For many cat lovers, one furry friend is simply not enough, and quite right too! Many of us here at zooplus are proud to be full-on cat ladies, so here are some of our tips on looking after your multiple moggies!
It’s important to know that living in proximity can put cats under pressure, as cats are naturally solitary hunters. However, most cats can adapt to live in social situations with other cats – in fact, they often learn to love it! Siblings who have been raised together will usually find it very easy to adapt. Although the harmony of your multi-cat household definitely depends to a large extent on the cats involved and their personalities, there are a few things you can do to help everybody get along.
Having their own stomping ground is extremely important for cats – defining their own individual spaces helps to stop conflict between cats living in the same area. Cats tend to mark their territories by spraying or rubbing their heads on furniture, which can sometimes cause problems for humans – nobody wants cats spraying all over their living room!
There are also a few handy products containing feline pheromones that help your cat to feel relaxed and at home in their surroundings. These are available as diffusers, or as sprays for use on furniture, and they can make a huge difference to cats who are stressed out in a new environment or having problems getting on with other cats.iving room! There are specialist cleaning products available that target animal scents, but it’s important to find out the cause of the spraying – it can sometimes be an indicator of stress.
Cat trees can provide places for your cat to develop a territory – they might have a cat bed that’s just their own, or a particular scratching post that they rub their scent onto. This can help cats to feel at home, and of course it’s good for keeping them fit and healthy by climbing around.
The ‘resource rule’
Experienced owners may be familiar with the golden rule of multi-cat households. The principle is that everything you buy for your cats should be provided at the rate of ‘one per cat, plus one extra’ – that means litter boxes, toys, beds, food bowls – everything! It’s easy to understand if you put yourself in your cat’s paws for a minute – would you want to share your bed, toys and food with your brother or sister?
It’s natural for cats to crave some space and privacy, especially when using the litter box, and if there aren’t enough resources available you may find that your cats start to seek out other toilet options (under your bed for example!). So it’s in your best interests to give each of your cats a clean, easily accessible place for them to do their business, and to give them as much privacy as possible. After all, you wouldn’t want to spend a penny in the middle of a busy hallway, would you?
Separate bowls of food and water for each cat are also important, as there will often be one cat who dominates the others at feeding time. If one cat is consistently stealing food from the others, it could be a good idea to feed your cats separately, closing the greedy one in another room if necessary! Playing separately with toys or taking time for separate grooming sessions can also help each cat to feel confident and develop a strong bond with their owner.
Multi-cat households can be a source of endless fun and cuddles, and it can be very rewarding watching your cats interacting with each other. Hopefully with these tips, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a proud cat lady (or gentleman!)