Bringing Your New Family Member Home
Your resident cat might feel intimidated with a new kitty coming into their space. On the other end, your new cat may also feel freaked moving into a new space that is unfamiliar.
Even pets that have all the confidence in the world at the shelter may act differently in a home, because they are not adjusted to the new environment. Make sure that they have separate space, where your resident cat can go for sanctuary if they need space away from your new cat.
By following these simple steps, you can integrate your cat into their new home. Jackie, one of our amazing staff members recently introduced her new kitty to her ones at home, and provided some tips! She had a great experience making her new boy comfortable, and now all of her fur babies get along so well.
“I like to use lickimats for my cats wet food! It helps to keep them mentally engaged and also is a good way to get them used to each other. I would give them each a lickimat to distract them from each other’s presence and help them associate a happy time with each other! It’s also a good idea to do room swaps, so the kitty in isolation doesn’t get too bored or lonely. I’d let him out of the bathroom into my room during the day and this helped him get more comfortable in the house and with the other cats smells! Having patience and going slow is really the key! A lot of the time people rush things and that’s when we see issues arise. Cats are super particular and letting them go at their own pace is so important.” – Jackie
Tips for Making them Comfortable
- Create a space for your new cat: Having a room or somewhere that they can go just for them is crucial.
- They should be able to smell and hear each other at first, but not see each other.
- Make sure they have their own food, water and toys.
- Feliway multi-cat is an excellent tool to use in areas where the cats may be meeting. Feliway produces cat pheromones which are chemical communications cats use to communicate with the world around them. This comforts cats and reduces signs of stress.
- The introductory period of giving the animal two weeks is a necessity, especially if the new cat is nervous. This will allow them to get used to their new surroundings before adding a new friend to the mix.
- During the introductory period between two cats, you can feed them wet food on either side of the door and swap blankets between them to get them used to each others scents.
- Supervise the first face to face interactions very closely. Make sure that you are always present in the room when first letting your cats interact with each other without a barrier between them.