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How Can I Help My Recently Adopted Cat To Adopt To My Home

Discussion in 'Cat Behavior' started by GOODFELLA, Apr 8, 2018.

  1. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018
    She is 4 years old calico and she was rescued from a shelter after her last family chose a big dog over her after having her from kitten age. She is a gentle soul and is very good to me but I feel she is very nervous, she hides inside my sofa. I think her experience with dog is still hunting him and the distance between Pet store and home in carriage make her uncomfortable. I know the time is two weeks but i love her so much and i want to help her. I adopted her 2 days ago.
     

  2. catlover73

    catlover73 TCS Member Top Cat

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    Sep 3, 2006
    Chicago area
    Welcome to TCS. I am not surprised your baby is hiding still. She has been through some big changes in a short amount of time. Is your baby eating, drinking, peeing and pooping? She may only do these things at first when you are asleep if she is really scared. Two days is not a long time for a cat to adjust to a new home. To help her feel more comfortable to try establish a routine set aside time around the same time each day for playtime. Playtime is an excellent way to build trust and confidence with a cat. If she is not ready to play yet just hang out on the floor near her but do not try to force interaction. That will happen in time once she more comfortable with her new environment. Try sitting on the ground near where she is hiding and read a book or watch tv. Let her decide when she is ready to interact. She needs time to get used you, the sounds and smells in her new environment. Once she comes out and starts exploring encourage her by setting aside time to do treats each day. She will learn she is safe but it is going to take time and patience from you. Cats get comfortable in new places in their own time frame.

    I remember when I moved into my current home in 2001. All 3 of my cats hid in my basement and would not come upstairs. I put food and water in the basement for them. I did go downstairs and sit with them. If they wanted me to pet them I did. Sometimes they would just sit on the other side of the room and look at me. I spent time sitting in the basement reading and talking to them. My babies had been in my life for a while but they were moved to a much bigger space with multiple levels. I was in a smaller one bedroom apartment before this. Once they did decide to come up stairs they would only do it when we were not home. I could tell because I would find toys upstairs. It took at least 2 weeks for my cats to explore the house when we were home and about a week before they really wanted to be affectionate with us. Eventually everything went back to normal and they were happy in their new place.
     

  3. Anne

    Anne Site Owner Staff Member Admin

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  4. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018

    I should have chose a small place but she went under my bed first. I used catnip to bring her out and showed her the food and the litter box, she was marking the territory and me at that time. Now she got familiar with my room but went to the hall when i was sleeping and hide inside my sofa. I let her stay in there for almost all day but at night i brought her out, showed her that i put her some food and water, took her to a high point that i set up by the window for her to have better view of the hall. she went back to the sofa and i came to work
     
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  5. 2Cats4everLoved

    2Cats4everLoved TCS Member Top Cat

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    Jan 9, 2016
    New York City Area.
    Hello and welcome to TCS. I understand it's all too heartbreaking when we aren't loved back right away, but with much patience you will be her hero soon enough.

    I recently adopted two senior girls, sisters. One very loving and knew from the start this was a safe place, Dora didn't miss a beat, she was comfortable right from the start. As for her sister Rosy, it wasn't until last week, on her 3 month anniversary when she let me touch her for more than 30 seconds.

    One thing I did with (mostly Rosy) was let her observe me. As @catlover73 advised, don't force interaction. I kept things relatively quite for the first two weeks. I did bring out the laser light which she responded to asap. But no touching.

    After her observing us for 3 months and getting used to our routine, she's come a long way and I can see next month we'll have an even trusting cat.

    My two were given up after being with their "forever" home of 12 years, than at the shelter for 8 whole months.

    I would say consistency, soft voice, not too much movement and a laser light may be the way to go. I did make a big deal out of feeding times, so they would know, and it's become a ritual now.

    With my other cat (who passed) I got a clean cardboard box for her to hang out in, just turned it on it's side and she took right to it. I kept it by the sofa so she could have her own safe space and observe us too. It takes time but you'll get there.

    The Cat Site has many great articles.

    Don't get discouraged, she'll come around.

    What is her name? And just for the record, we love pictures. LOL

    Again welcome!
     
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  6. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018
    She is amazing, she comes and p
     
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  7. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018
    She has a lot of love, she is unbelievably patient when she comes out . She even let me do belly rub but she is afraid of the place.
     
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  8. 2Cats4everLoved

    2Cats4everLoved TCS Member Top Cat

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    Jan 9, 2016
    New York City Area.
    Awww, belly rub is a big deal. She will get used to her new home and all the new smells and sounds that come along with it.
    In time.:petcat:
     
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  9. rubysmama

    rubysmama Forum Helper Staff Member Forum Helper

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  10. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018
    [​IMG] This is my Aphrodite
     

  11. 2Cats4everLoved

    2Cats4everLoved TCS Member Top Cat

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    Jan 9, 2016
    New York City Area.
    Awwwwwww, so sweet. She'll come around.

    Please remember, you can never post too many pictures:D
     
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  12. rubysmama

    rubysmama Forum Helper Staff Member Forum Helper

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  13. SPIKEhelp

    SPIKEhelp TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 9, 2018
    Philadelphia, PA
    I was so happy to read your post. I'm having the same issue with my new 7-year-old Maine Coon. He has that sweet, friendly Maine Coon disposition. A family member is moving to a new place and cannot take him (Spike) along. When I first brought him into my apartment, I put him in the bathroom so that he wouldn't be intimidated by the new space. I felt so bad for him being alone in there, that I went in and sat on the floor with him and petted him and talked to him for over an hour. About 5 minutes after I left the bathroom, he came out after having been in there alone for several hours. He walked around in the bedroom a little and went into the living room for a short time looking all around. He even played a little with a catnip toy but went right back into hiding in a closet he had found. Apparently, he stayed in there all night, because he was still in there when I awoke in the morning. He has come out periodically looking around. He lets me pet him. Today, he hid under the couch, sneaking out for a petting, but eventually went back into that closet. However, he seems to be getting the idea that things might not be so bad. But what worries me is that he's not eating, drinking or using the litter box as far as I can tell. Everything is undisturbed. I've plugged in a pheromone diffuser. I've read where it helps cats calm down and to feel more at home. I try not to make any noise or make any sudden moves, but today I HAD to vacuum...I just HAD to. I guess he's going to be stuck in that closet for the rest of the day.
     
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  14. tarasgirl06

    tarasgirl06 TCS Member Top Cat

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    Sep 19, 2006
    Glendale, California
    Welcome to TCS @GOODFELLA and beautiful Aphrodite! Well, the posters before me have a lot of great suggestions and those links should help. Just to let you know you're not alone, I adopted Elvis, our latest addition to the family, just over a year ago. He was 9 and had lived with his human family and a dog he loved. But the dad's fiancee is severely "allergic", so fortunately, Elvis was very much needed here in our family. He had lived with another cat for awhile, but when he came here, he had to adjust to new home, new guardian, and a multi-cat family, all adults, male and female, all spayed/neutered of course. He stayed in his room for quite awhile, hiding under the bed. I had to put his food right next to the bed for him to eat. But slowly, he got brave and wanted to investigate. Now, he rules the house! Time, patience, love, and play are key when a new cat joins the family. Please keep posting pix and letting us know how you both are doing, okay? Here is Elvis right after he joined us, and more recently. IMG_0139.JPG IMG_0674.JPG
    ...another keyboard cat :geekcat:
     
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  15. Caspers Human

    Caspers Human TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Feb 23, 2016
    Pennsylvania
    We adopted Casper when he was 2 or 3 years old.

    He had a family before but was abandoned outdoors. He lived on his own for about a year before he was caught by an Animal Welfare Society and brought in. ("Animal Welfare Society" = Private Non-Profit Organization. Not the Humane Society, etc.)

    Anyhow, he was VERY skittish when we brought him home. Even though he came out to explore the house, early on, it took him a good month to acclimate to his new home.

    Casper has been living with us for two years. He is still somewhat skittish, especially around strangers, but, for the most part, he walks around like he owns the place, now. ;)
     
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  16. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018
    I camped near the sofa(afraid to sit on the sofa maybe the spring hurt her) for an evening and she came out and start investigating again. Yesterday she spent outside the sofa a lot more and now only goes there to sleep. she found another hiding spot too. all and all i think she is coming along just fine.
     
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  17. GOODFELLA

    GOODFELLA Thread Starter TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 8, 2018
    Aphrodite fist only ate wet food, until she became more comfortable withe place. I played the music in youtube for relaxing cats so i think that helped a bit as well.
     
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  18. Etarre

    Etarre TCS Member Alpha Cat

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    Jan 25, 2018
    Congrats on your new kitty, and thanks for sharing a pic. She's beautiful. It sounds like she's warming up to you and starting to feel more at home. It takes a long time for cats to get used to a new space. Think about how much larger the space would seem to them compared to our impressions of it, and how many strange new noises there are in any home. When your cat seems fearful, she's reacting to all these environmental stressors, not to you personally.

    There's a fun thread about how cats settled in on their first day home, and it's interesting how wide a range of personalities all of our cats have, from fearless to very skittish and shy:

    What Was Your Cat's Behavior Like In The First Day?

    Good luck getting her settled in, and keep us posted on your progress.
     
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  19. Candybee

    Candybee TCS Member Adult Cat

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    Mar 6, 2018
    Shenandoah Valley
    I just recently went through the same experience almost word for word. I adopted my calico cat Gypsy just last month from the local animal shelter. She is a tiny 6 lb cat about 8-10 yrs old. I don't have any idea what kind of a life she had before me, but when I got her her mouth was in chronic condition full of rotten teeth and gums. So on top of being abandoned, she was a senior cat with dental problems that needed to be fixed asap.

    I found out that she was extremely shy and jumpy. Everything scared her and she also hid under my large couch 24/7. Also, she stopped eating and stayed under the couch for days. I finally noticed that when I looked at her food bowl in the morning it looked like she had eaten some. So I knew that only at night she would venture out to eat. But she still wasn't eating enough so I was really worried.

    I remembered something I watched from the cat daddy Jackson Galaxy from his show My Cat From Hell. It was about blocking off hiding places to challenge your cat and bring them out of hiding. So I blocked off her couch but not the other furniture that was easy enough for me to get under. This kept her from getting under the couch but also left her other hidey places she could go to if she needed some security.

    I was amazed at how fast it worked. Within a day or two she was coming out and eating and drinking in the open. I believe if I had not challenged her she would be under that couch still.

    I have had her for about a month now and she is the sweetest cat I ever had. She went from extremely shy to wanting to sit by or be near me most of the day.

    I still have the couch blocked off as I notice she sometimes goes over to inspect if she can go underneath it. I want to reinforce her behavior to stay out from under the couch so will keep the barrier up for a few more weeks.

    Your kitty will come around eventually but don't be afraid to challenge her. Jackson knew what he was talking about when he talked about challenging your cat. Sometimes they need our help, but only enough help to guide them. They do the rest but only if you help and support them.

    Good luck with your kitty and just be patient, calm, and nurturing around her.
     
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  20. SPIKEhelp

    SPIKEhelp TCS Member Kitten

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    Apr 9, 2018
    Philadelphia, PA

    I'm happy for you and your little girl. I know what a relief it is to see some progress. My boy is also coming out to play a little. He plays with his toys now, but he still spends a lot of time in that closet overnight and well into the next day, which is strange because that spot is right next to the front door. Anything that goes on outside in the hall is sure to scare him. From time to time he still looks like he suddenly sees a ghost. He comes out mostly in the evening, which is probably a cat thing, so I'm not worried about that. I'm just relieved that he's eating, drinking and using the litter box.
     
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