Cats are known to be extremely sensitive to new surroundings.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when bringing a cat home from a pet shelter.
Create a safe space for your cat, preferably in a ‘minimum-activity’ corner of your house. This could be a guest room or a bathroom.
If you have got the cat home in a carrier, it would be a good idea to leave it in a corner of the safe space as it would provide a hide out in case it gets startled.
Provide all the basic cat necessities including food, water, a filled litter box and a scratch post. Ensure that the bed and post are new since the smell of other pets can cause additional distress.
Inspect the safe space for any potential cat climbing zones and remove all potential objects that can be knocked over such as wine bottles, glasses or lamp shades. Cats are curios and will explore their surroundings.
Spend enough time with your cat in the safe space. Sit on the floor and watch from a non-invasion distance. Do not make noises or sudden movements that could be perceived as threatening.
Newly adopted cats often demonstrate poor eating habits and may hide in confined spaces for a few days or sometimes even weeks. Be patient with your new pet and allow plenty of time for this transition phase.
Once your new friend is comfortable with its surroundings and your presence, slowly introduce it to areas of your home outside the safe space.
If you own other pets, it is recommended that introductions are made over invisible barriers such as closed doors. Smell is a great source of communication and can help your pets get accustomed to each other before the actual introduction.