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New to Cats - Getting Your First Cat

Getting your first cat or kitten can be a huge step for a "Cat Newbie." These helpful articles and resources will help you in making that all-important decision of committing to a lifetime relationship. Whether you've just adopted your first cat, or are just thinking about getting one, this is the place to start.
  1. Cat Care 101
  2. Declawing
  3. Indoors or Outdoors?
  4. Allergic to Cats?
  5. Where to Adopt a Cat (32)
  6. Cat Names (2)

Top Mistakes by New Cat Owners
Before adopting a cat for the first time, do your homework to avoid these top mistakes made by new cat owners. By avoiding these mistakes, you and your cat will have a much better chance at a happy long-term relationship.

Before You Adopt Your First Cat
So you think you might want to get a cat, and don't know where to start. You no doubt have dozens of questions running through your mind: "Should I get a male or a female, a kitten or an older cat?" "I'd really like a purebred (name your favorite breed), but maybe I should adopt a mixed breed instead." This tutorial helps answer those questions, as well as a few you haven't thought of.

Your First Cat Tutorial
The decision to adopt your first cat is a monumental one, both for you and for your new cat, which I hope will be a family member for life. Whether you are thinking about getting a cat, or have just adopted your first one, this tutorial has been designed to make your relationship with this special cat a lasting one. This is what we mean by the...

Email Class for New Cat Owners
Introduction to Cat Care - Your New Cat. The same content as the online course, but delivered by email once a week. Subjects cover intelligent food choices, avoiding litter box problems, and claw management, to name a few. The class is also self-paced, so take as long as you need.

The R Factor
Caring for a cat or kitten is a big responsibility--make sure you're ready for this commitment before making that decision.

Top Myths and Facts About Cats
If you are thinking of getting your first cat, you should read first this list of Myths and Misconceptions About Cats.

Should I get an adult cat or kitten for my first cat?
A reader is interested in getting her first cat and asks whether an adult cat or kitten is the best choice. Read my reply to this cat FAQ.

Cat-Proofing Your Home
Make it easy on both family and your new companion by doing a little judicious house-proofing.

My First Cat - Reader Stories of Their First Cat
Taking in a cat for the first time is a momentous event, and we would love to see your stories and photos. Read other First Cat stories, then use the form to share your own.See submissions

How to Make Your House a Great Place for Your Cat
Just as you may need a TV, books, or a garden, for the quality of life you enjoy, so does your cat have certain needs. By providing him with the essentials, your relationship with your cat will grow, and kitty will truly feel "at home."

Advanced Tips for Choosing Cat Food
Cat food is one of the most important expenses of feline guardianship, next to veterinary care. It is important also to note that proper diet can eliminate or delay veterinary expense for a number of serious medical conditions.

Shopping List for Your New Cat
Plan ahead so you won't have to make rush trips for necessary supplies on the big day.

When Discipline is Necessary
Cats are basically pretty well-behaved critters, and rarely "act out" unless there is a problem. Learn how to analyze "behavioral problems," and the appropriate ways of countering them.

FAQ - Is my apartment big enough for a cat
FAQ about cats - Is my apartment big enough for a cat? I'd like to get a cat for companionship, but I'm not sure if my place is big enough for a cat.

How to Manage Your Cat's Claws
You may have concerns about your furniture, drapes, and carpet, but proper claw management will ensure your cat gets the scratching exercise he needs for strong muscle tone and supple limbs, and save your furniture at the same time.

How to Make Your Cat a Lifetime Family Member
Now that your new cat is home, here are the essentials you'll need to bond him into your family, and enjoy his company for many, many years.

How I Became an Accidental Cat Parent
It's amazing how many people who formerly preferred dogs, or just plain didn't like cats, became 'accidental cat parents.' Cats have a way of tiptoeing into your heart when you least expect it. Perhaps a cat appeared outside your door on a rainy night. Or you went to an animal shelter to adopt a dog, and a paw reached out of a cage to grab your sleeve as you passed by the cats' area. Did a child come home one day with a cat, pleading "Please, can we keep her?" Share your own story here. See submissions

Learning to Live with Sophie
Guest Writer Kelly L. Henderson shares her experiences in learning to live with her very first cat. She says the experience has been both frustrating and rewarding, but never a dull moment.

New Cat City: My First Cat Adoption
Join me in following the efforts of a friend of mine who is trying to overcome his allergies to cats while wrestling with all the details of preparing to adopt one or two furkids. While you're there, feel free to post your comments.

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