The fact that your cat does not like other cats may be due to a bad experience with them, for example through territorial fights or bullying. But also jealousy can make your cat dislike or avoid other cats. This often happens when both have only one common food bowl or only one litter tray.
As with humans, every cat has its own character and reacts differently to other people and other cats. Some cats greet each other in a friendly manner and immediately make a new friend, while other cats avoid any contact with their fellow cats.
This can have different reasons why your cat does not like other cats. For one thing, some cats mob each other and your cat has had a bad experience with its own kind so far.
Cats also want to defend their territory against other cats and this could give you the impression that your cat does not like other cats.
But also jealousy can lead to your cat not liking and avoiding its own kind. This can happen quickly if two cats have to use the same food bowl or the same litter tray. Also, if the caregiver, from the cat’s point of view, pets the other cat more and pays more attention to it, your cat may avoid its mates or even react aggressively to them.
What should I do if a second cat moves in?
If you get a second cat, it is important that each cat gets its own utensils such as a litter tray and food bowl. Spatial separation is also important in the early days and both cats should be introduced to each other with care and patience.
The most important thing is to prepare before the second cat comes to your home. In a multi-cat household it is important that each cat has its own accessories such as food bowl, litter tray, scratching post and retreat. This will prevent quarrels from the very beginning.
When the second cat moves in, you should keep both cats separate from each other. Assign the second cat a room of its own, which the first cat does not enter frequently and where there are no important utensils such as a scratching post or litter tray from the first cat. It is best not to give the first cat a room where the other cat spends a lot of time, otherwise jealousy can quickly develop.
Next, it is important to choose a different person to care for the first cat. This new person will then mainly take care of the new cat. If you live alone in your home, make sure that you do not neglect the first cat and that you spend equal time with both cats.
After a few days, you can give your cats a blanket or toy from each other’s rooms. This will help your cats to smell each other and become more familiar with each other.
It is important to approach the first meeting very carefully and slowly. Of course, this also depends on the character of each cat. If both are very curious and playful, this will work better than if one of them is very fearful.
It is best to open the door just a little so that both cats can sniff each other easily.
Depending on how both cats react to each other, you can open the door all the way. If there is loud growling and hissing, leave the door open just a little and close it again after a short time.
If, however, the first encounter is positive and both cats react curiously and happily to each other, you can also open the door completely so that both cats can get to know each other. You should do this for a few days so that both cats can slowly get used to each other.
What if my cat doesn’t like the new cat?
Often, two cats in a household go very well together. But there are also cats that simply don’t like having other cats of their own species with them and react with aggressive behaviour towards the other one. The reasons could be that the first cat wants to defend its territory.
If both cats attack each other, it is advisable to separate them with a loud clap or a loud no and leave them in separate rooms for the time being.
For both cats, a reunion is associated with enormous stress and you could make another reunion with feeding, where both are distracted from their meal for the time being.
Fearful cats in particular may take longer to reunite and you should be patient enough for them. It may also be advisable to spread catnip around the room to make both cats more relaxed when reuniting and to lighten the atmosphere.
How long does it take for cats to get used to each other?
It usually takes about one to three weeks for two cats to get used to each other. The same age and similar character play a big role in the time it takes to get used to each other.
Cats, like us humans, need a certain amount of time to get used to each other. Cats should ideally have a similar character if they are to be kept together in a household. The age also plays a big role in getting two cats used to each other and should be approximately the same.
If your first cat has already had a cat friend in the past, the acclimatisation with the new cat is often quite quick and easy. In this case, the time it takes to get used to each other is usually about one to three weeks.
However, it is more difficult if your first cat has only lived alone. In this case, your first cat may try to defend its territory from the new cat. Even if there are some territorial fights, the time it takes to get used to each other is a few months at the most.
If both cats are snarling and aggressive towards each other from the beginning and it doesn’t look better after a few weeks, it looks rather bad for the two cats to get used to each other. However, it is very rare that two cats do not get along at all and do not want to become friends.
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Summary – My cat does not like other cats
Cats that have had a bad experience with their own kind, for example through turf wars or bullying, will avoid other mates. But also jealousy among each other can lead to your cat not liking other cats. For example, if they only have one food bowl or one litter tray.
If you want to get a second cat, it is important that the most basic utensils such as food bowl and litter tray are available for each cat separately. It is also a good idea to separate the cats in the beginning. A reunion after a few days should always be done with great care and patience.
In some cases the first cat reacts aggressively to a new arrival and is not very welcoming. This is often related to defending their territory and you should separate the two cats for a longer period of time until they get used to each other.
The time it takes for cats to get used to each other is usually one to three weeks. The similar character and the same age play a big role in the acclimatisation period. The more similar the two cats are, the faster they get used to each other.