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How do I make my new arrivals feel at home?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
The time has finally come! I pick my my kittens from my sisters cat on Saturday. I have never had cats before and have been doing my research but I was just wodnering if there are any tips peolpe can give me on how to ensure they settle down easliy. Also how to make the 2 hour car journey from my sisters to mine as stress free as possible...
post #2 of 8
Yay on your new kitties! They may be a bit nervous when they first arrive at your home. Be sure to give them time to just settle in a bit. When we first brought Ringo home from the local animal shelter, she hid under the bed for several days. I'd lay on the floor and talk to her. Sometimes she would come out and let me pet her a bit. We kept the litter box and her food and water near the bed. It's important to keep the necessities near their "comfort zone" until the get more settled and used to their new environment. After about two weeks Ringo had officially taken over the house and we were able to move everything to their permanent places.
post #3 of 8
do you have your cat carrier all lined up? A nice sturdy one is nice - I have a sherpa bag which is lined with lambswool on the bottom, and mine seem to like that. I was advised to make sure the carrier is securely belted into the back seat, and just drive nice and carefully, with no sudden stops if you can.. Who knows, they may fall asleep on the way.

Also, and it's a little pricey, Feliway spray spritzed in the car and carrier and home might be nice if you can. Feliwy is synthetic hormones that basically seem to make cats feel more at home in an environment.

Hmm, they say cats like harp or classical music a lot - maybe you could have some playing softly in the car on your way home?

Once you get home to the nursery that I bet you have already set up, I'd say just let them have some quiet time - maybe you could sit in the room and read aloud to yourself, so they get used to your voice, but don't feel you're 'staring' at them. Oh, and whatever your sister has been using for litter and food, just keep on using it at first, even if you decide to gradually chagne later.

Also, make sure your camera has nice fresh batteries - and just enjoy. I know I was nervous when i brought mine home, but you and they will be family before you know it.
post #4 of 8
You must be getting so excited! Don't worry about a THING!

They will be just fine, it will seem like you have had them FOREVER in such a short period of time. They will be breaking things in no time

Don't be stressed out if they cry THE WHOLE WAY HOME. It is annoying for sure but they will be okay and NOTHING you can do will make them stop so don't bother. Just talk soothingly to them occasionally and keep loud noises like the radio away from them.

Two of my cats threw up their first night home...eww, and Rocko was my first ever experiance with pooping in the cat carrier...double eww. But soon enough they settle in and all is forgotten! The joy they will bring to your life FAR outweigh the not so pleasant times.

as soon as you can! We sure love pics!
post #5 of 8
One thing - scour the area they'll have access to very carefully for any even very small spaces where they can sneak in anywhere you don't want them (that could even lead into the house structure by accident). It's one thing for them to scurry under furniture to hide (and don't reach under to drag them out as it's even scarier for them) but another to become inaccessible. Patience will get them out from under most places (or an open can of tuna!).
post #6 of 8
Aside from the car ride, they should be fine. Kittens adjust better then cats do, or seem to really adjust more quickly. I think it's because they have shorter memories and generally less fear. "New place is scary... Ooo look, shiny thing! Can I chew on it?!"

I suggest holding off food before the trip and not to allow them too much water before, and as with children - make sure they take a litter box break before you pack them up. Take whatever blanket/bedding they sleep on now and put that in their carrier. Having them together should help them, too.

When they get home, make sure their litter box is set up and ready to be used and if they're not too upset - show it to them. Give them a little time to calm down and then offer some wet food, they'll probably chow down and forget the "trauma" of their trip.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hi All
JUst wanted to say a MASSIVE thankyou for all the advice.
I picked them up on Sunday.
Charlie was fine he meeowed for a bit but i think that was for his sisters benifit and then culrled up and fell asleep.
Cleo was a tad more unsettled but she too slept most of the way. They both used the litter tray within an hour of arrival and were exploring the whole house by the end of the day.
They now spend most their time fighting and sleeping so i dont think they are missing mom too much. I spent all day with them yesterday but had to leave them home alone today and get back to work
I left them attacking the scratching post so hopefully everything will be in one piece when I get home tonight
One thing...I wont need an alarm clock for a while as I get woekn up at 5am by a kitten on my head!! lol

Thanks again!!
Ill post some pics up shortly!!

PS: When should I get the first lot of vaccines? and can I let them play (supervised) in the garden once these have been done???
post #8 of 8
Ask the vet about their shots. The problem with the garden (even supervised) is that as they get older, they'll want to be out there more and more, but 'supervision' won't hold them beyond a few months and they'll just run and slink in, under and around whatever they find in their way (out). However, if you're prepared to let them stay out all the time but still want them to be safe, you could look into special cat enclosures, or else train them to walk on leads hooked to 4-point harnesses (the kind that not only go around the neck - dangerous 'as is' for cats - but also have 'collars' around their tummies, attached to the neck part on their backs). They will also whine and annoy you a lot :0) to be outside all the time if they're not trained to either use leads or an enclosure (which can often be accessed by little cat doors from your house).
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