+ Introducing Chickpea + New Kitten Checklist

Chickpea

Disclaimer: I’ve never been a cat person since I got a bit too close to my neighbour’s cat at four years old and got scratched. I’d had the best of intentions, wanting to stroke it and shower it with affection, but it really didn’t want me all up in its grill. Since then, I’ve always been very much on Team Dog!

However, working in a full-time job where I travel abroad frequently has meant that my dream of being a dog owner has had to be tamed. Ned and I both reeaaaaally want to get a dog, but we know it’s not fair as they are much more dependent on human attention, and combined with this, doggy day care and other costs are astronomical compared to cat care.

Once we’d decided to consider a cat, I began viewing the feline variety differently – where I once saw aggression and indifference, I now saw a fluffy ball of happiness. It also helps that I watched endless YouTube videos of kitties miaowing, as these tapped into my ‘caternal’ instinct like nothing else.

I first laid eyes on our future cat from my Tokyo hotel room, browsing Pets4Homes for North London kittens. The advert read ‘¼ Siamese kittens’ and the photos were adorable. I got in touch with Ned who was back in London and he arranged to see her on Sunday, the day I flew back home. I was adamant that he should say yes to the cat as I was so sure she would be perfect, but he was very much ‘no you should see her first too’. But as I touched down on Heathrow Tarmac, my phone showed the text: “some news for you to come back to: we now own the most beautiful kitty ever!”

Fast forward nearly over a month and all I can say is, if you are considering getting a cat, do it! If you need convincing, take a look at the photos of her below:

Here are my do’s and don’ts from what I’ve learnt post-Chickpea:

New Kitten Checklist

Do buy some inexpensive crinkle balls – they are essentially christmas decorations in ball shapes, and your kitten will go mad for them!

Don’t bother with a cat bed. Various people warned me about this but I still went ahead and do it. Chickpea has NEVER used this and instead sleeps between me and Ned every night.

Do ensure you see the mum so you get some idea of how healthy your kitten is likely to be/size etc. Con’t even consider a kitten where you can’t see the mum!

Don’t waste your money on cat’s milk.

Do rub a blanket on the kitten’s mum so kitty has her scent when she arrives at your home. Chickpea wasn’t anxious at all and got used to our flat straight away, which was really lucky for us.

Don’t let the kitten play with your fingers and hands. I used to let Chickpea lick/nibble my fingers but as she’s getting older I know there’ll come a time when it’s no longer play-biting and could actually really bloody hurt!

Do rotate what toys you leave out for your cat as she’ll easily get bored otherwise.

Do put up a bird feeder near a window so that the kitten has something to occupy her! Chickpea is an indoor cat at the moment (at least until her vaccinations have all been done) but we plan to put up a bird-feeder next to the conservatory, one of her fave places to chill out.

Do leave multiple bowls/sources of water for your cat around the house. We leave one in our bedroom and we often hear her at night having a quick refreshment!

Don’t get carried away and buy lots of expensive accessories. Chickpea gets excited by cardboard boxes far more than any expensive toy ever could.