Cats are often seen as silent and solitary animals. While this is true in most cases, different cats, like most animals, have distinct personalities. While it’s possible to find suitable companionship for a cat, there are several steps worth considering first.
Cats learn the social skills that shape their personality when they are kittens between two and nine weeks old. If you want to introduce your kitten to another cat or dog, this means it’s best to do it when they’re as young as possible.
It’s also best to introduce kittens to other animals within a controlled setting. Don’t force the animals to interact with one another. If your kitten gets too frightened, make sure there’s an empty room nearby that you can quickly put it in and where it will feel safe.
Helping cats to live together in harmony
If cats didn’t grow up together, it’s highly likely that they’re not going to get on. For cats used to living alone, suddenly having to share their home with another cat is a common cause of stress. For this reason, it’s sensible to think carefully about giving your cat a new playmate after they’ve matured from a kitten.
To help ensure cohabiting cats don’t suffer with stress, they should have their own litter tray, feeding and water bowls, and scratching post. If possible, give them enough space to stay away from each other; locating them around your home, so they can avoid coming into contact as much as possible.
Introducing a dog to your cat
Although cats and dogs typically don’t enjoy each other’s company, some can form a close bond. When introducing a dog to your home, it’s best to take things slowly.
If your pets are to get along it’s essential that your new dog doesn’t frighten the cat when they first meet. Preparing for the initial introduction is therefore crucial. If the first time your cat and new dog meet descends into a chase, it will be more difficult to repair their relationship.
To prevent this from happening, it’s a good idea to keep your cat and dog away from each other initially. This way you can allow the pets to get used to each other’s smell by stroking your cat and dog separately, without washing your hands, and dabbing your clothes with both pets’ scent before they meet face to face.