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Welcoming your new kitten into your home

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While bringing home a new kitten or cat is exciting, it's very stressful for the animal. Change is traumatic for cats, so you don't want to bring your kitten home when your house is crowded and noisy, or show it off to your friends and family as soon as it arrives. Follow these steps when welcoming a new cat or kitten into your home.

If possible, introduce your kitten to its new home when the house is quiet, perhaps when the children are at school.

While bringing home a new kitten or cat is exciting, it's very stressful for the animal. Change is traumatic for cats, so you don't want to bring your kitten home when your house is crowded and noisy, or show it off to your friends and family as soon as it arrives. Follow these steps when welcoming a new cat or kitten into your home.

If possible, introduce your kitten to its new home when the house is quiet, perhaps when the children are at school.

Prepare a room for the kitten before its arrival. Make sure the room is quiet and kitten-proof. Put its food, water, cat scratching post and litter box in the room. Make sure the kitten has something soft to sleep on, such as a cat bed or perch.

Don't take the kitten out of its carrier until it's in its own room. Shut the door to the room and open the carrier. Don't worry if the kitten hides. Talk to it softly. Never pull a kitten out from under the furniture. (No kitten has ever lived its entire life under a bed. Your kitten will come out when it's ready.)

Enter the room every few hours to clean the litter and check on the kitten. Otherwise, leave the kitten alone.

If the kitten seems to want attention, spend some time with the kitten. Talk softly and be gentle with the kitten. Encourage children to do the same.

When the kitten is no longer hiding and seems comfortable, let it out of the room. Make sure the house is quiet when you do this. Don't be surprised if your kitten takes a quick look around and retreats to its room. Repeat this process for several days.

Once the kitten seems secure in its new home, you can leave the door to its room open. However, it's a good idea to confine the kitten to its room whenever you're not at home.

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