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cat      Scardeycats!
                                                      Dealing with a new cat – introductions - safety  

Bringing home a new cat is an exciting time! It is also an exciting time for the cat, but perhaps not that same kind of excitement. Think about it – you’ve just taken a cat out of surroundings where it was comfortable and knew what to expect – into a totally new environment full of new sights, sounds and smells. 

For some cats this is an adventure and they will settle in immediately without the slightest hesitation. While for other cats this is very frightening and they may seek a place to hide and not show up for days. 

To make it easier for the new cat prepare a place in a room where it will be quiet while the new arrival adjusts. Maybe it is a bathroom, bedroom, den, any room that can be closed off from the rest of the house. Be sure there is a clean litter pan, food and fresh water available.   

If you have other cats living with you this will be a good way for them to get to know one another, from under a door where there can be no fighting for territory. After awhile they’ll get used to each other and the door can be opened. Be sure to supervise this introduction.

A 2005 study showed that about 50% of the time when bringing a new cat home a fight will ensue with the current cat(s). Cats do not make friends quickly the way dogs do. It takes time and planning to avoid fights, and sometimes fights are inevitable depending on the personalities involved. If a fight starts DO NOT reach down and grab one of the cats. In the heightened state of fear you will be mistaken for a predator and will most likely be bitten and or badly scratched. Make a loud noise, yell, clap your hands, stamp the floor, anything that will cause the cats to break and run. Then begin the introduction process all over again with a closed door between.    

Like humans all cats have different personalities. Some are bold and adventurous while others are timid. At the Shelter we work hard to keep the stress level for the cats to a minimum. In the new home a timid cat will need extra TLC to help it adjust. Lots of time spent petting and talking softly will hasten the adjustment.

Cats do not always take well to change so be patient and you can help your furry feline friends adjust.  If serious problems continue give us a call and we will try to provide advice to help. Do not give up, it may take a few months for the really hard to adjust cats to settle in. However usually this is accomplished in a short time.

Enjoy your new friend!  Thank you for giving it a new home where it will be well cared for and loved for the rest of its natural life. You are lucky to have each other.


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401 Skitchewaug Trail, Springfield, VT 05156
Phone: 802-885-3997 FAX: 802-885-1346


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