Kittens are difficult to keep track of, especially when they are very young and small. Their curiosity is boundless and they find places so small that you can’t see them or fit your hand in to get them out! When we first adopted our kittens they were 2lb and 2.5lbs, which is pretty darn small! We adopted them on the day we moved into our new apartment, so the place was as new to us as it was to them! After they learned to crawl beneath the kitchen cabinets within the first few hours we decided we needed a tracking system.
We bought kitten sized collars with bells to track our kittens as they explored the apartment. This was immensely helpful because it made their previously silent 2 pounds more easy to locate.
We also immediately limited the rooms that they were allowed to access. In the beginning we closed off both of the two bedrooms in our apartment, which left the living room, kitchen and guest bathroom, which provided plenty of room.
At night our kittens slept in a large crate with a small portable litter box and cat bed, within our bedroom. We also draped a blanket over the back and top of the crate to make them feel safe and to keep it a bit warmer (always a priority for kittens.) I’d learned from a previous experience to make sure your kitten can’t fit his head through the gaps in the crate – to prevent becoming stuck or injured. At 2 months old our kittens couldn’t fit their heads through the gaps in our crate, although they did learn how to climb the sides!
After a few weeks we did away with the crate and our kittens now sleep in our master bathroom. We find it’s best to confine them at night; otherwise they don’t let us get any sleep! At 4 months old, they’re allowed more freedoms during the day and no longer have to wear their bell collars. When we leave the apartment we still limit them to our master bedroom and bathroom because we have “kitten-proofed” those rooms and know that our kittens will be safe and less likely to destroy anything in a confined space.
I look forward to allowing our cats to freely move about our apartment. We will gradually allow them more freedoms until we’re sure that they can be safe in the whole apartment without our supervision.
Jennifer Kean is a writer and pet-lover who owns two rescue kittens (lifetime cat owner too!) and has a 40 gallon fish tank!