Cats are remarkably intelligent companions who can be the most affectionate, loving, and playful friends around.
If you just brought your new cat home, there are now millions of things to explore.
Taking steps to properly socialize them in their new home will help them have a stress-free experience. Common experiences such as trips to the veterinarian, leaving them with a pet sitter, and introducing new family members will go much easier if you take the time to socialize your cat properly.
There are several ways to do just that. Do you dream of that fluffy cute kitten purring in your lap? It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with how to socialize a cat so that you can make your friend feel safe enough to cuddles.
Benefits of socializing cats and kittens
Socialization refers to the process of exposing your cat to peoples, other cats, and other furry friends within your home. A cat that hasn’t been socialized properly may be timid or aggressive, and they might display a variety of behavior issues, from scratching your furniture to boycotting the litterbox.
Socialization is especially important if you have small children in your home. On the other hand, well-socialized kittens are typically very reliable, affectionate, and well behaved.
When should you socialize your cat?
Kittens are more receptive to new experiences when they’re between 2 to 7 weeks old, making them the perfect window for socialization. Of course, several pet parents don’t adopt their fluffy buddies until they’re closer to 7 or 8 weeks old. Don’t worry, cats are fairly easy to socialize for up to 14 weeks. Whereas, older cats can also be successfully socialized; it might just take more time and patience. Do you know that why do cats love boxes?
Introducing new sights and experiences to your cats
The more you can safely and appropriately expose your cat early in his life, they will be better adjusted and happier. Don’t do too much at once. Take it slow and provide several cuddles, play, treats, and petting. Introduce them to:
- Being pet and held
- Litter boxes
- Getting brushed
- Scratching posts
- Toys and interactive feeders
- Other pets in your house
Get them used to common sounds
Cats can easily be startled by new noises. Try to introduce these common noises in a controlled and gradual way — at farther distances and lower volumes with different positive reinforcement and treats in an environment where they feel safe. This way, your cat won’t be so stressed by them in their daily life. Learn how to teach your cat to use a cat door.
- Boisterous family members
- Phones and alarm clocks
- Garbage and delivery buses, trucks, and motorcycles
- Door knocks and doorbell
- Thunder and fireworks
- Noisy appliances such as a blender, vacuum, hairdryer, and washing machine
Quick Socializing Tips
Here are a few tips that how to socialize your cat:
- Cats are easier to socialize in pairs, so if you can adopt two at the same time, go for it!
- Be patient and don’t take any problem personally.
- Try to work on socializing in a small, enclosed space such as a bathroom, bedroom, or a walk-in closet.
- Always make sure your kitten is up-to-date on his vaccinations before taking him out with other furry friends.