While we may think of cats as being independent animals, they actually quite enjoy living a social life with other cats around. Today, our Grass Valley vets talk about how to tell that your cat needs a new friend and what you should consider before bringing one home.
How to Tell if your Cat Wants Another Cat
Behavior changes, such as erratic sleeping or eating patterns, may indicate that a cat feels lonely. If you're thinking of getting a second cat and your vet agrees, here are some of the most common signs that your cat wants another cat.
Is Your Cat Being Clingy?
If your cat meows a lot, follows you around, and won't leave you alone, it may require more social interaction. This very demanding conduct could signal separation concerns and your cat could very well benefit from having a friend.
Have You Noticed Your Cat Excessively Grooming?
Obsessive grooming, which may be a way of self-soothing, could also indicate that your cat may want a new friend. If your cat exhibits peculiar grooming habits, don't assume he's lonely; it could potentially signify a medical ailment. If you find your cat looking unkempt and not grooming himself as much, it could be an indication that he or she is lonely or sad, but you should talk with your vet first to rule out any other possible causes.
Is Your Cat Sleeping More Than Usual?
Loneliness may be indicated by a change in sleeping habits. If the cat sleeps a lot and no longer interacts with you, it could be because she is lonely and has become melancholy. However, as with any other habit modification, it is critical to screen out any medical difficulties first. If they pass as healthy then it may be time to consider that your cat may want a cat to spend their time with.
Are You Concerned About a Change in Litter Box Habits?
Unusual litter box behaviors can indicate stress or loneliness. If your previously litter-box-trained kitty begins to pee in other areas of the house, you should notify your veterinarian immediately. Cats are creatures of habit, and when they change their routine, it's like a blinking neon message to humans.
Is Your Cat Eating More or Less Than Usual?
Is your cat eating more than usual? It could indicate boredom or a lack of social stimulation. The cat, like people, may turn to food when there is nothing else to do and so your cat having a friend may be helpful in these situations. Alternatively, the cat may stop eating because she or he is depressed. A change in eating patterns, on the other hand, may suggest a medical problem, so discuss it with your veterinarian first.
Things to Consider When Bringing Home a New Cat
If you've consulted your veterinarian and have determined that there are no medical issues, it could be that your cat is just lonely and needs a friend.
However, it can be tough to know if a cat is ready to live with another cat, but a cautious introduction process will help them get off on the right foot. Here are some steps you can follow and questions to ask yourself:
- How is your cat getting along with the other cats in the neighborhood? If your cat dislikes other cats entering their territory and becomes agitated or angry when this occurs, it could be a hint that they would not accept sharing their home with another cat. Bengals, for example, are ideally suited to being sole cats.
- Cats who are related get along better than cats that are not related.
- Younger cats are more likely than older cats to accept new feline members of the household.
- Because of the lack of hormones, neutered cats get along considerably better than unneutered cats.
- Is your house large enough to give each cat their own space where they can get away from other cats if they want to?
Should I get a New Cat if One of my Cats Dies?
When a cat who has shared a home with another cat dies, it is normal for owners to want another cat to keep their remaining cat company. We recommend giving your surviving cat some time to adjust to life without their mate before obtaining a new cat or kitten. Cats have particular social needs, so even if they have lived contentedly beside another cat for many years, they may not feel the need for another partner.
Will I Be Able to Tell That My Cats Like Eachother?
Cats with a strong link will frequently show clear indicators that they regard themselves to be members of the same social group. Grooming each other, sleeping, or lying next to each other are examples of these indicators. They may regularly greet each other by touching noses or making a little meow as they pass.