When bringing home a new cat of any age, owners should be sure that they are prepared. Here are some helpful tips to ease the transition.

The very first item to acquire is a proper carrier. There are several types of carriers to choose from. They can be made from different materials, with various door placements. Some even have more than one door, which can be useful when coaxing a cautious cat out at the vets or home.

Next, determine what food you'll be feeding your feline friend. Canned food has higher amounts of the protein your kitty craves. However, some owners prefer dry food, as it can be left out all day. It is important to ask what your new pet has been fed and then feed her a mixture of the old food with the new, slowly decreasing the old.

Before your new addition even enters the door, a litter box should be set up and ready for use. Be sure to show your cat where the litter box is to decrease the risk of accidents. 

If you have other pets, proper care should be exercised for a safe and successful introduction. If your established pet is a dog, put your pooch on a secure leash hold fast. Allow your new kitty to decide when or if they wish to approach, and make sure that your pup is showing no signs of aggression, like barking, growling, or lunging toward the kitty. When your dog no longer shows much interest, you may allow him or her off the leash and keep a close eye on them. Always keep the animals separated when you're not in the room until you are certain there is no hostility between the two. If you already have a feline friend, establish a separate territory for your new one. While cats can be social, as a species they tend to be loners and require their own space. Put your new pet in her spot and allow the other kitty to enter only when you are watching. If either shows any sign of distress, you can remove one to another room. Give your new kitty a few days in their own space, then place her in the other kitty's territory while bringing your old friend into the new one's spot. This will allow them to acclimate to one another's scents.

Set up a veterinarian appointment immediately. The vet will ensure your new kitty is up to date on her vaccinations, check for fleas, injuries, and a number of diseases. This is especially important if you already have a pet at home so you can be sure your old friend is not exposed.

Most of all, be ready for the financial responsibilities that come with pet ownership. Following these tips will lead to the start of a beautiful friendship for you and your newest furry addition.

Published by Zoe Sewell