Bringing home a new cat to provide your kitty with some companionship and a playmate may seem to be a very good idea, but it can be fraught with difficulties. The older (or original cat) may be very resentful of this new interloper, invading his territory and will defend it. The result can be vicious cat fights, which, if one of the cats is younger, smaller or more vulnerable can end up in a trip to the vets or worse! However, it does not have to be like this. By taking a few precautionary steps, you can keep accommodations to a minimum. It is only natural that there may be some initial hissing and growing, but you do not want any resentment to progress further than that. The key to success lies in the slow introduction of the new cat. Give them time to get to know one another by using the following steps:
- Rub the cats down with the same towel to transfer their scents to each other.
- Make the cats smell similar by rubbing powder into their fur.
- Put the new cat in a bathroom or bedroom for a few days away from the older cat. Feed the older cat by the door of the new kitty's room so that the two cats can smell each other and basically eat side by side but with a door separating them!
- Take some time to put the older cat into the new cat's room and allow the new arrival out to explore the rest of its new home in safety. This gives her a chance to find a hiding place if she wants and to learn the smell of the older cat. The older cat meanwhile will be becoming accustomed to the new cat's smell, too. Then return the animals to their original places, leaving the door slightly open for a few hours so the cats can see each other. Repeat this process over the next few days.
This gentle, slow introduction should help prevent a face to face cat fight. There may still be romps and occasional actions of aggression but by introducing them to each other slowly, they should learn to tolerate each other and cohabit peacefully.