44–47 Weeks: What to Expect From Your Kitten
How to Make a "Kitty Garden" for Your Feline Friend
Although cats are obligate carnivores, they do like to munch on plants from time to time. It's generally believed that eating plants provides cats with the fiber they need to move hairballs through their digestive systems. In their natural diet of small rodents, they get the plant matter they need by eating their prey, but in domesticated life they need your help. If you want to keep your kitten from eating your house plants, give her a garden all her own. Here's how:
Buy several packets of seeds including wheat grass, oat grass, mixed cat grasses, and catnip. You can find these at home and garden supply stores or buy them through seed catalogs. It's best if you can get seeds that are not treated with pesticides.
Purchase a heavy, shallow planter or container that you find attractive. You'll want the planter to be heavy so your cat doesn't tip it over while she's munching, and it should have a wide base. Terra cotta and ceramic are good options.
Add a good layer of potting soil, plant the seeds, and water. The grass should sprout fairly quickly, but you may want to wait a few days or so before leaving it out where your kitten can munch. Once the grass has really started sprouting, add a few decorative elements. Colorful rocks, crystals, and sea shells will add to the attractiveness of your indoor garden.
Place your kitty garden in a sunny area. Touch the soil every day. If it feels dry or the grass begins wilting, add some water.
You may want to have two planters so you can start seeds growing in one while your kitten is using the other. That way you'll have a constant supply of yummy greens for your pal to munch on.
Advice from Other Cat Owners
How to Stop Kittens from Playing too Rough
Get your kittens used to having their claws trimmed now. Ask a vet, a vet tech or a groomer to show you how to trim their claws. If you start now, they will be used to it by the time they are adult cats and won't fight you. Also, understand that you are now the "mama cat."
When the kittens start going at it and you see it's getting rough, separate them even if you have to put one in another room until it calms down. When they realize they will be separated from the fun, they'll think twice before being so rough.
You can also wear them out by playing with them yourself. This is important in socializing them. Get a feather teaser pole or a laser light and play with them. You can also try furry catnip mice, and other toys to keep them occupied. They'll get tired out and won't be so rough on each other.
~Joy W., owner of Maine Coon mix