So you finally got yourself a Russian Blue kitten. Now what? Part 2
What are the things you should buy for your Russian to keep them happy, healthy and engaged? Below we will list some good recommendations. Always consider that your cat can and probably will destroy the 'pretty' toys and items in seconds and that the sturdier things are the better. Russian kittens can be very athletic and boisterous so it is best to keep them playing with things you want them to instead of dragging your makeup brushes or car keys around the house.
Kick toys (catnip or catnip free), fur balls, crinkle toys and contained balls are all great toys for your kitten or adult.
*The contained ball means they can't lose it under the fridge or couch.
*The crinkle toy is cheap and they will hide them all over the house but it is a great item to teach them fetch with.
*Fur balls and Kick toys they love to beat up on and kick with their rear feet and to lick if they happen to be the catnip versions.
Avoid the cheap plastic balls with bells inside. They can easily break and then the cat can swallow the ball and choke on it.
There are a wide variety of teaser toys out there. Teasers generally include a stick with feathers or a string hung at the end that looks like a fishing pole. These should not be left out for playing but only played with under supervision. Kittens can get wrapped up in the long line and choke or eat the feathers and choke on them.
Save yourself the money and don't buy the ones with thin string as they will break them. Buy the kind with thicker rope or twine.
There are a million different kinds of scratching posts out there. Make sure you check for loose staples. Cheap posts may be poorly made and have sharp staples inside that can hurt your cat. Run your hands along the inside seams if there is a nest box or anything like that.
If you can find a spot near a window for the post the cat will love it. Get them a post with a nest on top and they will love to nap the day away and watch the birds or people outside.
There are many types of litter boxes available on the market. There are only 2 things you should be concerned with: high sides and not electric. Kittens tend to dig and play in their litter. If you have a high sided box then they won't spill it out all over the floor. You can do a fully enclosed box with a roof and that is fine as well. Be wary about the electric self cleaning litter boxes. Your kitten is inquisitive and may try to play with the moving parts when they are done using the box. Having a kitten get stuck or even die, in a worst case scenario, would be awful. No one can watch their cat 24 hours a day. The 2 minutes it takes to scoop your litter box in the morning and evening could save your cats life or limbs. Just like you like to take showers every day, your kitten wants a clean place to go to the bathroom. Don't leave dirty litter boxes for more than a day or they will go somewhere else in your home. Depending on your litter you should always scoop poop daily or 2x daily and scoop and replace urine daily or every other day depending on how dirty it is. Once a week at most dump the pan, bleach and refill with fresh litter.
You should have either stainless steel or ceramic food dishes. Plastic grows bacteria much easier as it is more porous. You can get a non-slip mat for the floor and place their food dishes there. They will leave toys in their water and do all sorts of goofy things like that so the spill mat is a great floor saver. Non-tip bowls are a must while still kittens.
Your cat will rarely need combing or brushing. There are only 2 times a year when it is expected that you brush your Russian Blue: Spring shedding season and Fall shedding season. You'll know when that is because small amounts of hair will come off in your hands when you pet them. Just like dogs, cats shed when the seasons change towards winter or summer. You have 2 good options for combs and a Furminator is not one of them. Anything that strips the coat like that will ruin your pretty cats coat. You CAN use a simple flat flea type comb or a short rubber comb. Remember that you are not stripping the coat, you are only removing the already loose hair that is still in the coat. A single combing once a day until you stop getting hair in the comb will be sufficient.
The amount of hair a Russian sheds is a small amount. You should never have a full brush when you are done. You should have a few wisps of hair. If you have more than that STOP!!!! Do not buy a brush the cat can rub on themselves as they will strip out all of their coat and look terrible. Below are a good and bad example for shedding season and how much hair you will see on a comb.