Spreading the joy!
Purrfecting kittens before adoption
- The right age: The kittens should be at least eight weeks before they leave home. Ideally, the kittens should be with their mother for 12 weeks to learn social and behavioural skills.
- Weaned before adoption: The kittens should be properly weaned and able to eat on their own.
- House-trained: Litter-box training is a must. This makes it easier for the kittens in their new home and avoid unpleasant accidents.
- Health chart: The kittens should be dewormed and vaccinated. The new pet parents should be advised on proper kitten care.
Know the pet parents before adoption
- Screen the pet parents: While talking to prospective pet parents, it is necessary to screen them. Ask them about their previous experiences with pets, their home, family members and lifestyle. If you are comfortable, invite them to visit the kittens. If you are not comfortable, please say that you don’t think it is a proper fit and politely say ‘no’. You can also visit the home of the prospective pet parents before giving away the kitten.
Making pet parents and kitten meeting a pleasure
- Don’t stress the kittens: Place all kittens comfortably in a basket for showing it to prospective pet parents. It is stressful for the kittens if they have to be chased around a room while people are waiting to see them.
- Two is better than one: Giving away kittens in pairs is recommended. Kittens are very playful and need company for their healthy development.
- The adoption day: Feed the kittens at least two hours before they leave home. It gives them the chance to use the litter box also. This way, the kittens can settle down more comfortably in their new home.
- Giving away: Tell the prospective pet parents what food the kittens prefer and their daily routine. Always give away the kittens in a secure animal carrier. Place your kitten’s favourite toys and treats in the carrier.
- Avoiding unwanted litters: Giving away a kitten to a good and loving home brings great joy to all concerned. Please advise the new pet parents on spaying/neutering to avoid unwanted litter.
- Responsible pet parenting: Always assure the pet parents that you will take back the kittens in case of any problem. You can always find another pet parent.
(Sudhersena is volunteer at the Blue Cross since 1998 and an avid animal lover, owns nine cats and three dogs. She is associated with a number of animal welfare campaigns and programmes.)