How to Breed Harmony in Your Multi-Cat Household
By Brent Goodman
The number of happy and successful multiple cat households is huge, but they are not without their challenges.
Living in groups, cats normally develop a pecking order and often revert instinctively to latent, wild behaviors. To minimize conflict, you should provide each of your pets with their own safe zones, including places where they can sleep, play, scratch, eat, and eliminate. Here are ways to make sure your pets are healthy and content together:
Keep each litter box fresh In a multiple cat household, cats need to have more than one community litter box. Ideally, there should be one more litter box than the number of cats. Each cat should have access to his or her own box, with at least one litter box on every floor and easy to get to in an emergency. Make sure that each litter box is scooped daily, or even more as necessary.
Cope with spraying The risk of urine marking is greater when several cats are present. Using a room-wide calming pheromone applicator like the Feliway Comfort Zone Plug-In or Feliway Spray on marked sites and on prominent objects will help reduce or discourage spraying. Eliminate problem stains with an enzymatic cleaner like OdorLogicÂ® CleanAway.
Provide suitable personal space Cat trees, with multiple levels, and furniture with hideaways, perches, and scratching posts situated in separate rooms can accommodate the social order and provide ideal hangouts.
Maintain fresh water Be sure to keep water bowls in multiple locations and keep them supplied with fresh water. If one or more of your cats prefer drinking from your dripping faucet, get a Drinkwell Pet Fountain, which provides a continuous circulation of filtered water.
Cater to individual nutritional needs The individualized feeding of cats is a challenge, especially if you have one or more cats that each require a special diet. Maintain individual feeding bowls in different places and, if necessary, in a closed room.
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