|Then someday you'll get to spend your days taking pictures of|
adorable cuddle puddles.
PREPARING YOUR HOME
(Best case scenario, you do all this before you get another cat, but these are improvements that can help any cat household no matter how long the cats have been living/fighting together.)
The first thing you need to do is assess your home. If your house isn't multi-cat friendly then you are setting yourself up for failure. To have a smooth introduction and a peaceful life, you first need to check out your litter box situation. The golden rule for litter boxes is: number of cats + 1 and litter boxes should be cleaned daily. Having too few or dirty litter boxes pretty much guarantees cat fights, litter box aversion, or both.
Litter boxes good? Next, your resident cat(s) need a place to mark their territory and your new cat needs some territory to claim as his – for this you need scratching posts and cat trees. (Read about why scratching is important here.) Give your new cat a fresh scratching item, even if it's just one of the lay-on-the-floor cardboard scratchers. Having something of their own to scratch that doesn't smell like the other cats in the home will help you out later on during the actual introduction.
The third thing you should evaluate before bring another cat into your home is vertical space. Like scratching, it's a territory thing. Not having enough vertical space will increase competition in your home and certainly not help your cats get along.
EVALUATE YOUR CURRENT CATS
Are your current cats happy and healthy? Before you bring a new cat home you need to make sure your resident cats are current on their vaccinations and spayed or neutered. Not only do you not want any accidents, but altered cats get along much, much better than they would otherwise. An unaltered male cat would happily kill a new tiny kitten if they were left unattended together in your home.
If you currently have ill or unaltered cats, right now might not be the best time for you to make an addition to your family.
|It's hard to believe now that at one time Harry wanted to eat|
Damien as a snack.
- somewhere to hide
If you already have a new cat and you're having problems, repeat this step (or do it for the first time). It's the first step to making things better and it keeps your cats safe from each other. Not only are cat fights awful to listen to, but they can cause an array of damage – anything from small bites and scabs, to scratched eyes, to puncture wounds that form abscesses.