When you look at your new kitten do you think of having a sweet wonderful adult cat one day? If you want a happy cat that enjoys spending time with you and is a joy to be around, now is the time to make sure that happens. Kittens develop most of their adult personalities by 16 weeks of age. The positive or negative associations that kittens develop during the first few weeks of their lives can last a lifetime. Here are some great tips on how to socialize your kitten. (Remember, take things slow as your kitten may be afraid and will need a few days to get used to the new environment before introducing anything new. Kittens get stressed easily. If your kitten seems stressed at any point, stop and give her/him a break).
Handle your kitten often
Touching your kitten often is an extremely important part of socializing your new pet. Petting is a great bonding experience for both of you. Remember that one day you will need to trim toenails, clean ears, and brush teeth. Playing with their paws, ears and the mouth at an early age is a great way to get them used to being handled. This will make doing tasks a more pleasant experience in the future.
Introduce your kitten to others
Let your kitten be around other people. Introduce men, women, children, even people with hats or costumes. This will show your kitten that they don’t need to fear people. If your kitten is scared and doesn’t like new people coming into your home, have your family and friends go slow and offer lots of treats.
Talking to your kitten is very important. It won’t understand much of what you are saying, but it will be able to recognize if your happy, amused, aggravated or affectionate. It also teaches your cat to listen and pay attention to your voice. Have your tone reflect your mood, For example when you’re petting your cat and trying to calm him/her, use a soft soothing voice. Talk to your kitten as often as you can.
Introduce the cat carrier right away
Your kitten will need to go to the Veterinarian at some point in its life. It is actually recommended that cats go for yearly check ups. They will need a carrier to safely get back and forth to the Vet or any destination. The best thing to do is purchase a carrier that will be a good size to fit your adult cat. Place the carrier in your cats favorite area with the door open, put some blankets inside, and some treats. Allow your pet to go in the carrier freely. You can even feed your cat inside the carrier. This will make the carrier less stressful for your pet which will in turn make traveling a lot easier for everyone. (The best carriers are the ones that open from the top as well. It allows your Veterinarian to perform the exam while your pet is in the carrier, making it less stressful for your pet).
Following these suggestions will help your kitten become a happy cat that will be a joy to be around!!