Introducing new cats to each other

Cats are way different from dogs when it comes to first introductions. It is important to keep your new cat away from your current cat during the first few weeks, as to not cause any troubles down the road.

Here are some helpful tips to get you started:

  • the two cats should be able to smell and hear each other, but not see or touch
  • each cat should have its own litter box, food dish, water dish, toys and beds/sleeping location, etc.
  • feed the cats near the door that separates them so they learn that coming together, although not touching is a pleasing experience.
  • in addition the food, be sure to give the kitties extra special treats near the door that separates them, such as cat treats, canned food, tuna or other choices of goodies
  • after about two to three days switch the positions of the kitties so they can smell where the other has been and get used to the smells of the other kitty, this also gives the new cat time to check out a new part of the home
  • some behaviorists, suggest that using the same towel to rub the two cats separately may help to get them used to the smell of each other.
  • after a few more days play with them near the door, encourage them to paw at toys under the door

Step 2: Letting the cats see each other

If you are seeing no signs of aggression (hissing, spitting, flipping of tail tip)  within the first few weeks of the prior segment then you can slowly introduce them to each other.

using baby gates to separate the two rooms (one on top of the other in the door way) and get a friend to go with one of the cats and have one person and one cat on each side of the door. Start by setting the cats a few feet from the gates, when the cats start noticing each other, call their names and give them treats (aiming the treats behind them). During the next few days, continue to encourage eating and playing near the gat

Step 3: The moment of truth

the next stage allows the cats to spend time together without any form of barrier separating them.

  • try to bring them together when they are most calm (usually after dinner or strenuous playing) , at first, just a little bit of time
  • keep a spray bottle handy, just in case a fight does break out so you can stop it.
  • As the cats become more familiar with each other extend the time they get to spend with each other
  • if one cat spends quite a bit of time hiding or if one cat is harassing another you might want to seek the assistance of a behavioral specialist

Source: “Introducing Your Cat to a New Cat.” ASPCA. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 Oct. 2014.

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