How should I introduce my new kitten to my other cats?

  • Trying to introduce new kitten to my three and five year old. Have the kitten in a separate room...take him out but the others hiss at him.  Don't know weather to just see what happens or just keep them segregated. Help!

  • Hi Arline,

    The older two cats hissing at this new arrival is totally normal. Getting them established just takes a bit of time. 

    -First, keep kitten in the separate room. Provide plenty of toys, food/water, litter box and a little bed or blanket. Allowing him time to get used to the new room and home.

    - after some time, place the resident cats in separate room and allow kitten to roam the home to allow him to become familiar with the layout and to pick up the scents and favourite areas of the other cats. Allow about 20 mins or so. 

    - Place kitten back in his room, and let the other two back out.  Allow the resident cats to sniff where he has been.

    - now bring the resident cats to the closed door of the kitten's room - to sniff one another from either side. There will be some hissing but they are getting used to each other's scents and presence within the home.

    - at feeding time, try placing their meals on each side of the closed door so they can get used to the presence of food and each other's company..together. 

    - switch a blanket or toy from both the resident cats side and the kitten side and allow them to investigate each other's scent.

    - after about 12-24 hours. Try placing a pet/baby gate or barrier of some kind (something see through) so they each observe one another but not approach. 

    - when you sense the mood has improved. Lift the barrier and allow them to come together. There may be more hissing and low-growling but this is the way that the resident older cats make their point of being in charge. Ultimately, putting kitten in his place of hierarchy. 
    - if there is spitting and high-growling you will need to separate the cats and kitten and end the introduction for today. Allow for another 12-24 hours to pass before making another attempt.

    Just remember with patience and time - your cats and kitten can become good friends...or at least, have a peaceful tolerance of each other. 

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