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Adopting a Shelter Cat Month

June 1 2021

June is shaping up to be a purrfect month for some of our feline pals: it’s Adopt A Shelter Cat Month! Every year, over 3 million cats end up in shelters. If you’re ready for a new pet, please consider getting Fluffy from a shelter. A local Rancho Santa Fe, CA vet offers some tips on this below.

Reasons To Go To A Shelter

At the end of the day, we’re happy when any kitty gets adopted into a loving home. However, shelter cats are often in desperate need. Unfortunately, many of these sweet kitties don’t have much time to find homes. There are some great benefits to adopting your feline pal from a shelter. For one thing, this is much cheaper than buying from a breeder. Plus, you’ll be freeing up kennel space and providing funds that keep the shelter solvent. Both of these things will help them care for their other furry wards. Plus, since Fluffy will likely already be fixed, you may save on veterinary care as well. Comprehensive veterinary care, including our “Veterinary Dentistry” services, can ensure your new cat remains healthy and happy for years to come.

Finding Fluffy

Choosing the right kitty can be tricky. Spend some time with your new feline friend before deciding. After all, adopting a cat is a lifetime commitment! Consider the rest of your household, including other pets, when making a decision. Also, be sure to keep an open mind. That gruff looking senior cat may turn out to be the best pet you ever had!

Kittyproofing

Our feline pals do have a knack for mischief. Err on the side of caution, and do some kittyproofing before you bring Fluffy home. This means removing or addressing potential hazards, such as toxic plants, small or sharp objects, and plastic bags or ties. Ask your vet for more information.

Settling In

If there’s one thing we know about cats, it’s that they are all unique. Some kitties will immediately curl up in your lap and make themselves at home. Others will need time to settle in. Let Fluffy adjust at her own pace. Setting out things like comfy beds, scratching posts, and toys will help her feel safe and pampered. Be patient and kind. Focus on offering great TLC, and perhaps some treats and catnip. You’ll have that motor going before you know it! For more ideas on making your new furry friend feel loved, check out our article on “Holiday Gifts For Kittens.”

Our Advice on Adopting a Shelter Cat Month in 2024

What are the common health issues that shelter cats may face, and how can adopters prepare for them?

Shelter cats may face various health issues, including respiratory infections, parasites like fleas and worms, and dental problems. Stress from the shelter environment can also exacerbate or reveal latent health conditions. Adopters should prepare by scheduling a veterinary check-up promptly after adoption to assess the cat’s health and initiate any necessary treatments. It’s also wise to gradually introduce a balanced diet and ensure a calm, clean environment to ease the transition. Regular preventive care, such as vaccinations and parasite control, is crucial for long-term health.

How can adopters help their new shelter cat adjust to their new home environment?

To help a new shelter cat adjust to a home environment, create a welcoming space with essentials like a litter box, food, water, and a comfortable bed in a quiet area. Introduce the cat to one room initially, allowing it to explore more space gradually. Use calming products like pheromone diffusers to reduce stress. Provide toys and scratching posts for enrichment. Spend time quietly in the same room, letting the cat approach at its own pace. Consistency in routine and gentle interaction will help build trust and comfort.

Are there any specific age groups or types of shelter cats that are more frequently overlooked by adopters?

Senior cats and those with special needs or chronic health conditions are often overlooked by adopters in favor of kittens and younger, seemingly healthier cats. Black cats also face longer shelter stays due to common misconceptions and cultural stigmas. Additionally, cats that appear shy or less social in the shelter environment can be passed over, as they may not engage as actively with potential adopters. Encouraging adopters to consider these cats can help reduce their time in shelters and increase their chances of finding a permanent home.

How can adopters ensure that their existing pets (if any) will get along with a newly adopted shelter cat?

To ensure a smooth introduction between a newly adopted shelter cat and existing pets, adopters should start with a gradual introduction process. Keep the new cat in a separate room initially, allowing pets to sniff each other under the door to get accustomed to each other’s scents. Gradually introduce face-to-face interactions in controlled environments, closely supervising to manage any signs of aggression or fear. Using calming pheromones can help reduce tension. Patience and positive reinforcement for calm behavior are crucial to fostering a peaceful coexistence.

How can adopters contribute to reducing the number of cats ending up in shelters?

Adopters can contribute to reducing the number of cats in shelters by choosing to adopt from shelters instead of buying from breeders, thus decreasing the demand for commercially bred pets. Spaying or neutering their cats is crucial to prevent unwanted litters that may end up in shelters. Additionally, providing stable, lifelong homes for adopted cats can prevent re-surrender due to behavioral issues or lifestyle changes. Educating others about the importance of adoption and responsible pet ownership also plays a vital role in reducing the shelter population.

If you ever need anything, please don’t hesitate to contact us. As your nearby veterinary clinic in Rancho Santa Fe, CA, we are always ready to assist you in any way we can!