Imagine you are a kitten. The world seems huge. Everything is new: sights, sounds, smells, people and animals. There’s something different around every corner. It can be a little bit scary. We call this sensitive time ‘socialisation’ and it lasts for a kitten’s first 8-10 weeks.
Your kitten’s experiences in its first few weeks are crucial in shaping their behaviour as an adult cat.
So we need to try to make them good. They need to get used to the things around them including people, other animals and the sights and sounds of everyday life at home – the washing machine, vacuum, microwave and so on.
Good, early socialisation leads to friendly, well-adjusted adult cats which are less likely to be scared. Sadly, without positive early experiences, cats can become nervous, which often leads to behaviour problems.
Choose a kitten that has had good socialisation from the breeder or owner of the litter. The kitten would normally still be at home with its mother and should have mixed with other people and pets, seen every day sights and heard normal household sounds at the breeder’s home.
Even when you bring your kitten back to live with you, help it to feel at home with lots of positive experiences.