At one time or another, anyone who has cats living in their homes, has occasion to remove pet accident stains and/or odors from their carpets.
We received an email from a lady regarding this problem. She moved into a house with a a "bunch" of cats and the house had all-white carpeting. She had used every cleaner there is for cat's throwing up and potty accidents on her carpets but none were as effective as she would like them to be. She finally found a new one that is better than anything she had ever used. It's called Oxi Clean manufactured by OrangeGlo International. Be sure to read the directions very carefully. At first, she neglected to read the directions and mixed it with cold water and it didn't do much. But, then she read the directions and they said to mix with very hot water (not boiling) to dissolve the crystals. You only need a tiny amount mixed with water. She says "this stuff is unbelievable! It has removed stains which had been on the carpet for months, things that wouldn't come out with anything else. It doesn't say anything on the label about odors, but she used it on a down comforter that a cat had pooped on , then couldn't find the spot later even by smelling it. It's non-toxic and has very little odor. It works like bleach (but is color safe) without the bleach smell. She bought it at Costco and Linens and Things in her area (Sacramento, CA) has it. If you are unable to find it in a store near you, it can be ordered from their website at http://www.greatcleaners.com. They also make a lot of other cleaning products.
Another product to get odors (especially urine odors) out is Nature's Miracle. This can be purchased at some pet supply stores such as Pet Club.
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House soiling is one of the most common behavior problems in cats. It is normal for cats to have surface and location preferences for where and on what they like to eliminate. It's only when these preferences include the laundry basket, the bed, or the Persian rug that these normal behaviors become problems. With careful analysis of the cat's environment, specific factors can usually be identified which have contributed to the litterbox problem.
The idea that cats don't use the litterbox because they are mad or upset and are trying to get revenge for something that "offended" or "angered" them is a myth. Because humans act for these reasons, it is easy to assume that cats do also. Cats do not act out of spite or revenge, so it won't help to give your cat special privileges and hope he/she start using the box again. If your cat is declawed, that is not likely to be the cause of the problem either. Studies show that declawed cats are not more likely to have litterbox problems (or to bite) than are cats with their claws. "Stress" (a term that has many meanings) is not a common reason a cat stops using the litterbox. If stress is involved, you should see other behavioral or physical changes as well such as weight loss, fearful behavior, or changes in eating or sleeping habits. Punishment is not a way to resolve litterbox problems.
Your cat may decide he likes to eliminate in a particular location. Maybe his preference is for a quiet, protected place such as under a desk or in the closet. He may like to go in a location where the litterbox was previously kept or maybe where a particular odor is located. Location preferences can be dealt with by moving the box to the preferred location, leaving it there until your cat uses it consistently for several weeks and then VERY GRADUALLY (one or two inches per day) moving it back to where you want it to be. If your cat does not use the box when you move it, then it is not a location preference problem.
Soiled areas can be made less attractive by cleaning them with an enzymatic product such as Feline Odor Neutralizer (F.O.N. is sold only through veterinarians). Nature's Miracle and Simple Solutions (available at most good pet supply stores) also work well. Repellent sprays are not usually effective. Make the soiled surfaces less attractive by covering them with double-sided sticky tape, plastic or a vinyl carpet runner with the point side up. Give the areas an unpleasant smell by placing cotton balls saturated with muscle rubs or strong perfumes. Give your cat something else to do in these areas (rather than eliminate) by placing toys or food dishes there.
The reason the litterbox problem started may not be the same reason it is continuing. For example, your cat may have stopped using the box because it was not clean enough and now has developed a surface preference for carpet and a location preference for the bedroom closet. You'll need to address all three of these factors in order to resolve the problem.
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If you have screens on your windows and/or a screen door, be sure the screens are not easily pushed out and have no holes so if the window/door is open, the screen won't come off and the cat won't get out.
If it's a kitten you're bringing home, be sure there are none of these dangers laying around: String, rubber bands, small objects it can accidentally swallow & choke on, chemicals of any kind. Don't leave the washer, dryer, dishwaher open. Check before you close dryer/dishwasher. Kittens/cats love to go into them. Be sure to secure blind, drapery cords so they aren't hanging down. Cats/kittens can easily get wrapped up in them and get strangled.
Recliners -- Grown cats and kittens (and small dogs) love to go in small spaces. When the chair is in the reclining position, a cat/kitten/dog can easily go in and when the recliner is put in the upright position, the animals can get killed or so seriously injured that it would need to be euthanized (killed) because it is hurt beyond medical care.
SPECIAL NOTE: PLEASE BE SURE TO ALWAYS PUT THE TOILET LID DOWN WHEN NOT IN USE. IF A KITTEN ACCIDENTALLY FALLS IN, IT WON'T BE ABLE TO GET OUT AND WILL DROWN! We've known people who have had this happen to their kittens. If you have company, check to be sure they've put the lid down. It only takes a few seconds for a kitten to drown. This should be done even when the kitten is fully grown.
If you are introducing your new cat to an existing pet, please read: "How Do I Do A Dog-Cat Introduction?" and "How Do I Introduce A New Cat To My Presently Owned Cat?".
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Coming to a new home can be quite traumatic for some cats. First of all, put kitty in a small room away from activity in the house. If you don't have an actual separate room, the bathroom is good (or your bedroom). Go in and spend time with him/her so kitty will get to know you. Put the litterbox at one end of the room and the food and water at the other end. Show kitty it's litterbox, water and food bowl as soon as you let kitty out of the carrier. Put a box or pet bed with a towel or something soft in it for kitty to sleep in. Sometimes it takes awhile (not unusual to take several weeks) for a cat to feel comfortable in it's new home. Make sure the food is fresh. If it is dry kibble, leave it there all the time. If it is wet food, just put a small amount down at a time. In fact, you might put some dry as well as wet food down (smelly wet food would tempt the appetite). Do not mix the foods together. After kitty feels more comfortable, you might want to just feed dry kibble. But, if your cat likes the wet food, too, it can have both. When kitty feels comfortable with you visiting, then leave the door open so he/she can investigate the rest of the house. Be sure to leave the door open so if kitty feels the need to make a quick escape, he/she can go to it’s "safe" room. Be patient and you will be rewarded.
If you have children, be sure they’re very quiet while the cat is getting used to them. That way, kitty won’t feel threatened by them.
Caring for a Persian is not as difficult or time-consuming as you may think. Prepare to spend about 20 minutes a day.
UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD SCISSORS BE USED IN CUTTING KNOTS FROM THE FUR. A CAT CAN BE SERIOUSLY CUT AND REQUIRE STITCHES.
Nails: Please know that de-clawing is cruel. However, clipping the claws is a good alternative. Get a cat nail clipper. Hold the cat (it may take two people). Massage the claw out of its sheath. Clip the tip of nail. Do not cut the pink part you can see inside! That is the quick and it will bleed and hurt the cat. A vet can show you how, if you have any questions.
Eyes: Eyes need to be cleaned daily to prevent the build-up from staining or causing infection. A good product is Opticlear by Tomlyn. It is a sterile saline solution which easily removes build-up and prevents staining. Use Q-tips or co-ettes as a wiping medium. This product is available at pet stores and in pet care catalogs.
Teeth: The teeth of any cat need to be brushed. Use a cat toothpaste available at pet stores or pet catalogs. Use a soft baby toothbrush or a toothbrush meant for animals. Hold the cat firmly, put a bit of toothpaste on the brush, open the cat's mouth and then brush those back teeth gently. Also brush the tiny front teeth and the longer "fangs". You may find it helpful to put the cat on a counter or table so it is nearly eye level with you.
Ears: First, make sure the cat does not have ear mites (a vet check can tell you that). Most cats never need ears cleaned. Other seem to have a lot of brown waxy build-up. In this case, use a good product like Earoxide or Oticlens. Use a good soft Q-tip. Clean only as far as that little nub you can see. A cat's eardrum is straight in. If you stick a Q-tip in too far, you can burst the ear drum.
You also need to be careful cleaning the ear's outer surfaces as the capillaries in the ear are very fragile and can bruise easily. You may want to ask a vet how and where to clean if your cat needs it.
Combing: Use a large tooth comb to comb the coat DAILY. This is also a good time to check for fleas. If there is a mat (and it will happen), don't pull directly on it. Hold the matted hair by the area closest to the cat's skin and carefully work the comb through the top of the mat removing a bit at a time. This way you avoid any pulling that would cause pain to the cat. If combing does not work, try a pair of scissors. Gently lift the mat from the skin with your fingers. Slice the mat downward towards the skin. Be careful! It is all too easy to cut the skin. It may help to have another person hold the cat for you at this time. Then use a large tooth comb or brush to brush out the mat. In some cases, you will just have to cut the mat off and have a short space near the skin. Again, be careful not to cut the skin. It is best not to ever use scissors because it is easy to cut the skin and the cut could require stitches. Note: When a Himalayan-Persian's hair is ripped out or shaved, the hair follicle cools. The point color is temperature sensitive and only appears on the coolest parts of the cat. You cool a body hair follicle and the cat shades on it's body until the next time the hair falls out. Lots of people don't know this and end up with brown or grey cats all over. Some Himalayans, despite all efforts, shade due to genetics.
Fleas: Persian Cat Rescue recommends against any flea products except for Advantage. Proper bathing and grooming, along with the Advantage, should be all you need to control any flea problems.
Bathing: Most cats get used to bathing fairly easy. A hand held spray nozzle works best. Talk to your cat during the bath. Reward him/her after the bath with a treat or lots of playtime.
Many cats are frightened because of the slippery surface or a sink or tub. You can help alleviate their fears by putting down a rubber mat or towel. If your cat gets frightened and begins to struggle, grab him/her firmly by the scruff of the neck.
Make sure the room temperature is warm (78-82 degrees). Cats have a higher body temperature than humans so the water can be a little warmer than what you would use for yourself.
A Persian should be COMBED thoroughly before a bath to make certain that there are no tangles or knots. Use only shampoos that are specifically or cats. Do not get shampoo near their eyes. If you do, rinse thoroughly.
It is best to blow dry your cat. You can do this by putting your cat in his/her carrier and holding the hair dryer in their direction. NEVER use a heater. You could easily forget about it and the cat could die from too much heat.
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Bringing home an additional cat can be a very exciting event for us humans, however it can be very traumatic for all felines involved. It can end in disaster if not approached carefully! By using the following guidelines below, you can make that transition much easier and have a greater chance at successfully integrating an additional feline into your household.
Pay lots of attention to your existing cat throughout the following procedure, including daily exercise (try a cat aerobics or cat dancer toy). This will help your old cat feel more secure that someone else isn't going to take away your affection.
Have definite, coinciding feeding times for both cats.
Do not at any time physically hold the cats and put them face to face. That is a surefire way to stimulate aggression! Cats are not very forgiving either. If they are started out on the wrong foot, it is very difficult to undo the damage.
Always provide an additional litterbox in a different location. If you have more than two cats, you will need to provide at least one box per cat. This is to prevent territorial disputes over this very important resource. Remember to clean the boxes daily to encourage correct litterbox habits.
STEP ONE: Confine the New Cat to it's own small room.
This is to be your new cat’s "playpen" and safety area. A bathroom, small office or small bedroom where your existing cat normally does not "hang out" are ideal locations for your new cat’s room.
Put a litterbox, bed, food, water, scratching post and toys in the new cat’s room. This special room accomplishes several things. One, it decreases the chances of spreading any possible diseases your new cat may be carrying (remember to keep your new cat confined for approximately ten days even if you are able to complete the following steps in a lesser time period). Two, it helps your new cat get used to the smells, sounds and you, without having to confront a "hostile" greeting party (your existing cat).
Provide your existing cat with his own litterbox, bed, toys, etc. in a different area of the house. He may go the room of your new cat, sniff under the door, hiss and yell but just ignore him when he does so. Do not punish him in any way for hissing or growling at this point. Just walk away from him. Give him attention when he is calm.
STEP TWO: Use Scented Food Dishes
After your new cat has been confined for several days and is not hiding from you or acting nervous, take a small wash cloth, rub it on your new cat and then place it under your "old" cat’s food dish just before feeding time. Now do the opposite for the new cat. If either cat is reluctant to eat, try adding something really special to the cat’s bowl to entice him to eat. (Or put the wash cloth at a distance from his bowl were he will eat quietly. Gradually over the next few days, bring the wash cloth closer and closer until you can finally put it under his dish without any problems.)
Repeat at each feeding (always reviving the scent by rubbing on the opposite cat) until each cat eats calmly with no hesitation, hissing or growling. The more feedings you have per day, the faster the process will go. Just feed smaller amounts spread out over the day. Try to do at least two feedings per day, better yet three or more.
The successful completion of this step may take up to two weeks in some cats or as little as four days with others. In any case, do not move on until each cat is relaxed.
STEP THREE: Use close feedings.
After the successful completion of step three, place each cat’s dish on respective sides of the newcomer’s room. Again, feed definite meals to each cat, at the same time, on each side of their door. You do not need to add the scented cloth under the dish any longer.
Repeat this process until BOTH cats are acting normal; no hesitation to eat, no hissing, growling, spitting etc. then go on to step four.
You can also help this process along by playing daily with each cat under the door with a cat aerobics toy (a rubber pom-pom looking spider on a wire). In the process of playing they will put their paws under the door for the other to see and smell. This may help to engage them in play under the door with each other as well.
STEP FOUR: Play the switch game
If you are starting this step, check to make sure you have had your new cat at least ten days. If it has not been at least ten days, stay on step three until then. Again, this is for concerns of spreading possible disease. If it is over ten days and you are still not at this step, do not worry! Go at your cat’s pace. Your cat will tell you to move on to the next step by acting relaxed and normal.
Step four puts the new cat’s scent all over the territory of your existing cat but without an actual physical confrontation. This is an important step so do not skip it!
Confine your old cat to a comfortable room with a litterbox and some of his favorite food. Let the new cat out to explore by just opening the door to his room. Do not carry him out; as we want him to learn the route to and from his room on his own four feet. Let him wander around for several hours under supervision. Play with him and encourage him to relax. Next, put him away in his room and let your "old" cat out. Your existing cat may walk around the house, sniffing, hissing or growling as he can now certainly smell that "intruder" in all parts of HIS house. That is OK. Let him walk around and act grumpy. Just ignore him or try to get him to play with you to help relax him.
Repeat the switch game daily until BOTH cats are acting normal and are relaxed.
STEP FIVE: Limited Contact
After successful completion of step four, start this next step by putting your new cat back into his safe room. This process will allow the cats to see each other but not make physical contact.
Stack two 36" high-tension gates (baby gates) in the newcomer’s doorway, but with about two inches left at the very bottom. (Enough to get a paw under but not a head.) Gates are available at pet stores, children’s specialty stores or department stores. Or trying borrowing some from your friends.
If you have reason to believe that either cat will get over the gates then use two hard plastic doorstops. Jam the door of the room with the stops one on each side with the door cracked open only two to three inches. Make sure that neither cat can fit his head through the opening. Check that the door is secured and will not suddenly pop open or slam shut if a cat body slams against the door aggressively. They should be able to whack each other with their paws and investigate without full body contact. Again, encourage the cats to play through the door by using a cat aerobics toy put through the opening.
Continue the feeding ritual from step four above but with each cat still on their respective side of the baby gates or jammed door. When you are not home or can not supervise at least peripherally, close the door. Hissing, growling, posturing should be virtually at nil before you continue on to step six.
STEP SIX: Let them meet casually
After the successful completion of ALL the steps above, you are in great shape to now just let the cats casually find each other in the household.
Start first by heavily exercising EACH cat separately, especially if one animal is young and very playful. If one animal wants to play so badly that he harasses the other cat, they can become enemies quite quickly.
Next, get each cat’s food dish ready with something really good, like some bits of tuna or a tablespoon of wet food. Just before feeding time, leave the new cat’s door open or take down the stacked baby gates. Let the cats casually find each other and then feed them a meal, so they are eating about one foot away from each other.
Next, go ahead and get out a cat toy and play with the cats together. The whole process of step six is designed to associate something really pleasant with having this other cat around.
Some cats may hide; there may be some initial hissing or growling. That is OK. Let them work it out as long as no one is launching a full out physical attack on the other. Keep trying to feed them close together as well as play their favorite games with them.
Do not let one cat become a bully.
If one cat always seems to be the aggressor, supervise any cat interaction. Be ready with a squirt bottle set on a straight stream to break up any cat fights. Just make sure it is harassment and not play! Do not leave the cats together unsupervised if you are having this bully problem. Put the bully into confinement when you can not watch them.
Try to exercise the aggressor more heavily before they are allowed to interact.
This often takes off the "edge" and makes the aggressor more agreeable. The disagreeable one can also wear a harness dragging a six-foot leash under supervision. The harness is so you can quickly remove him from the situation. Again try to associate something positive with having the other cat around, like special treats or play.
If you have not carefully followed the guidelines above, go back to the beginning and start over. Be warned that the introduction may take up to three times as long on the second go around as you have to go back and try to repair that "bad first impression." To introduce any new animal into your household takes a lot of time and patience. It can go smoothly if you take your time and follow the steps above. But don’t expect things to be perfect overnight or try to rush things as you may end up with archenemies instead of best friends! We wish you purrfect luck!
These guidelines are from the Humane Society of Santa Clara Valley
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In trying to find a home for your cat, you might start by checking with your veterinarian. He/she might know of someone who would like to adopt your cat/s. Ask your local shelter if someone has contacted them regarding wanting to adopt a Persian or Himalayan cat. Put up posters at your veterinarian and other veterinarians in your area with a picture of your cat, description of personality and age of cat along with how to contact you. Interview the potential adopters at length and charge an adoption fee. Insist that the cat be an indoor only cat. Be sure the cat is spayed or neutered BEFORE going to his/her new home. It is not a good idea to simply give your cat away because research laboratories use them in experimental research and there are people who train dogs to kill.
Of course, the very best place for any cat is to stay in the home it is used to living in and with the people it loves.
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All cats need a well balanced diet consisting of quality cat food. Science Diet Kibble, Max Cat kibble, Sensible Choice Kibble or Eukanuba kibble are all excellent choices. There are also other quality brands available at your local pet store. You might want to give your kitty a little canned food morning and night (using the above-mentioned brands). Please do not mix the kibble and wet food together. Feed the wet food and dry food in separate dishes.
Always clean the dishes between feedings.
It's always good to give a kitty treat a couple of times a day. It would be a good idea to check with kitty's veterinarian as to whether your cat should have regular or light food. Light, of course, is for the cats who need a little "weight watcher" diet. Your veterinarian can also suggest additional vitamine supplements, if needed. Remember -- it's always best to check with the veterinarian before giving anything other than kitty's regular food. And - PLEASE - no people food for kitty.
Another very important thing -- ALWAYS have fresh water available. Water bowls should be washed with hot water and soap daily. Be sure to check during the day to be sure the water bowl is not empty and that the water is clean.
NOTE: Chocolate is toxic to cats and can kill them.
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Declawing (onychectomy) is an amputation of the cats' fingertips. Declawing can cause hemorrhage and deformity. It is a very painful procedure and the cat's feet can remain tender long after the surgery. Many times the cat becomes sensitive to normal touching of their feet during play or grooming.
A declawed cat should never be let out of your home. Declawing deprives a cat of their first line of defense. Personality changes after declawing is not uncommon. Many cats overreact to mild stimuli by biting or hissing. Some have litterbox problems.
If your are concerned about scratching, think about adopting a cat that has already been declawed. If you have a cat that is scratching, try using a scratching post, water bottle and regular trimming of the claws and repellents.
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Many families would like to have both a dog and a cat. Many dogs feel the same way; a cat can be quite entertaining for a dog. Cats often don’t like the idea at all – especially cats who have ruled their home for years.
If you’d like a cat and dog to become buddies, it’s best to get both when they’re quite young and they can bond. Otherwise, set your sights on a harmonious household – not close friendship.
Some dogs are not appropriate for a cat-friendly home. They are too predatory. Some cats can never acclimate to a dog, especially shy or withdrawn cats, or cats that have been traumatized by a dog.
The success of a dog/cat introduction depends on the owner and how much time and effort he/she is willing to expend. Essentially, you allow the cat to control most of the interactions and you make the dog the onlooker.
CONTROL THE ENVIRONMENT
You have an opportunity with a new dog to convince him/her that you are the ultimate authority on everything – including cats. You do this by controlling the dog’s environment from the moment you bring him/her home.
First, set up a tie-down – attach a short, unbreakable leash to an immovable object. A wall is best, but an extremely heavy piece of furniture is okay. Before the two animals ever meet, acclimate the dog to this area. Give him/her treats, bones or chewies there and make a nice bed for him/her.
Once the dog is happy with its tie-down, bring the cat in when the dog is NOT there (its scent will be). Let the cat explore and examine the area where the dog has been. Provide a perch, out of the dogs reach, where the cat can comfortably watch the dog’s area. Give the cat some treats, catnip or other toy in that area. You may even want to feed the cat there for a period of days or weeks. It’s best if you can acclimate both animals separately for at least a couple of days.
When both cat and dog appear to be comfortable with their spots, tie the dog down and give him/her something delicious to chew on. Then bring the cat in and place him/her on kitty’s perch. It’s not usually wise to hold him because he may well feel trapped and try to escape, injuring himself and you and exciting the dog in the process. Leave the door open this firt time so the can leave if he/she wishes to (he/she probably will). Some dogs respond well if – as they begin to bark – you tell them "quiet" and squirt some water in their face. Others don’t care at all.
An important component of counter-conditioning is making the association of something pleasant with something unpleasant. Thus, you might withhold attention from both parties until they’re in the same room with each other, then give both of them lots of attention. Or, feed them when they can see each other (make sure the cat is very safe, and the dog is tied down). And don’t feed them when they are apart. Or use toys – anything, in short, that interests them.
Many dogs and cats get along very well as long as the cat doesn’t run. If he runs, the dog automatically chases. Try to avoid that kind of situation, at least in the first few weeks. If you’ve been working on this unsuccessfully for awhile, please feel free to call the behaviorist at your local animal shelter.
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Reference: Trish King, Marine Humane Society