Humane Society of 
Northeast Iowa

Click here to edit subtitle

Helping Your New Cat in the New Home


Three very informative links to visit to help make your new feline's transition

safe and pleasant into your home:

http://www.humanesociety.org/animals/cats/tips/#.UtLIPbQ4j3A

http://www.petfinder.com/cats/bringing-a-cat-home/happy-cat-tips/

http://www.petfinder.com/cats/bringing-a-cat-home/tips-for-first-30-days-cat/


Particularly useful is the following link to help care for small, newborn kittens: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cat-care/newborn-kitten-care


Taking your new cat home:

  • Transport them securely in a covered pet carrier and talk to them calmly.


Upon arrival at home:

  • Put them in a bathroom and close the door and the toilet lid.
  • Provide water and food placed away from the litterbox filled with clumpable litter, a blanket and a scratching post. Cut a hole in a box for them to go into.
  • Let the feline come to you. Don't force her.
  • Visit them frequently in their room. Slowly give more access to other rooms.


If you have other pets in the home:

  • Keep your new pet in a small room and feed your resident pet nearby. Slowly move the bowl closer to the door.
  • Swap blankets/beds or rub a washcloth on a cat's cheek and put it under the food dish of another.
  • Later, use doorstops to prop open the door slightly for the cats to see each other.
  • Supervise any interaction as you give access out of the room.
  • If a fight breaks out, clap your hands, throw a pillow nearby to distract them, or squirt water. Start the whole process over if the cats continue to fight.


A few important points to mention:

  • Cats are lactose intolerant so they can not digest milk, which may cause diarrhea.
  • Kitty proof your house, put away breakables for awhile.
  • Cats like to look out windows, check your screens to make sure they are secure.
  • Rubberbands, hair ties and string are dangerous to your cat.
  • All string toy usage should be supervised and put away until the next play session.
  • Don't allow them to play with your hand, redirect with toys.
  • Rotate cat toys so they don't become bored with them.
  • Declawing can make a cat less likely to use the litter box, more likely to bite and involves amputation of each toe. The nails can be trimmed, caps can be glued on.
  • Provide scratching posts where your cat likes to scratch and teach them to use it.
  • Scoop the litter DAILY! If you have 2 cats, it is suggested to have 3 boxes.
  • Feed canned food, it is more compatible to their natural diet. Dry food requires a lot of water intake. Dry food that lists protein as the first ingredient is best.
  • Learn about your cat's body language and about the different types of aggression.
  • If you see a change in your pet's behavior, check with your veterinarian.
  • A collar with pet ID tag/owners phone # and/or microchipping is recommended.