Socializing Your Cat 101: Here’s What You Need To Do
Bringing a new cat back to your home can be a seriously exciting time. Of course, there’s nothing quite like socializing your cat. Still, one thing that all too many cat owners find is that their kitty doesn’t take to them right away. If you find that this is the case, you absolutely have to socialize your cat a little at a time. Yes, this process can be slow, but when you get it right, it will be well worth it. Here’s what you need to know.
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Cats may be fearful of humans
First of all, it’s important to acknowledge that some cats are fearful of humans. If you bought your cat from a breeder, you should find that this is not the case. However, if you happen to have got a rescue cat or kitten, you could find that they are not used to being around people. If your kitty is a little scared of you or your family, don’t take that as a slight on you. It’s not. Instead, you should work with your feline to help them relax around you.
You have to develop a level of trust
The first thing you need to do is develop a level of trust. That means that you shouldn’t invade your cat’s space all that much. Although you might want to pick your kitty up all the time, you should not do that. Instead, put your hand out toward your cat and let them come to you. They may sniff you a whole lot first, but soon enough they will get used to you and come of their own free will.
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Use food as reinforcement
You have one major thing on your side here; food. You are the one that controls your kitty’s food, and so you can use that to your best advantage. Make sure that your cat sees you laying the food down for them. Call them when you do so to let them know as well. If they realize that you’re providing for them it will be a huge help.
Use familiar toys to play
This one can be quite tricky, but if you try hard, you can get it right. First of all, you need to buy some cat toys for your new kitty. You can’t immediately play with them, and so you should just leave the toys in their area (their basket or room!). After a few days, your cat’s natural scent will have transferred to the toy. You can then use the toy to play with your cat. The fact that the toy smells and seems familiar means that your kitty will not fear it.
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Finally, the most important thing you need to remember is that this whole process will not happen overnight. Cats can be very temperamental creatures, and so it may take your kitty a while to adjust to you. Don’t worry if that’s the case. Just keep going strong and we’re sure your cat will be happy and healthy in no time.