Introduce the cat to your partner’s smell.,
Discuss the situation with your partner.,
Work on reducing bad cat behavior.,
Don’t force interaction right away.,
Give the cat space.,
Wait until the cat comes to them.,
Have your partner offer the cat a treat.,
Do not reinforce fearful behavior.,
Do not tolerate aggressive behavior.,
Reward good behavior.,
Give the cat its own space.
If you have a fearful cat you should begin introducing your partner to it before the partner even comes over. This can be done by bringing something with your partner’s smells on it into your home. This will allow your cat to get used to the smells and will potentially make the cat more comfortable when your partner shows up in person.You can simply use a piece of clothing that your partner has worn or a pillowcase that your partner has slept on. Basically anything that your partner has had a lot of direct contact with.;
, Your partner should know what they are walking into before they show up at your home, and you should be clear with them about what you need them to do when they are there. This will allow the introduction to go as smoothly as possible and set a good foundation for the relationship to develop in a good way.
If you have an easygoing cat that loves new people, these instructions could be as simple as explaining how your cat likes to be petted or what its favorite game is.
If you have a fearful cat then you will need to explain that to your partner and be very clear about what they should and shouldn’t do when meeting the cat. This could be as extreme as needing to completely ignore the cat and not make eye contact with it. While this can be embarrassing or difficult to explain to someone, it is better that they know before entering the situation.
, Introducing your partner to a cat that is aggressive due to fear or skittish will be more difficult than introducing your partner to a cat that is friendly and sweet. If you have a very fearful cat that has a hard time meeting and adjusting to new people, you should spend some time and effort at curbing that behavior before it is introduced to your partner.
Cats that are very fearful can respond well to behavior modification techniques and clear discipline, especially if done under the supervision of a qualified animal behavior specialist.Talk to your veterinarian about getting a referral to an animal behavior specialist in your area.
You can also potentially get help for this behavior from your veterinarian, who may be able to prescribe a medication that could curb your cat’s anxiety and fear.
, When a cat is meeting a new person it is likely to be a little standoffish, especially if it is a skittish cat. This hesitance to interact with a new person will only be increased if you force the cat to interact right away. For example, do not pick up a cat that is fearful of new people and foist it onto the lap of your partner. This will not create warm feelings in your cat for this new person.In fact, forcing interaction will likely make the cat more fearful and make acclimation to this new person even harder in the long run.
, If you want to introduce your partner to your cat, you need to make the cat feel safe and in control. This is done by giving the cat space and allowing it to keep its distance. Not forcing the cat into a situation it doesn’t want to be in will show the cat that it is safe in the company of this new person.However, this means that a first introduction may include little to no interaction between the cat and your partner.
What space will do is allow the cat to know that your partner is not a threat and it will allow the cat to get used to your partner’s unique smells.
, It is key that you allow the cat to come to your partner, and not the other way around. Have your partner spend a good chunk of time at your home and let the cat roam the home freely. In many cases, if your partner ignores the cat, the cat will become intrigued by this new person and begin to investigate.This is especially important if you have a skittish cat that is weary of strangers.
, In order to lure the cat towards your partner and to create good feelings between them, give your partner a cat treat that you know your cat loves. Have your partner hold it out and wait for your cat to come to them. Even a cat that is fearful of new people may find the treat irresistible.If your cat is especially fearful, make sure to tell your partner to avoid eye contact with the cat while it is getting its treat and to avoid trying to pet it after the treat is given. Showing the cat that nothing bad will happen when it interacts with this new person is key to having a successful first introduction.
, It may take multiple visits with your partner for the cat to engage with them. During these visits your partner should act consistently, allowing the cat to come to them and providing treats to the cat when it does show interest.Consistency will teach the cat that your partner is trustworthy and will not act in a way that is threatening to it.
, If your cat is skittish or aggressive with new people you should not reinforce that behavior. While your partner is there, or after your partner leaves, do not give the cat attention or console it. You need to show the cat that its behavior was wrong, not right.In fact, it may be a good idea to leave your home with your partner after this first introduction. This will help to show the cat that there is nothing to fear from this person.
, As your partner tries to build up a relationship with your cat, you need to be clear with the cat that aggressive behavior will not be tolerated. This means that you cannot calm or reassure a cat after it bites, growls, or hisses at your partner.Instead, you should leave the room the cat is in and give it no further attention.
You should not, however, punish the cat physically. Hitting or swatting at a cat will only increase its anxiety and aggressiveness.
Do not pick the cat up and move it to another room. Just picking it up gives it physical contact, which can be read by the cat as a comforting and reaffirming act.
, Just as you should not reward bad behavior, you should reward your cat when it has good behavior. This means if it is friendly towards your partner or takes interest in them, give your cat a treat.If your cat sniffs at your partner but will not get close enough to take a treat from them, you can give the cat a treat. While it would be better to have the cat take a treat from your partner, reinforcing any positive interest is most important.
, Your cat should be given a space all its own where it can get away from your partner and take some alone time. Giving your cat its own space in which it can decompress and destress will go a long way towards improving its attitude when it chooses to interact with your partner.This space could be a whole room or just a cat tower or cat bed that is tucked away in a corner.
Do not ever block off the cat’s access to this area, in case it needs to retreat to a safe space.