Are you thinking of getting a second cat? If you are going to get a new cat and you are worried if it will be friends with your resident cat, your concern is valid. Introducing cats, the right way is essential for them to get along with each other in the long term. Going slow is the best thing you can do to introduce cats. Throwing two cats that are strangers in the same room is never a good idea. So, if you were looking for a way to how to introduce cats fast, the answer is that you can’t. It takes time and patience. We will discuss all the steps you need to follow to make sure that you are introducing the cats properly. We have that covered for you. But keep in mind that even if you do everything right, there are chances that those two cats might not become friends. Especially, if one of the cats is not habituated to spending time with other cats. But if you are reasonably lucky and both your cats are tolerant of each other, remember that it still may take eight to twelve months for them to establish a friendship following the initial introduction. Don’t worry, you don’t need to keep them under tight scrutiny for this period. Your job is to make sure that their first few meet and greet sessions go well. Your cats will do the rest if they learn to like each other.
4 Simple Steps to Introducing New Cats
Now, we will give you a step by step guide on how to introduce cats. Follow these steps to the best of your abilities to make sure that your feline friends have the maximum chances of seeing each other as friends and not potential enemies.
1. Prior To Getting A New Cat
Before you get yourself a new furry friend, make sure that you are doing some things. Make sure there is a separate room for your new cat. This place should be as far as possible from your resident cat. This is done because you want your new cat to have some time and space alone to get adjusted to its new surroundings. And at the same time, you don’t want your resident cat to get the idea that there is a new cat in the house immediately on its arrival. When getting the cat, it is highly advisable that you get a cat that is playful and enjoys herself around other cats. This will give you the best chances of making sure that both your cats will have a good friendship.
2. After Getting the New Cat
Cats love being around their own scent as it makes them feel that they are in known territory. So, when you are bringing your new cat home, bring the bedding or towel with her where she has spread her scent. This will make both the trip and life at her new home much easier. When you reach home, take her straight to her room and be sure that it doesn’t meet your resident cat. This is not how you want them to find out about each other. Make sure that the room you put her in has no chance of escaping and be sure that your resident cat won’t be able to enter it. Now, give your new cat time to settle in her new surroundings, and don’t force her to come out. With time, she will feel comfortable and come out on her own.
3. It’s Time for the Scent Swap
Now that, your new cat is comfortable with her new surroundings, it is time to introduce her with her friend. But remember that cats communicate by using their scent as well. So, you want to use that sense for both the cats to be aware that there is another cat in the house. How do you do the scent swap? Place your new cat’s towel near the towel of your resident cat and encourage her to approach it. Do the same thing with the other cat. You can swap the food bowls of the cats. That will link the act of eating with the scent of the other cat and establish a high likelihood of them liking each other at their first meeting. If you see the introducing cats hissing at this stage then it is normal. There may be some hissing at first as they will start to get aware of the presence of another cat. But keep doing this until they’re tolerant of each other’s scent. This was the third step on how to introduce cats. Only after you have done this, you can proceed with a face to face meeting of the cats.
4. Time to Meet Each Other
Remember to make sure that they meet each other only after they can tolerate each other’s scent. First, you want them to see each other without being able to hurt each other. So, make sure that they catch a glimpse of each other through a closed door. If it is hard for you to do alone, ask for the help of a friend. Watch out for warning signs when introducing cats at this stage. If you see any aggressive behavior, one of the cats spraying or one cat trying to hide all the time, then the chances are that they won’t end up becoming pals. Watch their reaction for one another and if things seem to go well, then proceed forward. As time progresses, reduce the difference in their space day by day until they are able to be in the same room together without trying to scratch each other out. And that is how to introduce cats.
Remember that sometimes cats become best friends and sometimes they are only able to tolerate each other being in the same room. Even though we sincerely hope that the former is true for your house pets, if they don’t seem to each other’s company, then don’t force them to play with each other. It will only make them more stressed and intolerant of each other. With cats, you always want to reward desired behavior. So, if you see them rubbing on each other and grooming each other, then award them tasty treats. With this knowledge, we hope that you will be able to make your two cats like each other and make sure that they are best friends.