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Hi,

I'm new to the board and am doing a little research on an article about introducing a new cat into houses where there is already a resident moggy. I'm really interested to hear people's experiences of doing this, particuarly the problems you may have initially experienced and how you dealt with them.

When we introduced our second cat, we really had no idea what we were doing and just brought him home. We thought as he was only a little kitten, our older cat wouldn't mind. But in fact he was quite upset by it for a few weeks. It also made us feel differently about the new cat as well, it took us longer to bond with him because we were worried about him upsetting the old fella. Now, three years on, they're not best friends but we do catch them sleeping next to each other, all relaxed when they think nobody's looking!

Anybody got any good tips for introductions? Good or bad experiences of cat introductions? Etc. I'd love to hear about them.

Cheers,

Patsy
 

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We had a shelter cat for about 9 months (Delta) when we decided to bring another one home (Charlie, about 3 mo. old). What we did was bring Charlie (the new cat) straight into the house, and into a spare bedroom for a full day. It had everything he needed, food, litter box, water, toys. Delta was instantly on high alert, because she could smell him.

On the second day, we brought charlie out to the living room in the carrier, and let them sniff each other through the grating. Delta was obviously on high alert, but you could tell that plain curiosity was getting to her. Later that day we did a switcharoo, and put Delta into the spare bedroom, and let charlie run around the house to learn his new home. That night we locked the new kitty back up into his "safe room".

The third, fourth, and fifth day were all spent letting them both run free whenever we were there, and keeping a close eye on them. It was fun to watch. Delta kept a close eye on the intruder, always staying within about 10 feet, but not letting him get any closer or farther away. I think it was the 5th or 6th day when we spotted them touching noses. They've been best friends ever since.

One side effect of bringing the new kitty into the house is that Delta became much less affectionate when Charlie is around. To this day, she will be very affectionate, rubbing all over my face and neck, but as soon as she sees Charlie she quits and acts all aloof. She won't run away, and still lets us pet her, but she stops the really affectionate behavior.
 

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I adopted my Nina from the Siamese Rescue Org., and they recommend a slow introduction, about 5 -7 days in different rooms, with no contact. Just exchange bedding.

Exchange rooms for a day or two. Then allow them in the same room, with one in a playpen or carrier, and watch their reactions. Interactive toys would come in handy.

When you feel certain there won't be a fight, allow the new cat (or kitten) out of the carrier, under your observation. If necessary, go back a step. The whole procedure lasts about 12-14 days. Take your time. :)

Cats accept kittens much more easily than adult cats. Good luck!
 
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