Introducing a new kitten to a home with an established cat can be tricky, but with patience and careful planning, it can be a smooth transition for both felines.
Remember, whenever you are bringing a new cat into your home, it's always wise to get both cats' health checked and cleared by your vet.
Here are some tips to help make the introduction process as stress-free as possible:
1. Prepare a small secure room for the new kitten:
Before bringing your kitten home, ensure you have a small separate space for them to stay in for at least the first few days, allowing them to adjust to their new surroundings without feeling overwhelmed by your other cat.
2. A gradual introduction:
Once the new kitten has settled into their new surroundings (this could take three days to 3 months), start introducing them to your other cat gradually. Start by allowing them to sniff each other through a closed door or baby gate. If this isn't possible, the cat carrier your kitten arrived in will also work in helping them get used to each other's scent. You can also assist by exchanging bedding between cats or rubbing a cloth on one cat and placing it close to the other.
3. Supervise their interactions:
When you feel that they are ready to meet face-to-face, make sure you are there to supervise their interactions closely. We highly recommend purchasing a Feliway Plug-In and placing this in the area where your cats are likely to spend the most time together. Choose a room with plenty of space, and neither cat feels cornered. Keep a close eye on their body language and intervene if necessary. As the cats start to exhibit curiosity about each other, reward the friendly behaviour with treats and praise.
4. Provide individual resources:
Ensure each cat has different food and water bowls, litter box, and toys to prevent any territorial behaviour.
Remember that it may take some time for the kittens to get used to each other. Be patient and give them the space they need to adjust.
Following these tips can help ensure a smooth introduction process for your new kitten. With patience and care, they will soon become the best of friends.