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Looking for alternatives....

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
OK, so I have a new kitten. I got her on sunday afternoon. She is very sweet, and getting a little braver each day. I got her to keep me company this summer, while I work in Arkansas for 3 months. After that, she will probably go to live at home with my parents and my other cat, Cadillac. She might be able to live with me at school next year, but probably not.
The problem is, she seems bored. I have a bunch of toys for her, though not as many as I will have soon, once I move up this weekend. She'll pretty much have the whole spare bedroom as her domain, plus the rest of that apartment. But she really does seem bored. I mean she plays with her toys, but shes constantly crying for my attention, jumping up and sitting on my shoulder, or settling down in the middle of my keyboard while I'm trying to program (which is really nasty to debug!).
I feel bad, because I'm going to be working 40 hours a week this summer, so she wont get as much attention as she does right now, which doesnt seem like enough.
But I can't get another kitten. I am lucky enough that my parents allowed me to get one cat for arkansas, I can't push two onto them.
I originally looked into fostering, but nobody would respond to me, and now I don't know that I have the heart to give one up...I mean, once the two got attached to each other...And then she'd have to go home to cadillac, who is not playful...at all.
And I have had people ask me why I got another kitten, why not just bring cadillac with me...He'd be miserable. He loathes the indoors. He'll sit on my lap to be petted for about 30 seconds, then he's up crying at the door. I couldn't trap him in an apartment all day.

I dunno, I guess what I'm asking is...how do you have just one kitten?! I mean, I don't know what I could possibly do to make up for her being all by herself.
post #2 of 14
Well, if she is really only 6 weeks old like you said in your intro post, that would explain the clingy behavior. When do you start working? 6 weeks is pretty young to be with out mom cat... she's missing out on a lot of kitty socialization. Also, I'm curious as to why you adopted another cat knowing that you'll be working 40 hours a week AND that you'll most likely have to give her up to your parents after the summer anyway?
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by twstychik View Post
Well, if she is really only 6 weeks old like you said in your intro post, that would explain the clingy behavior. When do you start working? 6 weeks is pretty young to be with out mom cat... she's missing out on a lot of kitty socialization. Also, I'm curious as to why you adopted another cat knowing that you'll be working 40 hours a week AND that you'll most likely have to give her up to your parents after the summer anyway?
Because she'd go to my parents for the school year, not forever. And because I'm going to be all by myself for the first time ever, and in a new city that's dangerous and scary to boot. I have never lived all on my own, I've always had roommates or family. I'm going to be terrified, and alone. I need a companion to help me through that. Lots of people work well over 40 hours a week and still have pets. And like I said, I looked into fostering, but nobody got back to me in time. So, that's that. I'm happy with the fact that I got the kitten, I'm just still learning. Every other time I've had kittens, it's been a litter, not just one, except for Cadillac, but he was older, and we had another cat that we found within a few days that stayed with us a while.

*eta*
I think she's 6 weeks, that was their guess. She was found under someone's trailer. I start working towards the end of this month. And I always thought 6 weeks was when people normally gave their kittens away...
post #4 of 14
Ok, and when are you scheduled to start working? As I said, she's most likely clingy (I doubt she bored) because of her young age. You are now mom & siblings so it's up to you to be her playmate and teach her how to be a kitty.

Yes, lots of people work 40 hours a week and keep pets, but I'd bet that the majority of those people also don't have 6 week old kittens which require much more attention and care than say an adolescent or adult cat. I also didn't get that she'd be back with you after the school semester. I hope she settles down soon. Good luck in the new city. I found living alone to be a great experience... very liberating! I hope she'll be able to go to school with you... nothing fixes a bad day of classes like some kitty love.
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
I start work really soon actually. Next tuesday, to be exact. I do get every other friday off, and am not going to have time to go home much, so she'll have me every evening and every weekend. So that's good. I just always thought that 6 weeks was the age all cats found new homes. It's the general happy number around here, anyway. I don't know how to tell exactly how old she is. She's potty trained, eating dry food, her eyes don't look fully changed yet, but I don't see any blue in them anymore. According to my bathroom scale she weighs 1.2 lbs, but its not terribly accurate.
post #6 of 14
6 weeks may be the norm for a shelter kitten there (many shelters are over crowded and migh tbe inclined to let them go early for that reason) but 10-12 weeks is a better age. It give them time to socailize with ther litter mates and what not. Of course, being rehomed at a young age is often times better than the alternative anyway.

Just an idea... but you might try hiding a few treats around the house in the mornings to give her something to do while your away. My cats have toys they can play with on their own but they'd much rather play with us so I occasionall hide treats so they can have a scavenger hunt during the day.

She sure is a cutie. I love the spotted belly!
post #7 of 14
Interactive play is great too! You can use anything really. A scarf, sock etc. Drag it slowly across the floor so she can pratice her hunting skills! Also, they make a toy called da'bird which is AWESOME! Every cats favorite! By playing interactively with her it will give her the much needed socialization she needs and craves. Being so young she needs activity and you are it my friend!

Little toy mousies are nice for the little kitties too because they are small enough, they won't feel overwhelmed. They can bat them across the room. Also balled up tin foil is fun for them too. Give lots of love. Lots of play and then lots of cuddle once she is sleepy. You are her everything right now. But it's great to form that bond.

Does she have access to windows to look out at. I position my furniture so it is front of windows. Especially if you can't afford a cat tree. Although I recommend one if you can. It is useful for scratching, sleeping, playing and bird watching. All things essential for happy cats!

They also have a toy called a 'cheese chase', its basically a ball that they can bat around a track. My 2 year old STILL plays with it. Hours of fun that she can have by herself while you are away at work.

Good luck! Whats the kitty's name??
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the suggestions!
I really appreciate it!
And she doesn't have a name yet. I have a list though, but I'm not sure yet what I like....here are some of them:
Safari
Lynx
Kenya
Tango
Sushi
Faye
Koshka
Skiddle/Skittles
Haiku
Gotcha
Mira (like mirage)
Rambo
Typo
post #9 of 14
You probably know this - it sounds like you have a lot of kitten experience - but since you won't be able to check on her during workdays, super-kitten-proof your apartment.

PS. I like a lot of the names, but I think my favorite is Faye. Where is the picture, though, that was mentioned?
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brokenheart View Post
You probably know this - it sounds like you have a lot of kitten experience - but since you won't be able to check on her during workdays, super-kitten-proof your apartment.

PS. I like a lot of the names, but I think my favorite is Faye. Where is the picture, though, that was mentioned?
I like that one too. I've decided I'm just going to call her something different every few days and see which one sticks. Right now, her name is Shy. It fits for the moment, but I'm hoping not for long, lol! She's getting braver and braver!
And here are some pictures, a few were in that other post I made in the intro section:
pic
pic
pic
pic
pic
pic


I need to take a picture of her coat, it's so neat. Especially on her paws. all the long guard hairs all over her (except right along her back) are black at the base and cream at the tips, and her paws are this really pretty mixture of colors. she's precious.
post #11 of 14
OMG! She is beautiful! I love her belly with it's spots. I like the name Faye too. or Sushi! You can call her Su, or ShiShi.
post #12 of 14
I mostly wanted to touch on her estimated age. I think she's older than 6 weeks based on her size. My cat, Peanut, came to me at a vet estimated 6 weeks old. She was barely as big as my hand. Moo is a vet estimated 8 weeks and still appears smaller than Shy does in the pictures you provided. Photos can be pretty misleading though.

http://photos-b.ak.fbcdn.net/photos-...25929_6195.jpg

That's from the day after she was brought home. To put it in perspective, I wear a size 0 pants. So she was very little to not even take up my whole tummy area in the picture. My hand spread out covers how big she was.

Definitely try to do interactive play as much as possible - give her lots of love while you're home. I used a (non-lasing) laser pointer for a long time for about an hour before bed, along with toys she can catch and play with, chew toys for when she was teething, toys that would give her a treat when she figured out how to get the treat out, and lots and lots of cuddles. We used to cuddle next to the sliding glass door in a puddle of sunshine, and still do sometimes. Her favorite way to be carried stems from me walking around the house with her tossed over one shoulder as I was doing chores around the house - doing dishes, etc.

Peanut was raised an only kitten and definitely has some behavior issues due to being abandoned, mostly she doesn't realize biting hurts because she was away from her siblings far too young so she didn't learn how hard is too hard to bite and she didn't learn squealing means ENOUGH or THAT HURTS - But we're slowly overcoming those issues.

Good luck with her, she is absolutely beautiful. I'm probably saying something you already know, but try not to change her living situation too often if you can help it, it's very stressful on cats.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
Wow. That is small. I'll measure her today and we'll see ^_^
I wish I had my little scale I used for our border collie puppies back when we used to breed (responsibly, I promise. They were in high demand until we had to do an e-spay to prevent a cross with a german shorthair pointer...i still giggle thinking what those would have ended up like, lol).
And I'm going to try not to change things for her. I feel bad, as she's finally coming out of her shell and we're about to move far away. She's just now learned that there are stairs, and has been up them twice, but only for a little while before running down to hide again, lol. And she has been going into the den more and more often, and even got lost in the pantry, lol! She still goes under my bed, but now it's mostly to nap and get away from the noise when my roomies play rockband. When I touch her and wake her up she comes right out though, so I'm proud of her.

ETA

Just tried to measure her, but couldn't get her to stop playing with the ruler. She kind of stood still long enough for me to read that she's 6.5" tall at the shoulder and her body is 8.5" long...but that's just an estimate, like I said, she was playing a lot. Also, she has a full set of teeth, but I dont know if they are baby teeth or what, lol. I just know she matches up with the chart minus the molars.
post #14 of 14
Just putting it out there, and obviously with rescue kitties it's just an issue of when they're rescued, but its best for kitties to be with their moms/littermates until they're 12 weeks old. Shelters have to adopt when they can, or according to policy, but no respectable breeder lets a kitten go before that age. This is the "natural" age at which moms begin to force their independence on them and they've learned what they need to from her.

Laurie
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