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Adopting A Cat

Interested in Adopting?

Here's how to go about it

  • Step 1 - Call or Email us expressing an interest in adopting a cat.
  • Step 2 - We'll arrange for a quick home visit (all cats must have access to a cat flap and garden)
  • Step 3 - Come and meet your cat in one of our foster homes
  • Step 4 - Be chosen by your cat!
  • Step 5 - Arrange a day to collect your new Best Friend or if necessary we’ll deliver.

We ask for a minimum donation of £70 per cat which includes microchipping, vaccinations, neutering if required and flea/worming treatment. For kittens we ask for £100 per kitten as this includes neutering for when they are @ 5 months old. To see an explanation of the costs. Please see our 'Costs' page

Once you have your cat home with you it is advisable to:

  • ALWAYS Take clear photographs of your cat from various angles, and update them regularly. Make a note of any distinguishing features. So, should your cat escape or wander off, you have clear photographs of it. It is very possible when a cat goes out for the first few times, that they venture further than they should and could become disorientated so having clear photos is really important.
  • All our adopted cats are microchipped, so please keep your contact details up-to-date with the microchipping company, especially if you move house or change your telephone number.

ADOPTING A KITTEN - Please note we only adopt kittens in 'pairs' and if there is an odd number, one will be rehomed with the mother cat

Kittens and their needs

Experiencing a brand new home can be daunting for tiny kittens. They each have a unique personality, some are shy and may hide away initially for a few days or even a couple of weeks whilst others are confident and adventurous. Please remember this is potentially a traumatic transition for kittens as they are leaving their mothers and siblings for the first time.
If possible choose a room where they can be kept for the first week or so to adjust gradually to its new surroundings. This confinement also aids toilet training and avoids the risk of ‘accidents’ elsewhere in the house. In time, as confidence grows, the rest of your home can be opened up for wider exploring and investigating. It is important to supply somewhere the kittens can hide in case they are feeling vulnerable such as under a bed or a cardboard box placed on its side with a familiar blanket placed inside with recognisable scents which is comforting or leave the pet carrier in the room if that is their preference.
Please consider the following with kittens:
  • Avoid a room with full-length curtains initially as a kitten will run up them and perch at the top.
  • Check the room for potential hazards such as fireplaces or poisonous plants and make it as safe as possible. Remember that kittens can get into very small spaces.
  • Make sure any hazardous substances are out of harm’s way and cupboards where they are kept are not accessible by curious kittens.
  • Remove all breakable objects from shelves and windowsills and secure all cupboard doors. Pay particular attention to items a kitten might chew or swallow such as cotton or any sewing materials, wool, elastic bands etc. Treat your kitten as you would a baby or very young child.
  • Keep windows securely fastened.
  • Remove all breakable objects from shelves and windowsills and secure all cupboard doors. Pay particular attention to items a kitten might chew or swallow such as cotton or any sewing materials, wool, elastic bands etc. Treat your kitten as you would a baby or very young child.Keep windows securely fastened.
  • Position the litter tray in a discreet corner of the room, with the food bowl in the opposite corner and the water bowl away from both the food and the litter tray.
  • Place a suitable cat bed in a quiet area away from the food, water and litter tray areas. Line with a warm fleece blanket.
  • Place a kitten scratching post nearby (Prepare to replace this with a taller one as the kitten grows).
  • Have some appropriate toys ready for playtime. Don’t leave any toys out with string attached, only use these under supervision as kittens can easily be harmed.
  • Kittens wear themselves out quickly, let them sleep when they need to, do not awaken them because you want to play.

Kittens have small stomachs so will need feeding little and often. Try to keep them on the same or similar diet, a good quality wet kitten food is recommended. Coombes Pet Store on Portland road, Hove offers excellent advice regarding nutrition for all pets.
  • Kittens aged 8-12 weeks need four meals a day, 3-6 months three meals, and kittens over 6 months old, two meals. You may want to provide some dry food on an ad lib basis – it depends very much on your lifestyle, what your kitten likes and is used to and if you have other cats in the house with certain feeding routines and habits.
  • Do not give your kitten cow's milk as it can cause diarrhoea. If you wish to feed milk use one that is specially formulated for cats.
  •  Diarrhea that persists for more than 24 hours requires veterinary attention.
  • Fresh drinking water should be available at all times.
Toilet training

Cats are very fussy about their toilet habits and usually learn everything from their mothers, they do not like dirty litter trays any more that we would want to use a dirty toilet.
  • Place the kitten on the litter tray as soon as you take it out of the carrier on your arrival home and a short time after it has eaten or when it is sniffing, scratching, beginning to crouch and generally showing signs of looking for a suitable corner to use as a toilet.
  • Clean out the litter tray regularly though it is not necessary to change the whole litter after each use but do scoop out any waste to prevent odours.
  • Ensure your kitten can access the litter tray easily. Small kitten sized trays are recommended progressing to the larger or enclosed litter trays as your kitten grows.
Going outside

All cats and kittens rehomed from Lost Cats Brighton are fully vaccinated, neutered or spayed and micro chipped therefore protected and ready to face the outside world.
  •  It is strongly advised to deny outside access for 2 to 3 weeks from arrival at their new home allowing time to acclimatise to their new surroundings first.
  • A top tip is to allow your cat out for the first time in the morning, under supervision and before breakfast, their hunger will ensure they return quickly when called inA fitted cat flap is by far the best solution if your cat is not rehomed on the condition that it remains an indoor cat.
  • As your kitten grows (over 6 months old) you may like to fit a collar as a visual form of identification or to carry a magnet or 'key' to an electronic cat flap.
  • Remember to check the collar's fit (you should be able to get one or two fingers under the collar) and increase its size accordingly.


Helping adult cats to settle in

This will be a potentially challenging time for an adult cat adopted from a rehoming centre as a period of confinement can leave them in a state of anxiety. The cat may retreat into a hiding place initially but is best left there as you go about your business to allow it to decide alone when it is safe to explore. The settling in procedure for an adult cat is the same as   that adopted for a kitten for the first day or two.
  • If the cat seems keen to explore the new environment then there is no need to confine in one room only. It may however be wise to allow the cat to explore one room at a time. This is the time to get to know the cat’s personality.
  • Not all cats respond to the same quality of human contact so reading body language and appreciating signs of anxiety and stress (identifying and addressing the signs of stress) is helpful to get the maximum benefit from the relationship.
  • If the cat becomes aggressive when approached this indicates that it is scared or confused and would prefer to meet you in its own time and on its own terms.
  • Patience is important during the first few weeks as some cats take several weeks to feel safe in a new home.
If you already have a resident cat, don’t rush the introductions as this is a very important step. Exchange beds and blankets with the cats so they get used to each other's smells.  Scent is a major factor, If the smell of a new cat is familiar half the battle is won!
  • The confined and resident cat or kitten may be able to see each other through a glass door or window helping with recognition by sight and scent therefore easing the final introduction.
  • When the introduction is complete be sure to provide the new and existing cat or kitten with their own food bowl. Feeding time can be territorial for some cats although usually they eventually eat from the same or from each other’s bowl!
How to introduce cats and children

Many children have fantastic relationships with their cats and learn about respecting other creatures and being gentle – it is done successfully all the time, but it is up to parents to lay down the rules and to teach their children from the very beginning how to approach, stroke and handle cats and to treat them kindly.  it is very important, especially with young children, that there is at least one room that the cat can retreat to as a ‘safe place’ within the house. This is an area that the children cannot access and the cat can go if it feels too overwhelmed.  Even with the most tolerant cats it is the parent’s role to teach a child how to appropriately behave around a cat, how to approach, interact and handle them as well as how to read the signs when a cat has had enough and always respect their need for time alone and not to awaken them to play.
A new kitten or cat needs a great deal of commitment particularly in the early stages so the whole family has to play a role, even if it is agreeing to participate in regular playtime. Taking on a new kitten when you have a new baby or a toddler might be a lot to handle at once, so ensuring you have time for all the parties is part of a successful solution.
Involve the children with the cat chores such as feeding, grooming and litter tray cleaning, this teaches them the responsibilites associated with having and caring for a cat.

Letting the children play with the cat with wand and rod toys is a great way for getting them involved without physically handling the cat if it does not enjoy this. Again, it will help your cat view children positively. Remember, kittens are tiny, make your children aware of the space around them at all times ensuring the kitten is not in danger of accidentally getting hurt.
Make the experience pleasant for the cat as well by offering food treats as a reward for tolerating the child’s attention. For older children, allow them the opportunity to feed the cat treats to help the cat associate children as a positive experience. Children and their cats form strong and trusting bonds becoming very close friends.

Products available to assist with transition (often cheaper purchased online)
  • Feliway plug in diffusers produce synthesised pheromones from cats which help to soothe and calm.
  • Zylkene capsules contain a natural product that can support cats during common situations such as a house move or a cattery stay, or during fireworks season. Given once daily simply open the capsule and mix the palatable powder with food or a favourite treat. Zylkene has not been associated with side effects.
Keeping your cat in good health
  • Ensure you keep updated with your cat’s annual vaccination booster. Your veterinarian surgery will usually send a reminder of the due date to allow plenty of time to make an appointment. This also provides a good opportunity for an overall check-up of your cat’s general health.
It is important your cat or kitten receives the appropriate and recommended flea & worming treatment according to their age and size (weight based). These products are available from your veterinary or can often be purchased cheaper online

  • Grooming is especially essential for long and semi long haired cats, removing excess loose hairs which can cause fur balls to build up in the stomach. Brushing and combing also gives you a chance to keep a close eye on your cat, to asses its health and help to develop the bond between you.
  • If your cat is unwell, please seek veterinary attention.

Kittens are very playful. Give them an assortment of toys to keep them occupied and exercised – these need not be expensive – every kitten loves a cardboard box to play in, early playful interaction is important for their developmental skills and a good way for you to get to know and trust each other. Provide your kitten/cat with a scratching post. This also all applies to adult cats too, they need stimulating and enjoy play time just as much though they are much more likely to let you know when play time is over in favour of nap time.

The average life expectancy of a cat is typically 15 to 17 years though many live much longer, often into their twenties. Remember, you have promised to provide your cat a forever home, a place of safety and shelter, two meals a day and a warm cosy bed. You will, in turn, be rewarded by their unswerving loyalty, deep rooted trust, and a lifetime of friendship love and devotion.

Useful links  <-----for friendly help and advice  <-----for veterinary care             <---- for nutritional advice and pet care products.       <---- for cat care and behavioural issues

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