behavior modification, training techniques and education. This is her information:

The Cat Coach, LLC®
Marilyn Krieger, CCBC
Certified Cat Behavior Consultant
CWA, Professional Member
SpacerE-mail Contact: marilyn@thecatcoach.com
Phone Contact: 650.780.9485
Website: http://thecatcoach.com

SAFETY PRECAUTIONS
Do not allow your cat/kitten to roam freely outdoors; there are too many risks. Your cat/kitten may be stolen, hit by a car, pick up diseases from other cats, or fall prey to a coyote. Cats/ kittens who stay in the house all the time will not ask to go outside.

Do not allow your cat/kitten to chew on house plants. Many house plants are poisonous, so move the plant out of reach until you are sure of its toxicity and whether or not your cat finds it enticing.

Check drawers, the refrigerator, closets, and the dryer before you close them! Being quick and curious, your Bengal just may have gone in to investigate!

MY VETERINARIAN
The Cat Care Clinic
2638 N. Tustin Street
Orange, CA 92865
Phone: 714-282-2287
Website: http://www.catcare.com

Dr. Elaine Wexler-Mitchell is the owner and founder of The Cat Care Clinic.  Dr. Wexler-Mitchell is a board certified in feline practice-one of 25 charter diplomates. She is a former president of the Academy of Feline Medicine and served on the board of The American Association of Feline Practitioners. Dr. Wexler-Mitchell is a member of AVMA, AAHA, SCVMA, and the CVMA. She was a contributing editor to Cat Fancy magazine for 15 years and has written three books.

 

 

Remember, the more love and attention you shower on your kitten/cat, the more loving they become. Always let your kitten/cat know how special they are to you! Please contact me if you have any questions. I look forward to hearing stories of your adventures with your new Bengal!



 

May You Live Happily Ever After with Your Enchanted Tail!

 

 




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Last updated 12/18/14