Introducing your new kitten


Start out your new Maine Coon Kitten in one room with a litter pan and water dish. Ideally, the one room should be a bedroom with yourself or another human resident. This accomplishes a couple of things. Your new kitten will not be overwhelmed by its new surroundings and get "lost", and thusly will have no problem finding the litter pan. You will feed the new kitten in this room and keep the established cat out. It allows the new kitten to bond with it's new human  and also build up some self assurance in its new surroundings since it will not have to compete for food or attention right away. Finally, it allows the new kitten and the established cat to sniff each other under the door and get familiar with each others' scents.  If you put the new kitten in with other pets right away, there's also a chance the kitten will bond with the other animals first.  If you want the baby to see YOU as it's primary companion, allow it to connect solely with you before meeting other pets.

You can also exchange blankets or bedding between them while they're separated to allow each to get used to the other's smell.  Take the baby's blanket into the other cats area and feed them a special treat on it - this will associate the kitten's smell with something good :-)

After 3-5 days of the new baby being in its one room, it is time to let the the two meet each other. As a precaution, be sure all parties have had their nails trimmed recently! Be prepared for some posturing, some spitting and hissing, and the like. IGNORE IT! After a while, they should begin chasing each other about while still having the occasional hiss or spit as they get accustomed to each other. Cats tend to make a whole lot of noise and even loosen up some fur. Rarely will two domestic cats truly hurt each other.  I've had some that make horrifying noises that will scare you silly, growling, grumbling, screeching and even screaming - don't try to pick anyone up while they're in the midst of such a temper tantrum or you may startle them into biting you.  If you observe serious aggression, use a spray bottle to redirect their attention - just a couple of squirts of plain water will turn most cats.  This type of extreme behavior is more common when introducing two adults - 99% of the time an adult will accept a kitten without getting aggressive, other than a few smacks to let the kitten know who's in charge in the house!  Let them establish their dominance over the kitten, it's natural.

When introducing two adults, you might keep them separated a bit longer and use the exchange of bedding several times, giving treats on the "other's" blanket several times.  The process is basically the same, just give an adult being rehomed more time to adjust to it's new space and the inhabitants!  Patience is key when rehoming an adult cat :-)

Once they are introduced, there are a couple of things you must remember - Don't separate them again, they will get along! Do not interfere in their "discussions" as they need to sort it out amongst themselves. Once dominance has been established, things will quiet down for the most part.

It does not hurt to give the established cat treats and extra attention after the new kitten is introduced. Don't give the kitten excess attention in front of the established cat.

A couple of things you may have to do are to feed them on separate dishes and provide more than one litter pan in different areas of the household (as cats can be very territorial about litter pans).

All in all, this method generally has great success and makes for a fairly smooth introduction. Please remember that they may make up immediately, or it may take a couple of weeks, but when a cat is used to a buddy, they would rather have one than be alone all the time.


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Moosecoons Maine Coon Cats & Kittens in Maryland