By: Dr. Clayton Greenway, B.Sc., DVM | Oct 29, 2019
Introducing a new cat to a household already with a cat can be a stressful experience for both the newcomer and resident feline. A sudden introduction can trigger conflict and be the start of a fear-filled relationship. Here are three tips on bringing a new cat home to another cat so that they can become life long pals.
Keep them separated for the time being and get set up for the reintroduction. You’ll want to set up two different rooms of the house that the cats could be in. Keep them in their private room for a few days providing litter and food and then you switch the cat’s positions for a few days. This way they get a chance to walk around and smell the other cat’s scent. By smelling each other first, we will have a gentler and less aggressive introduction. After a few days of living in each other’s area, you then introduce them by sight but still keep them apart so that they can only see each other visually. After a few days of this, you can then allow them to physically engage each other.
It’s also important to use the supplements when they are segregated from each other. There are devices you can buy that aerosolize a feline hormone in the air that has a calming effect. This can also be used when they are separated in different areas so that it starts working and keeps them happy when they are confined. There are natural products you can get from a pet supply store that will help as well. You can continue to use these products after they are introduced to keep them calm for a few weeks to months. They will learn to live peacefully together and then you can wean them off this supplementation.
You can speak to your veterinarian about prescription medication that will definitely have a strong calming effect on each cat. It’s ideal to not have to go to this level because it will be more costly and less healthy. Don’t be afraid to use this as an option if initial efforts are failing because it’s more important that you create harmony so that they have a happy life and are not being moved to another home.
By employing some of these basic steps and along with some patience, I am confident your companions will be well on their way to having a life-long relationship that’s harmonious.