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What to expect with my future f4 savannah

aharter

Savannah Super Cat
Well the litter will be born around mid September, so by beginning of December or end of November I will get to bring home my first f4 savannah . I work a regular 8-5 job M-F with a one hour lunch break that I will be able to come home on for about 40 min. My boyfriend is a school teacher and gets home at about 3:30 most days. He also has summers off .What can I expect when bringing home my kitten? Should I allow it to sleep in my bed at first or keep it in the master bathroom? I plan on buying looooots of toys and things to play with, maybe leaving a tv on during the day. She (hopefully or maybe a he) will be the only pet in the house. I have had both dogs and cats, so I am not a first time pet owner, and know somewhat what to expect. BUT I am a first time savannah owner . My plan was to eventually let her have free roam of the whole house (1700 sq ft) . I could use any and all tips when it comes to keeping them from destroying furniture, keeping them out of the fridge and food, or keeping them entertained while I am at work. Do I need to go ahead and childproof everything or wait and see if the cat shows interest in things it shouldn't get into ? Also how much sleep should I plan on getting the first few weeks? Lol. I have been reading the forums a lot and some people seem to have no troubles and others it seems to be problematic. We will not be adding another cat to the mix (unless I can convince significant other hehe, which probably won't happen because he isn't terribly fond of cats), but in the future will probably add a puppy down the road. I just don't want it to be bored and because of that extremely destructive during the day. Any advice or suggestions? Wow that was a long post
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
Congratulations in advance, aharter! I hope all goes well with the litter expected.

I wouldn't expect a LOT of destruction necessarily. I would pay attention to catification of your home so that she has nice high perches and scratching pads and posts etc. I would not give her free roam of the house immediately on arrival...that can be too large and intimidating a space for a very young kitten... you can start out with your bedroom, but if that is too scary you can always move her into the smaller space of the bathroom. Don't release her to a larger space until you are sure she is using the litterbox, and consider more than one litterbox around your house until she is a little older and you are sure she is doing well in that respect. Better to be cautious than have issues and then have to work on a problem. Good luck!
 

WitchyWoman

Admin
Staff member
What can I expect when bringing home my kitten?
If you've done your homework and bought from a reputable breeder who socializes the kittens well, you can expect a loving and fun companion.

Should I allow it to sleep in my bed at first or keep it in the master bathroom?
Depends on the kitten. If it interacts with you immediately after it comes out of the carrier, is curious, cautious but not skittish, shows confidence, you can try allowing it to have access to the bedroom. Expect to be sleep deprived the first night or two as the kitten explores the environment and burns off energy from the trip home and from the excitement of a new home and new people. If the kitten seems afraid of so much space or won't allow you to sleep, put it back in the bathroom -- if you can get it out from under the bed:)

I could use any and all tips when it comes to keeping them from destroying furniture, keeping them out of the fridge and food, or keeping them entertained while I am at work.
Buy a couple cat trees and interactive toys (things that roll, make noise, light up). Make sure you have scratching posts with a variety of surfaces -- cardboard, hemp, plain wood until you determine which the kitten has a preference for. The kitten will most likely do what all cats do -- lots of play in the morning, long nap till afternoon, play, nap until you come home, lots of play at night. Expect some damage to the house -- it's a kitten and doesn't know valuables from toys. They are curious and like to play with things we wouldn't normally think about. All valuables and breakables need to be stored away.

As far as keeping the kitten out of the fridge and food, well, either you engage in consistent training or you give up immediately and save yourself some time. Again, it depends on the cat. I have 4 SVs and each one has habits I wish it hadn't but they're all different. One will jump in the fridge at every opportunity; the other 3 won't. Two will claw the furniture no matter how many other alternatives there are; the other 2 don't. It's been said repeatedly here, and it's true, that we adapt to the SV not vice versa. Although they do get into the rhythm of the house, there are some things you will have to accept about your cat whether you like it or not. What those things are will depend on the cat.


Do I need to go ahead and childproof everything or wait and see if the cat shows interest in things it shouldn't get into ?
Wait.

Also how much sleep should I plan on getting the first few weeks? Lol. I have been reading the forums a lot and some people seem to have no troubles and others it seems to be problematic.
Again, depends on the cat. Expect that it will take at least the entire 2 week quarantine period for the kitten to get used to the new environment and to the two of you. All 4 of mine adapted to our bedtime after the first week or two. Your kitten may not sleep all through the night and may wake up before you do. A good hour or two of play before bedtime will help keep the fur babe asleep a little longer.

We will not be adding another cat to the mix (unless I can convince significant other hehe, which probably won't happen because he isn't terribly fond of cats), but in the future will probably add a puppy down the road. I just don't want it to be bored and because of that extremely destructive during the day. Any advice or suggestions? Wow that was a long post
If you want a happy SV, you have to make time for it. Plan on getting up a bit earlier in the morning for playtime before you leave for work and make time for play and attention at night no matter how tired you are. It's no different than a puppy or even a child -- the more time you devote, the more you enrich the environment, the more consistent you are, the happier the animal/child/adults in the house.

Savannahs are not inherently destructive. Their energy level and focus may cause them to damage things though. My wood surfaces are scratched from them taking off in pursuit of something interesting. Most of my moveable objects are tacked down with Museum Gel and putty (http://www.amazon.com/Ready-America-33111-Museum-Clear/dp/B0002V37XY) including artwork on walls, lamps, and even pieces of furniture. Most SVs bond closely to their humans and need attention and interaction and inclusion in family life. These are not cats who do well being left to to their own devices for long periods of time. And remember that kittenhood is usually more intense with play than adulthood. The cat's needs will change as it matures. If your SO likes dogs, chances are good that he'll like your SV more than he thinks he will.
 

Rafiki

Site Supporter
Congrats on your soon-to-be furkid and welcome to the forum. I fully agree with Brigitte and Witchy Woman!

We used the master bedroom/bathroom suite for the quarantine time. Our SV hid under the bed for the first few days but was easily lured out with a toy so we did not move her to a smaller area. We both spent some time working from home during this timeframe to help her acclimate. She was super sweet during the daytime but at night she would turn into a maniac around 11 pm no matter how much we had played with her the hours before. She would go on this crazy rampage jumping all over the bed and biting. We had gotten another kitten just 2 months prior so we took turns either sleeping in the bedroom with her or sleeping on the couch in the den with the other one so he wouldnt get jeolous. We both looked forward to time on the couch that first week because she was so nuts. But she quickly calmed down and became a nice little bedbug that I look forward to sleeping with every night.

And yes, if your SO likes dogs, a SV is a good fit. These little creatures have much more in common with a Jack Russel terrier than a persian cat!
 

aharter

Savannah Super Cat
Thank you Brigitte and witchywoman! These are very helpful and insightful answers. I will definitely be waking up a bit early to feed and play with the kitten, as well as devoting lunch time to this, and if it likes to walk on a harness I was hoping to take it on walks in the yard in the evening. The museum gel and putty is an excellent idea, I will definitely be buying some of that. I am really hoping my SO will come to love the savannah breed ( I have a feeling he will). I am very much an all around animal person and he has only ever had barn cats and dogs.. I am hoping he will be pleasantly surprised :).
 

aharter

Savannah Super Cat
Rafiki, that is so cool you were able to work from home to help your kitten acclimate ! I will probably pick up on a Friday, so that I have at least 2 days to spend at home. Or depending on when born, maybe I can pick up over thanksgiving and have 4 full days.
 

Brigitte Cowell

Moderator
Staff member
I'd suggest waiting on the walks in the yard until after the kitten is used to your home...too many changes and new things can be very overwhelming to a kitten. I'm sure that is what you were thinking, not immediately...but thought I'd mention that...
 

aharter

Savannah Super Cat
Yea I wasn't planning on immediately ... I would be so scared about it getting sick from some virus or really anything until I know for sure all of it's vaccinations are fully in effect. And yes I definitely don't want it to be overwhelmed either.
 

Patti

Admin
Staff member
I agree with what everyone else has said, and don't have much more to add, except to be sure and talk to your breeder about the personality of the kitten. If it is the first one to greet her at the door and follows her around it will likely do well sleeping with you in the bedroom. If it seems to prefer the company of its siblings then it might be more shy and need its own space for bit while it acclimates to its new home. Also, ask what kind of environment the kittens are being raised in at the breeders. Are they in a dedicated cattery building? In their own room? In a bathroom? In the bedroom? I would try to stick as close to the breeder's environment as possible for those first couple of weeks.
 

aharter

Savannah Super Cat
Those are all really good points patti! I will be sure to ask the breeder these questions , and I will be able to see alot of the environment as well since she only lives a few hours from me and I will visit until bringing home.
 
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