Introducing A New Cat To Existing Cat

Cats and kittens in the same household can be the best of friends, or the worst of enemies, and occasionally, both at various times of the day!  One of the main problems is that cats are very territorial and if one cat thinks that a particular part of the room is his alone, he will soon show his displeasure if the kitten should dare to walk anywhere near it.  On the other hand, a kitten will sometimes do just that in order to get the older cat’s attention.  In some ways, kittens are not unlike small children!

introducing new cat

To ensure that your cat and new kitty get off to the best possible start socially, you need to go against what your heart intuitively wants to do.  Really, this is in kitty’s best interests even though it may make you feel heartless at the time!  Bring the new kitty into the room and leave it in its travel carrier for a while.  Allow your cat to wander around the carrier and get accustomed to the new kitten’s smell – stand nearby and monitor the situation so that the cat doesn’t try attacking the kitten through the bars!

Talk gently to your cat about the newcomer.  Tell him that it’s a playmate.  Reassure him that the kitty isn’t going to take his place in the household’s pecking order.  When the cat finally stops pacing around, and perhaps even stops any verbal complaints he has, bring the kitten out of the carrier.  Keep a hold of the kitten but fuss the cat.  If possible try and transfer the scent of one to the other – once they’ve lived together in the same environment, they’ll have a similar smell and “belong”, although this is no guarantee that they’ll ever be the best of pals!

Never leave the kitten alone with the older cat, especially at night when all humans are asleep, until the kitten is big enough and secure enough to defend itself.  It will probably be used to pushing siblings out of the way to get milk from its mother but the sheer weight and size of your other cat is a threat to the well-being of the kitten.

Acceptance will come slowly and friendship ever slower.  They may even have a love-hate thing going where you think they can’t stand each other, but remove one of them for any length of time, and the other will start pining for him.  By introducing them to each other slowly and not forcing them together, you allow each of them to weigh-up and observe the other, and this is the best way of ensuring that every won’t be a survival battle for either of them!

Separation Anxiety in Cats

It’s an increasing concern for many cat owners, how to keep their cats pacified when they leave the home. Unlike dogs, cats aren’t as prone to separation anxiety – but keeping our cats entertained when we’re not home is good for their mental health and provides adequate brain stimulation for them.

Separation Anxiety in Cats – Top Tips

Millions of cats watch as their owners leave for work every morning, with only themselves for company until teatime. Too many people are under the mistaken assumption that cats will happily fend for themselves. Cats can fend for themselves but they won’t necessarily be happy doing at all the time.

Cats are animals which thrive on mental stimulation and the company of humans.

Cats often augment their reputation as destructive house pets by doing things out of boredom. Cat owners could prevent this type of inconvenience by simply trying one of many easy and effective methods of feline entertainment from the comfort of your own workplace.

Cats will benefit the most from having companionship all the time. If you are a full time worker and can see no other alternative to letting your cat roam free, why not consider acquiring another cat or even a dog. This will develop the social skills of both parties and will prevent any remote chance of boredom.

If a second pet is not an option for you, an alternative is to place mirrors around the home. Although this sounds not unlike an insult to the cat’s intelligence, it does provide a very useful function. It will enhance the amount of visual stimulation that your cat will receive while she is on her own. It will also help or socialisation techniques and prevent her from becoming lonely.

Any movable objects are fantastic stimuli for the active and inquisitive cat. A weighted ball that changes direction is a fantastic and trouble free way of entertaining her, and it will keep her fit. Always ensure, as with children, that there no dangerous components to any of the toys you give to your cat which could be swallowed and cause choking.

Provide areas for the cat to go where she can reach different heights and angles. This will satisfy her climbing urges and will be a safer and more convenient alternative to a sharp set of claws travelling up the side of any valuable furniture. She will be able to experience different temperatures and lights and will be able to get away from the boredom of the house.

Cats enjoy exploring boxes and tubs so any old packaging left for to play with will provide her with lots of new spaces and areas to go into.

Rotate her toys so that she thinks she has a new one each day, this prevents her from getting used to the same challenge. Leaving the radio or television on will also help prevent boredom and will provide a feeling of familiarity to an otherwise lonely house.

If you haven’t already, install a cat flap so that she has access to a garden or yard. If you do not wish for her to have constant access to the outside world you can get flaps that can be locked or fixed so only certain actions can be made through the cat flap. (For your information. Sir Isaac Newton, the man who discovered gravity, is also the man who gave the world the cat flap)

If none of the above are possible, at least ensure that she has access to a window so that she can have a look at the outside world.

Litter Box Problems With My Cat

Cat litter box– Q – I have had Musette for five years, and during that time traveled considerably with my job. Musette and I moved to Virginia in June 2002.  I do not travel as much, but must go hom to check on my Mother periodically in North Carolina.  Now when I travel, even though she has a pet sitter, she has started pooping on the rug once a day instead of the litter box (still pees in the litter box).

Since my last weekend trip, she has started pooping on the rug once a day even when I am home (usually at night when I am asleep).

Her litter is cleaned every day; she gets plenty of food and drinks plenty of water; she get s a great deal of play time. I need some advice on how to stop this new bad habit, or some advice as to why she is doing this.  If it was just when I am out of town, I would say it is because she does not like to be left alone at night; but now that it is happening when I am in the house, I am at a loss.Please help me to help her — she is a very sweet, very playful cat.
Paula J. Garber, Sterling, Virginia

Continue reading “Litter Box Problems With My Cat” »

How to Stop My Cat Chewing

– Q – My husband and I adopted a cat from a local shelter 8 months ago. For 8 months we have been trying to curb his bad behavior of chewing on cardboard boxes. He has ruined many in our basement. We have no other room in the house for the litter box, other than the basement, so we cannot keep him out of there. What can we do to stop this behavior? We have tried all of the traditional means we can think of, and my husband is really losing patience with him!

– A –  You might try spraying the boxes with a hot pepper spray or a cheap cologne/perfume. It will only take a few tastes for him to associate cardboard with a bad experience. I would also look at the food you are feeding; is it a quality food or a bargain brand? He may not be getting the supplements he needs if the food is loaded with fillers such as ground corn rather than meat, vitamins, etc. There are also cat toys with leather laces you could provide to steer his chewing toward a more acceptable manner. All else failing, I would have your Vet take a look at him for his recommendations.

Why Does My Cat Lick?

– Q – I adopted a domestic shorthair kitten about a year ago that had been abandoned near my sister’s house. She’s now a healthy, happy adult neutered cat, with a bit of a weight problem. We recently changed her diet to Science Diet Feline Maintenance Light, and she’s slimming down nicely already.

The problem that we’re having is that in the past two months, she has started licking things around the house. Her favorite targets seem to be a fossilized clamshell, a flowerpot coated with some sort of pebbly clay-like coating, and a ceramic tile. She will sit and lick them for several minutes at a time, and if I take them away, she tries to get back at them. Does this sound like OCD, or could she have a vitamin deficiency? Or is it something else entirely? Thank you, Janie

Janie V, Mobile, Alabama, USA

– A – Janie, My guess would be her diet. A Light blend is usually for older pets with different nutritional requirements than a growing young adult. My suggestion would be to consult with your Vet about the diet and start feeding her a blend more suited to her needs.

As for the weight, may I suggest getting a laser pointer? They project a red dot and cats love to chase the dot as you move it around the room.

Not only will this provide exercise for the cat but will reward you with some amusing quality time with her as you enjoy watching her acrobatics in pursuing this elusive “prey.” Our cats love this toy and come running as soon as they hear me pick it up (it’s on a key ring that jingles). Pete