It does not matter where you are getting a new cat from; whether from an urban street, a home, a country barn, or a cat shelter, the first day in your home is critical and unique. It helps when you try first to understand some facts about how cats adapt to their world before bringing a new cat home. Before starting the cat adoption process, you first need to know what it entails with bringing a new cat home.
For every cat, territory is very essential. A cat will view his/her territory the same way most of us see our clothing, and without them, we feel vulnerable and naked. Place a naked person in a room full of strangers, and you will see him/her trying to hide. It is normal for new cats, irrespective of whether they are from the streets or home, to hide in new territory in their new home. Under-socialized or very sensitive cats can hide for a week or even more than a week. You realize the cat is the new member of the family, but it is not crystal clear to the new kitten.
You can facilitate the easier and smoother transition of the cat to a new home by providing enough privacy for the new cat. If manageable, first prepare your home before you adopt a pet. Choose a suitable place for the litter box; possibly a bathroom that seems to work well for many cat owners. Make sure the litter box has one to two inches amount of litter and place it in the corner of the bathroom if possible. Don’t know which litter box is suitable for your cat? Look no more The Top 10 Litter Boxes in 2017
Then make a safe cat shelter for him/her to hide. You can do this by buying a covered bed for the cat. Get a big bed for your cat to turn around, lie down, stretch, and stand up while keeping the bed cozy. Put the bed in a corner or next to a wall where the kitty can see the door of the room. This is good, for it makes the cat feel not trapped. Place corrugated cardboard, sisal, or cork scratching post next to the bed. Then, prepare a clean shelf for the new cat to settle on to perceive his new world.
After preparing your new cat’s bathroom, you can now cat-proof the other rooms in your house. Are there some raised surfaces for the new cat? If the answer to that is a ‘no,’ make some. Cats naturally need to survey and jump up their territory.
Do you possess any valuable households that can easily break? Put them away for some time until the new cat has settled fully in the new home. Check out all the crannies and nooks. Are there surfaces or places that could be unsafe for the cat’s exploration or hideout? If that is the case, make sure you block them. You should finally put a scratching pad or post in all rooms of your house.
If unavoidable circumstances make you bring in the new cat before your home is set, keep the cat in the carrier until his or her room is set up. The new cat will feel safe there for a little longer. Place a freshwater fountain opposite the litter box. After setting up the cat’s room, put the carrier near the “safe haven.” Make sure you close the room door before opening the carrier. Make sure you do not get the cat out. Instead, allow him/her to come out on his/her own and start exploring the new home. Leave the room now for the cat to have enough time to acclimate. Prepare some quality premium cat food and place it next to the drinking fountain.
Do not reach the cat. Let the kitty come to you instead. If the new cat does not come to you, leave the room and come back after fifteen minutes. Don’t get shocked if he/she doesn’t eat. It is normal for a re-homed cat to have no interest in eating, usually for a couple of days. Pick up the food remains and leave the room. Come back after some hours with a small amount of fresh food of high quality. If you notice the cat is openly not hiding, soliciting affection, and eating, you can now open the door for him to give him some more space. Do this at a slow pace to introduce the cat to every room in his/her new home.
Always remember that the cat should be the one to set the pace. All that is needed from you is patience. It may take a couple of weeks before the new cat understands that this new turf is his/her new territory. It may be hard for the first-time cat owner, but you will have an awesome bond with your feline over time.
9 Ways to Welcoming and Bringing a New Cat Home
Let me first congratulate you. It does not matter whether you are a first-time cat owner; you have just started a healthy relationship that is bound to be full of affection and fun. By starting off the right way, you can reduce that tough change time many new relationships face. Want to learn how to get your cat to like you? Here are a few cat preparation tips that will ensure a smooth ride between you and your new kitty.
- Go at a slow pace. A new cat will require seven to fourteen days to relax in his/her new home. Save meet-and-greet with relatives, neighbors, and friends until you realize your cat is comfortable eating and eliminating normally.
- Provide a safe hiding place for your cat to get his/her bearings. This will allow her to have sufficient time to observe the new family’s routine from a dark, small space of her own. A laundry room or a bathroom works well. Supply the hiding room with cat amenities like a water fountain, litter box, and food. Make sure there is a comfortable place in the room for you to sit because you will need to spend some time with your cat in his/her hiding place.
- Make sure you take your new feline to a veterinarian to get a wellness exam within a week after adoption. This will ensure that you get well informed of any condition or weird cat behavior your new kitten may have.
- Offer the same food your cat had in the cat shelter for the first one or two weeks after adoption. After one or two weeks, you can decide to switch your cat’s food to a different brand or flavor. Ensure that in the first or two weeks of the new food introduction, mix a quarter ration of the new brand of food with the old favorite food of the cat. From there, move up the ratio of the new food to old food by about 10 percent each day.
- Put a litter box not only in a quiet place but also in a low-traffic area. After all, every person deserves a bit of privacy when peeing, and giving your cat that privacy will help reduce any litter box-related problems. Are you unsure of the litter to use? Many cats prefer grain-clumping litter. You should first try that unless the new cat is very young and in the litter-eating stage. For kitties under the age of ten weeks, non-clumping litter is recommended for them. Check out The Top 10 Litter Boxes in 2017.
- Cats are natural scratchers, so make sure you have a strong, rough-textured scratching post to avoid wear and tear on your furniture. You can get a scratching post for every room that has soft furniture in your house, thus blocking access to the furniture. You should also install sticky tape on every corner of upholstered furniture to discourage scratching. Giving your cat a manicure after 10 to 14 days will help in reducing the damage.
- Make sure your cat-proof your house before allowing your feline to have a run for it. Put away household poisons, human medications, and harsh cleaning products. Now is when you re-home any toxic houseplant. If a kitten is a newcomer, make sure you lock away any breakable things and keep the toilet lid closed always.
- If your finances allow you, buy a cat tree for the new member of the family. Given that cats like to survey their territory, a high perch will be his favorite resting place.
- After your cat settles in, he/she will be keen to play. Make sure you get him/her interactive toys, like kitty fishing poles and feather wands, to direct energies towards something positive and to engage attention.
- Ensure there is a comfortable cat perch, which will be better if it overlooks the bird feeder, on a sunny windowsill. Observing Squirrels and birds cannot be compared with any kitty videos at any time.
Above are a few cat preparation tips you should put in place when bringing a new cat home. Getting a cat will give you a long-term friend and family if you start off on the right path. Do not miss that opportunity. Be prepared for the good things to come your way when you adopt a cat.