Page 6 - Kitten Book
P. 6

Introducing a New Feline to the Household

         Cats are becoming increasingly more popular to have as members of the family and the
chance of a new feline joining a house that already has a feline companion has never been
greater. The goal when introducing a new cat is to create a positive experience. Slow and
gradual stimuli between the two cats should be allowed to ensure a smooth introduction and in
turn live in harmony with each other. Remember you never get a second chance to make a good
first impression.

Before bringing your new feline friend home
    Carefully assess the current resident cat’s health, reactivity, tolerance, preferred

         territory and daily routine. This information may help you predict if your cat will be
         resistant to the introduction.

    It is recommended to add Feliway diffusers (pheromone diffuser) up to 2 weeks prior

         to bringing your new feline home or as soon as possible.

    The new feline addition should already have their area set up to meet all their social,

         physical and exploratory needs. The room should provide litter, food/water, rest and
         play areas. Set this area up in a room that is not preferred by the current resident feline
         but rather an area that was often ignored or avoided in the past.

Scent desensitization

         Use clean cloths and rub both cats down including their chin where pheromones are
located. Exchange these cloths to the opposite feline and observe how they react. If they are
not interested in the cloth it may be a good sign. If they react in a negative way try pairing the
scent with positive association like with a special treat, petting/massage session or play.

Create a barrier

    The doorway between the new cat’s room and the rest of the house acts as a barrier from
premature exposure, therefore, it should be escape proof to avoid set backs from an
unpleasant introduction. Bridge the separation between the cats by allowing positive
association with each other from both sides of the door. This can be done by:

          Offering favorite treats on both sides of the door
          Stimulate play- a good trick is to connect toys by a string under the door. This allows

             the cats to respond and react to the other cat playing with the toy.
          Sprinkle catnip on each side to stimulate play (be careful that catnip doesn’t make

             your cat possessive of it’s toy)
          Feed meals beside the doors. To make this technique work it is important to limit or

             eliminate access to food and treats at other times or places. Be very careful to not
             stress them and turn them off their food. Position the food/treats at a distance the
             cat is comfortable and gradually move it closer.
          Ideally the door should be raised enough to allow paw interaction between cats.

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