Preparing for Kitty's Arrival
My new cat is coming home soon - what do I do?!
Don't worry - we'll walk you through it! The first step is to prepare your house for your new friend.
1. Remove toxic plants.
2. Kitten-proof your home and secure breakables.
3. Set up a single room as a home base for your new cat – cats are very territorial and large, brand-new territory is very overwhelming. A smaller space will help your new friend feel more comfortable more quickly. Be sure the home base has the following:
a. A door that closes
b. Litter box
c. Food & water
d. Comfy blankets to rest on
4. Remind the family that a new kitty needs a quiet homecoming. Of course, you’re excited! But to have a successful introduction to his new life, your cat will appreciate if you let him come to you; not the other way around. Remember:
a. Do not force affection
b. Have plenty of treats and toys on hand
c. Hold out your hand, palm down, and extend a finger. The kitty will take this as an invitation to sniff you and evaluate if you’re a friend or foe. If the cat backs away, he needs more time. If he keeps his position, progress slowly by petting his cheeks and the top of his head. Slowly work towards the rest of the body, if he allows it.
5. At this point, if you have other cats, dogs, or kids to introduce your kitty to, read the respective links for tips on making those transitions just as smooth as this one! (Linked here or in the right sidebar).
6. After a few days in the kitty’s home base, allow her to explore the rest of the house, with the other pets closed up in a room. Be sure to supervise so she doesn’t hide. See our tips for integration.
7. Once the cat is comfortable, place the food, water, and litter box in their permanent spots. Be sure to show your cat where these items are!
Then the real fun begins – enjoy your new furry companion and watch as she learns all about her new, loving home.