There are few things in this world as cute and exciting as a new kitten. Well, maybe to you, but maybe not to your cat who has been running the show since you originally brought them home. Kittens are curious, mischievous, and playful. They are often keen on getting to know everything and everyone in a new place. While they may be excited about their new home, it is important to realize the stress that they may have on your older cat (or cats) in the house.  We’ve compiled a list of important kitten introduction do’s and don’ts to help you prepare everyone for the new kitten’s arrival.

The Do’s

  1. DO prepare a temporary living space for your kitten

When you first bring your kitten home, you will want to be sure you have a separate room or space that you can keep your kitten and cat away from each other. Take this time to make a cozy little haven for your kitten where they can relax and play comfortably. This will allow your older cat to sniff at them occasionally through a closed door.

  1. DO let your cat explore the room where your kitten is and vice versa

Take some time to let your kitten explore the house, especially in the areas that your older cat has been. While your kitten gets to do some sniffing around, let your older cat hang out in the kitten's room with the door closed. This will help your older cat be more familiar with their smell.

3. DO plan for supervised visits

When both you and your cats are ready, plan a few supervised visits with plenty of toys available. You will want to be sure you watch how both your kitten and cat interact with each other. Some play fighting is okay but be cautious of aggressive behavior.

4. DO provide treats

Treats are a great way to distract both of your cats. They are also a great way to get them comfortable being in close quarters. Use treats as a reward for both your kitten and older cat when they behave nicely towards each other.


The Don’ts

  1. DON’T force your new kitten and cat to meet immediately

Forcing an introduction between a new kitten and an older cat is never a good idea. You will not know how either cat will react. One of them may seriously hurt the other, which could result in an emergency trip to the vet.

2. DON’T punish your new kitten or cat for unwanted behavior

    If more aggressive behavior does arise, you may think discipline is the only way to stop it before it continues. Cats often don’t respond well to discipline when it is done incorrectly, and it may cause them to feel even more distressed. Instead, distraction with toys or treats is always the best course of action before separating each of them and trying to safely reintroduce them.

    3. DON’T take away hiding places from your cat

    You may think that less places to hide means your cats will get comfortable with each other faster. Taking away hiding spots is like forcing your older cat and kitten to interact. In fact, having hiding spots for both cats is extremely beneficial and allows your cats to have safe places to establish boundaries from one another.

    4. DON’T introduce a sick kitten to your older cat

    You should always be sure you are only introducing a healthy kitten to a healthy older cat. This will ensure that things, such as eye infections, are not spread to each other. A visit to the vet’s office for both the new kitten and older cat should be done prior to any introductions to avoid compromising the other's health.


    Patience is the key when introducing a new kitten and older cat. Be sure you have the time to allow a smooth, slow introduction. Both cats should adjust to one another’s company after a week or more.  Keep in mind that each cat may get used to their new family member differently, so it is important to allow for flexibility in your schedule if more time is needed.


    Want more? Click here for more fun and helpful kitty content!

    Also in Your Cats Happiness and Health

    Do Cats Need Enrichment?
    Do Cats Need Enrichment?

    Many domesticated cats live stress-free lives. If they’re indoor-only, then most of their days are probably spent sleeping by a window, knowing when and where their next meal will come from, and getting lots of pets and scratches (on their terms, of course).  

    However, cats benefit greatly from enrichment and they need it to live a happy, fulfilling life! We're diving into what enrichment looks like for cats and what things you can start to do now to make their lives more enriching.

    Preparing Your Home for Your New Feline Friend
    Preparing Your Home for Your New Feline Friend

    Are you looking to adopt a cat? Adopting a new cat or kitten is exciting, but it's also a lot of responsibility. Whether you're a new cat parent or just adopting another cat to add to your furry family, you'll want to make sure you're prepared for the added responsibilities - before and after they come home!
    How Cats Can Be Emotional Support Animals
    How Cats Can Be Emotional Support Animals

    Cats can be emotional support animals (ESA) to their human companions and many people see tremendous benefits of having a cat (or other animal as an ESA).

    There are several things to be mindful of when getting your cat registered as an ESA, including the differences between an ESA and service animal, and how to make it official.