Ideas to socialize a cat in a one person household? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-08-2011, 08:47 PM Thread Starter
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Ideas to socialize a cat in a one person household?

My breeder does a very good job raising and socializing her kittens in her home, but when I bring him home it will be just me and him.

I'm looking for ideas to help him become comfortable around new people and surroundings that he may encounter either outside or in my house (I'd like him to be a take with kitty if he's comfortable)

I know the obvious things such as bringing him with in a carrier to places like Home Depot or Petsmart (probably to much yuck on the floor to let him walk around the pet store)

Any ideas I may be missing?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-08-2011, 09:32 PM
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I'm in the same boat, Hal, so I'll be interested in learning more.

I never thought to take him to Home Depot or Petsmart in a carrier!

Learn something new.

My mom often comes over...so she'll play with him... do you have any friends or family who can visit you by chance?
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-08-2011, 09:41 PM
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Just being handled and around people will keep him socialized. Being left alone is counterproductive.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 01:23 AM
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Pet strollers are great for socializing. Often people stop and talk, and kids are really fascinated with a kitty in a stroller. It keeps them safe from being touched or petted too much, but at the same time people can get close to the kitty. Having friends drop over to your house often is another way.

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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 08:15 AM
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I'm reserved about taking my cats outdoors. What I do to socialize is have a few activites at my place. Small dinner parties, movie night, chili cook-off, wine tasting night, club meetings, book club, etc can bring in new people in that the cat can interact with. I'm an old mother hen when it comes to my cats and find taking them out with me exposes them to risks I'm not comfortable with. I have however, allowed my cats to come into the yard/garden with me while on a harness and lead. I would strongly suggest getting them use to a harness within the home first.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 11:19 AM
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Invite people over frequently. Use the excuse of a sports game on television, a tapas party, wine tasting, family dinner, or just to hang out and watch movies...but make sure your kitty is in the same room. Most people can't resist at least petting a kitty, and unless he has a very reserved personality naturally, his curiosity will get the better of him and he'll warm up to people.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 01:51 PM
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I don't think I'd take him in a carrier to a public place. It seems like unnecessary stress for him, plus I worry about what I'd be exposing him to.

I don't understand pet owners who bring their pets to PetSmart and let them wander around. For me, I'd worry about what my baby might get into or pick up. I'm not saying it's wrong to do so--I just wouldn't do it.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 02:35 PM
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Definitely see if you can get people to come over regularly. Just invite friends over for dinner now and then or something, so he gets used to strange people walking in the door.

I made the mistake of not doing this enough with Apollo and now he hides whenever anyone comes over. He's super social with us, so it's a shame that guests can't experience his friendliness because he's so skittish around strangers. And because we have such a quiet household, I think he never properly got used to loud noises, so he's very skittish about those too.

Getting him used to the carrier might be a good idea too. Apollo hates his carrier.

We got Athena at 4 months and she had spent her earlier kittenhood at a cat rescue, going to adoption fairs at PetCo every weekend, and she is extremely socially well-adjusted. She is very friendly to anyone new who comes over, is pretty good about carrier-travel, she's not even afraid of the vacuum.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 02:48 PM
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I agree with having guest over but start small just one or two people at a time at first.
Make it fun for kitty so that they see company coming over as a good thing instead of something to be afraid of.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 03:19 PM
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depending on your cat's personality, it might still hide when guests come if status quo is just you and your cat.
As a young kitten, taking him out in public is really a good idea. It's easier for him to adapt now and later when you need to, trips to the vet won't be near as hysterical if you take him to petco in a cat carrier once a week.
what really helped my cats get over their anxiety with strangers in our house is that this summer we had houseguests for 6 weeks including an 18 month old baby!!!


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