How Do Cats Get Used to Each Other?

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

If you’re considering introducing a new cat into your home, you may be wondering how they will get along. Here’s what you need to know about helping cats get used to each other.

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Introducing a New Cat

When you first get a new cat, you’ll want to take some time to let them get used to each other. You’ll want to keep them in separate rooms for a few days and slowly introduce them to each other. Once they start getting along, you can start giving them more time together.

Choose a good time

When you first bring your new cat home, give her a quiet room of her own to settle in. This will be her space where she can feel safe and comfortable. Bring her food, water, litter box, scratching post, bedding, and toys. Set up the room before you bring her home.
Let your new cat adjust to her new surroundings at her own pace. She may hide under the bed for a few days. This is normal behavior and gives her time to feel secure in her new home.

Keep the new cat isolated

The best way to help your cats get used to each other is to keep the new cat isolated in a separate room for a week or two. This will allow the new cat to explore their surroundings and get used to their new home without being constantly bombarded by the sights, sounds, and smells of a strange cat. During this time, you should continue to feed, water, and play with the new cat in their isolated room.

Once the new cat seems comfortable in their isolated room, you can begin slowly introducing them to the resident cat. Start by feeding the cats on either side of a door so they can smell each other while they eat. You can also try putting a towel or piece of clothing that smells like each cat under the door so they can get used to each other’s scent. Once they seem comfortable with these preliminary introductions, you can try letting them see each other face-to-face while still keeping them separated by a door or baby gate.

The Meeting

It’s best to introduce cats gradually. The first step is to give each cat their own room with food, water, litter box, bed, and toys. Set up a baby gate to keep them from getting to each other. Let them sniff and see each other through the gate. After a day or two, switch rooms so they can explore new smells.

Let the cats sniff each other

Let the cats sniff each other through a closed door at first. This will give them time to get used to each other’s scent without feeling threatened.

After a few days, let them see each other for short periods of time while you’re still in the room. Let them approach each other and sniff as much as they want. If either cat gets agitated, separate them and try again another day.

Once they’re comfortable with each other’s presence, gradually increase the amount of time they spend together until they’re both adopted to sharing the same space.

Keep the first meeting short

You’ve decided to add a second cat to your home. Congrats! But before you bring your new kitty home, there are a few things you need to do to prepare your home—and your current cat—for the new arrival.

One of the most important things you can do is to keep the first meeting short. Choose a time when you can stay home for at least an hour or two so you can supervise the meeting and intervene if necessary. If possible, have someone else hold your new cat while you approach your current cat slowly and calmly, giving her time to sniff and get used to her new companion’s scent. Once they’ve had a chance to sniff each other, let them explore different parts of the room together while you keep an eye on things. If either cat hisses or growls, or if fur starts flying, separate them immediately and try again later. Gradually increasing the length of time they spend together each day will help them get used to each other’s presence and eventually become friends.

The Next Few Days

After you’ve decided to bring a new cat into your home, there are a few things you can do to make the transition as smooth as possible for both your new feline friend and your resident cat.

Keep the cats separated

The best way to introduce cats is to keep them separated at first. This allows them to get used to each other’s smells. Set up two litter boxes, two food and water bowls, and two beds. Keep the doors to the rooms closed so the cats can’t see each other. Do this for at least a week.

Give the cats positive reinforcement

Be sure to give the cats positive reinforcement when they are around each other. This will help them associate being together with something pleasant. You can give them treats, pet them, or just spend time with them while they are in the same room.

After a Few Days

It usually takes a few days for cats to become accustomed to each other’s presence. During this time, they may spend a lot of time hiding or avoid each other. By the end of the week, they should be comfortable enough to eat and sleep near each other.

Let the cats explore each other’s territory

If you have more than one cat, you may be wondering how to get them to get along. Fortunately, cats are generally social creatures and will typically adapt to living with others given a little time and patience. Follow these steps to help your cats become friends:

– Let the cats explore each other’s territory. Set up separate litter boxes, food and water dishes, beds and scratching posts in different areas of your home. This will give the cats their own space and help them to feel more comfortable around each other.

– Give them time to adjust. It may take a few days or even weeks for the cats to get used to each other. During this time, they may hiss or growl at each other, but this is normal behavior and should not be cause for concern.

– Encourage positive interactions. Offer each cat treats or feed them wet food from your finger when they are in close proximity to each other. Play with both cats together using toys that encourage chasing and pouncing, such as feathers on a string. These activities will help the cats associate each other with something positive and may eventually lead to them becoming friends.

Monitor the cats’ behavior

Cats are naturally curious creatures and will quickly become interested in each other. It is important to allow them to sniff, touch, and explore each other at their own pace. Forcing them together too soon can lead to a lifetime of distrust and conflict.

While you should give them plenty of space to adjust, you should also keep a close eye on their behavior. The first few days will be the most important in establishing a good relationship between the cats.

If you see any signs of aggression, such as hissing, growling, or swatting, separate the cats immediately and try again later. Once they seem to be getting along well, you can gradually start giving them more time together until they are comfortable sharing the same space.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books

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