|Purred: Mon Sep 5, '11 9:22am PST |
|Congrats on the new little guy! Both of our kittens also adopted us by showing up on the doorstep. It's fun to be chosen!
The first step is to get him to a vet. In my opinion, this ideally should have been done before introducing him to your other pets, but now that that's already done get him in as soon as you can. You'll want to make sure he's healthy, get him tested for anything that he might transmit to your other cats, and also have him vaccinated and neutered. Your vet can also estimate his age.
As far as the behaviors, I personally would not use negative reinforcement at this stage. If he's lived outdoors his whole life, this is a drastically new environment for him. Even if he's had a home that he lost for whatever reason, he needs time to adjust to his new home. He's going to be curious, and being a kitten, he's going to have tons of energy! I would suggest keeping him most of the time in a "safe room" that is just his for a while, with some time for supervised exploration of the rest of the house. His room should have all his essentials - bed, water, litter box, toys, scratching post - and should be safe for him to stay unsupervised. During times that you let him out, play with him and watch him play with the other cats and dog. Make sure he is stimulated so he won't get bored and destuctive, but don't let him get OVER stimulated, because sometimes that's when they start attacking playmates or playing aggressively when petted. Once he is more familiar with his new home, then you can explore other options for controlling his undesirable behaviors, if they're still a problem.
I'm not an expert by any means, but this is what has worked for us with our two semi-ferals. They're both still kittens, one a year old and one 5 months, and they still get the kitten-crazies, but they are awesome cats!
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