E-Mail us
Local Vets since 1949

New Kittens

Caring for your new kitten - vaccinations, fleas, desexing, feeding, kitten care

Congratulations on the arrival of your new family member. The following information is provided to help you with all the necessary health care your new kitten will require, including, vaccination, heartworm prevention, flea control, worming nutrition, desexing and microchipping.

Wellness for life

Did you know pets age around seven times faster than you? Taking your cat to the veterinarian once a year is the same as a person seeing a doctor or dentist once every seven or eight years. That is why all cats need twice a year health and wellness check-ups. Wellness check-ups allow your veterinarian to detect, treat and help prevent health related problems early before they become painful and sometimes untreatable.

Vaccinations

To safeguard your pet from potentially serious and sometimes fatal diseases we recommend vaccinations. Cats are vaccinated against:

  • Feline Enteritis - This is the most common life threatening disease affecting cats. It is a very contagious viral disease with a high death rate especially in cats under 12 months of age. Signs include fever, depression, severe stomach pain, vomiting diarrhoea and dehydration.
  • Feline Respiratory Disease (Cat Flu) - This is a highly contagious disease. Cats of all age are at risk, especially young kittens, Siamese and Burmese cats.
  • Signs include sneezing, nasal discharge, runny eyes, coughing, loss of appetite and tongue ulcers. This can lead to severe dehydration followed by death.
  • Feline Chlamydia - Chlamydia is an organism that causes eye disease, predominantly seen in kittens up to 9 months of age. The signs of infection are discharge from the eyes (sticky eye or conjunctivitis) and nose, fever, coughing, respiratory signs, enlarged lymph nodes, inappetence, weight loss and depression.
  • Chlamydia is found in up to 1/3 of cases of conjunctivitis and is transmitted by close and persistent contact between cats.
  • FIV Feline Immunodeficiency Virus - This blood borne viral infection causes feline AIDS which is potentially fatal. Vaccination is available and will be recommended by our veterinarians if your cat is considered to be at risk. The virus interferes with the immune system and initial symptoms such as fever, sores, lesions and diarrhoea progress to severe chronic infections as the immune system is overcome. There is no treatment or cure for the virus itself.

Your kitten will require a course of three vaccinations:

  • 6 weeks First Vaccination
  • 10 Weeks Booster Vaccination
  • 14 Weeks Final Vaccination

One week after the 14 vaccination your kitten can go outside and socialise with other cats. FIV Vaccination requires a course of 3 vaccinations which can be done at 10, 12 & 14 weeks of age or later in life also. Cats vaccinated for FIV after 6 months will require a blood test prior to vaccination

Adult cats require an annual vaccination booster for life. You will receive a reminder when your cat's yearly vaccination is due.

Heartworm Prevention

Heartworm can affect cats and is spread by mosquitoes. Your kitten can commence heartworm prevention anytime before 16 weeks of age. Heartworm prevention is needed for the lifetime of your pet.

Worming

The most common worms that affect cats in Australia are roundworm, hookworm and tapeworm. Worms are a common cause of ill health in pets and can cause signs such as loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea and in severe cases even death.  Kittens should be wormed at 2, 6, 8 and 12 weeks of age, then every 3 months for life with an allwormer, eg. Drontal tablet for cats or Felix paste.

Flea Control

Fleas are unfortunately an ever present nuisance to our pets. If they exist in the environment they will find a way onto your cat's coat.

Fleas can be prevented easily and effectively with a once a month topical solution. All pets in the household need to be treated. Kittens can be given a topical flea treatment as early as 6-8 weeks of age. Our Veterinary Healthcare team can provide you with more detailed information about effective flea control.

Nutrition - a healthy diet

Getting the correct nutrition as a kitten is very important. Therefore it is highly recommended to feed a high quality commercially available kitten or growth formula. We stock several varieties of premium quality cat foods at our hospital. Milk is unnecessary and can cause diarrhoea in those that are lactose intolerant. Clean water must be available at all times.

Desexing

We strongly recommend desexing all cats, male and female, between 5 and 6 months of age. As well as reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies, desexing prevent pets from roaming, fighting, spraying and night prowling.
Once your cat has been desexed a tattoo, is placed in their left ear. This is a requirement to identify that your pet is desexed.

Microchipping

Microchipping is a permanent form of identification in the form of a tiny chip, which is implanted under the skin. Registration details are kept with Australian Animal Registry and can be updated by the owner if there is any change in owner details.

We recommended to microchip at the time of desexing as a tattoo is required in the right ear to identify them as being microchipped.

Kitten Safety

Please remember for the safety and well being of your cat and other wildlife it is recommended to keep your cat indoors or in an enclosure after sunset.

Your cat should also wear a collar or be microchipped to ensure that they are properly identified.