It's Christmas and many people will be getting a new furry friend as a gift. It's important to make sure that you provide a proper introduction to your home to lessen the stress of a new environment.
Find a quiet, small room for him/her to stay in for a few days.
Put the food, water, litterbox and baby blanket in the room with him/her. Also put an item of clothing, towel or small blanket with you and your family’s scents in the room right away. This allows the cat/kitten to have smells from his/her siblings (if purchased from a breeder) as well as your scent(s) to get used to
Check to see (after a couple of hours) if your cat/kitten has drank any water and/or used the litterbox. This is very important! Kittens can get dehydrated quickly. (you can use a clear glass bowl and mark the waterline with a dry erase marker if that helps.)
Spend time, one-on-one at first, with the him/her in the room where he/she is. Get down to his/her level and wait patiently for him/her to come to you.
If the kitten seems ready, bring in multiple family members.
Slowly acquaint other pets residing in the home. Be sure to supervise the interaction so that the cat/kitten feels safe.
This process can go as fast as a day or as slow as 2 weeks. Don’t worry, he/she will relax. Some just take longer than others. Also, be sure to have your new furbaby seen by your local veterinarian to get a baseline health check and to be sure there an no problems that you need to be aware of.
Getting a new member for the household can be a wonderful and safe experience for you and your new buddy!