Getting a Second Cat
Cats are very territorial and often introducing another cat into the household can cause problems.
It is always a lot easier, if you prefer to have two cats, to get them both at the same time as they’re likely to get on a lot better if they are introduced to the house at the same time rather than one having the run of the house first and then having to share it with another later.
After the initial few fights that the young cats might have, they should tend to get along well with each other and enjoy each other’s company in play and relaxation.
When a kitten is introduced to the house of an older cat you need to make a determined effort not to neglect the older cat.
This is very easy to forget when you’ve got a new kitten as people tend to fuss over kitten a lot more than older cats and it is not uncommon for the older cat to become jealous and start fighting with the new member of the family.
This can lead to other cat behavior problems where a house trained cat might decide to start urinating in the house where it wouldn’t have done so in the past, or it might go off its food and stop eating and get sick.
By considering the feelings of the older cat, not neglecting it, giving it sufficient time and letting it know that it is still special, there is more chance that the new kitten will be accepted better by the established cat.
It is made more difficult when the cats are in confined living conditions, and where possible, if there is conflict try to keep the cats apart for a while until they become used to one another.
You can put their litter boxes in different areas of the house, and also keep the food dishes apart.
Any time that one shows aggression to the other, calmly step in between and stop it going any further.
Making a Kitten Feel at Home
There are several things that you should do to make a new kitten feel at home.
First of all they need a good place to sleep that is private and they can feel safe.
Fortunately there are many different types of beds and baskets that are available.
The area that the kitten will be sleeping needs to be free from drafts and as warm and comfortable as possible.
It will need a litter box initially as it will have to stay inside until it becomes accustomed to its surroundings.
The litter box can have shredded newspaper for a cheap alternative but the best content for a litter box is commercial cat litter as it will absorb urine better and won’t smell as newspaper will tend to do.
This needs to be cleaned out regularly to ensure that it is always clean.
Put the litter box in a quiet corner where the kitten can be private and don’t have it where the kitten will be eating its food.
Cleanliness is another important factor with kittens and any utensils, or feeding dishes that are used with its food need to be thoroughly cleaned after every meal.
There are also a wide range of suitable products on the market to make feeding a kitten or cat more convenient.
Grooming is very important with cats and even cats in the wild spend much of their time grooming.
You can assist by getting a good double-sided body brush for grooming to make sure that the fur doesn’t become knotted and any lose fur is brushed away to reduce the chance of fur balls causing problems.
Grooming will keep the fur clean from dirt and other problems such as fleas.
Kittens and cats with longer fur will need more time spent on them than short haired cats as they will lose more fur and this will get swallowed if they are left to do all their own grooming.