Kids and Kitties

Has your youngster been begging for a kitty? Or has a cute furball recently joined your household? Growing up with cats can be very beneficial to children. However, there are some things to keep in mind. Here, a Thorold, ON vet offers tips on kids and kitties.

Benefits

Cats can be very beneficial to children. Fluffy is definitely an adorable playmate. She can also be a wonderful source of comfort on bad days. Our feline pals also make great cuddle buddies. Plus, they can help teach children about responsibility. For example, kids can help with feeding the cat, brushing her, and even cleaning the litterbox.

Playtime

There are few things cuter than a child playing with a frisky cat. Encourage your child to use interactive toys, such as laser pointers or wand toys, when playing with their furry pal. That way, they can keep little Fluffy amused, while staying out of range of her teeth and claws. Make sure they only use safe, suitable toys.

Cuddles

Our feline buddies can be quite affectionate, but they aren’t always in the mood for snuggles. Teach your youngster never to force attention on a cat. It’s also important for them to know how to hold a kitty properly. Picking a cat up by the stomach can actually be dangerous, as it can cause internal injuries. If they’re too little to hold Fluffy correctly, have them sit or kneel when playing with her.

Safety

Smaller children may not know what is and isn’t safe for our furry friends. Supervise all interactions closely, and don’t let your youngsters give Fluffy anything that could be dangerous. This includes things like plastic bags, ropes and cords, small or sharp objects, chemicals, or medication. Also, make sure they don’t try to share food with the cat. Many of our favorite foods are toxic to kitties!

Warning Signs

Be sure to teach your child about Fluffy’s body language. You don’t want your little one thinking that cats wag their tails when they’re happy! Keep in mind that kitties can feel threatened quite easily. Teach your child that when cats flatten their ears, hiss, growl, lash their tails, poof their fur, and/or try to run away, they’re feeling scared or angry, and should be left alone.

Please contact us, your local Thorold, ON vet clinic, for all of your cat’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!

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