Anyone who has watched the plethora of videos online or seen the calendars and cards that line the shelves of bookstores knows just how cute kittens (or for that matter any baby animal) can be. Think about those eyes, full of energy and wonder—ready to explore. One of the reasons baby animals are so cute is that in spite of their vulnerability and relative helplessness they are in constant motion and ready to take on the world.
To know cats is to love cats
Many times I have had people tell me that they really don’t like cats only to, some weeks later, be totally enamored with their own little ball of energy. Many times I have heard or said myself, “I wish they would stay kittens!” I believe that is one of the realities of cat collectors; you know—the people with dozens of cats? They are simply hooked on cuteness!
Unfortunately for photographers, children grow up and animals mature. Kittens become cats and, while still lovable, they lose that razor edge of “adorable.” On the plus side, your bond with your cat grows stronger every day. What happens along the way?
An adaptive environment during kitten development
For starters, kittens get bigger. That tiny kitten that once peeked out at you from inside your shoe can no longer fit in these jack-in-the-box size spaces. Keep in mind that even big cats still like to hide, explore and be left alone, but now we need to provide them with bigger hiding places and gymnastic equipment. Those itty bitty claws that facilitated climbing up our pant legs now have the potential to shred furniture, drapes and skin alike. You’ll need more durable toys and higher climbing equipment. As nature intended, cats will want to climb ever higher.
Click here to learn about exercising with your kitten.
Stimulating the mind during kitten development
As is the case with children, interests and activities change as kittens grow. Likewise, they need changes on your part to keep them interested. To best enjoy your kitten as she matures you should change her environment and her activities regularly. This will help your cat grow up without growing old and allow her to maintain the essence of her kitten-hood for her entire life.
Tooth care during kitten development
This is an often overlooked part of kitten and cat care. Cats are not just bigger kittens. Their instincts and personalities develop with their bodies. Tiny little tooth pinpoints now develop into formidable fangs and teeth that require brushing and cleaning.
If you have any questions or concerns, you should always visit or call your veterinarian — they are your best resource to ensure the health and well-being of your pets.