Before bringing a new adopted cat home, take into consideration:
- Where your cat came from?
- Was she staying in a cage, in a room, or in a foster home?
- Were there other cats living with her or was she alone?
- Was the environment noisy or quiet?
- How often did she eat and where did she sleep?
If you’ve adopted a cat from a shelter, this is most likely your cat’s third “home” in a fairly short time period. Even though your house is probably much more comfortable than the shelter where she came from, changing all factors in her environment all at once can be very stressful for the cat.
Signs of stress can include decreased appetite, decreased grooming, hiding, lack of interest in attention or affection, and sleeping in unusual locations. Cats are territorial, and coming into a new home leaves them feeling really uneasy. In order to integrate your new cat into your house and life as smoothly as possible, you must change her living situation slowly over time.
- Cats love to get away from it all in small places, and you can provide hiding places for your new cat as his own little safe haven.
- Sit on the floor and let her come to you. Don’t force her.
- Your newly adopted cat may not eat much or at all at first. It’s best to give your cat the same food she had at the shelter or in her foster home, at first.
- Be sure to change her water frequently and make sure that she is drinking.
- As your cat adjusts, she’ll show signs that she wants to explore outside her safe haven. Make sure other pets or family members won’t startle her while she gradually expands her territory.
- Provide your cat with a socially acceptable scratching place.
- Cats like to survey their territory, so a high perch is often a favored resting place, hence, buy a cat tree for your new family member.
- She may be ready to play, so you can furnish some toys. Many cats like feather wands from the pet supply store, but homemade toys are often favored.
Don’t forget to take your newly adopted cat for her wellness visit with a veterinarian and provide all necessities a cat needs such as litter tray, cat bed, collar, etc.
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