New cat in the house? Feliway makes getting used to it easier
If you bring in a new cat, while you already have other cats, you want them to get used to each other properly. It can be a kitten or an adult cat. If you want to get adult cats used to each other, this often takes more time. Males will react more violently to other males, and females usually react more viciously to females. Kittens are usually more readily accepted by adult cats than adult cats. Cats don’t like intruders. Although they are group animals, they do not accept a newcomer to the group without a struggle. It can take years to get used to it, but they do tolerate each other after a few weeks. What if this doesn’t work? Feliway is a product that gives cats a rest and helps them get used to each other more quickly. They will also fight less and be anxious.
A new cat
Cats are also described as solitary (very private), and that is true in a sense, but cats in the wild, like lions, are often part of their own group. After all, they are just mammals. In the wild, cats often hunt in groups, such as large rats or other animals.
Multiple cats in a house
Cats can also form a more or less close community at home, although there can be regular disagreements. If cats don’t get used to each other properly, you can end up fighting, growling, and blowing for years to come. But even then it is not hopeless, because if you use the ‘miracle cure’ Feliway, peace will have returned more quickly. Feliway is a product that contains the pheromones that they release when they feel satisfied and happy. The brain of the cat thus receives a kind of ‘peace’ signal and as a result becomes calmer and accepts each other more easily.
Get used to new cat
To get a new cat used to other cats in the house, it is best to take certain precautions:
Getting used to smell
Let the cats get used to each other by smell and do not put them together suddenly, but use separate rooms first
Cats judge many things on odors, they smell ten times better than humans. In principle, they do not appreciate the smell of a new cat and they will associate it with an intruder within their territory.
Take your time and don’t punish
Don’t rush it. Do not punish the cat (s) if they hiss or growl, but separate them again for a while if things start to get out of hand, and reward them for relaxed behavior. That cats do not accept an intruder within their territory without a struggle is natural behavior. So there is no point in trying to break through this behavior with punishment. Only rewarding for desirable behavior, and ignoring undesirable behavior, will pay off in the long run. And patience is a virtue.
Get used to it faster with Feliway
The aforementioned Feliway is a good aid in getting used to adult cats. The pheromones in Feliway products are a type of satisfaction hormone. These hormones are only produced in nature when cats purr and feel happy. By spraying the sitting or sleeping area of the cat with Feliway, and some on the furniture in the house, as well as brushing the fur of the new cat with your hand (!) With Felwiay, the habituation to each other will be accelerated. Feliway generally makes cats calmer anyway. The cat is less fearful, will naturally feel happier and cats will sleep more when you spread this medicine around the house. They are more satisfied and relaxed. You only need such a remedy if you do not want to get used to it, or if cats fight a lot, or if you are in a hurry to get cats used to each other, or if your cat (even cats alone) makes a fearful impression.
Getting cats used to each other
Cats also get used to each other with time and patience. While many cats who are not placed together until adulthood will not quickly become best friends, in most cases they do accept each other over time. There may be four stages of acceptance:
- accept each other with appropriate distance, sometimes fighting or small competitions.
- accept each other with an appropriate distance, no or rarely fighting or competitions.
- accept each other without distance.
- accept each other without distance plus social behavior such as sleeping together, washing each other and giving each other cups.
Tips to get cats used to each other better
- Do not put the cats together immediately, but give the new cat its own room temporarily, with its own litter box, its own water bowl and always each with its own bowl of food. So you need two of everything anyway.
- Provide an extra cat in a neutral place, for example in a hallway.
- Do not force them to lie or sit together.
- Provide a few high hangout cat spots in the house. Cats feel safer when they can sit high.
You can rest assured that you will need to be patient. Separation for several weeks is not uncommon and often necessary. When getting used to cats, time is your best friend. Think of it this way: In the beginning, a novice’s scent is threatening and it evokes aggression. But if you are patient, the new scent will become normal and familiar and the scent will just belong. In addition, the aforementioned Feliway helps to release positive pheromones, giving cats the idea that the scents are safe. The scents are therefore safe because these substances are normally only released when giving cups, for example.
It is also said that Catnips can help to get cats closer to each other, but only when the cats have known each other for a while and are minimally tolerant of each other. Catnips have a short-term intoxicating effect on cats, they then make a kind of trip in which they are temporarily stoned. This trip takes about ten minutes. If cats experience this together, it can have a positive effect according to claims (not further substantiated by experts), but they can also experience each other as threatening. Some cats react very violently to Catnips. For example, they (sometimes) spontaneously urinate or (sometimes) scream. However, this is not because they feel bad, but rather the opposite. They feel good. The behavior is also a bit like rolling on the ground in cats in heat. Not every cat responds to Catnips. There are also cats who hardly react to it.
Getting the cat used to a new environment
Make sure the cat is at ease in the new environment first, this can really take a while, for example a week
A cat feels comfortable when she / he eats, drinks, uses his / her own bowl, plays, washes, is petted, does not growl or scratch, no longer hides under the bed or in closets and the like. in the house, let the cat get used to it in a separate room first.
Allow the other cats to the newcomer’s locked door. They can sniff under the door and get used to each other’s scent. This is really important! Not seeing each other but smelling each other, thanks to the door, gives them time to accept each other without being able to make eye contact. If you use Feliway, you can spray Feliway at the crack of the door to make contact even more pleasant. You will soon see them playing at the door, responding to the sound and smell of the newcomer. If the door is ajar, they’ll try to get a glimpse through that crack.
Reward for good behavior
- Once cats start to blow or growl, don’t get mad at the cat growling or blowing, but temporarily separate the cats by not allowing the old cat back into the door of the room until after a while.
- If your old cat isn’t growling or blowing, give him / her a nice cat soup so that a positive link is made between the new cat’s smell (behind the door), with a tasty snack
- Place a cardboard box in the newcomer’s room and leave it in it regularly
- Then put the box in the living room for a while (spray it if necessary) Feliway, and lure your old cat there. The scents of the cats will mix when your old cat sits in the box, and the cardboard box containing Feliway and the other cat’s scent will send the message that it is safe. You can have the box change rooms regularly.
The first meeting between cats
If you think the cats have gotten used to each other’s scent, you can move on to the first meeting. If you do this without using Feliway, you will have to wait longer. With Feliway it is even possible to make old feuds between cats disappear like snow in the sun. The Feliway spray is ideal, virtually odorless for humans, and it makes cats very calm and peaceful. Cats need much less time to fully accept each other. You spray your hands with this and rub their fur over the cats after a minute. You can also spray Feliway on cushions and other lounges. Repeat daily for optimal results. The cats get the signal that the other cats accept them and even give them cups. Result: peace in the house! Also ideal to use in the carrier because the cat will be calmer and less anxious during the trip.
Frightened new cat
If a cat is anxious, leave it alone as much as possible. Petting is not reassuring at that point but a cause for even more fear. Do not look at the cat at all, and if you do by accident, look away quietly while squinting your eyes. You can also pretend to yawn. Eye contact is a threat to cats. Squinting and looking away is soothing, as is yawning. Frightened cats benefit from Feliway. If the environment smells like it, the fear will diminish.
Get used to kitten
When introducing a new kitten to your cat or cats, you want to prevent the kitten from getting hurt or not being accepted. While kittens are cute and often submissive, adult cats can still be pretty ugly to the kitten. They can growl, blow, or even hit or bite it. Often times, the kitten wins the hearts of the adult cats, and after a few weeks they may be playing with the playful kitten. Make no mistake, this can also be very wild at times. Keeping an eye on things for the first time can therefore not hurt. To get the cats used to the kitten, first keep it separate from the other cats, in a separate room. Then take the time to let cats get used to each other’s scent. You can rub the mouths of the cats and kitten with a cloth, so that there are traces of odor from the glands. By mixing and alternating these scents with the cats, cats are more likely to accept each other’s scent. Accepting scents is also very important with a kitten. Take plenty of time for this. Also move blankets and the like to introduce the scent to your cats.
After a while, you can leave a cat with the kitten. Stick with it and see how they respond. If it stays with a little bit of blowing, it will be a matter of time until the kitten is no longer resistable. Even if the kitten is a little ignored, this is quite normal and chances are it will be accepted after a while. However, if your cat doesn’t want to know about the kitten, and if it tends to attack or hit, your cat will need a little more time. The use of Feliway is recommended, but if you do not choose to do so, you must bring the kitten back to safety in a separate room. In that case, you should not put the kitten with any other cats yet. Have the kitten explore the house when the other cats cannot meet the animal. A kitten is accepted like other cats:
- wash the kitten with their tongue.
- sniff it without blowing or showing aggressive behavior.
- endure it in their neighborhood.
- play with it.
Cats that wash each other
Washing is a social event and cats really only do it because they have completely accepted the kitten or the other adult cat. If they sniff each other’s noses without blowing, that is also a very good sign. When cats sleep against each other, it goes without saying that they accept each other completely.