Some cats need a bit of time and patience to get used to a new home. This is true for adults and kittens alike. Here are some tips on what you could expect when you take your furry friend home. Please note, this does not happen with every cat but the more prepared you are the easier it is for all parties to settle and not worry or feel stressed.
The first few days of the cats being in your home may not be the easiest. Cats do need a few days; sometimes even a week or two to really get used to their new home, the smells and noises. You may find that they may be happier if left closed into a quiet room (a safe zone) with food, water and litter tray for a few days with you going in and out to visit and for some pats so that they get used to your smell. They may even go and hide under a bed in this room - just sit quietly and they will come out, it might take a bit of time as they need to trust their new home. This also helps with ensuring that the cats don't rush off and hide or climb up onto high advantage points - some cats tend to do this as they feel safer being high up.
This method of a "seperate room" also works well for kittens, as it teaches them where the litter tray is and contains any accidents that may occur as they get used to their new surroundings.
We have had people contact us worried that their new pets are not eating much or using the litter tray - this could be because the cats are a bit stressed. Given time to be quiet and relaxed in the new environment will sort this out. Note - If your pet does not eat or drink anything for 2 days please call your vet immediately!
Some people contact us as their new cats have kept them awake all night crying - again being in a safe zone allows the cats to settle and you won't hear the crying, which will stop.
Once the cats are more social with you in their safe zone you can introduce them to the rest of the house - they may run and hide back in the safe zone when they hear a noise or see someone approaching fast - this is normal and will settle. They may even walk with their tummies on the ground while investigating their new home, again - this will pass.
As noted above these are things that do not happen with every cat, but being an animal it helps to be prepared and at least know that if these things do happen that they are normal and do subside with time and patience.
Some cats are fine from the first moment they are in their new home and never worry about the noises, smells etc....it just depends on the cat. We have had people with cats that have never been abandoned yet they cry all night and then other cats that have been abandoned and fit in straight away, so one can never tell. It will take time and patience and the more relaxed the cat feels the happier it will be, as will you!