Best age to adopt kitten? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 04-15-2003, 12:42 PM
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To anyone who read my vegweb post on wanting to get a kitty, I'm happy to say that I believe I've worked things out. When we adopt the newest member of the family, she'll be exclusively indoors for the first 5 or 6 months. Eventually she will be allowed to play outside sometimes, but supervised and in our fenced-in yard (our home is in a quiet suburb). I'm anxiously watching for notices of kittens in need of a home at our local shelters.

Anyway, I was wondering how old a kitten should ideally be, before adoption. I'm not sure if we will find one that is at a shelter with her mother and possibly still nursing. In that case, I'm sure it would be best to wait until the kitten was weaned, but should we wait longer, if we can? What if we come upon one who has been abandoned and is being bottle-fed, as is sometimes the case?

Also, anyone have opinions on male versus female? We would definately be planning to spay or neuter, so I'm not sure if this is an issue. Finally, do you have advice on how to choose the kitten if there is more than one available?


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#2 Old 04-15-2003, 01:08 PM
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At the shelter I volunteer at, we adopt kittens out at 7 or 8 weeks old. We don't spay or neuter until they weigh at least 2 pounds and are at least 7 weeks old, so that's why we don't adopt them sooner.

I don't think age really matters all that much. Sometimes cats develop oral fixations if they were orphaned at a very young age and they might chew/suck on things. Friend of mine has a cat that was found at about 4 weeks old alone and starving. Well, he's 6 now and nothing makes him happier than to curl up next to you and suck on your shirt until you've got a big wet spot.
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#3 Old 04-15-2003, 01:26 PM
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I don't know the "ideal" age, but I adopted my kitty when he was three months old, and we are completely bonded. I'm not sure what his story was before that or how early he was taken from his mother, but he definitely acts as if I'm his mommy now. Even though he's two years old now, he sometimes does this biting/sucking thing on my chin or my knuckles which I assume is some throw-back to nursing.

As for how I chose him, I got him at a no-kill shelter which no longer exists where they just had all of the cats in a big room together instead of cages. I went in there, and just chose the first kitten that came up to me because I didn't want one of those shy cats that hide all the time. I wanted a true companion, which is what I now have. So my advice is to spend some time with the kitty and see if you are compatible.
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#4 Old 04-15-2003, 09:50 PM
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if you get a cat from a breeder (okay, I know this is a NO NO but in my case a necessity because my husband is SEVERELY allergic....its a hairless bigglesworth for us or no go), they usually make you wait four months. they feel thats the best age. however, in shelters, pet stores, adoption agencies and just about everywhere you can get them a lot younger. I'd go for 4 months because they are fully weaned and capable of basic self maintenance and such....and there's still plenty of kitten time left.


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#5 Old 04-16-2003, 05:11 AM
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Is your yard cat-fenced? I'd make sure the cat was spayed or neutered and up-to-date on all shots before letting it outside. I wish I could let my cat outside, but I don't want to risk it--too unsafe.

Play with them a while and find the one that has the personality you're looking for. Do you want a snuggling cat or a playful cat? If it's a kitten you shouldn't have trouble socializing it. 8 weeks old is standard. I don't think it's gender will matter so long as it's fixed. =)
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