Are you worried about leaving your kitten home alone? Here are a few things to that can help you feel confident that your pet is safe and sound in their surroundings.

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Separated from mum, a new and unfamiliar home, surrounded by strangers — all these new experiences are a lot for a tiny kitten to take in! It’s important your new kitten learns to be content at home on their own. Don’t worry though, as there are tips and tricks to make it easier for both of you.

What to do before you leave your kitten home alone

When you go out, leave your new kitten in a part of the house that is safe, secure, and clear of hazards such as glass objects, cleaning products, hair elastics, string or poisonous plants. It may be best to make up a comfortable space like the laundry with a nice warm bed, food, fresh water and the litter tray to ensure they have access to everything they need.

How to keep your kitten calm when they’re home alone

There are a number of things you can do to help your kitten remain calm while you are out of the house:

  • Don’t make a big deal of your departure as your kitten can pick up on your worry. Instead, practice casually coming and going and leave your kitten alone for longer and longer stretches of time so they become used to it
  • Create a safe place in the room, like a bed with blankets or a hot water bottle that your kitten can snuggle up against
  • If you have a blanket or towel with their mother’s scent on it, your kitten will find this soothing and reassuring
  • Spend time playing with your kitten well before you leave the house. If they are tired, it will help reduce their anxiety levels when you leave them home alone
  • Make sure food and fresh water are readily available
  • Provide them with some toys, maybe filled with food or treats. These will keep your kitten entertained and help them relax
  • Leave the radio or TV on as a distraction
  • If possible, having another kitten as a playmate can alleviate their boredom as well as teach your kitten valuable social lessons

Products to keep your kitten comforted and entertained

How to help your kitten with crying and separation anxiety

First, make sure that your kitten is crying as part of separation anxiety and that they want comfort and attention, and not an underlying physical issue for example being hungry or cold. If you are unsure why your kitten is crying and you’re worried about their health, don’t hesitate to contact your nearest Greencross Vets for advice. Once they have helped you rule out any other problems, you can implement a plan to help your kitten overcome their anxiety.

Should I leave the light on during the night for my kitten?

If you’re leaving your kitten home alone at night, you can leave the light on or provide a night light until your kitten is more familiar with their surroundings. As they become more confident around their new home you will be able to turn out the lights.

Cats have exceptional night vision, as they are hard-wired to hunt at dusk and their vision adapts to low-light conditions. They will rely on their hearing, sense of smell, and whiskers to navigate their surroundings in the dark so there’s no need to be concerned about your kitten being afraid of the dark.

Do kittens get lonely?

Yes. Before domestication, cats spent much of their day outside hunting for their next meal. Now it’s common for pets to be home alone for most of the day while the family is out at work or school. Make sure you know the signs that your kitten may be lonely and what you can do to treat pet loneliness. For example provide them with a variety of entertaining toys, make sure they get plenty of exercise, and if it works for your family and your kitten’s personality it can be very helpful to give your kitten a companion.

Conclusion

It’s perfectly normal for kittens to be a bit unsure and timid when they are getting used to you and their surroundings. In some cases, they can develop separation anxiety that will be displayed in a variety of ways. However, with a bit of time, patience and love, most kittens will learn that it’s fine to be left home alone sometimes.