How you introduce a cat to your household will determine its future relationships with other pets. In this phase, how to introduce cats, you will have to be careful not to make mistakes.
It is necessary to take time and patience to make the new animal feel welcome and accepted without disturbing or making those already present feel threatened. Follow this guide to learn how to introduce cats to your family.
It is important to remember that the cat is a predator and, as such, protects its territory from the invasion of unwelcome guests. In this article, we will talk about how to introduce cats to the house.
Need To Prepare For The Cat’s Arrival
Make the necessary preparations before taking your cat home. You can know how to introduce cats and how to prepare them for your arrival.
Prepare a Room for the Cat
The correct way to know how to introduce cats into your home is to give them a safe room. The animal will be overwhelmed by the smells, sounds and vision of the new environment, so the first thing you should do to make it comfortable is to reserve a room in the house for it. This way he will feel safe and have time to get used to the new environment. Here’s what you should put in his room.
- Plenty of food and water.
- A litter box. Place it as far away from food and water as possible so that eating and toilet areas are distinct.
- Toys. Place stuffed mice, dangling toys, balls, feather toys, and other items in the room that can amuse the cat and keep him active.
- One or more scratching posts. Cats love to scratch things to mark territory, so a scratching post will help them feel comfortable in their new surroundings and reduce the likelihood of scratching other furniture.
- An old blanket, cot, or old toy from the shelter or house you got the cat from. These objects will make the cat feel at home and make him understand where he should sleep.
- Many hiding places. They will be used to allow the cat to hide when it feels the need. This way he will feel safer and will be able, after some time, to find the courage to explore
Get the Right Litter Box
Cats often prefer litter boxes made of fine-grained materials, so purchase one with those characteristics that don’t smell too strong. Place the tub in an isolated but easy-to-access part of the room. This way, he will feel safe when he uses it. Know how to introduce cats.
- If your new cat is not a puppy, they may have developed a preference for a certain type of litter box, so ask the people who gave it to you.
- If you take a litter box that the animal does not like, it may refuse to use it. If your cat doesn’t like the litter box and spends time throwing the material out of the litter box or just circling around it nervously, showing obvious signs of contempt, you should try replacing it.
- Do not punish the cat for not using the litter box. If your new cat thinks the carpet is his new bathroom, you shouldn’t shout at him in the litter box or punish him by putting him in the tub. You could lead him to develop an even greater aversion to the new litter box.
Bring the Cat Home
Know how to introduce cats and bring the cat to our home.
Don’t Let the Cat Move Freely
Allowing a cat who has just arrived home to come out of his cage and explore all the rooms is not the correct way to introduce him. He would feel stressed and overwhelmed by the new environment, then run into hiding, while the animals already present would interpret his entry as an invasion of their territory and could chase him, further aggravating his worries and giving him good reasons to remain alert.
When you bring your cat home, place it directly in the safe room to get it used to the new environment before allowing it to move freely this is how we treat the cats and this is a way to know how to introduce cats.
Give the New Cat a Lot of Love
If you want him to feel at home, you should pamper him a lot. This doesn’t mean that you should always pet him, especially if he doesn’t like it, but that you should spend as much time as possible in his room with him. So that your presence can comfort him and that he doesn’t feel anxious about being alone.
- Allow the cat to explore you. Lie down on the ground, to reduce your height and appear less threatening. Stay in the cat room and let it sniff you, walk around you, rub it or even climb on you. He will have to learn about you as well as the environment so be patient before you start hugging or picking him up.
- Bring some cat treats with you and when he approaches, feed them by throwing them on the ground or having them take them from your hand.
- Play with the cat as much as possible, such as a dangling toy or a laser pointer on the floor. Wait a few days before starting interactive games, or your cat may be too stimulated.
- Avoid looking the cat in the eye, as staring is a sign of aggression in feline language. Observe him out of the corner of your eye and make sure you blink regularly, so as not to make him nervous.
Evaluate How Confident the New Cat Feels
If he’s just hiding, give him some more time before giving him a chance to explore other rooms. If he seems brave and always waits for you at the door to get your attention, you may want to leave the door open after a week so he can go out and explore. The acclimatization time may vary.
If the cat is agitated and scratches the door after a few days, you don’t have to make him feel locked in a room and you must allow him to explore. If, on the other hand, he still seems scared of the new environment and has never tried to leave the room after a week, give him some more time to get used to.
Do not introduce the new cat to the family in a time of stress
For example, if you chose the Christmas holiday season, the cat would be overwhelmed by the sounds and smells of all the different visitors. Likewise, if you take your pet home when you are too stressed or busy to give it time, it will feel very lonely.
Introducing the Family to the Cat
Make sure the children understand the new cat’s needs. Tell your children that they need time and space to settle in. Allow them to visit the animal under your supervision and for short periods. Give the children some food to offer to the cat or ask them to bring the full food bowl into the room to make them feel involved. Ask the children to be quiet and stand still in the cat’s room, sit on the floor and wait patiently for the cat to approach.
Do not allow children to pull the cat’s tail, ears, paws or whiskers and treat it as if it were a toy. Ask the children not to stare at the cat in its hiding place, as this would make it feel threatened. It also teaches them to respect the animal’s body language. If the cat blew, arching his back or opening his eyes wide, it would show his fear. Tell the children that when they notice similar attitudes, they should walk away and this is how to introduce cats and give the cat an escape route to its hiding place.
Get the Cat used to the Rest of the Family
First, bring items from other parts of the house to his room to get him used to different smells and visions. Have him sniff a sofa cushion or a children’s room blanket. Then, open the door and wait for the cat to come out of its own accord to explore the rest of the house. This is how to introduce cats to rest of the family.
You should always keep an eye on him at this stage, but don’t distract him. For the first few times, open the door at night, when the house is quieter and the cat can explore without fear. If he leaves the room of his own volition, he will also be able to find his way back into hiding should he feel threatened. When you are not at home, return the cat to its room. Wait for him to feel completely comfortable before allowing him to move freely when you are not around. This is how to introduce cats.
Move the food bowls and litter box
Once your cat gets used to the rest of the house, you can slowly move the food bowls and litter box to where they will stay permanently. Make sure the pet knows where you moved them or they will feel a lot of anxiety. You can use these methods to know how to introduce cats to a new cat to the family whether you have other pets or not. For more information on cats visit our CatsBuz website.