When Alyssa Fleck decided to adopt a stray kitten named Limoncello, she knew it wouldn’t be easy for her 7-year-old cat, Portabella.
Transitioning from only child to sibling can be tough. Learning to not only share your space, but your parent’s love and attention can take some getting used to — and the same goes if you have whiskers and fur.
Pet parents wondering how to introduce a new kitten to a cat will find it’s not a process that can be rushed. Portabella was not too keen on having a new furry playmate to contend with, so Fleck turned to her colleagues at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) for advice.
“After five years of Portabella being the only pet in the home, I knew it wasn’t going to be a quick and easy adjustment, but I was committed to making it work,” Fleck, media and communications manager at ASPCA, tells The Dodo. “Among many suggestions and recommendations, ‘patience’ was the most important. Successfully introducing two cats, in many cases, is not going to happen overnight.”
In some special instances, cats and kittens can form bonds immediately — such was the case with 10-year-old Mason and his five foster kittens, Scrammy, Moo Shu, Florentine, Hatch and Fabergé (pictured below).