Have you recently decided to bring a second kitty into your home? Congratulations! Of course, your resident cat may not be thrilled to find out she has a new roommate. Our feline pals can be quite jealous of one another! Read on as a Webster, NY vet offers tips on introducing two kitties.
Stage 1: Separation
When you first bring your new feline friend home, set her up in a quiet back room with food, toys, treats, a litterbox, and bedding. This will give her a quiet place to relax and settle in. It won’t take your resident kitty very long to realize that there’s another kitty in the house. She will probably spend a lot of time sniffing at the door. Your pets may also start playing ‘pawsies’ under the door. Give both cats food and treats near the door. This will help them learn to associate each other’s scents with positive things.
Stage 2: Meet N Greet
When both your cats seem to have accepted one another’s presence, it’s time for formal introductions. This is a very important day! First impressions are a pretty big deal to kitties. Take your new pet out into the living room in her carrier. Let your furry buddies see and smell each other. You may see some hissing and ‘poofing’ at first, but this should diminish steadily. When your cats seem calm, you can let your furball out of her carrier.
Stage 3: Easing Tensions
Cats don’t generally like change. It can take up to a year for your pets to really become friends. At first, they may growl or hiss at one another. If they actually fight, you’ll need to separate them. Offer your cats toys, treats, and catnip together. Dual play sessions can also help. Most of the time, kitties will at least learn to tolerate one another. Keep in mind that cats often fight when they feel they have to compete over resources. Make sure to provide separate food and litterboxes, and a few pieces of pet furniture. Be sure to offer your feline buddies a variety of toys to play with, as well as plenty of comfy beds to choose from. Last but not least, pay equal attention to both your pets.
Please call us, your Webster, NY vet clinic, with any questions or concerns about your cats’ health or care. We’re here to help!