Fur the love of pets

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Pick of the Litter

Kittens are adorable additions to the family and choosing one is fun for all ages. The ideal age at which to adopt a kitten is from nine to twelve weeks. Here are some more helpful tips for choosing your own purr-fect cat companion.

Pick of the litter

Look for a litter, either at a shelter or in a home, where you can observe behavior and interactions between the kittens and their mother. Aggression, hissing and even cowering all offer hints of possible behavior issues to come. To get your new family member off to a great start, find out as much as you can about her first eight weeks. Many shelters offer pet adoption counseling to help you meet the kittens that are the best match for your home, whether it's big and boisterous or quiet and compact.

Ball of fun

Take a toy—such a small rubber ball—and play with your prospective new family member. Healthy kittens should pounce on the opportunity to interact with you. After playtime, try to hold the kitten. Squirming is natural, but hissing and scratching are red flags. And remember, no matter how cute the kittens may be, don't be tempted to take on more kitties than you can care for.

The look of love

While admiring the tiny tiger stripes on your ideal kitten, also check for these signs of feline health: clean ears, pink gums and white, aligned teeth; a clean, soft coat, symmetrical body shape; and a good appetite. Finally, adopting a kitten before she is fully weaned can lead to tricky behaviors, such as suckling everything, especially you!