SPCA New Zealand
Advice & welfare

Preparing for your new cat

Once you have decided that you are going to bring a cat into your life (after some research and careful thinking about whether a cat is right for you and how to look after a cat), it is important that you make some preparations before getting your cat/kitten.

Download our full Cat and Kitten Care Brochure (PDF)

Keeping your cat safe and happy at home (PDF)

Make sure that you have thought about your new cat’s environment, enrichment, feeding, health and behaviour and what you need to do before your cat comes home. You can use the information given previously in this document to help. Important things to consider are:

  • Is your cat going to be kept indoors, indoors and outdoors but confined to your property, or as an indoor/outdoor cat that is allowed to roam beyond your property? Make sure you have considered the pros and cons of each of these choices before deciding.
  • What enrichment are you going to provide for your cat?
  • The right kind of food and feeding method for your cat (e.g. using food toys to enrich your cat and stimulate him/her mentally and physically).
  • You should find a local veterinarian before you take your new cat or kitten home, just in case he/she becomes ill suddenly. Check local websites or get recommendations from other cat owners
  • How are you going to take your cat home?
  • How are you going to set up your home for your new cat’s arrival?
  • What supplies will you need for your new cat? Items to consider include:
    • Cat carrier box
    • Food bowls
    • Water bowls
    • Food
    • Brush and/or comb
    • Litter tray and litter (ideally unscented litter)
    • Scoop for litter tray
    • Scratching post
    • Toys: e.g. fish pole toy, mouse, ball
    • Safe quick release collar and identification tag
    • Soft bed
    • Flea and worm treatment
  • How are you going to introduce your new cat to other members of your family (human and other animals)?

If you need to purchase some basic supplies before bringing your new cat or cats home, look at your local SPCA shops where many items are available. When you buy from the SPCA, you receive quality products and are also helping other animals in need, as all revenue goes back into supporting the SPCA.

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