FAQs & Tips On How to Introduce A New Kitten Into a House With a Resident Cat(s)
When introducing a new kitten into a household already occupied by one or more cats, it is best to place the new kitten in a separate room for a few days with food, water, a litter box, and a scratching post. Ideally, the scratching post is the only surface that your kitten can scratch. Since conditioning of the claws (scratching) is normal behavior for cats, it is important that your kitten learn what objects are acceptable to scratch.
Litter train your kitten right away by gently moving his or her two front paws in a digging motion in the box to trigger thoughts of voiding. This is probably all that will be necessary for litter training. The litter box should be cleaned daily and the entire contents replaced once or twice weekly. STERILIZE BOX WHEN CHANGING WITH A WEAK SOLUTION OF BLEACH AND WATER> DRY WELL.
Confining the kitten initially will allow your resident cats to become familiar with the kitten's odor and sounds. The older your resident cats are, the longer this adjustment period can take. One should supervise initial meetings by partially opening the door for interactions of several minutes (depending on progress), several times daily for a few days before allowing the new kitten free range of your home.Once your new kitten is introduced to the entire home, a few strategically placed scratching posts can be very useful; make sure to place one where the kitten sleeps, because cats often condition their claws when they awaken.
You may have to provide more litter boxes if one of your cats is reluctant to share a box. There should be one box per cat plus one extra one. more. Your kitten needs stimulation to allow normal development of play and social behavior. If you already have other cats, or if you adopt two kittens, this important need should be met. If the kitten has no playmates, however, provide toys and allow time every day to play with your kitten. He or she needs this attention, especially during the first 6 months of life. Social play instinct develops from weeks 4 to 11, and then declines. There is a marked increase in predatory play behavior at 8 weeks. Social play persists into adulthood, so continue to provide your cat with toys as it grows up.
While bringing home a new kitten or cat is exciting, it's very stressful for the animal. Change is traumatic for cats, so you don't want to bring your kitten home when your house is crowded and noisy, or show it off to your friends and family as soon as it arrives. Follow these steps when welcoming a new cat or kitten into your home.
If possible, introduce your kitten to its new home when the house is quiet, perhaps when the children are at school.
Prepare a room for the kitten before its arrival. Make sure the room is quiet and kitten-proof. Put its food, water, scratching post and litter box in the room. Make sure the kitten has something soft to sleep on.
Don't take the kitten out of its carrier until it's in its own room. Shut the door to the room and open the carrier. Don't worry if the kitten hides. Talk to it softly. Never pull a kitten out from under the furniture. (No kitten has ever lived its entire life under a bed. Your kitten will come out when it's ready.)
Enter the room every few hours to clean the litter and check on the kitten. Otherwise, leave the kitten alone.
If the kitten seems to want attention, spend some time with the kitten. Talk softly and be gentle with the kitten. Encourage children to do the same.
When the kitten is no longer hiding and seems comfortable, let it out of the room. Make sure the house is quiet when you do this. Don't be surprised if your kitten takes a quick look around and retreats to its room. Repeat this process for several days.
Once the kitten seems secure in its new home, you can leave the door to its room open. However, it's a good idea to confine the kitten to its room whenever you're not at home.
Easing The Transition
Introduce your cat to your home gradually by following these helpful hints:
* For the first day or two, keep your kitten confined to one room with a litter box, food and water. Let her become comfortable in this room before introducing her to the rest of the house.
* After your new kitten is relaxed and acclimated, allow her to explore and roam the rest of the house.
Children in the household
Show your children how to properly pick up a kitten and how to play with their new pet. Teach them that cats don't like to be teased or have their ears or tail pulled. Always supervise your children's interaction with your new kitten, especially when they have friends over to play.
Keep your kitten confined to one room of the house for the first few days, giving your other pet(s) a chance to grow accustomed to her smell.
Make the first introduction short and sweet, removing the kitten after a few minutes. Most pets will work things out in their own way, which may take about a week. If your pets are having more difficulty adjusting, supervise their time together and be patient. Offer both pets a place to go when they want to be alone.
Introducing a new kitten to an older animal can be very stressful on the older animal. Lavish most of your attention on the older animal, not the kitten, making sure that the old-timer doesn't feel threatened by the newcomer.
Before you introduce a new kitten to the household, be sure she (as well as your resident pets) is disease-free and has been recently checked by your veterinarian. Older, settled-in pets may resist sharing their domain, and it may take a month or more before your new kitten is an accepted member of the family. Follow these steps for smooth introductions:
Step 1: Put your new kitten in a separate room away from other pets for the first day or two, and leave her travel crate open in the room. The familiarity of the crate may make it a safe haven. (Resident pets will become aware of her presence from her scent.) If you have another cat, he may prowl around the doorway and show signs of aggression.
During this period, spend extra time with your resident pet to relieve any anxiety and minimize tension. Confine him to his favorite part of the house while the new kitten is allowed brief journeys out to explore your home. When your new kitten seems comfortable, allow the animals to start viewing each other.
Step 2: Allow your pets to meet. Stay in the room while they get acquainted. Let them sniff out each others space and one another. Make sure each pet has an easy escape route in case one or the other wants to leave. Some hissing or growling is to be expected.Tips for successful pet introductions• If one cat shows hostility toward another during the initial introductions, don't punish him; that action could backfire. Instead, start the whole process over again after separating the animals for a day or two.• Respect each pet's territorial rights. If your older cat has claimed the living-room sofa as her favorite spot, allow her to keep that space as her own domain. Help your new kitten find a different spot she can call her own.• Establish separate but equal relationships with each pet to prevent jealousy.• If you have a dog, keep him on a leash at first, and monitor him closely. In the beginning, don't let him chase or bother your new kitten, and don't make your kitten remain in the same room with the dog if she's uncomfortable or scared.• Buy separate food and water bowls.• Give each cat a separate litter box plus one extra one.