Kitten care information

Welcome to Tatsu Bengals Kitten Care Page
*Long read, but important things you should know*

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CONGRATULATIONS you will be sharing your heart and home with a new Bengal Baby from Tatsu Bengals. We are sure that you will find this a very enjoyable experience, and that you will have years of pleasure with your new friend. In order to make the kitten's transition to your home easier, and to answer some of the common questions about your Bengal’s new arrival, we are offering a few suggestions in this care guide. We hope it helps with your Bengal kitten's needs. Remember though that each kitten is an individual, and care depends upon his or her special needs.

1.) Introduction into the new home.

If your kitten is shipped by air to their new home it can be very frightening, with all the noises and smells it can give them some uncertainty by the time they get to their destination. Be patient with your new Bengal, and give him or her lots of love and reassurance upon arrival. Hold your kitten close, and comfort at home, it's best to first isolate your Bengal from active children and other animals for a short while. Let him or her feel comfortable in their new surroundings first. We recommend that young kittens be confined to a small area, such as bedroom or other room where they will reside for the first week as part of the quarantine period we ask of you. Put their food and litter box in this area with them so they know where to go to the bathroom and where to eat. A home regardless whether large or small can be overwhelming so this assures them they know where necessitates are at first. This gives them also the opportunity to familiarize with one area at a time, eat and use the litter box undisturbed, without feeling threatened by other resident pets. If you have cats already, they may not want the newcomer to use their litter box and eat from their bowls, so the new kitten will need one of her own we suggest stainless steel as it doesn't harbor bacteria like many plastic and ceramic bowls can. Other animals such as cats, dogs, etc., will be interested in your new Bengal baby and will probably come to the door of the place you have set up for her. A cat especially will play "footsies" with him or her under the door, and this is an excellent way for your pets to get associated and get them introduced to each other. Another method that is known to be successful for introduction of your Bengal to other pets, is to put her back in her pet carrier that she was transported to your home in and place it in the room with the other pets. Let them sniff and get acquainted gradually. There will be some hissing possible growling, usually form older pets especially, as this newcomer invades their territory, but shouldn't last more than a few days. Bengal's are not easily intimidated, and adapt very easily even to the most discriminating of your older more "set in their way" pets. Caution small children about chasing the kitten, yelling, and educate them on the proper way to hold it. Bengals are wonderful with children, and make great playmates.

2.) Vet Check and Quarantine

We advise you to have your new Bengal vet-checked immediately by your veterinarian (within 72 hours due to our contractual agreement.) This is for your protection, as well as ours and most important of course, the kitten's physical well being. Your baby Bengal's vaccinations have been started and depending on the age of the kitten you have adopted, may be completed with no visits other than your initial vet-check that we require you to take them to. Each situation will be different so please consult your vet and Tatsu Bengals Contract for specifics on each kitten's particular needs. We use the 3-way, killed vaccine, against Feline Rhinotracheitis, Calici, and Panleukopenia. Sometimes, this vaccine can make a kitten feel lethargic or feverish for a day or so after the inoculation. We test parents of kittens for FIV/ FeLV. All of our cats and kittens are never exposed to other animals outside of our cattery and therefore have not been exposed to any type of illness or exposure that may result in one of these fatal diseases. If your kitten stays indoors, and never goes outdoors, or if you have other cats that may be exposed to such conditions, it's best to precaution yourself against future problems that can complicate your new kitten’s health. You'll find a document/contract which we ask that you present to your vet at your initial visit checking your new Bengal baby as it has the vaccination and worming records (dates). We ask that you keep your new Bengal kitten in quarantine, away from other animals, for (one week) after arrival. This will not only give him or her time to adjust to their new home without the stress of threat from other pets, but also it will give him or her a nice one-on-one bonding time with you. Contact your vet immediately if your kitten should develop any of the following: diarrhea or bloody stools, vomiting, loss of appetite, fever, runny nose, sneezing, coughing, weepy or swollen eyes, patches of hair loss, rash, or listlessness. We cannot be responsible for the kitten's health if it is not given adequate medical attention.

3.) Feeding Instructions

We feed our kittens Earthborn Dry Cat/Kitten and leave it available for them at all times along with wet canned or boiled chicken. Just like people kittens and cats like variety. In the mornings we feed chicken or turkey cooked medium. We don't feed a raw diet. From time to time we also give our kittens and cats Authority or Friskies canned wet food. It is good for kittens and nursing moms especially because of its high fat content chicken liver. We don't recommend wet food too often as it can be too rich and cause runny stools. As a rule of thumb always us (high-quality / premium) cat and kitten foods since there is less fillers in these types of foods cats tend to eat less and their stools are harder and much more manageable come litter changing. Do not ever feed table scraps. No real milk as well it is not good for Bengals whole milk contrary to cat owner's beliefs in the past is bad for cats or kittens. Bengals and regular domesticated cats in general, lack the enzyme needed to break down the lactose sugar in whole milk. It is not easily digested by cats and kittens and can cause major stomach upset and loose stool (diarrhea). Also. (No fish), especially tuna, tuna is low in calcium. The nature of fish in general, is that it is high in phosphorous levels and may cause a vitamin-E deficiency in your Bengal or yellow-fat disease and or may increase your Bengals susceptibility to rubber jaw a form of osteoporosis. If you feel you need to feed your Bengal fish and or milk products for instance, use quality premium cat and kitten chows and canned milk supplements that give the Bengal kitten or cat a flavor they crave without all the bad possibilities the "real thing" has to offer them. He or she can remain on Kitten chow for the first year of their life, unless you find that she is gaining too much weight. If you're adolescent cat is getting plump or even a bit on the heavy side, switch her to cat (Instead of Kitten) formula foods. Kitten foods in general are higher in fat content for a kitten's growth and cat foods are less fatty for an adult cats needs. We supplement with Platinum Performance. Platinum Performance is a Feline Wellness Formula clinically developed to be a foundation formula for daily nutritional support. Platinum Performance Feline is a synergistic formula which addresses multiple nutritional deficiencies and imbalances that are common in most modern feline diets. These deficiencies are often the risk factors that lead to disease and premature aging. We also give L-Lysine Gel an amino acid supplement (Viraylis Gel). Maintains a strong immune system. These can be given in wet food or hidden in meat or chicken and is wonderful and offers the vitamins and minerals along with other important supplements necessary in a strong healthy immune system and healthy shiny coat. Your vet can order L-Lysine for you in different distribution methods ask your vet.

4.) Litter Box and Litter

As mentioned above, you will need to provide your new Bengal kitten with his or her own litter box. We use unscented clay-type litter, and advice that you use the same at first so they don't decide not to go in the litter that you have chosen for them. This way they can go in what they know and if you feel so inclined to change this we suggest talking to a trained rep at a pet store or other and let them explain the pros and cons of different types of litter. Understand that many litters out on the market are more marketed around the human's versus the cats needs. Some litters can become compacted in the intestine and cause problems. We raise Kittens and also our adult breeders to use hooded litter boxes. We do not use the door that is usually connected to the door and will take it out so the door is open and cats don't get caught inside which is common when the door is left on the litter box door opening. You will want to monitor the litter and how they act in the litter box. Make sure they are going only in the box if you have a large home you may want to have a litter box on each floor conveniently located for your cat and maybe out of the way of normal family traffic. Kittens are fully litter trained when leaving the cattery. The first week while in a quarantine you will want to introduce the litter box in the room they are located in quarantine room only, so they can quickly associate the litter and their litter box close to them.

5.) Socialization, Training, and Discipline

Kittens are like children; they need love, attention and discipline. Bengal kittens are active and very playful, but should not be allowed to be destructive. Like any other small kitten they will get rambunctious and will need to be monitored for proper socialization and training. We socialize our Bengal's and they are bred for temperament, but every new household has its own obstacles and requirements so make this a priority from day one with your new Bengal buddy. Provide them with plenty of toys. Simple things like paper bags, cardboard boxes can be an excellent alternative to pet-store toys. They tend to like these sometimes more than anything else. Other things like simple feather teasers, ping-pong balls, and crinkle balls are also a great play toys for your Bengal. As a simple disciplinary measure, you can use a squirt spray bottle that you use for watering plants. A simple gentle stream of water can be a handy reminder of bad behavior. Don't encourage your Bengal to play rough. All kittens tend to want to play and will get overly excited. You may have a "rough-houser" in your family, someone who likes to get the family pet "going" so to speak. Whether this is a child or an adult instruct them on this behavior and keep everything within some sort of checks and balances. For instance playing with a cat in general and always using your hands as a toy makes them want to bite hands. We suggest not using hands. Why? Cute as a kitten, not so cute when little Bengal buddy turns into a Bengal adult and still wants to bite. Kitten habits tend to become adult problems. Kittens will remember everything and this includes how you react and interact as they did in their formative growing stage. Children can sometimes not understand boundries with pets in general. From the beginning instruct children on how to handle and play with the new kitty. In general discuss appropriate play techniques with everyone in your family home both children and adults. It is in the contract to keep your Bengal indoors, because for the dangers of automobiles and infectious diseases carried by stray cats and other animals. If you start letting your cat outdoors, as a treat, he or she will begin sitting at the door, ready to head out anytime the door is opened. Then your Bengal buddy will become a cat that doesn't want to stay indoors with you and your family and only yearn for the outdoor life which is not good for them. They will not know what they are missing if they are never introduced to outdoors. If you take them outside for whatever reason, we encourage you to leash train them and only let them out with a responsible adult or older teen that can monitor them and stay with them holding the leash and not letting them get away or stray from they're site. There are harnesses made specifically for cats and are encouraged to use these.

6.) Scratching Posts and Toys

We find that our cats like the sisal rope scratching posts best. These are common on the market and can be found in any major pet store. By providing your kitten with a scratching post you are more apt to keep off your furniture for this reason. The act of kittens and cats using a scratching post is to provide them a means to remove old sheaths from their claws. The last thing we want to have happen is have your beautiful furniture be scratched up due to a kitten that has no where to sharpen and de-sheath there claws. We train all of our Bengal to use these and they take readily to the proposition. It is not a difficult training ordeal. When you see a kitten scratching on carpet or furniture immediately take them to the post and put their paws on the post. They will get the hint quickly and all involved will be happy. Just like litter boxes, keep your scratching post easily accessible and you may even want to have one for every floor of your home if you let your Bengal roam your entire home. As earlier mentioned there are many types of toys on the market for Bengal's and other domesticated cats. Each are fine and some better than others, but decide based on what your Bengal likes the best. Watch with toys that are easily broke apart or have stuffing that may be ingested and or not digested properly and passed. It is best to toss these and get new toys.

7.) Declawing Neutering Spaying

We do not allow declawing. Declawing a cat removes their ability to maneuver as well as other instincts they naturally rely on. This can cause any number of problems and issues. We practice a (Early-Spay/Neuter.) There is much research done to the benefits of this practice. Kittens bounce back much quicker and have proven to be much more resilient to the process. We encourage you to research this practice of Early Spay/Neuter for better understanding. Please also read our contract about this.

8.) Showing and Breeding

If you intend to show your kitten, it is best to start doing so at an early age. Show kitten and cats need to get used to being around all the other cats and having strangers handle them. You may choose to take them places where they can experience loud environments that may be similar to the show ring. We take our cats to places that are similar like pet stores, and any numbers of other places that will let you take them in. Again monitor them and leash them. Practice and understand the significance of grooming, socialization, exercise, health and proper diet are all vital to ensure that a show quality cat performs to their potential. We cannot be responsible for a kitten that is poorly prepared for the show ring. We also do not guarantee show wins as well. Young females will begin their heat cycles at about 1 year old sometimes as early as 8 months plus. If you intend to breed your female within the breeding contract agreement, it is recommended that you not let more than three heat cycles go before breeding. Often, this means that they must be bred before they are a year old. Also, these young queens must be comfortable with being around other cats. If not bred in a timely fashion, cats will develop cystic ovaries and conception is almost impossible then. It is your responsibility to monitor these heat cycles closely and document them accurately. It seems like a natural event, that you should be able to put two healthy, mature cats together and have them successfully breed with no problems. There are many factors that can prevent pregnancy, such as presence of bacteria or viruses, so both stud and queen must be at optimal health before breeding. If you have purchased a female, it is your responsibility to find a proven male that will accommodate her and is of sound health and temperament. As well, if you have purchased a stud, we recommend finding a proven female to breed with her of the same sound health and temperament. All breeders must be HCM, PK Deficiency and PRA tested before breeding.
We hope you enjoy the new addition to your family. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us.