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How do I introduce my new kitten to my older dogs?

Article ID: 32
Last updated: 19 May, 2008
Revision: 1
Views: 75981
Before introducing a kitten to your adult dogs allow some time for your kitten to settle in her new environment and become comfortable with you. Introduce your kitten to the house slowly and provide a warm hiding place for your kitten to retreat to in case she feels threatened at any time.  It may take several days or even a couple of weeks before your kitten is confident in her new home and closely bonded to you.  During this time keep her separated from your dogs. 

By the time your kitten is comfortable with her new home your dogs will have become used to the presence of a new member of the household. Prepare to introduce your kitten and dogs by choosing a room in the house that no animals will feel particularly territorial in.  Continue to keep all animals separated, if possible introduce them through individual cages so that they are all safe from scratches and bites.  Try and introduce your pets slowly over several days - do not hurry your introductions, it may be a few weeks before you are confident that your pets will behave themselves once out of their enclosures.  Once you allow your pets to interact it is important that you supervise your kitten and dogs so that you can intervene any of the animals become aggressive. During these interactions, it is a good idea to make sure that there is somewhere safe and secure for your kitten to retreat to if it becomes frightened such as a window sill or a bookshelf where your dogs cannot reach it. Do not leave your animals alone together until you are confident that they tolerate each other.  Over time, your dogs should become used to the idea of having the kitten around and they should all be able to get along without you having to watch over them.   

It is essential to thoroughly research the basics of pet care before acquiring a new pet.  RSPCA Australia recommends you take the time to find a detailed book on the species or breed you are purchasing well before bringing it home, so that you are positive your choice of pet will be appropriate for your lifestyle and you are well prepared for its arrival.  Consider talking to a vet before deciding on a pet as they will be able to advise you about health care and any breed-related conditions to anticipate.

This website provides general information which must not be relied upon or regarded as a substitute for specific professional advice, including veterinary advice. We make no warranties that the website is accurate or suitable for a person's unique circumstances and provide the website on the basis that all persons accessing the website responsibly assess the relevance and accuracy of its content.
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Dogs and other animals     How should I introduce my new dog to my existing dog?