Settling Your Savannah Kitten into Their New Home
It is important not to overwhelm your new Savannah kitten immediately up arrival to your home. Each kitten will transition differently from the breeder’s to their new home. Leaving their familiar environment, siblings and the human family they have known all at the same time is a considerable amount of stress for such a little sprite to go through. Taking the first couple days slowly will help your kitten feel at ease and begin the bonding process. Keeping the kitten contained in one small room is beneficial, both in establishing good litter box habits in the new environment, as well as insuring the kitten doesn’t feel too overwhelmed. If a kitten is given too much space too quickly it will likely find something to hide under or behind and will be reluctant to explore the area. Instinct tells them there are too many places for a predator to hide. In a small room where there isn’t anything for them to hide under or behind, they will be forced to explore the area and survey its safety. A master bathroom is an ideal starting place when bringing a new kitten home. By following this guideline and allowing the kitten to quickly feel their basic need of safety has been met they will move on to exploring their new family and the toys that have surely been provided. Play is key. Getting down on the kitten’s level and playing with a toy will quickly coax your new kitten out of its shell. You would be hard pressed to find a Savannah kitten that can resist the twitch of a teaser toy. Within a couple of days the kitten should start to be exposed to more of the house.
Slow and Steady Wins the Race when Acclimating your Savannah Kitten
Acclimating your kitten to its new home isn’t a race, but slow and steady is the proper pace. As you start to allow your kitten to explore your home be sure to supervise your kitten. It seems that many kittens are intrigued by cords and may try to chew on them. It only lasts a few weeks, but obviously could be quite detrimental to the kitten’s health. Wiping or spraying Bitter Apple onto the cords a couple of times during the first few weeks after your kittens arrival will help deter this behavior.
During the first week, encourage your kitten to continue its good litter box habits by providing frequent “time out” sessions in the original room it started in to use the litter box and eat or drink. Initially give 10-15 minute “time outs” every couple of hours. Less frequent time outs are needed the longer the kitten has run of the house. Many times the kitten will be upset about being put in time out, but when you let it out and it runs back to where it wants to be it is making the connection of finding its way to the litter box.
Introducing your Savannah Kitten to Other Family Pets
Introducing your new Savannah kitten to other family pets can be stressful for everyone. In most cases, new Savannah kittens have very little fear of dogs and will hit it off with them almost immediately. We have placed Savannahs into homes with most any kind of other pets – birds, ferrets, reptiles, rabbits – you name it. As long as they are raised with them they assimilate easily and see them as part of the family. We still recommend supervising these pets when left to free roam or interact together. Resident cats are the biggest hurdle when acclimating your Savannah kitten to its new home. Cats are territorial animals that usually want no part of sharing “their home” and “their family” with a new kitten. Facilitating some hard core play sessions with the resident cat after the kitten’s arrival will help ease the transition of the new kitten into the home. It provides one on one time with the resident cat so he knows he is still important to your, it allows for the release of energy when he is likely feeling jittery, and it serves as a distraction for the first couple of times the new kitten is introduced. If the resident cat is distracted by play when the new kitten is brought into the room it tends to take some of the edge off and makes for a less confrontational experience.
Once again, each kitten will assimilate into its new home at a different pace, but we generally recommend that kittens are confined to a kitten proofed bedroom size area for the first 3-4 weeks when unsupervised. While at work or away from home, make sure your new Savannah kitten is kept in an area that they cannot get into anything that may hurt them. Keeping them separated from other pets for this time when not supervised is also a good idea. This allows the kitten some time to grow and gain strength so they can play without concern of being accidentally hurt by the other pets.
Enjoy the baby days with your new Savannah kitten. If you find any tips that work exceptionally well or have advice to add after going through the experience, please feel free to share with us!