During the first few days of taking home your new kitten, it’s important to keep them in one small room for a little bit so they don’t get overwhelmed. Give them time and space to be acclimate being in this new environment by providing them with their very own “safe room”. There is no strict timeline of how long they should stay in their safe room, but there are signs to look out for to know when your kitten is ready to explore the rest of the house and meet the other members of the family.
It’s always so exciting to have a new member of the family – especially if that new member is a cute little kitten. Before they arrive, there are things that you must prepare for them like new food bowls, at least one new litter box and unscented litter, toys they can call their own, scratching posts, and scent soakers, but most importantly, their so-called safe room. This safe room could either be a spare room you have, or even just a small bathroom.
Three reasons to keep them in one room
You should keep your kitten in one room for 2-7 days. There are three reasons as to why your kitten must stay in their safe room. How to do basic things like using their litter box, how to socialize with the other family members, and how to be comfortable in their new environment.
Your new kitten’s temporary room is going to be the space where they can chill out, eat, drink and poop and pee in private. This room could also be the perfect practice area for your kitten to master how to use their litter box properly 100% of the time, without spilling. Until your cat is using their litter box full time, and not making accidents in other areas of the room, they aren’t ready to go out yet.
Having this safe room is important for both your new kitten, and for the older furry companions in your household. Through the gap in the door, they’ll be able to smell each other without seeing each other. This way, they’ll start to be familiarized with each other’s scents. Cats are very sensitive to change – best to introduce the change to them slowly and securely. Another way you can speed up the process a little bit is by letting your new kitten play with one of the toys of your older cat. When it’s time, introduce them slowly and safely, with a lot of supervision to make sure they don’t hurt each other.
Take this time, while your kitten is in their safe room, to bond with them. Play with them and shower them with affection and attention. If you’re adopting just one kitten, they must really miss their mom and littermates for the first few days. It is your job to help them get comfortable in their new home. Help them associate you with all things that is good – like play and food. When your kitten is eating, stay close by the whole time. Once you see that your kitten is fully at ease with your presence and the other members of the family, they’re ready to venture out.
Your home is their home also now. The way cats feel a sense of ownership is by spreading their scent around (scent soakers are a big help with this), and being able to see their territory. Invest in a cat tree for this purpose. Once you see that your cat is confident in her new home, it’s time for her to see more of it.
Watch the Video: Learn How Baby Kittens Grow: 0-8 Weeks!
When do kittens start jumping?
By the time they are six weeks old, kittens will not only be walking and running around – they’ll start developing their gymnastic abilities starting with hopping and jumping. By the time they are 8 weeks old, they’ll be all over the place, flaunting the gymnastic maneuvers they’ve learned. Get yourself ready.
When is the best time to socialize kittens?
Cats have a so called “window of socialization.” This window is between 2-7 weeks, but it can be extended to up to their 14th week. During this time, your cat must be exposed to a lot of new experiences so when they are older, they’ll be well adjusted cats. If you’re buying a cat from a breeder, make sure that your breeder is properly socializing your future kitten with humans, and other animals like cats and dogs – especially if you have an existing animal companion waiting at home.
It’s also important that they are properly protected from infectious diseases and parasites before they start socializing. Make sure that your cat’s vaccinations are up to date. Ask your veterinarian for advice on this.
Should I leave my kitten alone?
Yes. There comes a time when it is absolutely important for your kitten to be okay with being by themselves so they don’t become overly clingy. It’s best to train them while they’re young.
Kittens are much less independent than older cats, so there are some things to consider.
- Do it slowly. Leave them alone for around 15 minutes at a time. Build that number up in the next couple of weeks.
- Play with them. Kittens have a lot of energy. Help them burn it out before you go.
- Leave them something to entertain themselves with. The best way to do this is to give them access to a window, aka, cat TV.
The best time for your cat to exit their safe room is when they’re fully accustomed to living in their new forever home. They must learn the basics like how to pee and poop properly in their litter boxes, be fully familiarized with the other members of the family (including the furry ones), and be fully at ease with their new environment.