Newly born kittens instantly win the hearts of certain cats. Others can take a long time to adjust to a new cat or never do so fully. Much of this will depend on how old and socialized your cat is when your new family member is introduced to your cat.
Even though understanding cat behavior can at times be difficult, studying their wild cousins can help us comprehend why cats occasionally have interpersonal conflicts or may rejecting a new kitten.
Why Do Cats Not Like New Kittens?
Domestic house cats and wild cats share a close genetic heritage. These classifications are usually very different from one another, but they nevertheless share some characteristics and instincts, such as how they get along with other cats.
Solitary wild cats include servals, bobcats, and lynx. They are naturally secretive, nocturnal, and hardly seen. They spend the day hiding out in dens and come out at night to embark on lone feeding excursions.
Domestic cats that were raised in the wild are known as feral cats, and they often hunt and sleep alone. However, if people are providing them with food, they may develop a colony that is led by a female cat (queen). Cats that have strong familial bonds frequently live in colonies. Male cats, often known as toms, usually leave the colony when they are a few years old.
This social system is more complicated than the usual domestic cat. They are normally not well socialized with other cats and are usually spayed or neutered in order for them to live in relatively isolated regions away from other cats. This can be a problem if you want to bring a new kitten or cat home. Feral cats also frequently live in colonies with other felines who are genetically related to one another and were born into the colony. Rarely do unrelated cats join their ranks, and when they do, they may spend several months living outside the colony before being fully absorbed.
Giving your cat some time to get acquainted to the new kitten is sometimes the best course of action. However, if the new kitten has not been adequately socialized before the age of three, it may be difficult for your cat to get along with it. In reality, some cats live best in a home by themselves.
It’s important to introduce your cat to any new kittens you bring home gradually. Whether you’ve previously done that or not, there are a few steps you may do to try to break the ice if the cats aren’t getting along.
A separate water and food bowl for the kitten should be placed away from the bowls for your cat. Feed them separately so that your cat doesn’t grow possessive of its own food and your kitten has a chance to eat. Feed one of the cats in another room if required, keeping the door closed.
A place to sleep
Give every cat their very own sleeping area. Don’t try to offer your previous cat’s condo or bedding to the new kitten. Your elder cat has already claimed these and won’t like a kitten using them without permission.
Cats frequently avoid “intruders” and reserve overt aggression for last-resort situations. Your cat needs a safe place to hide from the new kitten while they get used to each other. Give your senior cat access to areas that the kitten cannot reach. For instance, your cat might take pleasure in keeping an eye on the kitten from a high perch. These areas may also make a great retreat for your cat if it needs to escape a wild or aggressive kitten.
Make sure there is a litter box available for every additional cat. This suggests that if you have two cats, you need three litter boxes. Eventually, your adult cat may start to associate the smell of the kitten with treats, making it a more pleasant scent.
Buy specialized cat pheromone wipes, diffusers, and sprays and use them as long as necessary. These pheromones, which give cats a sense of comfort and safety, may be helpful during the initial stages of introduction for both your new kitten and elderly cat.
Pet your new kitten and let it sniff you at the same time as you give your older cat one of its favorite goodies. This might help your cat learn that the scent of the new kitten isn’t always a terrible thing. There shouldn’t be a direct line of sight if your older cat and the new kitten are both in different boxes at the same time. Repeat the interaction when your kitten and cat are getting along well to reward the good behavior.
Cats shouldn’t be left alone together until they have met each other several times in person and there haven’t been any issues. If you are unable to watch them and are worried that one may hurt the other, make sure your cat and kitten are safely separated. The new kitten can stay in the bathroom with a litter box, bed, and bowl of water while you are at work or asleep at night. This is quite helpful if your kitten won’t leave your older cat alone.
A cat who is occasionally frightened by strange items may react inappropriately angry toward a new kitten. Because cats are creatures of habit, it is best to avoid making large home changes while introducing the new kitten. This includes making changes like remodeling your kitchen, removing carpeting, or holding a party with fireworks in your garden.
Despite the fact that they might want to fight, your cat shouldn’t be allowed to engage in anything more than hissing and swatting at the kitten. Clap loudly or squirt water at the cats to scare them away if you believe a fight is about to start. In the event that your cats fight, it is best to keep them away for a while before reintroducing them to one another gradually over the course of a few days to weeks.
If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your family pet, know the pet’s health history, and may make the best recommendations for your pet.
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