6 Tips for Introducing a New Kitten to Your Resident Cat
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1. Create a Separate Kitten Space
Always remember that the first order of business when adopting a new cat is to make sure that your kitty has a secure location to call home. This area provides your cat with a sense of security and provides a safe haven if the rest of the house becomes too much for him to handle at any time. Decide on a location that can be safely separated from the rest of the home as well as your potentially curious kitty in residence (if you have one). A litter box, food bowl, water bowl, and enough of toys will keep your kitten engaged when you aren’t around to supervise him.
2. Handle Vet Visits Right Away
A frequent vet check-up is required as part of the adoption procedure. It is best if you can schedule your kitten’s first visit to the veterinarian on the same day that you want to take the animal home. After the introductions have begun, you don’t want to stop them midway through. In addition to a health exam and any necessary vaccines, this appointment should include a conversation about spaying or neutering your kitten if it hasn’t been done before. Take some time to clip your kitten’s nails and brush its fur in addition to the veterinarian appointment before placing the kitten in their allocated kitten habitat.
3. Introduce the Cats Slowly
A frequent vet check-up is a required part of the adoption procedure. It is best if you can schedule your kitten’s initial visit to the veterinarian on the same day that you plan to bring the animal home from the shelter. After the introductions have begun, you don’t want to stop them mid-stream. In addition to a health exam and any necessary vaccines, this appointment should include a conversation about spaying or neutering your kitten if it hasn’t been done yet. While you’re waiting for your kitten to be seen by the veterinarian, take some time to trim its nails and brush its fur before putting it in their allocated kitten place.
4. Keep Watch for Any Warning Signs
Change might be stressful for any of your cats, depending on their personalities. Your incumbent cat may feel as if its territory is being infringed upon, and your new kitten may struggle to adjust to a new environment while also dealing with the introduction of a new sibling. If either cat gets violent throughout the introduction procedure, the process should be restarted by separating the two cats. Because of this strategy, your animals will no longer perceive a danger to their liberty and safety.
If one or both cats begin to exhibit indications of serious suffering, take them to the veterinarian right once. Inappropriate urine, excessive vocalization, and aberrant grooming can all be signs of severe stress in your cat, which can be hazardous to his or her health if left untreated.
5. Stay Patient Through the Introductions
Many cats can learn to coexist, but it is up to you to give them the time they need to become used to the notion. You should anticipate that the introduction procedure will take no less than a week, but it might take much longer depending on the temperaments of your cats and their personalities. Consider whether or not you have the time and resources to care for and bond with a new cat before bringing one into your household. Spending focused bonding time with both cats will be essential for making the transfer as painless as possible.
6. Understand How to Respond to Aggression
When cats first begin to live together, they may engage in playful fighting or compete for toys and human attention. Pay close attention to your cats’ behavior during the first few days after they are permitted to socialize freely with one another. Batting, pouncing, and other forms of action are common throughout normal game play, although they are not required. You should not, however, allow the cats to engage in aggressive behaviors such as hissing and arching. If one or both cats become aggressive, distract them with a loud noise or a toy to give them a chance to flee and find safety elsewhere.
If necessary, keep the cats separated in a secure environment until they have both calmed down.
These suggestions will assist you in ensuring that, with a little effort, both of your feline companions feel comfortable, confident, and protected in your house.
Our knowledgeable, caring team, wide range of available services, and state-of-the-art animal clinics are all geared to provide you with the peace of mind that your pet is receiving the finest possible care at the most reasonable cost.
Introducing another Adult Cat or Kitten to your Cat
It is always going to be challenging to welcome a new cat into your household with your current resident cat. However, it is vital to remember that even when the introduction procedure is carried out with the greatest care, there is no assurance that the cats will get along well with one another. Cats have a natural aversion to living with other cats, and it is critical that you be able to recognize and address this in order to ensure that the cats in your care have the greatest possible welfare, both in terms of their physical health and their psychological well-being.
Your cats may be with you for a long period of time.
In addition to the fact that owners feel much better when their cats get along rather than dislike one another, the stress level of the cats is decreased significantly as well.
Setting up the home for your new cat
In the event that you have decided to adopt a new cat, the first step you should take when you bring the cat home is to restrict the new cat to a single room. In an ideal situation, choose a space that is not frequently used by your resident cat and to which you do not require regular access, such as a spare bedroom or office. Make certain that the new cat’s room has the following items:
- Food, water, comfortable resting spaces with bedding, hiding spots, a litter box, toys, and a scratching post are all provided.
Ideally, these objects should be those that came with the cat, or they should be completely new. You should avoid using some of your resident cat’s items since these items will smell like your resident cat, which may make your new cat feel anxious at a time when you are attempting to assist it feel at ease in its new environment. Similarly, lowering the quantity of possessions that your present cat has (for example, by removing a litter tray) has the potential to cause it unhappiness as well.
This may aid in the adaptation of the new cat to the new surroundings, while it may also aid in the prevention of any emotions of being threatened by the incumbent cat’s territory.
This is what will happen:
- These products should be those that came with the cat, or they should be brand-new in their packaging. You should avoid using some of your resident cat’s items since these items will smell like your resident cat, which may make your new cat feel anxious at a time when you are attempting to assist it feel comfortable in its new surroundings. It’s also possible that limiting the amount of items your present cat has (for example, by getting rid of a litter tray) will make him or her unhappy. The application of synthetic feline face pheromone Feliway Classic in both the new cat’s room as well as the area where the resident cat spends the most of his or her time will also assist to develop a sense of comfort and security in the physical surroundings. In addition, This may help the new cat adjust to its new environment more quickly, while it may also assist the current cat avoid any emotions of being intimidated by the new cat’s presence in the household. Don’t forget to leave plenty of time for your new cat to grow acclimated to his or her new home’s routines and the people who live there, as well as for your new cat’s smell to become a part of the space. As a result of this,
It might take several days to a week or two for the cat to become used to the new environment depending on the cat. The following are signs that your new cat is settling in to its new home environment:
- When you enter the room, friendly behaviors like as approaching you, stroking around your legs, chirruping, purring, and meowing are displayed. The animal is lying on its side with its belly exposed and is prone to turning over. It is occupying itself with its toys
- Furniture, edges of walls, and other things in its room are rubbed against the face of the animal. Behaviours such as normal feeding, drinking, grooming, and toileting
If your new cat is displaying any indications of frustration (as described below) as a result of being kept in a single room, you may desire to offer it with more space, such as a corridor or an additional room that is not shared with your incumbent cat. If this is not feasible, it may be desirable to begin the introduction process as soon as possible after the meeting. The following are examples of signs of frustration caused by confinement:
- The act of scratching or pawing at the entrance and its surroundings, or at the glass
- Cats that meow for several minutes at a time Pacing in front of the entrance
- Arriving at the front door
- When you try to exit the room, someone swipes at you
The procedure of introducing the cats to one another should begin once the cat has become completely comfortable in its own area of the house. Begin by gently introducing the scent of the other cat to each of the cats in your household (without actually physically meeting). This is necessary because cats use the scent of individual cats to determine whether or not they are members of the same social group. To do this, we will create a common fragrance that will allow all of the cats to recognize one another as members of the same social group.
This increases the likelihood that they will accept one another’s bodily presence since they are more likely to perceive one another as members of the same social group if this is accomplished.
More information on the way cats interact with one another through the use of pheromones and odours can be found here.
Step 1: Exchange bedding
Begin by removing one item of each cat’s bedding (for example, a single blanket) and placing it in one of the other cat’s beds to start the fragrance swapping process. There should be enough bedding for both cats so that this change in bedding does not result in either cat having a limited number of sleeping or resting spots after the transition. We anticipate that each cat will lay onto the bedding of the other cat, so blending their two distinct odors to form a more cohesive overall aroma. Keep a close eye on both cats’ responses to the new bedding.
As a result, the cat may need to move through the steps at a much more leisurely rate.
For more than one piece of bedding, you can repeat the technique described above.
This will allow you to measure your resident cat’s reaction to the new cat’s scent as soon as possible after bringing it home.
It is possible to wear a light cotton glove while stroking the cats (one glove for each cat) or use a cloth to wipe over each cat’s facial glands (under the chin, cheeks, and areas in front of the ears) and then wipe it onto the furniture in the part of home where the other cat lives to make the cats feel more comfortable being stroked by the human.
Step 2: Allow exploration of each cat’s area
Starting with one item of each cat’s bedding (for example, a single blanket) and placing it in one of the other cat’s beds, you may gradually increase the number of cats involved. This change of bedding should not leave either cat with a restricted number of sleeping or resting spots, so make sure there is plenty of bedding for both cats. We anticipate that each cat will lay onto the bedding of the other cat, so blending their two distinct aromas to produce a more cohesive overall fragrance. Examine both cats’ reactions to the bedding in the privacy of your own home.
As a result, the cat may need to move through the steps at a much more leisurely pace than usual.
For more than one piece of bedding, this procedure can be performed several times.
This will allow you to assess your current cat’s reaction to the new cat’s fragrance as soon as possible.
It is possible to wear a light cotton glove while stroking the cats (one glove for each cat) or use a cloth to wipe over each cat’s facial glands (under the chin, cheeks, and areas in front of the ears) and then wipe it onto the furniture in the part of home where the other cat lives to make the cats feel more comfortable with being stroked.
As a result, the cats will be able to share scents even more effectively, as well as face rub on the markings to generate a more unified smell.
Step 3: Allow visual contact
Begin by removing one item of each cat’s bedding (for example, a single blanket) and placing it in one of the other cat’s beds to begin the fragrance swapping process. There should be enough bedding for both cats so that this change in bedding does not result in either cat having a limited number of sleeping or resting spots throughout the transition. It is intended that each cat would lay on the bedding of the other cat, so mingling their two distinct odours to produce a more unified aroma. Observe both cats’ responses to the bedding in complete silence.
- As a result, the cat may need to move through the steps at a much more leisurely rate.
- Repeat this procedure for each additional piece of bedding.
- It is possible that the resident cat will have a higher chance of dealing with the new cat’s smell before the new cat physically enters the home if the resident cat accepts the smell of the new cat prior to the new cat physically entering the home.
- As a result, the cats will be able to swap scents much more effectively, as well as face rub on the markings to generate a more unified aroma.
- Begin by removing one item of each cat’s bedding (for example, a single blanket) and placing it in one of the other cat’s beds. There should be enough bedding for both cats so that the change in bedding does not leave each cat with a limited number of sleeping/resting spots. It is intended that each cat would lay onto the bedding of the other cat, so mingling their two distinct odours to produce a more unified aroma. Keep a close eye on both cats’ responses to the bedding in complete silence. A cat who exhibits negative behaviors toward the bedding, such as deliberately avoiding it or even hissing at it, may be less inclined to accept a new cat into its home, and as a result, will need to move through the phases at a much slower pace. Once the cats have become comfortable in the presence of the bedding, the bedding can be moved back into the original cat’s chamber to allow for further mingling of scents. This procedure can be performed for more than one piece of bedding. Extra tip: If at all feasible, attempt to collect some bedding from your new cat before bringing it home so that you may assess your current cat’s reaction to the new cat’s fragrance as soon as possible. If the resident cat accepts the smell of the new cat before the new cat physically enters the home, it may have a better chance of coping with the sounds, sights, and smells (at a higher concentration) of the new cat when it finally arrives. If the cats enjoy being stroked, a light cotton glove can be worn while stroking the cats (one glove for each cat), or a cloth can be wiped over each cat’s facial glands (under the chin, cheeks, and areas in front of the ears) and then wiped onto the furniture in the part of the home where the other cat lives. This will allow for increased smell exchange as well as the potential for the cats to face rub on top of the markings, resulting in the creation of a communal aroma.
Advice for using crates positively for kitten introductions only
- The use of crates, such as those used for dogs, for adult cat introductions should be avoided at all costs since the limited size of a box limits their ability to flee from the other cat. For kittens who have become accustomed to being house-trained during their early development or who have been positively trained to enjoy being in a crate, it may be possible to use this method during introductions if your home does not have separate rooms or cannot be divided in any other way, such as using a crate. If you want to bring a cat or kitten to your home, never confine one or both to a cat carrier since they do not allow any option for escape. Cats can be introduced to their new environment through the use of a large crate in a room that is strategically placed in the corner and partially covered with a blanket to provide an area where the kitten can be out of sight. In addition to a blanket covering one area of the cage, the crate should always contain a hiding place within it where the cat can remove itself from visual view. The crate might be furnished with a cardboard box or an igloo bed in order to accomplish this. Having a place to hide when the resident cat comes gives the kitten the opportunity to relax. The entrance to the room may then be opened and the resident cat can be let out to explore the room while the kitten is contained in the crate. The kitten can be distracted with a few treats or high-value toys, and the resident cat can be fed a high-value food reward as well, in order to establish good connections between the two cats. These goodies should be saved for times when the two cats are exposed to each other in order to retain their value. Crates should be spacious enough for the kitten to be able to walk around freely and should have essential resources such as food, water, a litter tray, and a hiding spot. These materials must be placed as far apart from one another as possible, which means that the larger the container, the better the result.
When people are in visual proximity to one another, they should experience positive sentiments. As a result, cats can be played with or provided food treats, with each activity occurring independently of the other. It should never be a competition of stares. Instead, the cats should be content with going about their own business while yet being able to gaze at one another sometimes. Allowing them to smell one another through a barrier is acceptable; however, any signs of negative behavior toward one another (e.g., growling, hissing, flattening or rotating of ears with tense body posture) should be immediately distracted, for example, by luring the instigator of the negative behavior out of sight of the other cat using a toy such as a fishing rod toy.
If there is more than one resident cat, visual contact should be established between only two cats at first (one resident each time and the new cat), and subsequently the number of cats should be increased as necessary (more residents and the new cat).
As soon as one of the cats displays symptoms of anxiety or antagonism toward the other, remove the cats physically and visually from one another immediately.
As a result, the cats may begin to feel more comfortable with one another once more.
In these situations, Feliway Classic and Feliway Friends can be used in conjunction with one another.
Step 4: Physical access but supervised contact
This following stage should only be carried out once the cats are completely familiar with the idea of seeing each other via a barrier. It is preferable if the removal or opening of the barrier occurs softly, particularly at a time when both cats are engaged in a joyful activity such as playing or eating. Never push the cats together and always try to be as passive as possible. The primary goal is for the cats to feel comfortable in each other’s company; they do not need to be physically engaging in order to achieve this.
If cats appear to be at ease when in the presence of one another, then physical access should be provided as frequently as feasible under supervision.
Step 5: Free access without supervision for short periods
When the cats are completely comfortable with viewing each other over a barrier, they should proceed to the following step. The process of removing or opening the barrier should be done discreetly, particularly at a time when both cats are engaged in a joyful activity such as playing or eating. Attempting to observe passively while attempting to herd the cats is not a good idea. In order for the cats to feel comfortable in each other’s company, they do not need to be physically engaging with one another.
It is recommended that physical access to other cats be provided as frequently as possible if the cats look to be calm in each other’s presence.
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How to Introduce a New Kitten to Your Cat
Getting a new kitten is a lot of joy, but not everyone in your family will be as enthusiastic as you are about your new addition. Each product that we showcase has been picked and vetted by our editorial staff after being thoroughly researched and tested. If you make a purchase after clicking on one of the links on this page, we may receive a commission. Kittens are simply simple entertaining to have around the house. There are no limits to how much fun they may have with their silly personalities and entertaining behaviors!
Follow these easy procedures to successfully introduce a kitten to an established cat colony.
8 Expert Tips to Help You Introduce a New Kitten to Your Cat
You should take into consideration your present cat’s personality, age, and attitude before adding a new kitten to your family. If your cat is in the prime of her life and has a brave, outgoing attitude, she may find it interesting to have an intriguing new roommate to observe and engage in play activities with. The addition of a new kitten, on the other hand, may cause your cat to become worried and stressed if your cat is becoming older or has a reclusive attitude. Most cats will eventually accept a new kitten, but if you know your cat will be sad as a result of the new kitten, you may wish to postpone the adoption of a new kitten.
2. Introduce by scent first.
Starting with anything that smells like the kitten can help your cat get used to the idea of being around the kitten, recommends Zazie Todd, PhD, social psychologist and writer of the famous blogCompanion Animal Psychology, as well as author of ” Wag: The Science of Making Your Dog Happy.” “Take something from the kitten’s bedding and show it to the cat,” she suggests. “After that, be certain you pamper your cat.” Todd believes that using food as a positive association can aid in the development of the relationship.
3. Provide the cats separate space at first.
Your new kitten should be kept in a separate area from your existing cat. They will be able to begin getting acclimated to one other’s aroma without having to approach each other face to face in this manner. Finally, after a few days, place the kitten in its carrier or a room with a screen door so that they may see and smell each other while in a secure environment. Don’t be concerned if your senior cat hisses, yowls, and flees as you approach (some cats can be drama queens). Eventually, your cat’s curiosity will win out, and he will begin to approach the kitten once more.
4. Infuse calming influences.
The introduction phase can be made easier by utilizing a pheromone spray to relax both cats throughout the transition period. To Todd, “there is evidence that pheromones are effective in promoting cat socialization.” She suggests the Feliway Multicat diffuser, which has been shown to reduce cat anxiety.
5. Be patient.
Introduce your kitten to your cat slowly and methodically rather than hurriedly. Cats are creatures of habit, and they may be offended by the introduction of a young feline at first, but things will usually work out in the end. It is your responsibility to maintain your composure and optimism, and never attempt to push the animals together before they are ready.
6. Feed your kitten at the same time.
Feeding your cats at the same time from opposite sides of the screen or kitten carrier may be a good idea. Your elder cat will come to link the new kitten with a positive experience as a result of this behavior.
7. Give your kitten her own litter box.
Always make sure that your new kitten has his or her own litter box, food and water bowls, and that they are separate from where your current cat eats and goes to the bathroom.
Todd believes that kittens and cats should be given their own space and belongings. It’s less likely that there will be disagreements if each animal has its own meals and restroom facilities.
8. Know when to play referee.
When you believe your cat has gotten accustomed to the kitten’s presence, you can place them in the same room together for a short while. Simply said, be prepared to arbitrate any future disagreements. Generally, though, the existing cat will hiss and stalk away or may meet the kitten with a short sniff and then completely disregard its presence. Keep in mind, too, that kittens can be oblivious to their surroundings and may continue to attempt to play with or even jump on the larger cat. If this occurs, divert the kitten’s attention by providing a treator toy and positive reinforcement.
Introducing a New Kitten to Your Cat
“Please introduce yourself to your new sister!” The arrival of a new kitten into the family is a joyous and exciting occasion for the entire family, especially the children. with the exception of your present cat, of course! It doesn’t matter how kind and affectionate your present cat is; she’s still a cat, and as such, she’s innately territorial and conscious of her position in a tight social pecking order. The introduction of a charming ball of fluff into her environment has the potential to cause a variety of undesirable reactions.
There will be discomfort due to the fact that cats are very picky about the hygiene of their own bathroom facilities.
However, with a little forethought, sound psychology, and thoughtful thinking, you can assist to make the process of introduction relatively stress-free and lay the groundwork for the kind of camaraderie and companionship that makes being a ‘two-cat family’ such a pleasure.
Step 1: prepare your home
Preferably, before your new kitten arrives at your house, take a new toy or blanket to the breeder’s or pet store and have some of your new cat’s fragrance rubbed into the item before returning it. Allow your existing cat to grow acquainted with this by leaving it lying around the house for a while. At the time of their first meeting, she will recognize the aroma as something that is not dangerous. For the first few days, set aside an area (a spare bedroom or the utility room) for the new kitten to live in, complete with a water dish, food dish, toys and bedding for her to sleep in.
Step 2: let them get to know each other’s scent
Keep your existing cat separated in a separate room, also surrounded by her favorite things, on the day of the arrival of the new cat. Bring the new kitten inside the house, give her a brief tour to get her used to her new surroundings, and then put her in her own room. You should only allow the resident cat to come out of her room at this point (but make sure she is kept apart from the kitten). Allow her to sniff your hands, which are now scented with the kitten’s aroma, and then offer her goodies to comfort her and help her make the connection between the new smell and ‘positive things occurring.’ Over the course of the first few days, gradually integrate the kitten’s fragrance into the home by switching food bowls and bedding with the other pets.
Allow them to independently explore the other’s area as soon as they are both comfortable with each other’s smell, but keep them apart until they are comfortable doing so.
Step 3: finally, allow them to meet
Keep your existing cat separated in a separate room, also surrounded by her favorite things, on the day of the arrival of your new cat. Provide a brief tour of the house to the new kitten to help her become acclimated, and then place her in her own room for the rest of the night. You should only allow the resident cat to come out of her room at this point (but make sure she is kept away from the kitten). Allow your hands to get coated in the kitten’s fragrance and offer her snacks to calm her while establishing a link between the new smell and ‘positive things happening’ in her world.
Allow them to independently explore the other’s area as soon as they are both comfortable with each other’s smell, but keep them separated until they are comfortable.
Step 4: build on your success and treat them both equally
Separate them immediately following their first mealtime together and keep them apart until their next mealtime, gradually increasing the amount of time they spend together. During their time together, distribute rewards, affection, and attention evenly amongst them in order to not only develop pleasant associations, but also to emphasize that there is no bias on their part. Remember that, as the ‘leader of the pack,’ it is not your obligation to arbitrate between them or choose who should be regarded as the ‘top cat’ – they will naturally work this out between themselves.
Everyone adores an adorable kitten, and one of the pleasures of having a second cat is the opportunity to make a big deal about the new addition to the family.
And it is a formula for a very contented two-cat household!
The Do’s and Don’ts of Introducing Cats to Each Other
The fact is that cats are extremely territorial creatures, as we all know. Despite this, whenever the question of introducing two cats came up throughout the years, I would repeatedly hear people say, “Just put them in the same room and they’ll figure it out.” Is it possible for it to function on occasion? Sure, but it’s cat Russian Roulette; they could figure out who loses an eyeball just as often as they figure out who doesn’t. However, they will not miraculously figure out how to be friends.
Follow this time-tested, step-by-step protocol to the letter if you want to offer yourself and your cats the best chance of a successful integration.
How to Introduce Cats
Step One– Preparation: Meals on the Schedule and Basecamp Before you bring your new cat home, there are a few important things you should do to offer yourself a major advantage in the process. These are as follows: If you already have a cat, make sure you have turned her over to a pattern of meal feeding rather than free-feeding her. A.No free-feeding. When it comes to my method, this notion is fundamental, and nowhere is it more crucial than throughout the introduction phase. Once these planned meal times are established, it will provide the ground for both your existing cat and your newcomer to experience a shared, ceremonial way of being: they will both be fed at the same time, x number of times per day, for the foreseeable future.
A separate Base Camp (as well as the obligatory isolation phase) – In your house, a cat’s base camp is a specified region that serves as the core of the cat’s territory.
This might be the master bedroom or a second bedroom, an office, or even the bathroom if there is no other alternative available to the homeowner.
As long as the human fragrance is strong, it will aid the cat in establishing a sense of belonging by mixing odours with other animals. Also included are a few other critical components of a good base camp routine, which include the following:
- Keep lots of “fragrance soakers” at their base camp since cats are highly attracted to the scent of their surroundings. Fragrance soakers are soft materials that absorb a cat’s scent and, in essence, indicate “I live here,” while also allowing for rubbing, scratching, and sleeping in the item. Everything from beds to blankets to carpets to cardboard scratchers to scratches posts are good smell absorbers.
- It is important to note that this integration strategy is distinguished by the fact that the new cat and the resident will not first look each other in the eyes. This is a non-negotiable requirement. At your peril, you will choose to ignore this portion of the introduction procedure.
Once your new cat has demonstrated a significant amount of comfort in his new home, it’s time to introduce him to…
- Site switching is a technique in which one cat gets to explore the territory of the other without ever having to come face to face with the other. This is also an excellent time for essential signposts such as cat trees, litter boxes, and other such items to develop a common aroma. Cats rely on smell for the majority of their communication, thus getting to know them is essential to the “getting to know you” process.
Follow this simple process for harmonious site swapping:
1. Take the newbie out of his base camp and place him in the bathroom, then close the door behind him. 2. Give permission for the resident cat to step into the newcomer’s base camp, then close the door behind him. 3. Give the newbie the opportunity to tour the remainder of the house. 4. Rinse well and repeat. And, by the way, your new cat will let you know when he’s ready to leave base camp and explore the rest of the home on his own initiative. For example, it might take anything from a few hours to many days.
- The Feeding Ritual on the “Other Side of the Door”: This feeding routine, which is all about establishing a good link between the newcomer and the existing cat, has altered through the years, but it has, for the most part, always been successful for us. What exactly is involved? Mealtime will consist of two bowls put up on opposite side of a closed door, which will serve as the entire meal. These bowls should be spaced far enough apart so that the cats may go up to them, eat, and then walk away without encountering each other, but near enough so that they are aware of the presence of another cat on the other side of the door as well. Starting from there, we gradually bring the bowls closer to one other.
Here’s a video with further information: Eventually, this will bring us to a situation where…
Step Two – Visual Access
After a few weeks of being able to smell each other’s fragrance, it is time to let the cats to actually see each other. All of your hard work has resulted in predictable behavior between the two cats as well as a friendly (or at least tolerant) “scent handshake” after every meal. It is erroneous, however, to believe that they will remain as friendly after the visual aspect is added to the conversation. As an alternative, start from the beginning and reset the Challenge Line; then bring the feeding line all the way back to the beginning so that they can eat with little or no disturbance.
- But first and foremost, you must make a decision…
- The use of a pet gate or a screen door to introduce the cats has proven to be the most effective method in my experience.
- Once you’ve decided on a method, take into consideration…
- The “Raising the Curtain” approach – This technique is similar to the one used in the movie “Raising the Curtain.” Make use of clothespins to put a blanket over that gate or drape a blanket over the screen (or, perhaps less effectively, a cracked door).
- The curtain enables you to begin with the bare minimum of visual access possible to begin with.
- Step Three–Eat, Play, and Fall in Love The goal here is to bring both cats into a room together, without any form of barrier, and maintain things as amicable as possible for increasing amounts of time as the experiment continues.
- In order to facilitate the ultimate positive association, you should arrange for both cats to co-exist in a room together.
- Never forget that bringing both cats into a common place without providing them with anything to do is the worst thing you can do for any type of in-person/no boundaries introduction.
- When introducing cats during the Eat Play Love period, it’s important to pay attention to the environment and be prepared to respond immediately if any warning signals appear.
As a result, it’s critical for you to have a strategy in place in case disagreement arises, and it’s perfectly OK if it does. Here’s a checklist to help you feel more prepared in the event that anything unexpected happens.
- When it comes to fights, the pursuit is generally the first thing that takes place. Chasing ends up in a room, a closet, behind a bed, or under a piece of furniture that you never imagined would be big enough for one cat, much alone two. When it comes to regulating chaos, one must first manage the space—and this means closing up the Underworld and shutting off the Outlands
- Prepare Your Sight Blockers Ahead of Time: This item is used to direct someone out of a room and it is something that does the following: In order to prevent the cats from seeing through it, it must be substantial enough that you can set it between them and they will not be able to bust through it, and it must be high enough that you will not be need to bend down to place it between them.
- Using a blanket as a last resort removal option can be useful in the event of a significant lockdown, when you are unable to coax the cats out of their hiding places even with the Sight Blockers down, or when a fight breaks out despite your best efforts. Basically, just throw it over one of them and scoop him up to get rid of him from the room.
A. How It Works – The gist of the Eat, Play, Love (EPL) philosophy is rather straightforward: When you introduce one cat into a room where there is already another cat engaged in a high-value, completely engrossed activity, you are creating a conflict. And your goal is to keep them engaged for as long as possible with goodies, positive reinforcement, play, and… well… love—all while avoiding the dreaded staredown/throwdown scenario from occurring. I recommend that you work with a partner to help you through the process: 1.Begin with One Cat: Begin by playing with only one cat in the room to get a feel for the situation.
- 2.Invite the Other Cat: Have your lover casually bring the other cat into the room and instantly engage him in conversation.
- A perfect world would be one in which you would bring your cat into the space with whichever food or toy they like the most.
- 3.Keep the “Rhythm” Going: This is where your partner’s assistance is crucial, since he or she can strive to keep the other cat focused on the session while you work to keep your cat focused on the session.
- It goes without saying that you would choose the latter option over the former every time.
- From there, you may remove the door/gate barrier for lunchtime and conclude the session by feeding the cats on the side of the room that they are currently occupying (if applicable).
- Check out my latest book, Total Cat Mojo, for more more information on the Cat-to-Cat Introduction procedure, including an entire chapter dedicated to it.
- The Best and Worst Ways to Train Your Cat
- Before You Get a Kitten
- How to Introduce Two Cats
5 Steps to Introducing a New Kitten to Your Resident Cat
“My cat would love to have a kitten to play with!” Well… it’s possible. Cats are territorial creatures, and while your local cat may seem relaxed back and friendly, all cats are territorial. Introducing a little, energetic fluffball to your household may cause panic, jealousy, moodiness, aggressiveness, and other unpleasant behaviors in your existing cat, depending on his or her temperament. Follow these five actions to make everyone’s stress levels lessened:
Step 1: Prepare your resident cat before the kitten arrives
When your resident cat recognizes the fragrance of the new kitten, he or she is less likely to feel scared by the new arrival. If at all possible, bring a pet blanket to the shelter or facility from where you will be adopting the kitten and massage the aroma of your kitten into the blanket before dropping it off. When you go home, put the blanket in a position where your cat will be able to discover it on his or her own and grow comfortable with the aroma of the blanket.
If you already have a cat that you free-feed, you should transition to meal feeding before bringing home the kitten. Mealtimes that are scheduled help to build a regular and soothing routine.
Step 2: Prepare your home before the kitten arrives
It’s tempting to put the new kitten and the current cat in the same room and let them have it out with each other. Please don’t do that! Both cats require some time to become used to the other’s presence before meeting in person (or, more accurately, “in cat”). They also require a secure haven to which they may withdraw when they are feeling overwhelmed. Prepare distinct areas for each cat that can be closed off from the rest of the house to ensure their safety. It is possible that a utility room, office, extra bedroom, or bathroom will suffice.
Step 3: Introduce your cats by scent
Because fragrance plays a significant role in your cats’ communication, it’s critical to establish a favorable “scent” relationship between the two cats before they meet in person. Place your resident cat in a separate room with its favorite items on the day your kitten is due to be delivered (see Step 2). Make a point of showing your cat about the house before settling the kitten into its own private room. You may now let your resident cat to leave its enclosure. Toss some kitten-scented snacks into your cat’s bowl and let her smell your hands and clothes.
This video provides useful hints on how to educate your cats to “scent” one other and interact with one another.
Step 4: Create a socially distanced meet-and-greet
As soon as your cat and kitten have been acclimated to each other’s odors, allow them to view each other via a pet gate or a screen door, or enable them to sniff underneath the door of the other cat’s “safe room.” Place their food bowls on each side of a closed door when they are eating (not too close together at first). Each cat will be able to detect the presence of another cat on the opposite side of the door as a result of this. After both cats have learned to behave properly while they are in close proximity to one another, you can allow them to meet.
Step 5: Informally introduce your kitten and cat
When it appears that both cats are ready to meet face to face, without a barrier between them, bring one cat into the room and engage it in active play and/or treat-based training. Bring in another person to assist you in bringing in the other cat and ensuring that both cats are treated equally. Examine each cat’s body language carefully for warning indicators such as hissing, growling, arching the back of their necks, trembling, antagonistic movements, and signs of distress. Prepare with blankets in case one cat becomes hostile and you need to swiftly and quietly separate them..
As the cats’ tolerance and acceptance of one another grows, you may progressively increase the amount of time they spend together.
Pounces, running, rolling, batting, hiding, pursuing, and fighting for toys and attention are all examples of normal, non-aggressive play.
The introduction procedure will take at least a week – and maybe much more – depending on the temperaments of the cats involved.
Be patient with your kitten and cat as they learn to get along with one another. Reward them when they exhibit acceptable conduct. It is hoped that your kittens would establish mutual regard and friendship in the near future, maybe even developing into lifetime companions.
5 Tips for Introducing a Kitten to Adult Cats
Approximately 3 minutes of reading time There’s nothing quite like the infusion of new life and enthusiasm that a kitten brings into your household! If you generally adopt adult cats, introducing a kitten to your household may be a fantastic adventure that will infuse your home with a spirit of play and happiness. If you already have multiple cats in your home, you’ll want to make sure that the introduction of your kitten is as stress-free and seamless as possible – for both your kitten and the other cats in your home, as well as yourself.
Slow and Easy
This is usually a good tip to follow when introducing a cat to someone. It is also important to consider safety when adopting a kitten because kittens are tiny and might quickly injure themselves if placed in an unfamiliar environment or amid larger, more powerful cats. Isolate the kitten in a tiny space that is devoid of hazards and locations where it may fall. As a result, the only accessible area for our new cat was a bedroom, which I made into a floor mattress to minimize the possibility of the kitten falling out of bed.
- Stimulation may be provided through the use of safe cat toys and your personal presence.
- Of course, you should supply him with the necessities such as a litter box that he can easily get into and out of, a scratching post, hiding places, food, and water, among other things.
- In a household with many cats, the variables include a variety of distinct cat personalities.
- I didn’t expose the kitten to all five cats at the same time; instead, I planned it so that the kitten might meet one or two cats at a time, depending on the situation.
- As with any introduction, it’s best to start slowly.
- Then I’ll place the kitten in a room, carefully contained in a carrier, and let one or two of the other cats take a quick look at him before releasing him.
- Keep an eye out for signals that your kitten and cats are getting ready to spend more time together.
- Assuming he has undergone a medical examination and is okay to be around your other cats, you should proceed with the introductions.
Empty Mind, Beginner’s Mind
My suspicions were confirmed when I brought the kitten home, and I realized that two of my five cats might be a problem. I was concerned that they might injure or kill the cat. These were erroneous assumptions, but you should be prepared for anything.
In one instance, a kitten and an adult cat (who had previously been wild) proved to be excellent friends. They were constantly engaged in play, and the adult had all of the patience in the world for the kitten’s seemingly limitless energy.
Let Teaching Happen
There’s nothing more endearing than seeing an experienced cat instruct a kitten on how to act properly. Kitty kittens are full of activity, and if your elder cats are well-behaved and safe, they’ll be able to educate your kitten the difference between what is good and wrong. My kitten was abandoned by his mother very immediately, thus he never had any early instruction in good conduct from her. My mature cats, on the other hand, rose to the occasion. They patiently endured his non-stop playing and wrestling, and they were quick to tell the cat when enough was enough.
Fortunately, my kitten has learnt not to bite and now understands that it is acceptable to roughhouse with some of the other cats but not with humans.
Escape Plans in Place
When the kitten gets too much for your cats, they will want a safe haven to retreat to. According to the kitten’s size, this may be steps, a wall or ceiling, a counter top, or even an entirely different room. Allow your elder cats to take a break if the kitten becomes too much for them to handle. Also provide a safe haven for the kitten in the event that other cats are threatening or hostile against him.
Spread the Love
Introductions and acceptance of the newcomer will go more smoothly if the existing cats do not feel replaced or abandoned by the new arrival. During this time, make certain that all of your cats receive the affection and care they need. One of the cats in my family enjoys being brushed. Another enjoys being held and riding on the shoulders of others. Take time to nurture your relationship with each cat, while also creating a new and growing relationship with your kitten. You are laying the groundwork for many years of happiness.
Kenneth Martin, a board-certified veterinary behaviorist, and/or Debbie Martin, a veterinary technician expert in behavior, have both read and revised this article for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
Catherine Holm is the award-winning author of cat fantasy fiction and cat-themed memoir. She lives in Vermont with her husband and five well-loved cats. Learn about her work atwww.catherineholm.com.
Published on the 8th of July, 2019.
Introducing your new cat to resident cats
When you bring a new cat into your house, it might be a major adjustment for your existing cat (s). Why? Because your existing cats are likely to perceive the new cat as a threat rather than a friend at first glance. That’s not the ideal way to begin a relationship, but that’s the way cats operate in the real world. There is, however, some good news! By following these guidelines, your new cat is more likely to be accepted by your existing cat(s), resulting in at the very least peaceful coexistence and, ideally, bonding.
Consider your current cat’s needs.
Your incumbent cat will be quite upset when you introduce another cat into your home (s). Why? The reason for this is that your cats are likely to perceive the new cat as an adversary rather as a companion at first. There are worse ways to begin a relationship, but that is the truth when it comes to cat relationships.
There is, however, some positive news to share with you. With the help of these tips, your new cat is more likely to be welcomed by your existing cat(s), resulting in at the very least peaceful cohabitation and, preferably, bonding.
What’s their experience with other cats?
Your cat may need some time to acclimate to a new cat in the house, especially if they have never been around other cats until when they were kittens. The new cat should be well-known to enjoy the company of other cats, since this will likely make the introduction process less difficult for everyone involved.
The introduction of cats should be a gradual approach. As a matter of fact, the more time spent on the procedure, the greater the likelihood of a successful introduction. If you say “slow,” it signifies that you’re going at the same rate as your cat who is most stressed. This may be the new cat or it could be the resident cat (s). This introduction might take a few days, a few weeks, or even months, depending on the cat. In the short term, it may be tempting to speed the process, but patience will ultimately benefit everyone in the family (both people and cats) in the long run.
Step 1: Separate the cats
During the first phases of this introduction procedure, your new cat should be kept in a separate room with the rest of the household. In order for the new cat to begin to feel comfortable in their new territory and for the current cat to acclimate to the new cat’s presence in the home, it is necessary to do so as soon as possible. The new cat should be housed in a room where the incumbent cat does not spend a lot of time in order to ensure that everyone has a successful relationship. If you live in a small flat, this may not be possible.
During this time of separation, you might alternate the cats’ bedding to allow them to become accustomed to each other’s scent.
Do not proceed to the next stage until both the new cat and the resident cat are behaving calmly and comfortably together.
The incumbent cat should be behaving in the same manner as they did before to the advent of the new cat.
Step 2: Create positive associations
Now you’ve got two or more cats that may be intrigued about each other based on their scent, but who may also be afraid and/or agitated by the presence of the other. The purpose of this stage is to demonstrate to the cats that pleasant things (such as rewards) happen when they meet each other, in order to establish positive connections between them and one another. To begin, identify a snack or treat that each cat enjoys (that is different from their normal diet). From now on, they will only be able to enjoy this reward if they are in the presence of the other cat.
At this point, there should be no direct interaction between the cats.
Neither cat should be picked up and pushed to come into contact with the other cat.
Here are two examples of how to use the baby gate to generate good connections (the first would take place before the second):
The baby gate should be covered with a sheet so that the cats can’t see each other. After a few moments, lift the sheet and call out, “Happy kitties!” (or anything else you’d want to say) and toss a treat to each of the felines. Then cover the baby gate with the sheet as soon as possible. This is simpler to accomplish if there is a second person there, although it may be accomplished by one person. Repetition of this practice five to ten times in succession, at least once or twice a day, is recommended.
Prevent tension from manifesting itself by concluding the conversation on a good note before any indications of stress manifest themselves in one of the cats.
Engage the cats in interactive play by holding a toy in each hand (or, better still, by having a second person on one side of the baby gate and you on the other). Use a different toy for each cat to keep things interesting. Cat laser lights or a fishing rod toy, which has a long rope and feathers tied to the rod, are both good options. Keep the gaming sessions brief and to the point. Always come to an end to the game on a positive note (before the cats show any indications of stress) and give the cats a treat as a reward.
When you notice encouraging signs that the cats are becoming more comfortable with one another, you may increase the amount of time they spend together and decrease the distance between you and the animals when you toss the treats.
- When the goodies are consumed in the presence of the other cat. In the presence of the other cat, he is occupied with a toy
- On opposite sides of the baby gate, they are completely ignoring one another and going about their business. touching noses through the fence, dancing beneath the gate, and/or pressing their bodies against the gate are all common occurrences.
When you notice signs that one or more of the cats is anxious, you should go more slowly with the procedure. If one or more cats exhibits a very high level of stress, the procedure should be reversed. It is not a setback; rather, it indicates that the procedure will take longer to complete than you had originally anticipated. The following are examples of warning signs:
- A pattern of hissing or growling directed towards the other cat A hiss or two here and there isn’t a cause for concern as long as the cat is otherwise behaving in a positive manner
- They are putting themselves in a position where they cannot see the other. For the new cat, this may entail hiding in their room until the situation is resolved. This may entail the resident cat fleeing to another room
- Nevertheless, it is unlikely. Body language that is tense. Take note of any of the following characteristics: a swishing tail, ears flattened back against the head or twisted sideways, hair on the back of their neck lifted, hiding or slinking away
Step 3: Supervised time together
It has been several months since the cats have become increasingly acquainted with one another, but they have not yet engaged directly. You may now allow them to spend supervised time together without the use of a baby gate. Treats should be given to them for any encounters that are either good or neutral. At the first sign of a bad interaction (such as stalking, chasing, or pouncing), use a toy to divert and redirect the cats’ attention. Try to conclude the contact on a positive note, and then progressively increase the length of time that the cats are allowed to spend in the same location under your close watch as the relationship continues.
Set the cats up for a positive relationship.
To ensure a successful introduction, make certain that the home environment provides enough of everything for each cat, including enough litter boxes, scratching posts, water bowls, food bowls, hiding places, comfortable resting spaces, toys and human attention, so that the cats do not feel they are competing for any of these resources. It’s also critical that the cats have adequate elevated resting areas to keep them comfortable (any object from a few inches off the floor to a few inches from the ceiling).
Cats enjoy perching on things, and doing so makes them feel more secure in their surroundings. Furthermore, larger resting places enhance the amount of territory available in the house, increasing the likelihood of harmonious cohabitation among cats.