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I'm the new guy

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
hello all,

Quick intro. I am a father of 2 little girls, 3 and 1. My wife is expecting our third child in April of next year. Currently we do not have a cat(s). But are thinking about getting one. I think it is important that the kids have something to love and learn to take care of and have a responsibility. I know that my kids are a little young for total responsibility but they can help dad. I have a couple of questions that some of you might be able to help me with.

I have been checking out petfinder.com to see what local rescues there are in my area and see what kind of pets that they have available. So last week I took my oldest daughter to go look at one place and we found a cat that I liked (After talking with the lady who ran the place she directed us to this cat as it fit my criteria of the type/age of cat I was looking for) and he (the cat) liked me as well. My lil girl 'loved' ALL the cats there and wanted them all to go home with us. The cat that I liked jumped in my lap as soon as I sat down and purred away. He is a short hair, mostly white with a few black spots all over his body. He would rub up against my daughter and she would just giggle. I taught he how to hold her hand out and let the cats come to her before she could touch them and after that she would hold her hand out to every cat in the place that she could and then pet them. The cat that I liked has a sister that was surrendered to the rescue at the same time as he was. She was not as personable, but still a nice cat. I think I was told is that she was a tabby.

First question. Since he has a sister that came in with him, should I consider getting them both? They are both about 2 years of age. I was thinking about getting only one, but might reconsider.

Second Question. Do I need a scratching post or something to scratch in every room of the house?

Third. About how much money should I budget every month for a cat. for food, litter, and a fund for the vet. (need to make sure that I can afford a cat(s) before we officially get a cat(s))

Fourth. If there is one cat toy that you could not do without, what is it.

Fifth and probably most important. Should I wait to get a cat till after my wife gives birth? She has already told me that I am in charge of the cat and the litter box. She WILL NOT touch the litter box.

Thanks for looking in. Just trying to make sure I do things correctly the first time.

ConBrio
post #2 of 25
Welcome conbrio and family to TheCatSite

and THANK YOU and bless you for being such a good person! You obviously love your family and are also doing all the right things as far as including cats in your family. So, my humble advisements:

Yes, yes, YES by all means adopt them both!!! Your girls will obviously love two twice as much as one; the two are deeply bonded already, as cats DO have deep family ties and love one another devotedly so there will be no adjustment period for them and they will play together, eat, sleep, and groom together, and be company for one another when you are away during the day and the kids are at school, etc.

Yes, a scratching pad in each room is wonderful! Not absolutely necessary, but very nice. You can also buy the corrugated cardboard scratching pads, with or without wood frames, as they are economical, lots of fun for cats, and replaceable as they wear out. You can check on http://www.catclaws.com for some wonderful examples (and by the way, I'm giving them a shameless plug because I'm a very satisfied long-time customer!).
Toys? Well, each cat is different, just like kids are. Whatever you choose, just make sure it is sturdy, safe (no sharp or breakable parts or parts that can come off and be swallowed!), small enough for a cat (think prey-size, as in mouse-sized), and fun. Cats actually love such things as wadded-up paper balls, brown paper grocery bags (make sure you cut or take off handles first!), plastic milk jug rings, and things like that. You don't have to spend a fortune -- and generally, cats PREFER these homemade toys to the expensive ones anyway! The store-bought ones my cats prefer are plain catnip mice or other shapes filled with 'nip, sparkle balls, soft foam balls, and interactive "fishing pole" type toys that you only play with, with your cat, and then put away. They come with various "lures" -- our favorite is DaBird, which has feather lures that are replaceable.

How much to budget? I'm not sure, for two, as there are nine in our family! Just make sure you buy premium cat foods (actually they are economical, because the cheaper brands contain ingredients which do not generally produce the best health and you may end up with more vet bills by feeding bargain brands! I recommend such brands as Nutro, Triumph, Optimum Nature's Recipe, Natural Balance, Solid Gold, PetGold, or other "human-grade" brands with NO byproducts or fillers. You can buy them at Petco, PetsMart, or other "pet" supply store.) and I would strongly recommend scent-free, scoopable cat litter -- we buy in 30-lb. refillable plastic pails, from Petco, $11.99+ tax, and one pail lasts my Nine a week, so for two cats, one will last close to a month. I'd try to set aside $100-$200 a month in your savings account for vet checkups; of course you'll want an initial checkup, and spay/neuter if they arent' "fixed" already (this can be done at 4 months of age, and it is recommended the sooner after this, the better), plus baseline innoculations. After that, an annual checkup is recommended; booster frequency is debated hotly among vets and the cat community, but for indoors-only cats (which I strongy advocate for their safety and health as well as the family's peace of mind!) they should not have to be frequent. Teeth cleaning is recommended when needed; you vet can tell you how often each will need it, when he performs their annual checkup.

Best of luck to your family and to (hopefully) your two newest members-in-waiting -- and THANK YOU!!! for saving two precious lives and loving them!
post #3 of 25
I too would consider them both. It could be a one-each kind of thing when it comes to care (I know a 1-year old is going to be able to care in such away but you would be suprised with a 3year old.) My son is 2 and feeds my cats every morning and helps me sweep up any cat litter and tells me when it needs scooping!!! The ages of your children IMO are okay. We got Ziggy when he was a year old and he was fine - just had to remind him to be gentle!!

And I agree to all of the above. With the scratch posts I would say one upstairs and one downstairs. And toys, I would say that the 'tickle toys' onsticks are my cats favourites, also small mice with feather tails. And balls that rattle when they roll.

Budget - Set back some for vet bills, and I spend around £30 ($55) per month on my cats (1 adult and 4 kittens) and that includes litter/food/treats/toys. The initial cost I think are the highest with beds/blankets/scratching posts/toys/food bowls/litter trays and of course the cats themselves.

As for you doing the litter stuff while your wife is pregnant, she should go near it whilst 'with child' as close contact could be harmful to the baby.

Good luck whatever you decide.
post #4 of 25
Hello, Welcome to TCS! I also would get both cats. As for scratching posts I would say at least 1 per cat. I have 5 cats and I do not have a scratching post in every room even though I would like to and will probably in the future. Budgeting I have a special savings aside for vet bills and I spend probably $50 a month on food and litter. For cat toys the small fury mice and cat nip are favorites in my house. I see no reason to wait I had cats before, during, and after my pregnancy.
post #5 of 25
Hi ConBrio , welcome to TCS.
I adopted 2 littermates, a boy and girl.
They really do keep each other company.

You asked some important questions.
TCS also has Forums that are specific to the topics you are asking about.
You can post a thread in those for more feedback if you want.

As you learn your way around the site, if you need help,
please feel free to contact me.
Simply click on my user name and send a private message.
I will get back to you asap.
post #6 of 25
Welcome to TCS!! I would definitely consider getting them both! We have three sets of siblings here, and the siblings are very bonded to each other... more so than any of the other kitties.
post #7 of 25
Welcome! You have such great advice from everyone already I don't know what I could possibly add

So all I will say is welcome and I hope you get both. Cats are awesome pets and always do better in two's, especially if they are young.
post #8 of 25
Thread Starter 
thanks for all the advice so far. it will help when the final decision is made. till then i am going to continue to poke around and see what more I can find.

ConBrio
post #9 of 25
Hi there we're so happy to get the chance to welcome you to TCS. I see that you've had some great advice already. I'm sure you'll enjoy your stay with us - we're one great big family and you'll find loads of friends here. If I can help at all while you're finding your way around TCS just click on my username and send me a Personal Message - I'll do what I can to answer your questions
post #10 of 25
Hola y bienvenido a TCS, ...Catulina y Milky te saludan!!........
(Translate: Hi and Welcome to TCS, Catulina and Milky say hello to you!!!...)

See you on the forums!
post #11 of 25
If only more people knew... two cats are easier than one!

They play with each other, they model each other's proper behavior, and they actually keep each other out of trouble sometimes. (One will usually be more timid, and be able to cat-talk the other one... don't do that, you'll get us in trouble!)

Since your family is about to be five in number, two cats will increase the chances of family members finding a cat that meshes with them, and take some of the pressure off a single cat with two little girls who might want to pay more attention to the cat when it's tired or played out.

My cat's favorite cat toy is the Cat Dancer. It's only a few bucks, but they go wild with it! But rolled up balls of paper are also popular.

As for the ultimate cat litter solution... well, here's some reviews of the ultimate cat litter solution:

http://www.epinions.com/reviews/Litt...ist/pp_~1#list

Yes, I own one. Yes, I loooooove it. Yes, I wrote a review:

http://www.epinions.com/review/Litte...t_208449736324
post #12 of 25
Hi and welcome to TCS! We are so glad you have joined us!

If I can help you with any questions you have about the site, please click on my username and send me a message.
post #13 of 25
Hello ConBrio, my name is John, welcome to the site Yes, I would take them both
post #14 of 25
Hello & Welcome to the Cat Site!

Congratulations on your new baby - you'll have to update us all on how that is all going
Good luck with finding new cats!

Best Wishes to you all! Enjoy the forums
post #15 of 25
Welcome! I love your username! (I'm a musican). Anyway, I'm of the opinion that it's much better to have 2 cats than one. Cats don't imprint on people as much as dogs do...it's really nice for them to have another feline, especially if it's a littermate.

Definitely a good idea to keep pregnant women away from cat litter, for Toxoplasmosis is a very bad thing.

For toys, my cats prefer: furry mice, and catnip bananas (for some reason, this shape is very popular).

I have noticed that the more I pay for food, the less they eat. So I feed my 5 cats Artemis dry and Wellness wet. If I had fewer cats, I might go for more expensive, but you do what you have to do.

Congrats on finding TCS - it's a great place!
post #16 of 25
Thread Starter 
Still in the waiting game here to find the 'right' cat(s). But hello to everyone.

kluchetta, I started using con brio in high school as a handle. I got it from music. I played sax for about 15 years and bassoon for about 6 years and baritone for a year so I could play in pep band in college
post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by conbrio View Post
Still in the waiting game here to find the 'right' cat(s). But hello to everyone.

kluchetta, I started using con brio in high school as a handle. I got it from music. I played sax for about 15 years and bassoon for about 6 years and baritone for a year so I could play in pep band in college
No way! I'm a bassoonist!!!!
post #18 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by conbrio View Post
kluchetta, I started using con brio in high school as a handle. I got it from music. I played sax for about 15 years and bassoon for about 6 years and baritone for a year so I could play in pep band in college
Quote:
Originally Posted by kluchetta View Post
No way! I'm a bassoonist!!!!
That is really cool.
We have very talented members here on TCS.
post #19 of 25
post #20 of 25
Thread Starter 
UPDATE

well here is a quick update on a cat for my family. I saw a post on another forum about a lady who was giving up her cat. I responded to the post and have emailed back and forth to ask question about the cat and for her to find out about us. Found out that she is giving up her cat because her husband just got deployed to Iraq and she (and her daughter) will be traveling back and forth to her hometown and will not be able to take care of her cat.

Now it is a waiting game for her to email me back with a time and directions to meet her and her cat to see if he will be a good fit for our family. The hardest part is waiting to meet up as I have been talking with her for over a week now. I guess she is just taking her time to make sure I will be a good fit for her cat. Also I guess as long as I continue to show interest that it shows her that I am serious about the cat and getting one is not a fad. One of the biggest problems about waiting to get a cat is that my 3 year old asks every morning, noon, and night when we are getting a cat and where is it.
post #21 of 25
Welcome!!!


Valerie
post #22 of 25
Hello and welcome, This site is great hopefully you will like it as much as we all do!

First question. I only have one cat, I am at home all day and he is perfectly content with someone to hang out I play with him, I do think once I work full time he will get lonley.

Second Question. I have small apartment with one scratching post which is fine for my cat, make sure your post is a nice solid one that doesnt move around. if you are worried bout cat scratching furniture try soft paws these are rubber caps that go over the kittys nails to stop them ruining things he/she should not be touching

Third. we probably spent about $200 on Mellow in the first month for his vet visit, adoption fees, inital start up costs etc, monthly costs are not to bad, food is fairly cheap, there are some interesting threads on the site about what to look for in a food.

Fourth. Da BirdMellow loves this, he is just over a year old and goes crazy for this toy!

Fifth I have not had a child so dont know the answer....
post #23 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by conbrio View Post
UPDATE
One of the biggest problems about waiting to get a cat is that my 3 year old asks every morning, noon, and night when we are getting a cat and where is it.
Sending lots of vibes that you hear from her soon.
Here is a temporary kitty for your 3 year old.
Not quite the same is it.
post #24 of 25
Welcome! Let us know what you decide to do. Here's another vote for getting two
post #25 of 25
Welcome to TCS!!
Quote:
First question. Since he has a sister that came in with him, should I consider getting them both? They are both about 2 years of age. I was thinking about getting only one, but might reconsider.
I would seriously think about adopting both of them. Assuming they get along well, they will be great company for each other. (I myself am about to get my second kitty, which I think will greatly enrich Ares's life.)
Quote:
Second Question. Do I need a scratching post or something to scratch in every room of the house?
I would get a scratching post for the living room, and if you have a second story, I might get one for a room up there. (Put in places that you fell your kitty will spend alot of time at - don't hide it in the corner of a room that no one uses.)
Quote:
Third. About how much money should I budget every month for a cat. for food, litter, and a fund for the vet. (need to make sure that I can afford a cat(s) before we officially get a cat(s))
It greatly depends on what food and litter that you buy for the kitty, along with how healthy the kitty is and if they are neutered or spayed prior to coming home. I buy a $40.00, 34 pound bag of WBCL, which is a corn based litter, which lasts about 2 months. I buy Natural Balance Venison and Pea wet and Duck and Pea dry, which comes to about $40.00 a month. As for vet expenses, your kitties will need shots and neutering/spaying, but if they are otherwise healthy, you will probably see a vet once a year.

Quote:
Fourth. If there is one cat toy that you could not do without, what is it.
Well, I have 2 toys. For interactive play with your kitty, I'd go with Da Bird wand. For a toy that kitty plays with by him/herself, I buy Petmate Looney-Loops Cat Toy at Petco. They come in a 3-pack for about $3.00, but are great entertainment and exercise .
Quote:
Fifth and probably most important. Should I wait to get a cat till after my wife gives birth? She has already told me that I am in charge of the cat and the litter box. She WILL NOT touch the litter box.
I think that you could get kitties now. Try taping cries of a baby and playing it for the cats, so they are used to it. Also, dab yourself with baby products, such as baby powder and lotion, so that when the baby comes, the smells will be familiar. As for the litterbox, I scoop mine a couple times a day and don't see it as an unpleasant task - my Hubby scoops occasionally, but not often. (I use a Litter Locker to store the waste in for later disposal.)
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