Kittens 101: Caring for Your Cat

"Good Morning America's" favorite veterinarian, Dr. Marty Becker, stopped by with a lesson on everything you need to know about cats and kittens.

And Becker had several guests helping him out -- eight adorable kittens available for adoption through the Humane Society of New York. Find out more about animals for adoption by Clicking Here.

What You Need to Know About Kitten Care

Development

Around 8 weeks old, your kitten should be well-socialized with other cats and people and likes to be handled.

Should have clear eyes and nose, no sneezing, and normal appetite and stool.

Visiting the Vet

It's hard to tell when your cat is sick, but your vet will conduct a general wellness exam. Some signs that your cat might be ill include bad breath, grooming less than normal, gaining or losing weight, refusing to eat, eating or drinking more, urinating or defecating outside the litterbox, lethargy and lack of playfulness.

A series of vaccinations start at 6 to 8 weeks old. Vaccines include feline panleukopenia (distemper), upper respiratory viruses, feline leukemia and rabies.

Your vet will know which product is best for parasite control. Becker says that Frontline works best for fleas and ticks. Revolution has a broader spectrum and works on fleas, hookworms, heartworm, ear mites and roundworms. Both are topical products given monthly and are easy to use.

Your vet will give your cat a blood test to detect FELV (feline leukemia) and feline immunodeficiency virus. The test take just a few minutes and typically cost $35-$40.

Ask your vet which cat food they recommend -- it could change at different stages of a cat's life. Becker likes Hill's for kitten food and Multicat Food from Iams for adults.

Don't forget to spay or neuter your cat. It's best to do it early, at about 4 months old.

Recommended Products for Your Cat

PetMate Fresh Flow Fountain, $30-$45. Cats are typically under-hydrated. Cats prefer running water and this gives them a fresh, healthy supply.

Hartz Living Cat Collar, $2.99. Use a stretchy or break-away collar with a bell so the collar doesn't catch on something and choke them.

Interactive Toys from Hartz and Our Pets, $5-$20.

Hartz Hairball Remedy, $5.

Scratching post, prices vary. Important factors in choosing a scratching post are material, stability, size and location. Cats need to scratch, so it's impossible to make them stop.

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