Introducing your kitten to family
With their big, round eyes and soft, fluffy fur, kittens can be an irresistible draw – especially for children. But in order to introduce a new kitten successfully to the family, a few guidelines should be followed. Here are Rockingham Road Vets' tips on introducing your kitten to the family without causing any sibling rivalry.
If you’ve any more questions our kitten advisors are on hand in Rockingham Road to answer them or offer a kitten check-up. Just contact us on 01536 407778.
It’s important that you let your kitten rest and get their bearings when you bring them home, then you can start introducing them to their new family.
Everyone should sit on the floor and only touch the kitten if it approaches them. Children will need to learn a gentle approach.
- Teach them to gently stroke the kitten on the top of the head and along the back.
- Kitten tummies are very tempting when they roll around but most are quite sensitive about this area and might lash out if petted there.
- The litter tray is not a children’s sandpit.
- Kittens like to be left alone when eating, going to the toilet or sleeping.
- Always wash your hands after handling the kitten and the litter tray.
Introducing your kitten to other pets
Cats can be territorial so play it safe if you’re bringing a kitten into a home that already has a cat.
- Keep your kitten in a carrier when you introduce it to your resident pet so they can safely weigh each other up.
- Offer reassurance to your older cat by stroking them.
- If there’s any hissing or arched backs don’t worry – it’s natural.
- Once things are settled, reverse the positions and bring the kitten to meet the older cat. Praise them and give both a treat if they are friendly to each other.
- Keep moving the meetings around your home so the kitten's scent spreads.
- Continue to make short introductions until there is less of a reaction from either cat.
This goes for dogs too, but remember to keep your dog on a lead until they are calm with each other and make sure your kitten always has an upwards escape route.
As always, the team at Rockingham Road Veterinary Surgery are happy to offer further advice.