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BRINGING YOUR NEW CABINCOON KITTEN HOME!

Each and everyone of our kittens are raised with many hours and weeks of affection, love and attention!!! We spend a great deal of time ensuring the kitten is healthy, happy, outgoing and well socialized. Please enjoy your new baby and contact us with any questions.

Even though we are experienced breeders with more then average medical knowledge, we are not qualified to offer medical advice or opinions. It is always better to be safe and take your kitten/cat to a licensed vet for a thorough exam immediately.

Please, always transport your kitten in a carrier! We seat belt our carriers to secure them and prevent accidents.

Dry food - We feed and recommend: Royal Canin Growth (Kitten) to our kittens up to 4 mos of age and after 4 mos. we feed Royal Canin Special #33 and Adult Fit formulas #32.  You may purchase these brands at Petco, Petsmart and online at http://www.royalcanin.us/ - Royal Canin USA .

Canned food:    Cats are obligate carnivores and require the majority of their food from meat protein. Allow your cat to eat as much canned food he/she wants. Dry food has too many carbohydrates, so only offer a small quantity. We recommend Merrick, Evolve, Eagle Pack in Beef, Turkey or Chicken canned flavors. We feed our cats a high protein home made Beef meat formula; Choose only one or two flavors and do not feed numerous flavors or the cat may become a finicky eater. We do not feed fish. Cats have a tendency to become fish addicts and will not eat anything else. Serve canned food at breakfast and dinner at room temperature. 

Water:  Offer clean fresh water every day. We like the Drink Well Pet Fountains....they provide filtered running water which encourages the cats to drink more water.

DISHES: Use glass, ceramic or stainless steel, low sided bowls and clean them daily.  Plastic tends to collect bacteria from the oils in the cat food and can lead to chin acne, bacterial infections etc.  Disposable paper plates may also be used for their canned food.

Hairballs: You can offer a product like Petromalt which is a brown sticky paste.  Recommended dosage is once a week, approximately one inch given orally.  Many cats will lick it directly from the tube.  A dry hacking, gagging cough is usually a hairball.  If your cat is coughing, add a little of canned plain pumpkin to their regular canned food and give Petromalt daily until the hairball is expelled. If the coughing continues please take them to your vet.

Treats:  We feed Greenies Feline Treats, Royal Canine Maine Coon formula and Wysong Doctors Assorted Dream treats at bed time. The cats and kittens really love chasing after their treats, which provides them with extra exercise.nbsp;

Maine Coons enjoy playing with their food and sometimes their water.  We recommend using heavy water bowls and putting trays under the water bowls to prevent floods.  Keep the food bowl at least 12 inches from the water bowl.  Do not keep the litter pan anywhere near the food and water containers. 

INTRODUCING YOUR NEW CAT OR KITTEN TO ITS NEW HOME
Your baby may be frightened, insecure, confused or anxious about the changes in environment it is experiencing.  The baby is leaving his/her safe haven, mother and siblings for a new home and possibly new 4 legged friends.  To minimize the stress and to best help your baby acclimate to its new home - Step one, when you get your kitten home, Isolate your kitten from existing pets for at least 7 days preferably 21 days (this is to prevent your kitten from contracting any illness your pet maybe carrying). Put him/her in a quiet room by itself with toys, food, litter and water. Spend a great deal of time talking and playing quietly with your baby - but please allow the baby plenty of nap time.   Your bedroom may not be the best choice if it will cause problems with your other cats (i.e. they may feel excluded).  Let your kitten explore this room completely so it can ascertain that there are no dangers and it can start to relax.  After the kitten has been in your home and isolated from your existing pets for a minimum of 7-21 days and you feel the kitten is ready, open the door to this room and permit the kitten to leave at its own volition to start to explore the rest of your home.  The kitten can always run back to its new safe haven if something alarms him or her.  It is best to give your other pets some time to get used to the idea of a new cat in the house.

Scents - cats have very powerful olfactory senses.  It would be very helpful if you can bring a towel or bed that your other pets have been on inside the carrier for your kitten so the kitten can both add the scents of your other pets onto their fur as well as get used to the smells of your pets in advance of meeting them.  Also, take a towel or cat bed that the kitten has been on and bring it out so that your other pets can get an advance preview "smell" in order to recognize the new kitten.  Another helpful tip - put a small amount of baby powder on the shoulder blades and britches of all of your pets; this is one area in which the pets cannot lick or groom so they will all have a common scent on them.  Remember those sensitive noses; don't overdo it.

Go slowly - it is important for the kitten to rebuild their confidence as well as to give your other pets time to get to know the newcomer.  Many times, it is the older pets who have a harder time adjusting to the change and the kitten will be-bop around the house, oblivous to the older cats distress.  Be sure to give your other pets lots of attention and it does not hurt to address the newcomer as the friend of your other cat; i.e. Buddy's new pal or Minx's little sister.

Got a really peeved cat (i.e. What were you thinking - to bring this cute bundle of fur to upstage me!!)?  Here is another option to help the newcomer get to know your other cat(s).  Put the kitten in a secure carrier and put him in the middle of the living room.  The other cats can see, hear and smell the kitten without the kitten wandering too close and getting a warning from the established cats.  Later - alternate this system if you only have one cat and let the kitten wander around so the other cat can see him but not be able to feel too threatened.  Then go back to step one above.

Your other pets may not want to share their litter pans and food at first.  Be prepared with extra supplies and to put them in different areas of your home to prevent accidents from occuring.  Make sure the cats all have access to litter and food/water at all times.  Some cats will stalk the babies or bar them from the litter pans so be sure that you observe everyone closely and make sure the new kitten is not at risk before leaving them all alone together.

STRESS
Sometimes new cats or kittens may not appear to eat or drink for the first day.  Don't worry - they will eat when they feel relaxed, but offer the kitten food and water often.  Stress may also cause some temporary illness such as dry or wet sneezing, watery eyes or a slight fever.  As long as the eyes are clear and the nasal discharge is clear, then the kitten will recover quickly as they adjust to a new environment (dust, allergies) but any green discharge should be investigated by a licensed veterinarian.  Changes in water may also cause diarrhea (from stress too) so it is best to use bottled water and use the food we use to minimize temporary digestive problems.  The kitten may cry for no reason - suddenly missing its littermates and feeling alone.  Comfort the kitten - this will pass and helps to develop a bond with you.  Kittens are amazingly resilient and they have been raised with love and care that we expect you to continue.  :-)

LITTER
We suggest you use the jumbo sized litter pans or large plastic storage containers to accomodate the long length of the Maine Coon body.  Hooded pans are fine, but if the cats end up missing the edge of the pan (i.e. their rear end is sticking out of the end of the pan by the entrance), then you should remove the hood.  Put litter pans in a quiet and well ventilated place.  We use Purina Layena Chicken crumble (chicken feed) and Fresh Step clay (non clumping) litter but after your kitten is acclimated to his new home, you are welcome to use whatever litter suits your cat's preferences and your lifestyle.  We do not recommend Clumping litter...it can cause blockages in their throats as well as digestive track and intestines. Scoop the litter 2-3x daily, dispose of litter appropriately and clean/disinfect your litterpans with Bleach at least once a week.  Keep extra litterpans as needed.  Clumping litter is not always safe for young kittens (they tend to eat everything!) as they have a cement additive so we recommend not using clumping litter.

EMERGENCIES
Stock extra pans, litter, food and bottled water in a location with your own personal supplies in case of emergencies fires, flooding etc.  Keep at least one carrier per pet.  A quick evacuation tool could be a zippered pillowcase if your carriers are inaccessable.  Keep your cat up to date with vaccinations and keep your pet's nails trimmed bi-weekly.

GROOMING/COMBING - Comb your cat weekly using a wide tooth (coarse) comb, then progress to a tighter (fine) tooth comb.  Do not use brushes on Maine Coons, they do nothing more than move the top layer of fur around.  Be gentle and groom the cat in a position that is comfortable for you both.  Start with the britches and tummy and progress to the back and chest which are more pleasurable for the cat.

BATHING - Always comb your cat prior to bathing. Do not fill the sink with water. Our basic (i.e. not a show bath) shampoo routine includes Goop (mechanics hand cleaner)(if greasy), Regular Dawn (not Ultra) dishwashing liquid soap, and Rotenone or Malaseb shampoo (when older) and a vinegar rinse, make sure you rinse really well, it is vital you rinse all soap residue out; a sticky coat will look worse than when you started and will attract dirt.

DRYING - Towel dry the cat well after the bath.  Warm some thick, absorbant towels in the dryer prior to the bath and wrap your wet cat in these towels to absorb the excess water.  Change the towels as needed and comb out the cat lightly as it is drying or blowing drying.  Make sure it has a warm or sunny place to finish its grooming itself, or blow dry the cat.  Expect to be treated with possible disdain for several hours but the cat will forgive you.  :-)  Now you have a fresh smelling, lovely kitty to enjoy.  Bathing will also help reduce the amount of hair that is shedding and is vital during their molting seasons (Spring and Fall).  Greasy coats and shedding can lead to horrific mats so it is important to keep up with their grooming.

NAILS - Trim the front and rear nails every week as a young kitten and every 2-3 weeks as an adult.  Use small cat claw sissors and holding the cat in a stable position, like a football under your arm, press on the pads of the foot to extend the claw.  Clip the translucent tip of the claw.  The opaque portion should not be cut or your cat's claw will bleed - i.e. this will hurt and cause a negative reaction.  Clipping claws should never hurt and if done properly, the cat will not mind.  There are five claws on the front paws and four on the rear.

EARS, EYES, MOUTH and NOSES - use a warm damp soft washcloth and gently wash their eyes, nose and mouth, and wrap it around your finger to swab out the ear.  Do not use q-tips or put any liquids in the ears unless directed by a vet.  Wipe away brown wax but report any heavy buildup or black dots to your vet.  Do not get water in their ears when bathing - do not submerge their heads at all!

TEETH - check your cats teeth and gums frequently for signs of gum disease (gingivitus or stomatitus), tooth disease, tartar or teething. 75% of cats do develope Gingivitis sometime in their lives because of the type of bacteria in their mouths, and they cant chew bones and toys like dogs can.   Very bad breath is not normal - your cat could have a problem.  Juvenile gingivitus may be seen when the cats are 6 months-18 months old and occurs when the adult teeth are in and in unaltered cats, when their hormones start to kick in.  This usually clears up by 1.5 years of age and can be helped with treatments of clindamycin (antirobe aquadrops)an antibiotic prescribed by your vet.  Discuss brushing your cats teeth with your vet.  Starting this as a kitten makes it easier to do as a habit.

FLEAS - There is no excuse to tolerate fleas.  Use a topical product for CATS ONLY such as Biospot,Advantage or Frontline on your cat monthly to kill the fleas and treat your home.  Fleas are very detrimental to your cat's health - they can kill a cat through anemia and give cats tapeworm, bacterial infections as well as make them miserable.  Do not let fleas invade your home - keep your cats indoors and be alert. You can use Flea Busters powder for treating the interior of your home.

TOYS
When purchasing cat toys, make sure they are cat safe and do not have parts that can be easily removed and swallowed.  Avoid glued on parts and make sure tails, bells, etc. are very secure.  Mylar kitty teases are great, but do not leave them around for the cats to chew on - the metal strings can cause intestinal damage if swallowed.  Thread and strings are also very dangerous.  Cats tongues are like scratchy velcro.  Once something like a ribbon is licked, it is nearly impossible for a cat to spit it out.  Also strings, ribbons can get stuck around their necks. Ribbons can get stuck in their stomachs or cause an intestinal blockage and require surgery to remove.  Your cats are like toddlers - keep dangerous items out of their reach (and their reach is incredible) and keep them safe.

Expensive toys are not necessary - cats love cardboard boxes, paper bags (handles must be cut), tinfoil balls (large, tightly compacted), pingpong balls, etc.  Cat tracks and turbo scratchers are great.  Catnip toys are wonderful.  Pipecleaner toys (bugs) make great fetching toys.

FURNITURE
Cats love cat trees.  They love to be up high as it gives them both a great view as well as a sense of security.  Cats try to defy gravity all the time and we get to enjoy it when gravity wins.  :-)  A cat tree at least four feet tall is a necessity for cats.  They need something tall and sturdy so that they can scratch.  Scratching allows cats to have a mini-workout.  They work their upper bodies, they work their lower bodies, their back, their abdomens.... well, ok - you get it!  They flex, they crunch - they need a good workout and a cat tree with a sisal post works great. 

DECLAWING
Declawing is also not an option for one of our kittens.  Please check out this site for more details on declawing, the actual proceedure, more information on good ways to trim a cat's nails, build a great cat tree from scratch and understand why cats scratch so you understand  their needs and how important keeping their claws is to their overall health and well being.

KEEPING A CAT INDOORS
Cats are perfectly happy to live indoors if you provide them with affection, attention, a scratching post or cat tree, toys and quality food and fresh water.  They've never been outdoors and don't miss what they don't know and they will never miss the following:

HARNESSES
Many pet buyers have had success training their Maine Coons to walk around on leashes and harnesses.  Always carry your cat outside, do not allow him to walk out the door on his own. Don't allow them unsupervised time in an unfenced or non-fully enclosed yards (front or back which we oppose) and keep their rabies vaccinations up to date just in case.

PRECAUTIONS
Many products and situations are hazardous to your cats.  Pine based cleaners are toxic.  Keep toilet lids down and do not use tank cleaners if your cat ever drinks from the toilet (I know, groan, but some do!).  Treat your cat like a curious child and look for hazards.  Cover electrical outlets, protect them from dangling blind cords or electrical cords, firescreen off your fireplace, candles, potpourri, be careful with recliners, hideabeds, rocking chairs, slamming doors.  Be careful with beds (box springs, dangling threads), needles and thread, plastic bags, shopping bags, tape and sticky tags, cigarettes, styrofoam, packing peanuts, yarn, cellophane, open refigerators, washers & dryers, garbage cans, sharp tin can lids, chicken bones.  Be observant and try to deal with hazards before your cat finds them.

POISONOUS PLANTS
Visit these web sites for lists of plants to avoid:

Cornell list of poisonous plans
Cornell Resources on poisonous plants
CFA's list of plants

HEALTH AND FIRST AID
Basic info:  A cat's average temperature should range from 100.4 to 102.5 degrees farenheit.  Kittens can be slightly warmer.  A temperature of 103 degrees is cause for concern and an immediate vet visit.  Measure temperatures with a rectal thermometer or an ear thermometer.

Pulse should be 110-130 beats per minute.

Respiration should be 20-30 breaths per minute.

Keep your vet's phone number handy as well as locate an emergency clinic or after hours vet nearby if your regular vet is closed.  Emergencies seem to always happen at night or on weekends.  :-(

Let us know how your baby is adjusting to its new home.  Best of luck with your new treasure and ENJOY your wonderful new Maine Coon cat!
For information please email us at cabincoon@verizon.net