It is such an exciting time bringing your kitten or kittens home but there are some important steps to make it a success.
Firstly, your kitten needs their own dedicated space. Our kittens are used to sleeping with people so ideally a bedroom, but it shouldnt be the place your other pets sleep at first. A spare room is a good second choice, or a bathroom or laundry. Make it cosy with bed, litter tray, dry food and water available at all times. They need plenty of toys, a comfort teddy or blanket as well as a place to hide when they feel scared or overwhelmed, like a hooded bed or cardboard box. Make sure they are easy to retrieve from that space, not under a bed or couch.
Then they need to settle in and relax and have lots of cuddles and company until they are happy to play. Provide their meal times in a routine way so they know what to expect. Don’t let them meet your pets on the first day. There are some exceptions to this as some pets love other animals and are generally happy but resident cats are unlikely to be ok at first and very friendly dogs can fall into the trap of becoming submissive to the kitten which is not helpful to either.
Kittens need parenting for quite some time. Parenting a kitten involves helping them learn and play, comforting them when they get a fright and disciplining them when they play too rough. Hand raised kittens look to humans to provide this. Discipline should never hurt or scare. A low growl or physically containing the kitten are how mum cats do it. Then when the kitten is still the mum will groom them. We can do that by stroking or with a brush, but the message is, you sit still, I am the boss. for less troublesome offenses mum cats simply get up and leave. They dont give space to bad behaviour. It’s good for someone in the family to play that role. Children do better by distracting mischief with healthier games. Balls or toys on strings.
There are some tricks to integration with food and with scents and these links go through it all well.