What Does My New Cat Need?

Welcoming a new cat to the house can be an exciting experience. It can also feel slightly scary. Have you gotten everything you need? Will your cat be comfortable in your new house?
Cute tabby kitten sitting on cat tree
Cute tabby kitten sitting on cat tree
Cute tabby kitten sitting on cat tree

Keep on reading to find out what you need to help make your cat more comfortable before you welcome them home.

– Crate

It is always important to begin with this basic piece of cat equipment, as it is very useful for bringing your cat around.

There are different kinds of crates: some are made out of fabric and others out of hard materials like plastic. Some crates come with safety belts, to ensure your cat is safe on any journey you take her on. It can also be used as a safe space at home.

Always choose a crate based on what your cat needs. Take your cat’s size, their strength and their behavioural habits into account when selecting.

– Bed

Choosing a cat bed is important, as your cat will likely spend a lot of time on it. There are several different kinds available in the market - from suspended beds, pod-shaped ones, and even beds shaped like castles!

Picking the perfect bed requires you to know your cat a bit and finding out what they love. So do not worry if you don’t get the choice right the first time. Simply invest in a new bed if the old one is not a fit.

woman touching ginger cat on nose affectionately

– Litter box

​This is one of the most crucial things for cats. Take your time choosing what kind of filling you want in the litter box, what size works best for your house and your cat, and where you want to position it in the house. How easy it is to clean it also depends on the type of litter box you choose.

– Food

​This should be one of the first items that you should have on your checklist. You do not want the first mealtime to come with no food ready at all!

There are many types of cat food available. Choose a brand known for its nutritional value, such as a complete and balanced food from Purina. Different cats have different nutritional needs, so keeping your breed of cat in mind is very important. Do not worry if your cat does not take to the food you have chosen; you can always change the brand under your vet’s supervision.

– Scratching posts

Although it is not strictly necessary that you have this at home before your cat arrives, don’t underestimate how important a scratching post is. Cats need to scratch: it is their way of keeping their claws trimmed. They also tend to rise up on their forelegs when scratching a post and thus exercising their whole body. Plus, if you do not bring this item home sooner or later, it is likely your cat will mistake your furniture for a scratching post instead!

There are several types of scratching posts available today. A simple one would be a pole covered in rough material that your cat can scratch. The more elaborate ones have levels on them for your cat to climb. Buy one depending on your needs and how much space there is in the house.

– Identification

​Since outdoor cats are free roamers, it is likely they will get out of the house to explore the neighbourhood. If this happens, your cat should be identifiable by any stranger (so that they do not try and adopt them!).

A simple solution to this would be a collar or a microchip that can be scanned to reveal your contact details on it. Do give more attention when choosing the right collar size, as you do not want it to be too tight around their necks but you also do not want it too loose, or your cat might get a leg stuck in it when scratching.

– Food and water bowls

Choose a bowl that is suitable for the amount of food you feed your cat. You can also get more elaborate versions of a water bowl, such as a water fountain. A water fountain circulates the water in the bowl so that it is always aerated and fresh for your kitten throughout the day.​

– Toys

​No list of things for cats would ever be complete without toys. Make sure to have at least three toys that they can play with. Toys are good to train your cat and help them develop their motor skills and cognitive abilities, so do not leave them out of the list!

Now, you should feel prepared to welcome your cat or kitten home. Simply make sure you have the items on this list and you are all set!