Introduce a New Kitten to Your Older Cat
Many cat owners are unaware that their sociable, single-adult cats may have difficulty interacting with a new kitten, despite their best efforts. In most cases, a new kitten is anxious to make friends, but elder cats in the home may not want anything to do with the new kitten. It is common for elder cats to act depressed, reclusive, hiss a lot, and occasionally even stop eating if they are not adjusting well to the new member of the family in their lives. Cats are averse to change, which is especially true when it concerns their established area, as seen by these actions.
Preparation is essential for a successful introduction of a new kitten into your household with an existing cat.
By following these steps, you will give yourself (and your elder cat) plenty of time to prepare for this transition.
Calm Your Older Cat
Any cat will benefit from the usage of pheromones to create a quiet atmosphere. The weeks leading up to the arrival of a new kitten are an excellent opportunity to put them to good use. You may get a cat to feel calm without giving him or her any medicines by using diffusers, sprays, and wipes. Consider utilizing pheromones for at least a few weeks before bringing a cat into your household. You might try nutritional supplements that are meant to relax cats if you believe your elder cat may become nervous and worried as a result of the arrival of a new kitten.
They usually function best if they are administered a few weeks before the expected stressful event and can be continued after the new kitten has been introduced to the household.
Get Your Home Ready
The placement of new objects for your kitten in and around your home should be completed prior to the kitten’s arrival, including food bowls, beds, a second litter box, and toys. Start putting these objects in their new locations about a week before the new arrival so that your adult cat may get used to the smells and become acclimated to the new surroundings. If at all possible, try to include objects that already have the fragrance of the cat on them in your collection. Make sure you’re prepared for the arrival of the cat.
During the first week or two, confine your new kitten to a tiny area, such as a bathroom, where he or she may rest and recuperate.
This area should contain all of the kitten’s things (such as a litter box and food bowls), as well as an item of furniture that belongs to your elder cat.
Prepare Your Cat
Make sure your senior cat is in good health. Adding additional stress to an already stressed cat can only make matters worse, and you want your cat to be not just emotionally prepared for a new kitten, but also physically prepared to deal with the new kitten. Schedule a checkup with your veterinarian to ensure that your cat is healthy and that all of its vaccines have been updated. When it comes to kittens, respiratory infections are widespread, and you’ll want your older cat’s immune system to be ready to deal with whatever comes into the house.
While older cats may occasionally warm up to a new kitten right immediately, they normally require some time to acclimatize to the new environment and circumstances.
You’ll want to make certain that, regardless of how your cat feels about the new kitten, things remain calm and that you have the greatest opportunity possible of forming a lasting friendship from the beginning of the relationship.
Introduce Your Cat to the New Kitten
Allow your cat to sniff your kitten when the kitten is in a carrier or in your arms when you first get it home from the shelter. Go right to the room that you had previously chosen and set up for your new kitten, and let the kitten to explore on his or her own time. The litter box, food bowls, bed, and a few toys should all be within easy reach of the pet’s location. Allowing your adult cat to have unfettered access to the kitten is not recommended. Keep the kitten in its assigned room with the door closed at night, while you are absent from the house, and anytime you are unable to oversee the kitten and your larger cat, as appropriate.
This should be done for roughly a week, depending on how your cat reacts to the new environment.
It will want your care and support, and the aroma of the cat on your clothing will assist it in becoming acclimated to the new arrival.
Encourage Time Together
Allow your cat to sniff your kitten whether it is in a carrier or in your arms when you first bring it home. Take your new kitten right to the room you had previously allocated and set up for him/her. Allow the kitten to explore. The litter box, food dishes, bed, and a few toys should all be within easy reach of the pet owner. Maintain strict supervision over the kitten’s interaction with your older cat. Maintain a kitten’s isolation in a designated room with the door closed at night, while you are absent, and whenever you are unable to oversee the kitten and your elder cat.
Depending on how your cat is reacting to the modifications, you should repeat this process for about a week.
After you’ve finished playing with your kitten, don’t forget to give your elder cat plenty of attention. It will want your care and encouragement, and the aroma of the cat on your clothing will assist it in becoming acclimated to the newcomer.
Allow Your Cat to Establish a Hierarchy
Cats require a sense of hierarchy, and a new member of the household must be aware of its place in the hierarchy. It is possible that your older cat will attempt to create a hierarchy with the new kitten for a short amount of time. When the newcomer does anything that your elder cat does not like, your older cat may hiss and swipe at the kitten. This is totally natural, and as long as it is only hissing and swatting, you should avoid interfering with the situation. Your elder cat is establishing its position as the dominant cat in the family, and the kitten is learning what it means to be the new cat and what it means to be the dominating cat.
Problems and Proofing Behavior
Despite the fact that the first few meetings are not positive, don’t give up. It may take some time for older cats to become used to a younger cat. A typical error is to accelerate the socializing of cats, only to become angry or irritated when things don’t work out as planned later on. Maintain your composure and work in little increments to bring the cats closer. Attempt to schedule your encounters and gradually increase the amount of time you spend together. Speak with your veterinarian or a behavior specialist if your elder cat is very hostile toward the new kitten and might benefit from their advice.
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.
Allow plenty of time for your new cat to become acclimated to the routines of your new house and the people who live in it, as well as for your new cat’s smell to become a part of the space in which it will reside. This is what will happen:
- In a proactive manner, by rubbing the scent gland regions on the sides of your cat’s face against furniture and the corners of the walls, and by scratching its scratching post
- Observe your cat napping and relaxing on bedding and playing with toys in a passive manner
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 act of scratching or pawing at the entrance and its surrounding area, or at the glass. cat meowing over a period of many minutes at a time Drooling in front of the entrance; As I walk up to the front door, I hear the doorbell ring. When you try to exit the room, he swipes at you from behind.
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.
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 collective aroma among the cats.
Step 2: Allow exploration of each cat’s area
The resident cat might be temporarily restrained (for example, during the night, to the owner’s bedroom) to allow the new cat to investigate the resident cat’s part of the home if they do not display any unpleasant reactions to the smell of one another on their bedding (and on their rubbed regions). Nonetheless, confinement should only be implemented if it is unlikely to result in any suffering, such as frustration. Instead, the new cat might be temporarily taken from its room (and confined elsewhere) to enable the incumbent cat more freedom of exploration.
Step 3: Allow visual contact
The cats should only be permitted to interact with one another when they have been completely comfortable in the home as a whole and after they have detected the scent of the other cat. The ability to see each other should be achieved through the use of a physical barrier. This can be accomplished in a variety of ways, including the following:
- A door that is slightly ajar (to prevent them from passing through)
- A mesh barrier – some individuals build a wooden door frame that fits within their current door frame and is coated in mesh wire
- A door that is slightly ajar (to prevent them from passing through). a stair gate designed specifically for toddlers
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
When people are in visual proximity to one another, they should have positive emotions. As a result, cats can be played with or provided food treats, with each activity taking place independently of the others. The competition should never be based on who can stare the longest. They should be content with going about their own business but still being able to look at one another sometimes. Allowing them to smell one another through a barrier is acceptable; however, any sign 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.
- Visual contact between two cats (one resident each time and the new cat) should be established as soon as possible if there is more than one resident cat.
- Keep the sessions brief and stop while they are still performing well, that is, while they are interested in the food or toy supplied and are not displaying any bad behaviors or indicators of discomfort, such as crying or crying out.
- Face pheromone for cats made in a lab Cats can be introduced to Feliway Friends (Feliway Multicat) if there is any disagreement between them during the introduction procedure, or if their friendship breaks down later in the process.
- If you have cats, the diffuser should be placed in sections of your home where they spend the most of their time, or in areas where there is a lot of fighting or stress (once the cats are spending more time together).
Step 5: Free access without supervision for short periods
As long as there is no bad behavior between the cats during the ‘physical access but monitored touch’ stage, free unsupervised access for brief periods of time (a few minutes) is permissible. Once free unsupervised access has been established, it should be made available as frequently as feasible. During the rest of the time, the new cat is kept apart from the others. If pleasant behaviors are observed between the new cat and the resident, they can be kept together for increasingly longer amounts of time; however, they should always be allowed access to their respective areas of the house when separated.
- The separate room can be left permanently open over time if everything is going smoothly.
- Cats can access the entire environment while also retreating to areas where they are not in conflict with the cats with whom they are in conflict in some cases.
- Increased chances for vertical space use, such as shelves, pathways, and perches, can assist cats in maintaining their own personal territory.
- If you are having difficulty completing this introduction procedure, or if the cats have a breakdown after an initially successful introduction, it is a good idea to seek expert assistance.
Contact your veterinarian, who will be able to provide you guidance or send you to a skilled behaviorist if necessary.
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7 Tips to Introduce a Kitten to an Older Cat
You’ve decided to expose your older, wiser kitten to a cute new ball of fluff. What do you think? The following points should be considered prior to initiating any introductions: your cats may be territorial and may not instantly accept a new and unfamiliar cat into their habitat. Fortunately, there are several things you can do to alleviate any tension and make introductions more fun for everyone!
Before you make any kitty introductions.
There are several things to consider before bringing a second cat into your house, including whether or not bringing in a new kitten is the best option. Be mindful of the fact that cats are typically lonely creatures, and it may be frightening to see a new exuberant feline approaching their territory or crawling under the sofa to play hide and seek with them, especially if your current cat is older. If you decide to bring in a new pet, avoid making their initial interaction with you upsetting!
Is your new pussycat going to be a lap cat or will she be a self-sufficient feline?
When playing, your new bundle of joy may be quite animated, or he or she may choose to sit back and observe all of the shenanigans taking place!
7 Tips to Introduce a Kitten to an Older Cat
When the big day arrives and you bring your kitten home, it may be tempting to introduce the two kittens at the same time, but resist the temptation! It is critical to keep both cats apart for a period of time so that they may become used to the scent of the new cat. Making different, separate places for each cat in the house is an excellent method to accomplish this goal effectively. Make sure you have everything you’ll need for each kitten, including toys, a bed, a litter box, and food bowls, in advance.
2. Introduce your cats by smell first
Encourage your older cat to spend some time in a separate room while you acclimate your new kitten to his or her new environment. Your new kitten will rapidly pick up on the odors in the house and realize that there is another feline in the house with him or her.
When you’re finished, you may change them over, enabling the older cat to roam about and get a whiff of the new kitten. Remember you praise and treat both cats as they adjust to the fact that there is a “new child on the neighborhood.”another “kit on the block”!
3. Let them see each other
The second step in introducing your kitties is to make eye contact with them! Before allowing your four-legged buddies to roam free in the same room, divide them with a screen or a gap in the doorway. Gentle introductions are recommended; when they are acquainted with one other, they will sniff noses or rub up against the door frame. The time has come for them to finally meet face to face!
4. Support a calm, patient introduction
Always maintain as much calm and patience as possible when your dogs are ready to meet face to face! Keep in mind that your resident cat will need to learn to share their territory with the new kitten as well as accept the new kitten. Older cats may also be less tolerant, so early introductions should be brief before gradually increasing the amount of time the cats spend together over time. On the other hand, the new kitten may be quite timid and eager to explore, regardless of how the current cat feels about it!
Be prepared to intervene if they begin to fight, since there may be hissing at first.
5. Give treats
Don’t be shocked if your cats aren’t immediately attracted to one another. These items take time to complete! You may use incentives to enhance bonding, and you can encourage play when they behave peacefully and appear to be enjoying one other’s presence. Make a point of petting and praising your senior cat more frequently at this period. Assure them that they are not being replaced, but rather that they are being provided with a new buddy!
6. Watch how your pets react
Keep in mind that your kitty may not be immediately accepting of one another. It takes time to complete these projects. Treats and play can be used to enhance bonding when the children are calm and appear to be enjoying one other’s presence. At this point, be sure to pet and compliment your senior cat more frequently. Make them feel certain that they are not being replaced, but are instead being offered a new friend.
7. Keep to a schedule to minimise stress
Cats are big fans of routine! Maintaining a plan for your pet’s playtime, eating time, and sleep time will assist him or her in navigating this adjustment. Just because your resident cat gets a new partner does not mean that her schedule should be altered. It will be easier for your new kitten to adjust if you maintain your current routine, and it will reduce the stress of change for your existing cat.
Support Your Pets With FELIWAY
Feline communication is aided by the usage of FELIWAYCLASSIC, which is one of the most effective communication tools available. FELIWAYCLASSICsends odorless “happy” signals to your new kitten, which can help them feel more comfortable, safe, and calm in their new environment. In order to offer continual comfort to the kitten, you can spray FELIWAY CLASSIC onto a clean piece of cloth or bedding and leave it in the kitten’s room overnight.
How to Introduce Your Older Cat to a Kitten
Getting a new pet is usually a thrilling experience, especially when it’s a feisty and fun-loving kitten like this one.
However, if you already have an older cat in your house, you may be concerned about how they will get along with one another in the future. Your elder cat may not be delighted about your new addition, despite the fact that kittens are frequently more welcoming of other animals than adults.
Kittens in Your Home
Kittens are baby cats that vary widely in appearance depending on their breed. Kittens can be weaned from their mothers and introduced to kitten food between the ages of three and five weeks. They are frequently made available for adoption at the age of six weeks, when they have learned the art of feeding on their own and have begun to litter boxtrain. Because kittens are predatory by nature, they may make very fascinating pets to have around the house. By the time they are ten weeks old, they are bursting with pent-up energy that has to be released.
It is possible that your older, more relaxed cat will be uninterested in having a kitten companion because of these tendencies.
Prepare Your Older Cat for the Meeting
Preparation is essential in ensuring that your elder cat is ready to accept a new family member. Make use of the following suggestions to prepare your cat: Make certain that your cat is in good health. Your cat’s health will be checked up by your veterinarian to verify that it is in good condition. If they have any health issues that are causing them agony or pain, attempt to have them taken care of before bringing a kitten into the picture. As a kitten, you should be on the lookout for respiratory disorders, which you should avoid passing on to your elder cat if they aren’t in excellent condition.
- Make your home a home.
- The earlier you set out fresh materials for your kitten, the greater the chance that your cat will be able to examine and detect that something is about to occur.
- Make sure there is an extra litter box equal to the number of cats plus one.
- Don’t forget to stock up on new toys as well.
- Allow them time to become used to the physical changes in your home before bringing in a kitten.
Be patient while your cat becomes used to the presence of a new kitten in your home. It is possible for cats to be territorial, and your elder cat may first feel intimidated by your newer cat. Allow them some time to unwind before putting them in a situation where they must engage with a kitten. The first meeting took place. As soon as you get your new kitten home, allow your cat to sniff it and get a sense of what it is before placing it down or removing it from the carrier. This accords your elder cat the courtesy of inspecting the new partner before allowing the kitten to enter their area for the first time.
- It’s a good idea to keep your pets apart from one another at first, unless they’re under close supervision.
- This provides children with an opportunity to explore in safety without having complete access to your home.
- It also sends a message to your elder cat, informing them that this is still their home and that you recognize and respect the natural order of their relationship with you.
- Give goodies to both cats at the same time to provide a chance for positive contact between them.
- Place their food bowls near together, but do not force them to share their meals.
Cats enjoy playing with toys such as feathers, balls, and laser pointers to keep them active and entertained. This will assist them in relaxing, as well as provide your new kitten with an opportunity to gain their trust and attention.
6 Tips for Introducing a New Kitten to Your Resident Cat
Introductions between two cats with distinct personalities, especially between a “only child” resident cat and a new kitten, can be extremely tough. During the acclimation period, follow the six suggestions below to keep yourself and your cats from becoming stressed.
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
Cats are fiercely protective of their territory. Your resident cat or cats are most likely under the impression that they are the owners of your home. A new kitten might seem like a danger to an existing ownership relationship, which is why it’s so crucial to introduce them gradually. Expect to be away from the kitten for a few of days at the very least. After the first day or two, offer each of your cats an item that has the fragrance of the other animal on it, such as a blanket, pillow, or fabric toy, to keep them company.
Avoid explicitly approaching either cat with a scented object, since this behavior may be perceived as a threat by the cats.
For example, you may allow your cats to view one other via a baby gate or allow one of them to smell beneath the door of the other cat’s assigned territory.
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 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.
Step 3: finally, allow them to meet
The most appropriate moment to introduce yourself is during a meal, when the urge for food will outweigh all other distractions. Expect some snarling and hissing when they meet for the first time; this is a typical aspect of their establishing their own positions within the hierarchy. Make sure you have a blanket handy in case a full-fledged battle breaks out between the two of them. Your thorough preparations, on the other hand, should ensure that by this point, they have become familiar enough with one another that they can coexist for a few minutes over supper.
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!
Introducing a Kitten to an Older Cat
Make sure you have adequate food bowls, scratching posts, and litter trays for your pets to enjoy. It is a good idea to have one litter pan for every two cats in the house. Cats are not always eager to share a litter box, and they are much less glad to use a litter tray that isn’t clean. View the cat goods available from our friends in the store by clicking here. Separate the resources of each cat, putting food, drink, and litter in separate areas of the house. Make sure your existing cat(s) understand where their typical litter trays are located, and consider where you may place a litter tray for your kitten to ensure that no one is offended by the fact that someone else is using their toilet!
- Cat ‘friendly pheromones’ can assist in making cats feel more calm and content in their surroundings.
- Making your existing cat as comfortable as possible before introducing a new member of the family is a terrific place to begin the transition.
- Your other cat will be able to roam freely throughout your home without fear of being followed, and they will be able to rest certain that their food and other resources will not be stolen by your new visitor.
- Prior to your cat and kitten meeting for the first time, it’s a good idea to familiarize them to each other’s fragrance by using an old tea towel or something similar for each of them.
- Next, trade tea towels by providing your elder cat the kitten’s tea towel in exchange for your kitten’s tea towel.
- They will almost certainly take a good sniff at it, but some may not appear to realize that there is a fresh fragrance on it at all at first.
- The technique should be repeated over several days if necessary because different cats will need longer or shorter periods of time to absorb the new fragrance.
- You might see them lying down on the kitten’s tea towel after a while.
- This swapping and mixing of odours can make cats feel more connected to one another and as members of the same social group.
- Your adult cat will eventually come face to face with your new kitten.
- Little kittens are still learning about social relationships, while older cats may send off subtle cues that they don’t want to be followed by their human companion.
Having a stair gate across the door to the kitten’s chamber, or putting him or her in a large puppy cage with a soft bed, a box to hide in and all their resources, and allowing your larger cat to enter the room so that they may approach the kitten freely, is an excellent solution to deal with this problem.
- When your elder cat is acting in a calm manner around your kitten, you can allow your kitten to have unsupervised access to your older cat’s territory.
- Many cats will welcome a new kitten if they are given enough time.
- If you haven’t done so before, your kitten will most likely be able to find their way back to their own litter tray when they need it, as well as where to find their other supplies.
- If your kitten comes along and starts eating their food, your other cat will most likely not like it.
- If your adult cat adopts your kitten, you may find that they eventually come to terms on sharing resources or sleeping areas.
It is recommended that you introduce your new kitten at a speed that is comfortable for your elder cat in order to maximize the likelihood of them developing a positive bond as your kitten matures.
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.
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 scent, it is time to allow 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” at every meal. It is erroneous, however, to assume that they will remain as friendly once the visual element 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 disruption.
- 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” technique – This technique is similar to the one used in the movie “Raising the Curtain.” Make use of clothespins to hang 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 get both cats into a room together, without any sort of barrier, and keep things as harmonious 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 shared space without providing them with something to do is the worst thing you can do for any kind of in-person/no barriers introduction.
- When introducing cats during the Eat Play Love phase it’s all about reading the room for any warning signs, and being ready to act quickly.
Our cats are so energetically sensitive, and can certainly feel the raised temperature in the room. So it’s important for you to have a plan in case conflict unfolds, and again it’s ok if it does. Here’s a checklist to help you feel prepared in case anything 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