What Your Savannah Cat Expects On First Arriving At Your Home
Are you anxious and excited about bringing your new Savannah kitty home? Most professional breeders know this, but they will not allow their kittens to leave until they are 12-16 weeks old.
This precious time with mom, brothers and sisters allows the kitten to be socialized, trained, eating both wet and hard food and spayed or neutered.
Removing your kitten from its mother and siblings will cause a lot of stress and separation anxiety but you can help to ease the transition to your home with a few easy steps.
First Week Home
Be calm and quiet when you bring your kitten into your home for the first time. Place the carrier on the floor in a small room and let your new baby come out on its own.
If the kitten hasn't ventured out after a few hours, you might try encouraging it with a teaser-toy.
Keep your Savannah in a small room for at least the first week and preferably in a room where it can watch all the household activity. Confinement (with a great view) will give the kitten a sense of security whereas access to the entire household can be overwhelming and stressful.
Many people keep their kittens in the kitchen at first and then allow it into the adjacent room before it bursts with curiosity. You will know that the kitten is adjusting to your household if it is eating and drinking well.
But don't ignore your new baby. Sit on the floor at the kitten's level and play with it just as you would with any other youngster. This includes placing it into the litter box several times a day until its natural instinct becomes active.
Try not to move the litter box for the first couple of weeks and when you do, place the kitten in it several times so that it develops the habit of going to this new location.
The Savannah is a very loyal pet that bonds strongly with its human family. Give it a chance to bond with its humans before introducing it to other pets.
If a kitten is exposed to other pets immediately, it is possible that it may not bond as closely with your family.
If possible, let the kitten sleep with you, perhaps by the pillow if you and your partner don't have allergies. But don't leave a down comforter on your bed for the first few weeks. To a newly awakened kitten, this feels like a litter box and may be used as one.
Be sure your Savannah's comfortable in its new home and has adopted all family members before you introduce new people. Too many too soon may interrupt the bonding.
Indoors Or Outdoors?
People have very strong opinions about whether Savannahs should remain indoors or be proudly walked through the neighbourhood. Some breeders make harnesses for their Savannah kittens to encourage exercise in the outdoors; others are horrified at the thought.
This is your Savannah, so you get to decide what is best for your beautiful cat. There are a few cautionary steps that can be taken, to ensure that your cat is safe if you decide to introduce it to the great outdoors.
- Confirm that your Savannah's vaccinations are up-to-date before taking it outside.
- Test the harness around the house to ensure that it is both comfortable and secure and your Savannah will actually walk while wearing it.
- Complete and mail the microchip registration. It is free and will help you in case you lose your new family member or it gets stolen... horror of horrors.
Of course, before bringing your baby home, you'll want to do all the home prepping that users and breeders recommend.