Previously we described how we brought Abu into our home. And now that he’s comfortably settled in, it’s important to learn Cat Care 101. Now, I have to remember to keep Abu feeling safe, happy and healthy. This requires frequent visits to the vet and constant checks on his mood and behaviours.
Cat Care: Dreaded Visit To The Vet
Supposedly Abu was going to get his vaccination after he turned four months. But due to the Movement Control Order in Malaysia, most non-essential businesses were ordered to remain closed until further notice. My mum told me that it’s so important for a cat to get their vaccination to avoid any transmittable disease. So, three months went by, veterinarian services were finally operating and I didn’t waste any time to get Abu vaccinated.
Vaccination day arrived and I think I was more nervous than Abu. I didn’t know what to expect and that made me even more nervous, but Abu reacted quite normally… until I locked his carrier. Abu was trembling and his heart was beating so fast, so my sister had to calm him down by stroking him a bit.
After registering at Wangsa Melati Veterinary Clinic, I had to take Abu out of his carrier. But the doctor had to hold it down because Abu was grasping on to it with his claws. The doctor then took his weight, checked his ears, mouth, etc. But the next thing happened so fast – the doctor put a pill inside Abu’s throat and swiftly injected the vaccine near his upper thigh. The doctor mentioned that Abu won’t be as active after vaccination, but he was still running around as soon as we reached home.
Cat Care: Leaving Them Alone At Home
We had to go over to our grandparents’ home and spend a night there for Eid al-Fitr, but we didn’t take Abu along with us. I noticed that Abu has a fear of strangers when I first got him and I didn’t want to make him go through it again. So my mum reassured me that it’s totally normal to leave him alone for a day as long as there is enough water and food for him and a clean litter tray.
Other than that, I kept some lights and fan on to keep the house ventilated. A cute tip that I came across online was to place treats around the house as a way for your cat to explore around even if they are alone. I couldn’t sleep that night from constant worrying especially knowing that he would be searching for us. I knew this would happen one day, but it still broke my heart to leave him alone.
Cat Care: Keeping Their Mood In Check
1. Daily Behaviours Vs. New Behaviours
I learnt that as weeks passed by, Abu would display new behaviours. The first few weeks when Abu settled in his new home, he was very timid and wouldn’t try to seek attention. Nowadays, he spends his mornings playing with us, afternoons sleeping, and then at night more playing. So by the time we go to sleep, he will also be sleeping. So in my head, I thought that Abu was going to be so easy to train. Little did we know, he was actually controlling us with his repeated cute behaviours. He would be doing the same thing everyday but yet we get excited over it every time!
Abu slowly became more adventurous and some of the things he would do is climb up to a high place and leap off it, or he would find tissues or paper laying around and shred them to pieces. Imagine waking up in the morning and seeing a mess! Abu also changed his sleeping routine when he spends most of the day sleeping and lazing around, while at night, he is constantly seeking attention. By night, I mean three in the morning!
2. Involve Other Family Members With The Cat As Well
I was very lucky to have my sister at home with me to help me take care of Abu. She unexpectedly grew fond of him as time passed and adored him as much as I do. Abu’s relationship with my sister was like any best friend. Whenever I go to work, she would be the one playing with Abu, feeding him and that made me feel more at ease.
Every Cat Is Different But Love And Care For Them As Much As You Can
Abu is unique, just like any other cat. Even after a few months, he’s still so cautious around us, running away whenever he gets scared. He’s not the type to rub on your leg or cuddle up next to you in bed, but he’s Abu! He has his way of showing he’s comfortable around you and that he trusts you. And every cat has different ways to show that they also love you.
My Inspiration To Always Care For Abu
Every cat deserves a chance to be loved and cared for. Since young, whenever I see any cat outside roaming around, my heart tugs and I would get emotional. I have an aunt who currently has about five cats that she took in when they were in a poor condition. She brought them to the vet, gave them food and a safe home. And I love seeing the affection she gives to them and how happy and healthy they are now.
I also found out that Katzen Cat Sanctuary does the exact same thing and it touched my heart. They provide permanent care for special need cats or cats that have incurable disease. This centre also provides a platform for cat adoption postings and boarding hotels. The compassion they show always inspire me to be kind to all furry animals in the future. I hope that I could do the same thing one day.