What is a second-chance cat?

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A second-chance cat is defined as a homeless cat who has been rescued and re-homed. In other words, a cat who is getting a second chance at a good – and happy — life.

Second-chance cats can be adopted from an animal shelter. Often, they’ve been spayed or neutered, have been vaccinated and received necessary medications and treatments. In some cases, adoption fees are waived.

Second-chance cats can also be rescued from the streets. Some people conduct “rescues” on a regular basis and will either find them homes or take them to shelters.

How to Get Your Cat to Settle Into the New Environment

Most cats are not big fans of change, so make the transition as stress-free as possible to reduce the risk of fear-based house soiling, excessive meowing and crying, hiding, escape attempts and aggression. If you’re adding a cat to a home where there are already other animals, please talk to a pet expert about the best way to introduce her.

Here are some things to keep in mind when bringing your cat to her new home:

• Be sure to cat-proof the new house. Tuck away electrical cords, plug up nooks where a cat could get stuck, make sure that all windows have secure screens, remove any poisonous houseplants and confirm that no pest-control poison traps have been left anywhere in the house. Introduce her to her new human family slowly.
• Don’t give her run of the house at first but, rather, let her have her own “room” so she can have some peace and quiet to acclimate. Keep things like her own blanket, some toys, food and water bowl and litter box in her “room.”
• Make sure you spend some quiet time, reading, watching television or simply petting or playing with her in her space.
• Little by little, let her explore other areas of the home.

NOTE: It’s especially important to let her have her own space if there are other animals, because this will prevent territorial issues. Don’t force them to get along but, rather, let them sniff and go to each other gradually.

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