New cat introduction using a cat carrier (infographic)

Once again, in this instance, I have used an infographic to illustrate a different way to introduce a new cat to the resident. As most people know this can be a tricky time. It needs to be done with care and consideration for the feelings of the resident cat (or dog). Generally speaking, cats get on with dogs faster than with cats.

This is because of territorial rights protection by the resident cat (resource protection) while dogs don’t have this instinct. Some dogs relish the company of a new kitten to the family. A kitten can brighten up the life of a resident dog and to be fair sometimes resident cats get along with incomers but this is relatively rare.

New cat introduction using a cat carrier in an infographic
New cat introduction using a cat carrier in an infographic by MikeB
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RELATED: 4 tips on smoothing the introduction of new cat to a resident cat’s home (infographic)

Click on the link above for some more and different suggestions on introducing a new cat to the resident. As you know the key is patience to give the resident time to adjust in sharing their home range. This is unnatural for the domestic cat as they are essentially solitary although 10k years of domestication has changed their personality and instincts.

If you don’t use a crate for introducing your cat to your home use an escape proof room for him to live in for a few days. All the bits and pieces a cat needs should be in the room such as food and litter tray etc..

Some basic rules on this aspect of cat caregiving

Introducing a new cat to a resident cat involves a careful and gradual process to ensure a smooth transition and reduce stress for both animals. Here are some basic rules to follow:

  1. Prepare Before Arrival: Set up a separate space for the new cat with all necessary resources like food, water, litter tray, and a bed.
  2. Scent Introduction: Exchange bedding between the cats to familiarize them with each other’s scent before they meet face-to-face.
  3. Controlled First Impressions: Keep the new cat in its separate space and allow the resident cat to sniff around the door, but not direct contact initially.
  4. Supervised Interaction: After a few days, supervise short meetings between the cats in a neutral space.
  5. Gradual Integration: Slowly increase the time the cats spend together, always under supervision, until they seem comfortable.
  6. Monitor Behavior: Watch for signs of aggression or fear, and separate the cats if necessary. It may take time for them to adjust to each other.

Remember, patience is key, and it’s important to move at a pace that’s comfortable for both cats. For more detailed guidance, you can refer to advice from organizations like Cats Protection and Blue Cross.

Sources: Me, Blue Cross, Cats Protection, Dr Bruce Fogle, RSPCA and more..

How long does it usually take for cats to get along?

The time it takes for cats to get along can vary greatly depending on their personalities and the care taken during the introduction process. It can range from a few days to several months. Some cats may become friends within 8-12 months, while others might take longer, especially if they are males or unfixed, as they are more likely to engage in physical altercations. In some cases, cats may never become best friends but can learn to coexist peacefully in the same space. Patience and gradual introduction are key factors in helping cats adjust to each other’s presence.

P.S. exceptionally some cats get along fairly quickly.

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