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Holiday Kittens Might Not be Jolly

While an adorable new kitten may seem like a wonderful holiday gift, it's usually better for you and your cat to take the big step of adopting a kitten after the holidays.

Why? The holidays are a busy, chaotic time, which can be very stressful for a new kitten. And such a major decision, bringing a new life into your home, should be separated from the emotion of the holidays. Too often, a kitten is adopted on impulse as a holiday gift, and ends up in a shelter, where her fate is uncertain at best.

When people carefully consider and plan for the addition of a kitten, the risk of her ending up in a shelter is minimized, and a meaningful, long-lasting relationship develops. Adopting a cat is a serious commitment that extends beyond the fun and excitement of the holidays.

Pet relationships are most successful when every member of the family is part of the decision process. The holidays provide a great opportunity for families to discuss and prepare for the new addition.

Rather than a kitten, give the gift of preparation - a book about adopting cats. This might not be as exciting as a live kitten, but it will spark discussion about adopting a cat and will help teach younger family members about the responsibility of having pets.

When considering a new kitten, there are many variables for potential pet owners to think about, including lifestyle, family size, and the time they are willing to spend with a pet.

Once the decision is made to adopt a kitten, the key to successfully welcoming her into the home is preparation. Before bringing a new kitten home, potential kitten parents should select a veterinarian, buy all the necessary equipment and toys, and select a 100% nutritionally complete food for kittens.

With the proper preparation and the continued commitment to responsible pet ownership, proud kitten parents are likely to raise a happy, healthy feline who will successfully integrate into the family.

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