Ragdoll Care Information for new Owners
(Please Read All)
(Please Read All)
Ragdolls need lots of time, love and attention, they need to be kept INDOORS! If you would like your ragdoll to go outside, you must build or buy a suitable enclosure and/or an approved cat harness so that they can have a taste of the world outside in the daytime without being exposed to danger. They also need a good diet, constant fresh water, ongoing parasite control and vaccinations, and health checks atleast annually. Obviously they also need things like litter trays, scratching posts, toys etc. Below is some information on what we use and recommend for our Ragdolls, and also some general care advice.
Some plants and household items/food products are toxic to cats, and you should remove these from your house or put them safely away before your kitten arrives. Please see a full list of plants and household items that are toxic to cats and kittens here! This is VERY important.
We feed our cats high quality dry foods - Royal Canin Baby Cat 34 for first weaning, Royal Canin Kitten 36 for Queens and their Kittens up to one year old, and Mainecoon 31 for adults. We recommend the continued use of these products to our customers as we have found that the Royal Canin Kitten 36 especially is fantastic, it assists with rapid growth, good digestive health and the kittens love it - this is what your new kitten will be used to when they come home with you. We also feed this to our pregnant and lactating Queens for the extra fat and protein. The Mainecoon 31 food is obviously designed for Maine coon cats, the largest breed of domestic cat. Ragdolls are around the second largest breed, so this food is the most suitable for adult Ragdolls as it is good for the growth of their bones, healthy heart and is great for coat health.
We leave dry food down all the time so that our cats can nibble as they please and this is what we recommend for our owners to do, cats do not tend to overeat (its normal for cats to eat 12-16 small meals per day and is very good for their digestion).
Warning - If you are changing your cats diet (like from Kitten to Mainecoon, or from Royal Canin to Hills or Advance), you must do so gradually by mixing the foods together for a few days, to avoid stomach upsets. This applies if you are changing brands of biscuit or changing meats/wet food.
We supplement with a variety of fresh meat, usually equal parts Kangaroo mince, Beef & chicken tenderloin mince. Our kitten owners will get a copy of our Recipe within their kitten pack, so if you would like to continue feeding your kitten the meat and supplement mixture twice a day you will have the information required to do so. If you would like a copy of this recipe please email us.
This recipe includes things like Omega 3,6 and 9 oil, Calcium syrup, Colostrum powder, Llysine powder, Slippery Elm powder, Probiotic powder and Nutripet/Nutrigel.
Although most premium cat biscuits are a 'whole diet' we do still recommend feeding your cat fresh meats regularly - Once or twice a day.
Chicken necks and wing tips are good for dental health and we feed these to our cats a few times a week (if the chicken necks are large chop them into two or three smaller pieces). Usually the small kittens like these much more than the adult cats, you would be surprised what they can eat!.
Never feed your cat cooked bones as these can splinter and cause choking or injury.
Some cats like fish for example tuna & salmon, so you will just have to see what your cat really likes! Keeping in mind that you don't want to upset their stomachs. We recommend fish twice a week if they really like it, but we don't usually feed our cats this as some are very picky!
Please do not feed your cat cows milk as cats are generally lactose intolerant!
Remember your cat will also need fresh water available at all times, our cats and kittens usually have colloidal silver & Llysine powder in their water for an extra healthy immune system. Some cats like to drink from their paws and make a mess, so a larger water bowl is a good idea when they are older. Most Ragdolls love moving water, so drink fountains are usually a hit.
We only ever recommend vaccinating with the F3 vaccine for indoor cats. We have our kittens vaccinated once at 10 weeks of age, this is because the kittens have their mother's inherited immunity up until then through drinking her milk & colostrum, plus more immune boosters from the diet we wean them onto so a first vaccination at 6-8wks would quite likely be ineffective anyway. We also prefer not to vaccinate at the time of desexing (12 weeks old) as they are already going through a major surgery and will be slightly compromised so there is more of a chance of adverse reactions to a vaccine at this time. All vets have differening opinions on the importance of vaccinating and how many a kitten should have, so make sure you talk with your vet and are comfortable with everything. So our kittens will be vaccinated once before leaving (10wks F3), so you can choose whether to just have the second vaccination done at 14wks or so with F3, or if you want a 3rd booster (some vets recommend it) at 18 wks or so. After the first two or three vaccinations, you can choose to do either annually or bi annually. Overvaccinating can have some negative and potentially lethal effects on your cat.
Our cats and kittens are all regularly intestinal wormed, heart wormed and flea treated, so you will have to keep this up to date as well. The easiest method is to buy an all in one top spot treatment like revolution or advocate, and follow the instructions on the pack for your cats age/weight!
If you ever have any reason to think that your cat/kitten is unwell or not behaving as normal, please play it safe and take them to the vet for a check. Ragdolls are very sensitive creatures and can be easily stressed, so it is usually quite obvious when something is wrong, as their whole persona and attitude changes.
Obviously when you take your ragdoll kitten home they will usually be stressed due to a change in circumstances, and this shows in a variety of different ways, it is usually more of a physical stress than an emotional stress. We go into detail on this topic in our kitten information sheet that all new pet kitten owners will receive, there is also information on stress reactions on our FAQ's page.
Ragdolls do not belong outside, but if they are allowed in an enclosure then you should probably make sure that they are also prevented against ticks, just in case!
If you ever have any concerns or questions that aren't emergencies, we are always at the end of the phone to help as much as possible, but obviously for emergencies don't hesitate to go to your vet.
We use and recommend Ozpet Litter, Oval shaped Ozpet trays and Ozpet cat loos. The litter is kitten safe, cost effective, environmentally friendly and biodegradable. To avoid accidents it is always best to have 1 tray per kitten plus 1 spare, as some cats can be very picky and like to use one tray for number 1's and another tray for number 2's! It is best to have these at different ends of the house (or upstairs and downstairs) so that the kitten is never far from a toilet should they be caught short! Litter tray scoops are a must! You will definitely need one to remove the solids from the tray and flush down the loo or throw in the bin. Once the pellets start to turn to dust it is time to change the tray, having an Ozpet tray with the seive in it makes your litter last longer which is why we recommend them, its a great system. Your kitten will be used to this specific type of litter, so please don't change brands on them too fast as they might not like the new choice, and dont change to the crystal type of litter (until they are much older, if at all) as this can be a major choking hazard, it absorbs the moisture and can get stuck to kittens throats and tongues. You can buy Ozpet litter from nearly all pet shops - they almost always have it at Petbarn and City Farmers, and if you would like some of the blue or pink oval Ozpet trays or the Ozpet Cat Loos we sell them for a cheaper rate than most pet shops. Look at the Saffireblu Shop page for more info. :)
We have found lately that using the large disposable litter tray liners on both kinds of ozpet trays (the oval and rectangular ones) has made our cleaning and litter disposal much easier as we can quickly bag and throw away the dirty litter and don't have to bleach the base of the trays so often. Just put a liner in the base of the tray under the seive to catch any urine and the litter dust that falls through, then when it is time to change the tray pour all of the litter from the seive into the bag and tie it up and throw away, or if the litter is still clean but the base smells of wee just top up the litter, seive it and change the liner in the base.
Keeping your cats litter trays clean and hygenic is important for your cats health, remember they will not want to go to a dirty or smelly litter tray and will find somewhere else to go!
A great vet.
Lots of Attention.
Safe carry crate (We can get the airline approved PP20 crates for $45 if you would like to buy one from us)
Food and water bowls (metal/ceramic as opposed to plastic for hygiene reasons),
Clean Water, Royal Canin Kitten 36 Biscuits, Fresh chicken/beef/roo meat.
2 x litter trays, Ozpet litter and scoop are also necessities.(We sell the Oval Ozpet trays for $30)
All cats need scratching posts, not only for their claws but to help stretch out their backs, otherwise you may catch them using your furniture. If you would like a great scratching post for a very good price ($20-$140) please contact us and we can help you organize to get one from Richard - a lovely man who makes them as a hobby and sells them at cat shows.
You will need some grooming equipment for your new kitten, this includes things like a slicker brush, a comb, claw clippers and kitten shampoo and conditioner if you would like to wash your kitten/cat, but pet safe fresh wipes are an easier alternative to keep the coat & ears clean. They keep themselves well groomed and don't usually need a bath, but you can choose to do so every so often, we recommend Aloveen oatmeal shampoo and conditioner as it is very gentle on their skin. Ragdolls may need brushing once a week to avoid hairballs and occasional knotting. Ragdolls don't tend to knot or matt, but the areas under the arms can still get a little tangled due to constant movement.
All kittens & cats need a variety of toys (we recommend laser pointers, cat it senses speed circuits and food mazes, toy mice, toy balls, feather teasers on a stick & basically anything safe that jingles!
Also a suitable cat harness is very important if they are to venture outside!
There are products available from pet stores to deter cats from scratching furniture and going to the loo in the wrong place should your cat develop any bad habits in their new home, and other products like 'Feliway' and catnip spray to relax them and encourage them to certain areas like beds, toys and scratching posts so you can use these products when you first settle your kitten in.
We now recommend 'Soft Paws' to protect furniture, please see our related links page for details, they are fantastic, safe and oh so cute!