Many pet owners enjoy taking their animals along as they explore the world, and while cats are most comfortable in their homes, some cats travel well. Despite this, they might still experience difficulties adapting to unknown places, so how can you help your cat settle in new areas?
Providing a safe and comfortable corner stocked with your cat’s essentials helps your cat adapt to new places. Taking a few of your cat’s familiar toys and blankets is essential to provide that feeling of “home.”
This article looks at how to help a cat adjust to a new place while traveling and how long it takes for a cat to adapt to a new location. I have also included information on settling a cat into a new home at night. To conclude, the signs of your new cat adjusting and what you can do if a cat won’t settle in a new home.
How to Help a Cat Adjust to a New Place While Traveling?
Carrying along a cat’s belongings can help it adjust to a new place. The cat carrier or bed is one of its most familiar environments in a new place, and it probably contains a blanket with its scent and some toys.
When you get into a new place, transport your cat inside using the cat carrier. Set its food bowl, water bowl, and litter box in a room that has enough corners to hide before letting the cat out of the carrier. This ensures your cat comes out to a cozy area that feels like its original space.
How Long Does It Take for a Cat to Adjust to a New Place?
A cat’s temperament and other variables determine how long it takes to adjust to a new place. A young cat may adapt faster than an adult. Also, other pets in the new area affect how it adjusts.
A healthy cat can take anywhere from 2 weeks to a month to adjust to a new place. Cats who have experienced trauma may take longer to settle down.
Whether you are stopping over at a hotel or visiting family, it can be a new and painful experience for your cat. However, you can prepare before you arrive (for family) and when you arrive (hotels) to help your cat adjust to the new environment.
How to Settle a Cat into a New Home at Night?
For a cat to settle down in a new home at night, the entire move and daytime activities must be trouble-free. Outlined below are the steps to settle a cat into a new home:
- Choose one cat room
Select a comfortable space with lots of places to hide and outfit it with your cat’s belongings before bringing the cat in. bring the carrier in, close the room door, and allow your cat to exit the carrier on its own.
- Food, water, and litter box before the cat arrives
Set your cat’s food and water bowls away from the litter box. Cats dislike pooping and eating in the same place. Also, place the litter box in a closed-off corner.
- Comfort and feed the cat.
Your cat is unsure about the new environment, and it has to stay confined in that room for about three days. Feed your cat often, spend time with it, cuddling and talking in a soothing voice. Try to visit every two hours.
Try not to allow your cat to go out a few days after moving. Your cat needs to stay indoors for at least two weeks before venturing outside. Your cat will adjust to a new home with time, and settling in for the night won’t be an issue.
Signs Your New Cat Is Adjusting?
When you have done everything to help your new cat settle into your home and some time has elapsed, here are a few things to look for that indicate cats are adjusting well:
- They start to explore on their own and sniff around the new environment. Besides moving in and out of their room or safe zone, they tend to enter new areas, which is a good indicator of their confidence in their new home.
- An increase in grooming behaviors like licking themselves more shows that they feel good. If a cat is ill or stressed out, it will look disheveled compared to a neat and well-groomed cat that feels great.
- Exposing themselves in the open is another sign that they are relaxed in their new environment. You may find the cat sprawled in the middle of the floor.
- Half-closed or sleepy eyes in a cat show a level of trust in their environment.
- They are more interested in toys and other things. They might play with the things or just explore to see how the object reacts.
A happy and well-adjusted cat makes for a peaceful family.
What Can You Do If a Cat Won’t Settle in a New Home?
Even with full awareness of all that’s going on in your environment, moving can be stressful for you. For homebodies like cats, it is double stressful and can be a shock. Hence, it is not unusual that they find it challenging to settle in a new home. If this is true for your cat, here’s what you can do:
- Be patient
A cat will not settle down in a day or two because it needs time to explore the new environment, and it will do it at its own pace.
- Provide everything it needs
From food, water, litter box, and safe space, arrange everything your cat needs to settle in a room. Spend ample time with your cat too. The cat may be restless and not settle in if something is lacking.
- Seek professional help
If you have done everything possible and your cat has still not settled, it may be time to seek professional help. A vet or a pet psychologist can help the cat work through whatever problems keep it from settling in.
Among pets, cats are infamous for disliking change and need enough time to adjust to any new environment, so pull out your mittens of patience and settle in for the long haul.