Questions to ask before you get a cat.

Can I afford a cat?

Cats require annual vaccinations, worming and flea treatment. Kittens need to be neutered at six months – all adult cats
are neutered before Cats’ Aid home them. Pet insurance is recommended but does not cover these annual expenses.
Basic requirements for your cat – food, litter, litter tray, scratching post, toys, brush, cat carrier and collar.

Equipment Needed

Please note that our cat fosterers can give recommendations for all of the items…

Cat Carrier 

Hard plastic carriers are secure and can be purchased in different sizes with front door and/or top loader access to suit your new cat.


The sky is the limit here or a nice box may just do the trick.

Litter trays

Closed litter trays are used widely. The advantages of these are that they keep the substrate from being scattered over the floors and minimise odours.  However, some kittens/cats may find them daunting at first, so to encourage them to use them you can remove the plastic perspex flap from the front and also fill with a deep bed of litter.

You can also give them an option of an open litter tray as this gives them choice if they are unsure of using the closed litter tray.


Cats are very clean animals and will not use dirty litter trays. Depending on the number of cats/kittens that are in the house, this will indicate how many litter trays are needed and the amount of times they need to be changed. If appropriate facilities are not provided for cats/kittens, they may start to have accidents in unwanted areas within the house, so this is important to get right to help avoid unwanted behaviours occurring.

Choices of litter are usually up to the owner’s own preference. Most are highly absorbent, easy to dispose of, light to handle and some can be made of recycled materials. All types have their own advantages and disadvantages. Litter types can be Wood base, Gravel base, Crystal base, Sand base etc.

Do not use clumping litter with kittens as they tend to eat it and it can cause digestive problems.

Tips: Remove the faeces, whole tray should be refreshed once a day depending on litter type used. Keep litter tray spotless by using products such as Trigene or Virkon (read instructions on all products and make sure no direct contact with cat/kitten takes place.)

Scratching posts and toys

It is in the cat’s nature to scratch and play. Scratching posts will encourage the cat to scratch in appropriate places (rather than your furniture) and toys encourage hunting behaviours such as stalking, chasing, pouncing, catching. This will give them a healthy behavioural outlet.


Kitten soft food is what we recommend up to 3 months of age. As they are growing, after that, you can gradually introduce some dry food.

Adult cats should be fed adult food appropriate to their age.

Please check with the fosterer what food your new cat/kitten is on and mirror this initially to avoid tummy upsets with sudden change of food.


A crate may be advised depending on your cat/kitten.

Do I have time for a cat?

Cats like to hang out with their humans and regular time should be set aside each day for play and cuddles. A fifteen minute play session twice a day is all that’s required to keep your kitty happy, and as many cuddles as you can give in between. Adult cats need a lot less time than kittens, who can be very energetic!

Do I have space for a cat?

Yes, a cat’s world is vertical not horizontal, so if you can fit a climbing frame/cat tree into your home, you have room for a cat. Rule of thumb says, one room per cat. Apartments are ideal for indoor cats once you provide a climbing frame/cat tree, toys and some playtime. In fact, lots of people now believe it’s safer to keep a cat indoor-only because of outdoor hazards such as dogs, cars, poison and cruel humans etc. Indoor cats tend to live longer.

How clean are cats?

Cats are the cleanest of creatures, when problems arise it’s usually the human’s fault!! Cats instinctively bury their waste, when litter problems occur, it’s most likely because the litter tray is not clean enough. Vet’s advice should always be sought however as this can also be their way of letting us know something is wrong.

Cats do shed so a few well-placed blankets are a must as they can be removed and cleaned easily. Also velcro/lint brushes are an easy way of removing fur from furniture. Regular brushing is a great way of bonding with your cat and removing excess hair.

In general cats are very easy to live with, are low maintenance and extremely loving. They can fit into a busy lifestyle very easily, all they require is food, play and love. In return you will be rewarded with years of fun and kisses!!