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Cats often seem like aloof, solitary animals but they are actually very sociable creatures who thrive on building intimate ties with other animals. Below, our Thousand Oaks vets discuss getting a second cat as a companion for your first, and how to introduce them to each other.

Does my indoor cat need a friend?

If your cat's behavior changes, such as erratic sleeping or eating patterns, it may indicate that they are lonely. If your veterinarian recommends getting a second cat, here are seven signs that your cat would benefit from feline companionship.


If your cat meows a lot, follows you around, and won't leave you alone, they may be asking for more social interaction. This very demanding conduct could signal separation concerns.

Excessive Grooming

Obsessive grooming, which is frequently used to self-soothe, may also indicate that your cat needs a companion. If your cat has unusual grooming habits, do not assume he is lonely; it could be a sign of a medical problem. If you notice your cat is unkempt and not grooming himself as much, it may be a sign that he or she is lonely or sad, but you should first consult a veterinarian.

A Shift in Sleeping Habits

A change in sleeping habits may also indicate loneliness. If the cat sleeps a lot and no longer interacts with you, it is possible that she is lonely and has developed melancholy. However, as with any other habit change, it is critical to rule out any medical conditions first.

Litter Box Issues

Unusual litter box habits may indicate loneliness or stress. If your litter box-trained cat begins to urinate in other areas of the house, you should contact your veterinarian immediately. Cats are creatures of habit, so changing their routine appears to humans as if a neon sign is blinking.

Odd Eating Habits

Is your cat eating more than normal? It could indicate that someone is disinterested in social situations or is bored. When faced with a lack of options, cats, like humans, may resort to food. Alternatively, the cat may stop eating because it is sad. Conversely, if your pet's eating habits change, contact your veterinarian right away because this could indicate a medical problem.

Getting a Second Cat

If you've checked with your veterinarian and determined that there are no medical issues, it's possible that your cat simply wants a friend.

Despite this, determining a cat's readiness for cohabitation with another feline can be difficult, but a gradual introduction process will ensure a successful start. The following are some suggestions for actions and questions to consider.

  • How is your cat getting along with the other cats in the neighborhood? If your cat dislikes other cats entering their territory and becomes agitated or angry when this occurs, it could be a hint that they would not accept sharing their home with another cat. Bengals, for example, are ideally suited to being sole cats.
  • Cats who are related get along better than cats that are not related.
  • Younger cats are more likely than older cats to accept new feline members of the household.
  • Because of the lack of hormones, neutered cats get along considerably better than unneutered cats.
  • Is your house large enough to give each cat their own space where they can get away from other cats if they want to?

What should I do if one cat dies?

It is understandable for owners to want another cat to keep their remaining cat company after the death of a cat who shared a home with another. Before getting a new cat or kitten, allow your surviving cat some time to adjust to life without their mate. Cats have unique social needs, so even if they've been living happily with another cat for years, they may no longer feel the need for another companion.

How can I tell if my cats like each other?

Cats with a strong bond frequently show clear signs that they believe they belong to the same social group. Grooming, sleeping, and lying next to each other are some of these indicators. They may frequently greet each other by touching noses or emitting a small meow as they pass.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If your cat is displaying any of the symptoms above, contact our Thousand Oaks vets. While it may be the case that your cat is craving more social interaction, there could be an underlying health issue causing your cat's behavior.

New Patients Welcome

VSEC Thousand Oaks is accepting new patients! Our board-certified specialists and experienced emergency veterinarians are passionate about restoring good health to animal companions.

Contact (805) 492-2436