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-   -   Fostering/maybe adopting a cat (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=80533)

lindapalm March 17th, 2012 06:43 PM

Fostering/maybe adopting a cat
 
I am considering fostering a cat from the Humane Society, and possibly adopting if it works out. The cat has lived in a walk in cage with other cats for six years, so she gets along well with other cats. I have seven cats, and they get along pretty good with each other. When I brought a new cat into the house, it was always a stray, which I would keep confined in a room for a couple of weeks, have him vet checked to make sure it was okay to let him with the rest of the cats. We moved and now live in a house that has the litter boxes in the basement, and the cats have access through a doggie door. My question is, should I confine this cat in a room for awhile, and if I do, , when I do let her loose in the house how will she know where the litter boxes are? I think I should take her in the basement and let her loose there, and see what happens. Is that too risky to expose all the cats at once to her?

BenMax March 18th, 2012 05:54 PM

Intergration is a slow process...normally. I personally would NEVER put my own cats with the fosters I have until they have had an opportunity to smell each other from under the closed door where the foster cats are.

A good trick is to take a cloth and rub the sides of the cheeks of the new cat and then put the cloth where the other cats can smell the newbie. Also, ensure that the cats do not come into contact with the new one all at once. I recommend to take your mildest mannered cat first to meet the new one. If it goes well supervise the bonding. I normally take my sweet female and put her in with the foster(s). Then move each cat in one at a time over a period of time so that they all get to meet the new cat independantly. All at once can cause fights and the new cat will be overwhelmed.

As you have seven cats, I would say it would take approximately 7 weeks to successfully intergrate all together. If the new cat and another one of your cats bond well, then leave them together in the room so that they 'stick together' when it comes time to open the door and let the new one explore.

Do NOT rush the process. In order to successfully introduce and avoid confrontations it takes time and effort.

BTW - I have 3 males and one female. I foster cats and kittens all the time and eventually I do intergrate them but very very slowly. At night the newer fosters are put back into their rooms as I cannot supervise.

Good luck.:thumbs up

Love4himies March 18th, 2012 06:12 PM

I agree with BM, slow is always better than fast. Your resident cats get used to the new cat's scent and the foster kitty gets a chance to settle in, get it's bearings before having the added stress of getting to know the resident kitties. Can only be a win-win situation for all.

Good luck!

lindapalm March 18th, 2012 09:17 PM

Thanks, I thought that was probably going to be the right way of doing it, I just thought that maybe since she was used to many cats over the years, and mine are used to more than one cat, I could just introduce them right away, but I guess it wouldn't be worth something bad happening. My biggest fear, if I take her, is that one of mine will start spraying. It happened to one of my males when I took two stray males in, and I definately don't want that to happen again.

Love4himies March 19th, 2012 07:08 AM

[QUOTE=lindapalm;1036591]Thanks, I thought that was probably going to be the right way of doing it, I just thought that maybe since she was used to many cats over the years, and mine are used to more than one cat, I could just introduce them right away, but I guess it wouldn't be worth something bad happening. My biggest fear, if I take her, is that one of mine will start spraying. It happened to one of my males when I took two stray males in, and I definately don't want that to happen again.[/QUOTE]

I believe my Jasper would spray if I took in a male too, so I will only do females/kittens. I just find keeping them separated gives the kitties time to get over the "shock" of having a new cat in their space.

lindapalm March 19th, 2012 10:59 AM

Do you think my chances are better of not having my cats spray if this new one is a female, or doesn't it matter? I have five males and two females.

Love4himies March 19th, 2012 11:17 AM

[QUOTE=lindapalm;1036626]Do you think my chances are better of not having my cats spray if this new one is a female, or doesn't it matter? I have five males and two females.[/QUOTE]

For Jasper, it makes all the difference in the world, he has never sprayed when there has been a strange female come into the house, but when there is a male around he WILL spray. Jasper loves female cats, he's never even hissed at any new ones that have come into the house. Kind of like a Don Juan of kitties :cloud9:


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