How to Quarantine Your New Kitten!
Getting a new kitten (or any pet really) is one of the true joys of life. Shopping for all their accessories is so much fun and picking out his or her name is serious business, especially if multiple family members are all weighing in. This is a time of incredible excitement, but you should not lose sight of the more serious side of adopting a new pet.
Firstly, that little creature has been taken away from mom and often has traveled many miles to your new home - he or she might be feeling a bit stressed and overwhelmed. If you have other pets, it’s important to remember to follow some guidelines on safely introducing your new addition to the other four-legged family members. Being patient with this, will ensure that neither pet feels threatened and will increase the likelihood of them getting along and eventually bonding.
1. Choose a closed off area in your home, like a spare bedroom or a guest bathroom. If you are using a laundry room, you will need to be extra careful with your washing machine or tumble dryer to avoid any accidents.
2. Make the area really comfortable, safe and inviting. You’ll want to arrange all their new accessories around the room so things are easy for the kitten to find. Set up a sleeping area with their bed and blankets. Have a play zone with all their toys and a scratcher or climbing frame (with this common danger removed). Make sure to set up their food and water bowls away from their litter box.
3. Keep your new kitten separate in this designated area, away from your other pets for at least 7 to 10 days. This gives your kitten a chance to adjust to you and their new home and de-stress before having to meet their new four-legged siblings.
This quarantine period has a really necessary purpose too, outside of your new pet’s general well-being. What most people don’t know is when we vaccinate our kittens (and puppies) for the various core illnesses at the vet, they are not fully immunized for about 2 weeks until the vaccine takes effect, so this quarantine period helps to keep your new baby safe. It also protects your existing pets on the off chance that your kitten has come to you with some kind of illness.
Following this mandatory quarantine period is hard - you just want to integrate your new pet into your family, however, taking this 2 week period of adjustment ensures the long-term happiness and health of everyone.
Keep giving your pets the best of natural life!
April Arguin A.S., C.P.N., M.P.H