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Here are some important points to be aware of to assist in integrating a new cat into your home with your resident cat(s). It is best to be prepared ahead of time to help things run smoothly.
There’s a good chance that a new kitten will be more easily received than a second mature cat. The personality of the cat is more important than whether it’s male or female. Remember that sometimes the new arrival may be ignored for a while. However more times than not, the new kitty will slowly achieve trust and acceptance and even quickly become best buddies with your own cat.
1. Create a separate area for the new kitty, which will contain their food, water, litter box, scratching post, toys and bed. (Always keep food and water away from litter boxes) It is recommended for the new cat or kitten to be kept separate for 7 days.
2. Anticipate that both cats to not be too happy when they first meet. They may hiss or growl. This is quite normal and natural. They are just figuring out who is boss.
3. The other cat’s scent is very important to cats. Cats have glands in their cheeks that produce pheromones. Pheromones are produced when your cat rubs their cheeks against pretty much anything. It will send out a chemical that gives your cat information about the cat whose pheromones are being produced as well. It also helps them relieve anxiety. Start by gently rubbing each cat with their own towel on their cheeks. This can be a good way to start introductions. Some cats do well with synthetic pheromones (spray or diffuser). These products can be purchased online or in pet stores.
4. Give them time. Pushing pets together before they are ready may cause a negative experience. After a day or two of their getting use to the other’s smells, reverse their living quarters, so that the resident cat has a chance to smell and explore the separate area where you are keeping the new kitty (as well as putting the new cat into the area where your resident usually stays). Do this a couple times. Your own cat may need some extra attention from you during this adjustment period.
5. Next, you can start allowing the cats closer access to each other by placing them on either side of a closed door so that they can smell each other directly. The next step is to allow them to see each other through a baby gate or a door that is propped open two inches. If the cats are interested in each other and seem comfortable, allow them to meet. Open the door to the room between the cats and observe them closely.
6. NEVER JUST PUT THE NEW CAT DOWN AND “LET THEM WORK IT OUT”. Make sure it’s under your supervision. Allow them to hiss and growl at each other, that’s ok. However, if there is a physical altercation this is where you must get involved. It could be slow process to determine how fast they will get along. If they are tolerating each other’s company, even resentfully, praise them both big time. NEVER LEAVE THE CATS ALONE UNSUPERVISED, UNTIL YOU ARE SURE THEY GET ALONG.
7. Make their first interactions happy moments. In this way, they will associate those happy moments with the other cat. For instance, feeding them together (with their own bowls); playing and loving them together – while always showing them your approval.
8. If they are still not getting along, you will need to split them up again. After a time out, start again. If one of the cats is more of the instigator, give them their breathing space, and try again later.
9. Keep your dog(s) on a leash and immediately put a stop to any aggressive behavior. Never allow your dog to chase or corner the cat, even if its out of playfulness or curiosity.
Introducing a new cat into the home may take hours, days, weeks, or even months before your cats completely adjust to, and accept each other. Patience and a positive attitude will help your new cat become a fully integrated member sooner rather than later.
Factors to Consider
1. If you are thinking of getting a kitten to keep an older cat company, you might want to consider two kittens. They will be able to keep each other company while the older cat learns to love them.
2. If you already have more than one cat, use the "dominant cat" for preliminary introductions. Once he/she accepts the newcomer, the other resident cats will follow.
3. Lots of snuggle-time and attention is indicated for all cats concerned during this period. Remember, the prime goal is to get them to associate pleasure with the presence of each other.
4. If possible, ask a friend to deliver the new cat to your home, in her cage. You can act nonchalant, as if it's no big deal, then later let your resident cat(s) think it's their idea to welcome the newcomer.
Congratulations and thank you for opening your home to a new cat.
FIV stands for feline immunodeficiency virus and it causes a cat's immune system to weaken. Dogs and humans cannot get FIV from a cat. A cat can infect another cat but usually only from a deep puncture wound; the kind of wound that an unfixed, outdoor male would inflict on another unfixed male over territorial issues. These cats can live with cats without FIV, sharing bowls, cleaning each other as well as playing together. FIV cats are absolutely adoptable, wonderful cats! Many cats have this virus and live long, healthy lives, some well into their late teens. A lot of owners don't even realize their cat has this virus. Can you tell if this kitty has FIV? He does, and he is a wonderful, much loved boy.
Many cats with FIV live in mixed households with FIV negative cats for years or decades without the negative cats getting infected. Consider asking your local rescue about adopting or fostering a cat with FIV because some of them are truly the best cats. FIV is a very misunderstood virus - let's try to create some awareness in our community!
TNR stands for Trap, Neuter, Release (or Return)
TNR is done to control the feral cat population and end the breeding cycle. At the time of spay and neuter the cat will also receive a FVRCP vaccine, Rabies, Revolution Flea treatment and a microchip. The tip of the left ear will be clipped off during the spay surgery to identify a cat that has already been been through TNR. A true feral cat is born outside and has had no human contact. Some cats going through the TNR process are actually lost or abandoned pets and have reverted back to “feral mode” for survival. If a cat that is trapped is found to be friendly or just need some socialization it will be kept back to be socialized and go on to adoption. For cats that will be returned to the colony outside, they will be fed by a registered colony caregiver, known as a CCG. The CCG will know the cats in their colony care and spot any newcomers needing help and for signs of illness and alert the rescue or organization that TNRd the cat. Insulated straw shelters are also provided for shelter in the winter. For the cats being returned to the outside colony they will be held inside for recovery from surgery, anywhere from 3 days for males and approx 5 days for females. Rescues will each have their own protocol. It’s imperative to watch for and trap any pregnant females as soon as possible to ensure the kittens will not be born outside.
Any kittens born outside are easiest to socialize if caught by 8 weeks of age.
Click here to find out more about the Hamilton Burlington SPCA's TNR program.
and visit ( HCCN) on FB , The Hamilton Community Cat
Network is a group of stakeholders in Hamilton who are working towards advancing TNVR ( Trap Neuter Vaccinate and Release) It includes HBSPCA, Hamilton Animal Services, Hamilton Street Cats, Hamilton Public Health, two vets and volunteers. HCCN runs the TNVR 101 and shelter build workshops.
Some cats have extra toes because they inherit a gene that codes for polydactylism. If one parent is polydactyl and one parent has normal feet, then 40 to 50 percent of the kittens will also be polydactyl.
Regular cats have five toes on their front feet and four on their back, for a total of 18. But polydactyl pronounced (pol-ee-dak-til) cats boast more toes, usually on their front feet.
Right now, there’s no certain breed of cat that is more or less prone to being polydactyl. However, in the past, the original Maine Coon cats had a high incidence of polydactylism — about 40 percent.
If the word "polydactyl" sounds like Greek to you, that’s because it is — the Greek root poly means "many" and daktylos means "digits or toes." The record holder for most toes was a kitty named Jake, who had a whopping 28.
American writer Ernest Hemingway was a lover of polydactyl cats. He was given his first polydactyl cat, a white six-toed feline named Snowball, by a ship's captain; today, nearly 50 of Snowball's descendants still live at Hemingway's home in Key West. Polydactyl cats are known by many names, including “Hemingway cats,” a reference to Snowball and her famous owner. They are also referred to as “mitten cats,” “big-foot cats” and “six-toed cats” — or even “cats with thumbs.”
The first record of cats like Snowball is from 1868, and they were mostly found in the Northeastern U.S. and Nova Scotia. Polydactyl cats were often found on ships because sailors believed they were good luck and thought the extra toes gave them better balance while on the high seas.President Theodore Roosevelt’s poly kitty, Slippers, was one of the first feline residents of the White House.
from Huffpost, 07/21/2013