How to Socialize an Adult Cat

by catfood

Even grumpy old cats can learn to be a little friendly.

It could be difficult to welcome a new adult cat into your household. You might not be fully aware of the care an older cat received from its prior owners if you’re adopting one.

If you’re joining cat-loving households, several cats will need to create a “pecking order” and decide if their new housemates are friends or rivals. Fortunately, most adult cats can live in harmony with one another, and many make friends over time.


What to Expect When Socializing Cats

A cat’s innate tendency is to be leery of anything unfamiliar. Actually, a cat will instinctively keep a safe distance between itself and someone it has had a bad experience with. Kittens tend to be fairly accepting of strange surroundings and people up until around 7 weeks of age, but after that, it requires patience and effort for a cat to learn to accept change.

Be tolerant.

Some cats are just inherently less social than others, just like people. Some cats appreciate being in close proximity to people, while others prefer not to be picked up or handled. That indicates that you might have a cat who is never allowed to sit on your lap no matter what you do.

Introduce yourself gently if your cat is new to the house. Provide both new and more seasoned pets with the opportunity to approach or flee without difficulty if there are other cats in the house.


Holiday Treats

Use the rewards and foods it likes to make it beneficial for it to be nearby. To avoid having to get too close, tidbits should be initially thrown from a distance so the animal can recognize them as coming from you.

Permit the cat to approach.

Find a place to be still, and call your cat over if it starts to back away from you when you move, which is usually an indication of fear. Over time, something as simple can entice it and make it more open to engagement.

Consider Stress

It’s challenging to be thrust into a novel situation with unfamiliar characters and connections. A new cat may find it challenging to develop affectionate feelings for its human guardians because it is the target of hostility from resident cats. Stress can affect your cat’s behavior, feeding, and sleeping habits.

If you can identify the stressor and get rid of it, you might be able to adjust the other, more hostile cat’s behavior and help the new cat relax and feel more at home.


Problems and Editing

Cats’ anxiety and antisocial behavior can result from a variety of situations.

Even healthy cats can become shy when confronted with a new environment or other animals that will be sharing their space. Cats’ natural tendency when they’re ill is to seek refuge in a quiet place away from humans and other animals.

An established cat may urinate outside the litter box to “mark” its territory when a newcomer comes. If so, you might want to give each cat its own litter box. Even though it might look a bit excessive, if it makes the cats happy, it will be worth it.

If your pet hasn’t been the vet recently or is behaving suspiciously or antisocially, make sure there isn’t a health issue that needs to be addressed.

Your socialization efforts have been successful if your cats engage with one another without hissing and growling. Keep your expectations in check. Some felines may become comfortable and begin to groom one another. As long as the fur isn’t flying, consider the effort a success.


Common Mistakes

When trying to adapt a new cat to an existing environment, some well-intentioned cat owners overindulge and coddle the new kitty or treat the current cat with kid gloves, wondering about how they’ll get along with the new cat.

It can be difficult to strike the proper balance, but if one of your cats exhibits jealousy, there’s a high chance you’re neglecting it in favor of the other. While you are striving to help the new cat settle in, be sure to schedule some one-on-one time with your current feline friend. Giving it a special treat or complementing it while petting its fur may be necessary to achieve this.

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