Are you fascinated with Bengal cats and want to own one? Bengals have distinctive leopard-like fur and wildcat looks that always deserve a second glance. These cats are also extremely smart, energetic, loyal and get along well with families and other pets. Read on for some helpful information on how to raise a Bengal kitten.
Raising a Bengal kitten: What are the basics?
Providing what your kitten needs.
See to it that your Bengal kitten is fed nutritious kitten food. Popular cat food choices are canned wet food and the dry or kibble variety. Check the feeding guide of food packages and make sure that your kitten does not become overweight. Make a weekly check of their weight to ensure that they are not gaining too much.
Aside from standard kitten food, you should also feed your Bengal kitten fresh and saltwater fish, cooked meats, salad greens, squash, scrambled eggs and cat grass.
Some tips on feeding your Bengal kitten:
- Do not switch immediately from a liquid to a solid diet.
- Make sure that the food is 100% balanced and complete with vitamins and minerals.
- Allow your kitten time to get used to her food.
- Keep an eye on her food dish and make sure her food is always fresh.
- See to it that your kitten is drinking water.
- Give your kitten undiluted wet or dry food from seven months up to the first year.
- If you notice a loss of appetite, consult your veterinarian.
Provide your kitten’s essential resources such as litter box, food bowl and water dish. A warm and comfortable cat bed is also essential. It does not have to be pricey and most kittens are content to sleep in a cardboard box with a blanket.
Here are some general rules when it comes to your kitten’s litter box:
- Always have an extra litter box for your kitten.
- If your home has multiple floors, put a litter box on each.
- Place the litter box in a convenient location.
- Opt for unscented litter with a sand-like texture although the clumping type is also convenient.
Your Bengal kitten only needs minimal grooming since they have a satin finish coat. Use a rubber grooming glove to keep your kitten’s coat glossy and healthy.
Your kitten’s health should always be a priority.
As a responsible cat owner, you should take your Bengal kitten to the vet regularly. Have your cat microchipped and schedule them for vaccination from six weeks of age so they are protected from rabies and other common health issues. Your kitten should be fixed when they are around five to six months old, although some breeders suggest fixing a kitten at around 12 weeks, before they are rehomed.
Deworming sessions should be scheduled when your kitten is around four, six, eight, 10 and 12 weeks old using oral products like Panacur. Check for fleas and other parasites and provide flea treatment if needed.
The Bengal breed is prone to certain health issues, such as feline infectious peritonitis(FIP), chronic anemia, heart disease and nasal dermatitis. Consider pet insurance for your kitten in case of medical emergencies to assist you in paying a portion of the vet bills.
Provide ample activities for your kitten to burn off excess energy.
Bengals tend to be hyperactive so make sure that you provide them with activities and stimulating toys.
These are some must-have cat equipment for a Bengal kitten:
- Cat exercise wheel – It helps your kitten to exercise and to keep them out of trouble. It can help curb bad behavior and prevent your kitten from becoming destructive.
- Cat tree – Bengals love to climb and hang out in high places where they can observe everything. It is ideal to have some built-in sisal scratching posts as well.
- Lots of toys. Some ideal toys include cat wands, laser toys, puzzle toys and other catnip-filled toys.
- Bengals love adventure. Train your kitten to walk with a harness and leash so you can take them for walks.
Be patient if you have other cats.
It may take considerable time and patience before your Bengal kitten can finally fit in. To have a seamless transition and good relationship among your felines, take note of these tips:
- Confine your Bengal kitten in a separate room for at least 24 hours and slowly introduce them to the resident cat.
- Allow the cats to share their toys and play with each other.
- Do not force the cats to interact as they will eventually do it on their own terms.
Raising a Bengal kitten is manageable with the right preparation and resources. Provide your kitten’s basic needs such as food and water bowls and a litter box. Feed them nutritious cat food and prioritize their health with regular vet visits, vaccinations and deworming sessions. Most importantly, keep them physically and mentally stimulated by providing interactive toys to prevent them from becoming destructive.
Image: istockphoto.com / Dixi_