11

I just got a new 1 year old cat on January 31st 2021. He's of course hiding, which is understandable. He's a domestic medium hair cat.

Last night I went to sleep and he just kept meowing like crazy, my boyfriend went to check on him in his bed and he was fine, so we let him be.

Today as of right now at 9:47pm he has not stopped meowing under the couch. I went to check on him and he seemed fine. I slowly brought my hand towards him and he hissed, so I let him be. However, now he's just keeps meowing they almost sound like howling meows. Please someone answer as soon as possible! I'm starting to get worried for him!

1
29

This is unfortunate, but nothing to worry about.

Of course the new surroundings and new people scare him at first. If the cat was taken from his own family (his parents or siblings), he might be calling for them. If he was taken from another human, he might be calling for them. He's basically trying to find his former home and family by calling them.

Unfortunately this is the time where you might unintentionally teach him bad habits. If you go looking for him every time he meows, he'll learn that later, when he's used to having you as his family, he can summon you by meowing for any reason. Looking for him just once after he meowed for a while is ok, but don't run to him as soon as you hear him.

His meowing should stop after a week, two at most. I know from experience that it's heart wrenching, but as long as he didn't get used to you and trusts you, there's nothing you can do.

You can try making him more comfortable by offering him more hiding spots. Cats love elevated places like tables, windowsills and shelves. Most cats also feel very safe and comfortable in a cardboard box with a bit of padding.

2
  • 2
    Could calling for the cat help to create a bond? Feb 2 at 21:07
  • 3
    @AndrewMorton It all comes down to trust. If you actively try earning the trust of the cat (see J...'s answer for very good suggestions) then calling him back can strengthen your bond. If he's still freaked out by you and you unintentionally do something to make him even more afraid (like staring in his eyes) then calling him might even make him more afraid. But in general this is a great time to call him by his name to get him used to it.
    – Elmy
    Feb 3 at 5:59
11

New cats require patience. Especially a year-old cat - at this age they will have recently bonded quite strongly with whomever their previous owners were so they will need time to adjust and to warm up to you as their new "person". It takes more time and work than with a younger cat.

Take time to just sit quietly in the room near them - cats can be very independent but you must make time to spend with them in those critical first days and weeks to build a bond. They have to get used to you being nearby, to learn that you're not a threat and that they can look to you for comfort, security, and friendship.

Try offering treats. If you get a hiss when you approach, don't push it - let them come to you, but hang around and be non-threatening so they learn that you can be trusted. Offer a hand for them to smell, but don't stick it in their face - let them take their time to get used to it and to approach you. Let them smell and examine without any fast movements or reaching towards them. Make sure they always have a clear "escape route" that's obvious to them - cats don't like feeling backed into a corner or trapped.

Sitting on the ground or close to the ground helps - it makes you seem more approachable and less scary. Just settle yourself down and give it some time. Cats also love to see you make big blinking movements with your eyes. Sustained open-eye contact freaks them out because it looks like you're trying to hunt them, but if you inject some slow, deliberate blinks this communicates that you just want to hang out and relax.

If you just disappear to another room when they don't engage right away them they won't really warm up to you.

0

He's in new territory with new people. Use the suggestions above and in addition, try some pheromone diffusion in the home like Feliway. Assuming he is not in pain but just psych distress. A little catnip might add to his pleasure too.

1
  • Welcome to Pets, this answer is a bit short, please consider adding some more information, thanks.
    – lila
    Feb 2 at 20:54

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.