As you may already know, Pisces is a remote adoption center for ARF rescue cats, and kittens! We dispatch tons of kittens every year, and most are excited and eager for a new home an new friends. However, if you already have a matured cat in your home, the feeling may not be mutual.
Survey Behavior & Health
Confirm the health of your matured cat. If your cat is easy to stress, or has any health concerns, it may not be capable of handling a new kitten in your home. Take your cat to a vet before adopting to ensure your your cat should live with a new kitten. Likewise, all of Pisces ARF cats have a bio and behavior assessment. Your favorite kitten here may not be suitable to live with small children, or older cats. Click Here to watch our short video on the steps to adopt one of our rescue cats!
Preparing Your Home
The best way to start out a new relationship is to begin at home. Make sure you are ready for a new kitten, if you are stressed, unprepared and agitated, your cat(s) will pick up on the negativity. Be prepared, stay happy and positive! Place the new beds, bowls and litter box for the new kitten around your home a week or so beforehand. It is a good idea to designate a bathroom to your new kitten to flee to for the first week or two, with all its necessities. The mature cat will be able to hear and smell the kitten, with no interaction.
There are a handful of helpful products you can pick up to help smooth over the first few weeks of introduction. Pheromones are an excellent way to create a calming environment for your cat in the weeks leading up to bringing home your kitten. Pheromone emitters release an odorless vapor mimicking a natural pheromone mother cats emit to help them feel safe and secure. Pisces recommends: Comfort Zone Feliway Multicat. If you are worried about the stress level of your cat, nutritional supplements are another great option. Don't worry, these will NOT drug your cat! They are a natural supplement that supports and maintains normal relaxed behavior. Pisces recommends: HomeoPet D-Stress. Consult your vet before administering either products.
Upon the arrival of your new kitten, there are simple steps to improve your odds of a successful greeting.
- Allow your cat to sniff your kitten when it arrives home, while still in the safety of a kennel or your grip.
- Take your kitten to its designated room with litter box, bed and bowls. ALlow your cat to explore the room, with the door shut.
- Take turns exchanging the cat and the kittens rooms, without actually meeting. This will allow them to sniff each others scents and slowly get acquainted with the odors.
- After about a week, allow your new kitten to explore your home, under supervision. Do not force interaction, leave door open to retreat if necessary.
- Hissing and swatting by the older cat is normal behavior, as long as it doesn't escalate. Your cat is simply addressing boundaries and addressing its roll as dominant cat.
Remember to reinforce good behavior with praise and attention. The most important advice to take away is that it will take some time. With a slow introduction, patience and some time spent, your cats will eventually co exist peacefully under the same roof. Perhaps, even become companions with one another!