Cats are the type of animals that either love being around people or prefer to hang out on their own. And honestly, who can blame them? Humans have this urge to pick up a cat and pet a cat the moment that they see them… But what happens when that cat isn’t quite ready to be picked up? Cats are just like us in the fact that it takes them time to acclimate to people and surroundings. We can’t expect them to feel comfortable all the time because people and places are always changing. If you are wanting to help your cat feel more comfortable in certain places or around people, here are some simple steps to socialize your cat.
Simple Steps to Socialize your Cat
Start working with them when they are just a kitten.
If you are lucky enough to have your cat starting in their kitten years, it’s the perfect time to help them adjust! Kittens are a lot like human babies! They need warmth, food, etc and like to be held. If you’ve ever come across a kitten that was skittish, it’s because they aren’t used to anyone petting or holding them.
When your kitten is young, it’s the perfect time to hold them. Not only you should hold them, but others should as well. Don’t make a forceful act, but if your cat is near, pick it up and hold it. Pet your kitten gently while holding it. Then, when it wants to be let down, let it down.
Having other people hold the kitten while young is a good idea as well. That way, it gets used to others and doesn’t just associate being held and petted with you.
If you have other pets, start the interaction immediately in your home.
Introducing a cat or kitten into your home is always a good idea! If you have other pets, make certain that you (carefully) start letting them interact with one another. The end result is that you want all your pets in your home to get along, so you have to give them the time and opportunity to make that happen.
Older cats can become more socialized as well.
Just because a cat hasn’t been interactive or up for human interaction in the past, that doesn’t mean that it always has to stay that way. With work and patience, your older cat can start to actually like being in more social situations.
Start slow and allow them to adjust to the changes. Pet them daily, talk to them while you are petting them, have your friends and family do the same. It will take time, but slowly you should start to see that your once shy or nervous cat should be a lot more confident when it comes to being around other people.
What exactly is the purpose of trying to socialize your cat? If you have a cat that needs to be more socialized, it can then help him/her be a more confident and playful cat later in life. Cats love people, and they love to play…but sometimes, they just need that little boost to help get them out of their shell!