4 Tips for Introducing Cats

  1. Create a safe place

    • Both cats (current and new) need separate places where they feel safe and can explore the new situation on their own terms
    • Your new cat should have a confined space that is just theirs to help them adjust to their new environment
    • Make sure both spaces have food, water, litter boxes, scratching toys, etc.
  2. Introduce Scents

    • Swap bedding to help each cat get used to their new friend’s scent
    • Let your new cat explore their new house, and smell where your current cat spends their time (make sure the resident cat is not around during this time)
  3. Easy does it

    • Give both cats time to get used to each other’s scents
    • Don’t rush the process; each cat will acclimate to each other at their own rate; for some cats, this could take days to months
    • Start with a visual meeting first, letting the cats see each other with a barrier in between them. Once they are both comfortable with visual contact, ease into removing the barrier
    • Make sure both cats have an “out” if they become too overwhelmed when the barrier-free meeting occurs
  4. Use FELIWAY® Optimum to Help Introduce Your Cats

    • FELIWAY® is the #1 Vet Recommended brand to reduce tension and conflicts among cats
    • The FELIWAY® Optimum diffuser helps support a calm, relaxed atmosphere, encouraging a harmonious relationship between your cats
    • Place a diffuser in each room where your cats spend most of their time - one diffuser in the room of your new cat and one where your “resident” cat hangs out
    • Try FELIWAY® today with a 60 day moneyback satisfaction guarantee

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After your cats start becoming more comfortable with each other's scents and during their visual meetings, you can slowly start introducing time together. Start by removing the barriers between the two and let them explore on their own (while keeping a watchful eye). These meetings should be short and in a “neutral space” that neither cat has been spending most of their time in. It’s normal for them to be shy or hesitant at first - no need to rush them. Try adding toys in the space to encourage play. If there are any signs of discomfort, long staring or hissing, or fighting, you should step in and separate them and go back to the visual phase. Pay attention to both cat’s cues, they will tell you how relaxed and accepting each cat is (or isn’t).

Repeat this process as many times as you need until they show signs of being more comfortable and relaxed with each other. Longer term interactions and unsupervised access should be introduced gradually. Start with shorter interactions when you are there and increase as each cat shows their comfortability. Don’t worry if they aren’t playing or snuggling right away - time is key!

Keep Calm

Pets are very perceptive of our emotions. They can pick up on your stress as well as the other animals in the home. Patience and understanding is key.

FELIWAY® Optimum mimics calming pheromones to help reduce common signs of stress in cats such as: scratching, urine spraying, tension and conflicts between cats, fears, and reactions to changes.

Introducing cats & dogs?

It’s a common misconception that cats and dogs don’t get along. Of course, each pet has a different personality that will impact their relationship, but not all hope is lost! Similar to introducing cats, creating safe spaces, swapping scents, and being patient can help your pets become friends.

While FELIWAY® is specifically designed for cats, there is a calming pheromone option for dogs. Try ThunderEase to help calm your pup as well!