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Great Cat Tips

Grow a Cat Garden

Find Your Cat

Missing Cat

Stain Cleaning Methods

Proper ID

Traveling With Your Cat

 

Grow a Cat Garden

To grow grass for your cat indoors — fast-growing lawn grass, oat grass, fescue or wheat — choose a shallow pot so your pet has easy access. Fill the pot with sterilized packaged potting soil, leaving some space around the edge for watering. Moisten the soil, then sprinkle the grass seeds on it.

Potted grass will grow best in a sunny area, but remember to water it often so the soil doesn't dry out. And since young unstable roots are no match for a cat, keep the pot out of his reach. If your cat is tenacious and agile, consider buying a mini-greenhouse to protect the seedlings. Soon enough, kitty will be able to enjoy his green treat.

If you let your cat outdoors to munch on grass, make sure the lawn hasn't been sprayed with toxic chemicals.

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Stain Cleaning Methods

Occasional accidents are a fact of life with cats. A quick and thorough cleanup can usually keep stains from becoming permanent. Keep club soda on hand. Its bubbles lift soil to the surface, and its salts help prevent stains. Removing all traces of odor is equally important, so buy a pet-odor neutralizer. These products, available at pet-supply stores, don't just mask the odor of urine or feces, but eradicate it by breaking up the particular combination of odor molecules. If you cat's sensitive nose can detect even a smidgen of the smell, he may continue to eliminate in the same spot. For a similar reason, avoid ammonia-based cleaners since ammonia smells similar to urine.

Remove any solids with a spatula, stiff cardboard or a paper towel before attacking the stain itself. If the stain is dry, don't dampen it with water; just apply the appropriate cleaner. Always spot-test the cleaner first on a concealed area of the carpet or fabric. If stains remain, use a commercial stain remover designed for pet stains and appropriated for the material. Follow label directions and be sure to test it on a hidden area first. And if even an odor neutralizer can't dispense with the smell, call in a cleaning professional or get ride of the rug or chair.

Cat gyms and condos can be cleaned with products intended for the materials they are made of: wood, carpet or fabric. But don't be so fastidious that you're removing all your cat's scent markings. Remove hair with masking tape or lint remover, a damp sponge or rubber gloves, or a stiff-bristled hairbrush.

 

Cleanup Essentials
  • Paper towels
  • Spatula or cardboard
  • Club soda
  • Baking soda or salt
  • Hydrogen peroxide (3%)
  • Ammonia
  • Pet-odor neutralizer (available at pet-supply stores)
  • Commercial stain remover designed for pet stains
  • Commercial carpet and upholstery cleaner
Stain Cleaning Methods

Stain Cleaning Method
Urine
Blot up liquid with paper towels. Pour club soda on the area, then blot it up with paper towels. Next, apply a pet-odor neutralizer, following the product's directions. If stains remain, use a commercial stain remover designed for pet stains.
Feces
Remove solids, then blot up any moisture with paper towels. Follow with cleaning procedure for urine.
Vomit
As quickly as possible, scoop up solids and apply baking soda or salt. When dry, vacuum up the rest. Follow by pouring club soda on the area, then blotting it up with paper towels. If stains remain, apply a nontoxic commercial carpet and upholstery cleaner or stain remover designed for pet stains.
Overturned plants
Vacuum up soil. For stains, let any remaining moist soil dry first, then vacuum again. Apply club soda and blot with paper towels. Follow with a nontoxic commercial carpet and upholstery cleaner or stain remover.
Other
For difficult-to-remove matter, follow cleaning procedure for urine. If stains remain, mix 1/2 cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide with 1 teaspoon of ammonia and apply solution to stain. Rinse with club soda to remove peroxide and ammonia residue.

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Missing Cat

Unless everyone in your household is extremely careful, your indoor cat may dart out and run off. Even cats that are used to going out and know the neighborhood well occasionally disappear. While most will return on their own, some may get trapped in a shed or garage, go too far afield to find their way back, or be mistaken as a stray and taken in by someone.

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Proper ID

Proper identification is essential to getting your cat back. He should always wear a conventional collar and identification tag. Choose a sturdy collar made of elastic or with an elastic insert, or one with a "breakaway" feature: a clasp that opens when pulled hard so he won't be strangled if it catches on something like a branch. The collar should be tight enough so it won't slip over kitty's ears unless it's stretched, but loose enough to fit two fingers underneath. If you cat balks at the collar, get him used to wearing it for longer and longer periods of time. Then, never take it off, even when he is safely ensconced indoors.

A range of ID tags are available, from engraved to handwritten. There are also small screw-apart barrels that can hold folded paper. Include only essential information on any tag: your address and one or two reliable telephone numbers with answering machines.

The disadvantage of collars for identification is that they can come off. Consider a second, more permanent form: the microchip. Implanted by your vet, the microchip can be scanned by an animal shelter or vet to give the name of the registry where your number is on file. This is not foolproof, though. Some smaller shelters may not have scanners and those that do may not be able to read chips from diverse manufacturers until they are all standardized. So, to be on the safe side, put a collar on your cat as well. You may save him a trip to the shelter by allowing whoever finds him to simply call you directly.

Make sure you always have a few clear, close-up and recent photos of your cat, showing his face straight on, as well as some of his entire body, especially of any identifying features. Vital for "lost" posters, photos also help identify pets at animal shelters and pounds.

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Find Your Cat

If your cat doesn't return within a day or so, launch an all-out search. First, check your home very thoroughly. He may be trapped in a closet, in hollow furniture, in a hole where pipes enter the wall — anywhere a cat can fit, which can be a surprisingly small space. Check crawlspaces, under porches, outbuildings, and even the roof. Remember that sick or injured cats will often hide in a safe place to recover.

Next, go public. Ask all your neighbors, especially children, if they have seen your cat and to keep an eye out for him. Offer a reward and advertise. Place a good photo of him in the center of a poster with large, clear lettering saying "Reward," "Lost Cat," and giving your cat's breed, color, and any distinguishing marks, and a reliable phone number or two. Head to the copy center and make copies; color ones are best. Hand out posters to neighbors. Ask local store owners if you can put one in their window or at their cash register. Go far and wide; many cats are found miles from home. Take out a classified ad in your local paper repeating the information on the posters, and check the "Found" ads every day.

Find out the animal control agency responsible for your area, as well as any other shelters, pounds, humane associations and vet clinics in your area, and visit them daily. If possible, go into the stray cat department yourself. Look carefully and consult your photos: Your cat may be dirty, hidden in the back of your cage and too stressed even to recognize your voice. Leave photos of your cat with the staff, but keep visiting since many shelters are understaffed and can't check every new arrival against the "lost" list. Ask each one about any other places you should check. And don't give up! Sometimes cats turn up months after they're lost.

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Traveling With Your Cat

Cats get very attached to their surroundings. Add the fact that most car trips result in humiliating (and sometimes painful) sessions at the vet, complete with pokes, prods and injections, and it's no wonder your cat disappears at the sound of his carrier being brought out. While many dogs like nothing better than to accompany their masters on car outings, travel with a cat can be difficult. Even if your cat is a decided homebody, there are ways you can help him cope a little better.

Cats tolerate carriers and the travel implied by them much more easily if they have been acclimatized at a young age. If you take your cat for frequent short drives to the store, to visit friends or even just for the occasional spin around the block, then he won't be as likely to associate travel with unpleasantness, such as those traumatic visits to the vet. If your cat is trained to a harness and leash, take him on car rides to check out nature a bit farther away than your backyard. When your cat becomes accustomed to these trips, you can begin to try longer ones.

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Many items on this page were taken from Animal Planet Website.  Visit them to learn more here.

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