What to Expect for Your Kitten's First Year

Have a new kitten in the family? If so, congratulations! Cats are clean, intelligent animals that thrive with the right care, and we know you want to provide that for yours. At Richview Animal Hospital, we want to help. We work hard to give every patient the best shot at a long, healthy life, and we know that cats and dogs alike face fewer risks in adulthood when they receive proper care  as babies.

Kitten at Rich View Animal Hospital in Etobicoke

Now that you have a new cat, it's time to learn exactly what your cat will need to build a strong foundation for years to come. Dr. Oliver Sterbinsky and the rest of our veterinary team will help you learn more details about proper at-home care, but remember to pay attention to the following basic needs during your cat's first year of life.

Veterinary Care for Kittens in Etobicoke

It's never too early to check your kitten for common diseases, infections, and other health risks. Your kitten's vet also needs to keep track of his or her growth, rule out abnormalities, and start the first round of core vaccinations to protect your kitten from life-threatening diseases. Bring your kitten to our Etobicoke vet clinic as soon as possible for his or her first wellness exam with Dr. Sterbinksy. Our team will help you schedule your kitten's next round of booster vaccinations, which are very important to maintain as your cat grows. Other wellness options include topical and oral parasite prevention products, which protect young cats from fleas, ticks, and mites.

Kitten Vaccination Schedules:

In their first year of life, kittens require a lot of care and attention. A series of vaccinations is given in the first year to help ensure a healthy beginning. At every vaccination appointment, a full physical examination is performed by the doctor to make sure that your kitten is growing and developing properly.

8 wk - rhinotracheitis, calici virus, panleukopenia

12 wk - rhinotracheitis, calici virus, panleukopenia, chlamydia & feline leukemia virus (FeLV)

16 wk - rhinotracheitis, calici virus, panleukopenia, chlamydia, FeLV, rabies (1yr vaccine) & feline leukemia (FeLV)

1 yr - rhinotracheitis, calici virus, panleukopenia, chlamydia, FeLV, rabies(3 yr vaccine) & leukemia for high risk pets

Spay or Neuter Surgery for Kittens

We also recommend spaying or neutering your kitten as soon as possible. At Richview Animal Hospital, we emphasize the importance of this routine procedure, which involves the removal of sex organs and is called spaying for female kittens or neutering for male kittens. In addition to fighting pet overpopulation, spaying and neutering allows us to reduce every pet's chances of behavioral problems, preventable diseases, and more. If you schedule your pet's surgery as soon as they reach sexual maturity, they will enjoy the lowest possible odds of developing uterine infections, cancer, and other life-threatening conditions.

Kitten Nutrition

Kittens need more calories and hydration than adult cats, so we recommend free-feeding wet food that was formulated specifically for their growing bodies. Ask our veterinary team to recommend high-quality food that contains the extra supplements and nutrients your cat needs.

Socializing Your Kitten

Kittens learn how to socialize from their siblings and mother, but human contact within the first 12 weeks of life will make it easier to socialize with humans too. We'll help you learn how to handle your kitten gently, play with them in familiar ways, and help them overcome fears and acclimate to their new forever home. Over time, your daily interactions will build an unbreakable bond between you and your adorable cat.

Contact Richview Animal Hospital today to schedule your kitten's first physical exam.


In addition to kitten wellness packages, we also offer microchipping.  A microchip can help identify your pet in the event he or she escapes your home or car and gets lost.  Microchips are inserted under your pet’s skin between their shoulder blades. 

The chip contains your pet’s unique identification number.  When your pet is found, the shelter, veterinarian or rescue scans your pet’s chip and from there will call the customer service center and provide the location of your cat.  The service center then calls you to let you know your pet has been found.

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