Adopting kitties!

It is time.

We’ve been cat parents before, but sadly bereft (rip buddy, you were the best and I miss you every day) for the last two years or so.

Kids 3 and 6. Probably adopting a pair of kittens from the shelter. What don’t we know?

I’m so excited. We haven’t told the kids yet.

I don’t have any advice but I wanted to say I’m sorry about your previous dude, my little bud is lying next to me right now and the thought of not having him around makes me tear up even though I know it’s inevitable.

With young kids, young cats are best, unless you find a very patient old one.

While I don’t regret adopting our elderly ladies, their relationship with our 6-year-old has not been a fun one for anyone involved.

Kittens are frequently rambunctious, which is loads of fun, but their claws are also usually super thin and therefore easily cause tiny scratches; get them used to being clipped early on (gently handling their paws, etc.). Also, despite the overwhelming temptation, try to avoid using any part of your bodies as toys (there’s a danger they can misinterpret and occasionally launch themselves at your kids and you in an effort to start a play session). Actual toys (and the magical red dot) are the way to go. Oh, and make your decision on litter (both type and placement) before you get them, as cats are very much creatures of habit.


I am so excited for pictures and your kids. Giddy and can’t wait to hear more! So glad you’re adopting. Try to get a brother & sister sibling couple. They’re the best and will be good mates.

Please consider adopting older or adult kitties, they have a harder time finding good homes and can be just as loving and rambunctious as kittens.

Whatever you do, good luck!

Adopting a pair is good. In our experience they help entertain each other.

Be patient and select for traits your family desires. When we last adopted we had a sweet pair, but they did not get along. After more looking at a different location we found a different pair who were not quite as cuddly but got along great and loved to play.

My twins were about 6-7 when we adopted our pair of cats. Like you perhaps they only had known an elderly cat. We had to do alot of training of the kids on how to handle the kittens. “Gentle pats, Gentle pats!”

The littlebox location and claw trimming are good suggestions.

Popped into the thread looking for this. Good on you :)

I’m with @BrianRubin about shelter kitties in most cases, but with small children, kittens are the way to go.

We adopted Wally from a foster as an 8-week old kitten when my son was an 8-month old baby, they did fine together. We adopted 8-year-old (at the time) Lilly from a shelter when he was boisterous three-year-old, and she was not happy when he was in the room. She only came out of her shell when he was in bed. Samantha was also a shelter adult when we got her (about 2 or 3), but Carter was older by then, and Sam was also just the world’s most chill kitty.**

Sadly, we’ve lost all three over the past few years. Lilly made it to 18, poor Sammie got hit by sudden evil cancer at about age 12 which was so sad and infuriating, and Wally just passed about a month ago at 17. After Sam died we got Loki from the PAWS shelter near Seattle. He was 1-2 but the kid was a teenager by then. :) He’s a big, sweet, Panther-like tomcat.

And we just got the first kitten I’ve had since we adopted Wally in 2002. Athena is so sweet, but she is a handful! Tips: Trim the claws. Otherwise they may try to climb you. Perhaps when you are not even yet fully dressed in the morning. (OUCH!) Do not wrestle-play with them as kittens, teaches them bad play habits. Get lots of toys: Hits with Athena and Loki are Crinkle Balls, the Cat Tracks toy, and of course the laser. Love the laser I linked because (1) you don’t have to hold down a button, and (2) I can use rechargeable AA batteries in it.

Loki and Athena

Athena’s shoulder-thing is cute now but it’s gonna be interesting when she weights 14 pounds later on…

** Sammie was so sweet that the kill shelter she was originally in KNEW she’d eventually get adopted, so when her time was up, they twice checked her back in under a new name, until they could get her to a no-kill shelter, where we found her being shown at PetSmart.

We had a neighbor many years ago who told my wife she was shipping several kittens off to the pound, the mother was already there. So my wife and kids went over and we ended up with two of them. One died from cancer about 2 years ago, the other is still around, though he shows signs of age.

Everything you said is spot on. OMG I Love those ears. So cute! Is Athena a Maine coon? 14 lbs is a lotta cat. Also about trimming nails, don’t wait to start doing it. Want to acclimate them ASAP so it’s no big deal in future. If they freak out just do one or two a time like a quick swipe and act like nothing happened.

Truly a great pic Denny :)

True. When I first adopted my tiny kitten, he weighed a few ounces I suppose, and it was so fun to have him greet me when I came home from work by running up my leg and my shirt to sit atop me. Many laughs all around, and the cat enjoyed it.

As he go older and heavier, it became less fun, but I still didn’t put a stop to it.

Things culminated when Buck (the cat) was a fully grown part Maine Coon that tipped the scales at 17 pounds. He (not me, but he) created this game where, when I came home from work, he’d be sleeping in his La-Z-Boy recliner (not mine, but his), and I would tip-toe past him, desperately trying not to wake him up, and I’d head for the shower. Undressed in the bathroom, I’d take a quick peek down the hallway. No sign of him. Good.

Tip-toe over to the tub, pull aside the shower curtain, place one leg over the tub, the other leg still out on the bath rug, turn to the door…and suddenly he was there in the doorway, rearing up on his hind legs, then making a terrifying leaping sprint at me. All this in a split second; cats are amazingly fast. And before I knew it, he was climbing up my naked body so quickly that my hands couldn’t grab him.

The pain, man. Wow. Bloody welts all over.

And this happened almost every day for a while there.

One day, Dad stopped by for a visit, and we got to talking about the cat, and I told him what had been happening.

Dad stared at me in disbelief. “Once you’re in the bathroom, why don’t you shut the door?”

“That would be cheating.”

I used to use my hand as a cat toy with my previous kitty. It was cute when she just had nubs for teeth, and she was so nice and gentle towards my pancreatitis but never let go of using my hand as a chew toy. As she got older, yikes! I could not move my hand near a blanket because it would be instantly thrashed. When she had to be put to sleep due to illness and I adopted new kittens I made sure to not make that mistake again. Hands are not toys no matter how fun it is when they’re so tiny.

@Giles_Habibula, that’s hilarious. Ouch. I think I’d have been facing that kitty down with a squirtgun at my side as I headed for the shower.

Yep, she is. I’m guessing on the final weight, but that’s not atypical for a female Maine Coon. Bill, my college cat, was a non-purebred Maine Coon (that is, I got him as a kitten from a pet store rescue, but he had all the characteristics) and he ended up 20+ pounds.

Also I forgot the best cat toy ever! Popular with every cat I’ve ever tried it with, from age kitten to ancient: The Cat Dancer! They’re super-cheap – about $1.67 each – so get a few because they get chewed up, and cats will also sometimes drag them somewhere in the house where you won’t find them. :) I just ordered 4 more while looking up the link.

Along those same lines, this toy is like crack cocaine. Apparently I’ve bought it 7x now as they drag it around and shred the mouse. The stiffer wire must do something for stimulation.

Ooh, don’t have one of those! Thanks, @jpinard, Athena and Loki will be able to enjoy theirs on Wednesday!

My dad used to treat the family cats with a little rough play. They would complain but always came back for more. But those cats would wait for my mother or sister to walk by and attack their legs. Their way of getting even with humans I suppose.

Trim your cats claws when they are little, and then they won’t mind so much when they get bigger and it’ll be easier.

Although I made the mistake of giving Claudia treats whenever I trimmed her claws, and now after I clip one nail, she starts meowing and squirming all over, because she wants treats.

I am indescribably amused over your cat’s wonderful name.