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How to introduce a new cat into your home

Be prepared when bringing a new cat into your home
Be prepared when bringing a new cat into your home
Getty Images/ULTRA.F

If you decide to adopt a new cat into your home, you need to follow some steps to make sure that it goes smoothly.  No one likes to be thrown into a situation that they can not handle, and neither does your old or new cat for that matter. Following a few simple steps will ensure for success.

The first step of getting cats to get along is to take it slow.  If you decide to get a new kitty and just throw it into the mix, this can make both the new cat and the old cat uneasy.  Take small steps in introducing them to each other,  Begin by placing the new cat in a room of your home that has a door on it.  Leave the kitty in the room for a few days to check out the home.  Of course make sure that there is a litter box, food and water in the room as well as some toys.  By doing this kitty can get a sense of your home and start to feel comfortable.

Now while you have the new kitty locked in the room, make sure that neither cat is ignored.  Give plenty of attention to each cat.  Take time to play and cuddle with each cat so they know that they are loved and do not get stressed.

After a day or two, take the kitty out for small breaks to be around the other cat.  This may get crazy with lots of hissing and batting, but it only takes a short time for you to introduce the cats to each other.  Let them smell each other, and if things good good, let them play.  Some cats come around really fast and others do not.

If for some reason your cats do not hit it off, take it slow and do not think you are doomed for the cats to hate each other for ever.  Some cats just take a long time to warm up to the fact that they will be sharing the house with another cat.  If they do not get along, take the kitty back to the room and try giving him some toys that your older cat has played with,  Also give the old cat some toys that the new kitty has played with.  This way they will be able to get used to each others scents, which may make it more comfortable the next time they meet.    Plan on having them meet again the next day.

Now of course you can not keep the new kitty locked up forever.  Maybe if after the second time of meeting it does not go as well. consider putting the old cat into the room by himself and let the new kitty have the run of the house for a day and then try to introduce the cats to each other again.  By this time both kitties should be use to the smell of each other and the feel of the house. 

If the cats do not get along, and you do not want to take the new kitty back, you may just have to learn to accept it.  Not all cats will love each other just as not all people love each other.  In time the cats will learn to tolerate each other. It all just takes time and patience.

Cedar Valley Humane Society offers a wide variety of cats to adopt.


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