Acclimating a New Cat

I love cats. I had 6 and got another one, who is such a lover. He's a 7 month old male named Punky. We have tried everything to acclimate him to the other cats but nothing seems to be working. Any advice?

Pam from Elkhart, IN

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January 12, 20070 found this helpful

I am sure that by now with 6 cats, you know they are people in fur suits, they all have their own personalities. We adopted our Sarabi last year at 7 months, our Nala who was almost 5 at the time was NONE too happy. We tried to sequester Sarabi in a room by herself, litter, food the whole works. We probably introduced her a little earlier than we should but I was so missing her. But here are my suggestions and what I have read.

Sequester the cat in their own room, they will need everything to be comfortable, this room may be used for a few days, weeks? Make sure to pay the most attention to your "older" cats, making sure that you are not spending an extra amount of time or energy on the new cat. Let the cats smell each other through the door, gauge their reactions. We tried a baby gate, but that really only works for little kittens or puppies. We did use a wedge door stop, with some manipulation got one on each side so that no one could go in or out and they were able to smell each other and see each other. When it seems to get better, then sequester the "old" kitties in a room so that the new kitty can go exploring, give him a few hours to sniff and see what's up. Then put him back in his room and let the other kitties out, they will smell where's the new one has been. Then check out their behaviors towards each other through the door again, the slowly bring the new one out, ALWAYS paying the most attention to the "old" kitties, not the new one.

It's a long process but worth it. I can't say that my kitties lay in each other's arms in the sunshine like I imagined, but they will sleep with me on the bed, sometimes touching, they play and sometimes get into a scuffle and make some noise, but they are really good girls.

P.S. When a rogue Siamese shows up at your door a few months later and won't leave, don't let that one in! If I did, I think Nala would have packed her bags and left! Sampson (he looked like one so we named him that) is an outside kitty, who gets fed softened food (his owners didn't give him dental care) twice a day and a nice warm rice sock to keep him warm in his little house we have out in the front yard.

My poor hubby, he only signed up for 1! I begged for Sarabi and then Sampson came along! Jeez, good thing my landlord lives in another country!

Hope that helps!

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January 16, 20070 found this helpful

I have four of my own cats and sometimes "babysit" (for a year at a time) cats belonging to friends who go back to spend a year in the States, so acclimation has to happen fast.

I was going to suggest just what the above post said with the addition of gradually putting food dishes on either side of the door so your cats will associate something pleasant like food with the smell of the new cat.

Purrrrrrr,

Cantate in Japan

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January 16, 20070 found this helpful

---> You didn't say if you're new cat is a female, or a male... & what sex you're other cats are, THAT makes a difference!

---> The vets say: When adding a new cat to a household, it's best to add a cat of the opposite sex, this way they will most likely not fight for their "place"

If you have a grown cat, don't get another grown cat, get a kitten (this way the grown cat won't feel threatened)

---> Also the vets say, it's best NOT to take litter-mates, but if you do, get a brother AND a sister, not 2 of the same sex. (less fighting!)

---> But as we all know, each cat has his or her own quirks (they're like toddlers) and they each behave differently just like small children. The bigger ones often like to pick on the smaller ones, & the bigger ones always love to steal food from the tiny ones! (like bullies in the playground)

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