The answer to if one kitten will be lonely:
One kitten will be lonely if you don’t provide it with physical stimulation during the day. Signs of a lonely kitten are:
- Excessive meowing
- Eating too much or too little
- Low energy
- Destructive behavior
- Inappropriate elimination
Spend time playing with them or adopt an extra kitten.
This article will tell you if one kitten will be lonely, and signs of a lonely kitten.
Most cat owners are worried about how their little one will fare when left alone. If you are wondering if your kitten will be okay by themselves, keep reading to find the answer.
Domestic cats are solitary when it comes to their feeding and hunting habits. They can survive alone and often have a territorial nature.
However, the above can only be said of adult cats. Kittens crave playmates and especially bond with their littermates. Their territorial nature kicks off in adulthood.
Marylyn Krieger, a cat coach, and behavior consultant, says that kittens learn social skills by interacting and playing with each other.
That means if you leave your kitten without enough physical stimulation, they will get lonely. They need to play, tests out their hunting skills, and explore other things.
Adopting one kitten might not be a good idea because your kitten will feel lonely. Your kitten’s sleep is broken up by many bouts of play.
Since obviously, you are not going to be playing with it at night, another kitten will fill that void and play with your kitty.
Most animal shelters advise people to get two kittens. Those who decide to get one kitten, often come back the following month to get another kitten.
To become well-socialized cats, kittens need to learn appropriate behavior from each other. Having two cats ensures they are not lonely when you are away.
Sometimes a kitten can become lonely, and will let you know about their unhappiness through destructive behavior.
Kittens Can Get Depressed If Left Alone
As you watch your kitten groom itself, play, and do whatever it wants, it may appear as if your feline doesn’t care much about you.
However, your little one craves companionship and it may get lonely or depressed just like we do, if you leave it alone for a long time.
Of course, your furry friend won’t tell you they are lonely, but here are subtle signs to watch out for:
1. Excessive Meowing
We know that kittens have different personalities; some are quiet, and others are just loud. If your kitten is normally the quiet type but suddenly becomes loud, it could be their way of asking for more attention.
Excessive vocalization is a sure sign that your kitten is lonely. The behavior can also be accompanied by clinginess; following you around everywhere. Your cat needs more social interaction.
2. Eating Too Much or Too Little
If your cat is eating much more than the usual amount of food you give it, this could be a sign of boredom. Just like humans, a kitten that has little physical stimulation may turn to food because they have nothing else to do.
On the other hand, the kitten may eat less because of depression. Keep in mind that a change in eating habits indicates a medical issue, so check with your veterinarian.
3. Destructive Behavior
A lonely kitten is surely a bored one, and so it’s not surprising to see your furry friend looking for creative ways to occupy its mind.
They may decide to destroy something while you are away. This could be your toilet paper, long curtains, or sofa.
As much as this destructive behavior is annoying, remember that your kitten is trying to tell you that it needs more time with you.
Because your cat is born a predator, it likes to move and discover.
4. Inappropriate Elimination
Cat coach Pam Johnson-Bennett says unusual litter box habits indicate loneliness in your kitten. If your kitten is already litter trained but starts pooping in other parts of the house, it could indicate loneliness.
This is their way of expressing the displeasure of being left alone for too long.
Cats are creatures of habit. A sudden change should indicate something is wrong. Don’t forget to mention this to your veterinarian too.
5. Low Energy
If you notice your kitten has become disinterested in a lot of things and has generally low energy, this should indicate that it could benefit from a loving companion.
You can increase the time you spend with your kitten, to provide it with the much interaction it needs.
Provide it with more enriching toys to keep them busy and entertained.
6. Increased Sleep
It is normal for kittens to sleep away a large chunk of the daytime hours because they are growing. Another reason is that these are nocturnal creatures.
But if your kitten begins to sleep more than usual, instead of spending time with you playing, this could be a sign of loneliness.
7. Over Grooming or Not Grooming
Grooming is a natural habit among all cats. It helps them to remove excess fur, cleanse injuries, lubricate their skin, and makes them feel good. However, if your kitten’s grooming regimen becomes too much, it is a sign that they are bored and lonely.
There is also another extreme in this grooming habit where your kitten does not groom itself at all; leaving them with an unkempt look.
These are all signs of a distressed kitty.
How Long you Can Leave your Kitten Alone
Your kitten needs to form strong bonds with its human companion (you), and leaving it alone for a long time can make your little one sad.
Each kitten has a unique personality, but there are some general guidelines on how long you can leave your kitten alone.
If you need to go to work and are worried about leaving your kitten alone, here are some points that will help you.
Kittens need frequent attention. They need to be fed at least three times a day. Kittens between 4 to 8 months benefit from human interaction every 4 to 6 hours.
If you are going to be away, it’s best to have someone check in on your kitten. It could be a neighbor or a friend.
For a 6-month-old kitten, you can leave it alone for the entire workday. But you still need to provide it with necessities like food, water, and a clean litter tray.
It is not advisable to leave a young kitten alone overnight. They can get into a lot of mischief and cause a lot of mess in your house.
A sudden injury or illness can quickly escalate into something serious for a kitten. You need to keep a watchful eye on them.
Alternatively, you can hire a pet sitter to stop by several times. Your little one will enjoy the regular attention, and be a lot happier.
How to Help a Lonely Kitten
If you are concerned that your kitten is having behavioral problems due to loneliness, it’s important to take them to the vet first to rule out any medical condition.
Your kitten cannot tell you if they are sick. Sometimes these signs I mentioned before of loneliness may be their way of telling you they are not feeling ok.
But if your furry friend has been cleared off by the vet and has a clean bill of health, then you can be certain they are just lonely.
Here are the best ways to help your little one feel less blue while you are away:
1. Adopt an Extra Kitten
While your kitten was still with its mother, it got used to the companionship of its mother and littermates.
Leaving it alone when it is used to playing with its littermates can make it so bored. Adopt an extra kitten as a friend for your lonely kitten.
They will play together and enjoy each other’s companion.
2. Show Them Through a Window What’s Outside
Kittens are visual creatures. Let your little one look outside the window and watch birds, squirrels, rabbits, and passersby.
It might help the day pass quickly for them until when you are back.
3. Play Music or Switch on the TV
As long as the volume is at a reasonable level, your kitten will enjoy listening to music. Classical music can help calm and relax your pet.
Listening to this type of music has been found to reduce cats’ stress and anxiety when going to the vet.
If your kitten lacks access to a window where it can watch things outside, you can leave the TV on for them. The movements and changes of colors on the screen can capture your feline’s interest, and act as a form of enrichment.
It is not uncommon for us to see our feline friends engrossed in TV programming. Especially when the program features birds moving or insects; natural prey for them.
Watch for the positioning of the TV if you decide to entertain your kitten this way. If you have a large flat screen, mount it to the wall, in case your kitten decides to leap and catch the ‘prey’.’ Otherwise, your TV will suffer.
4. Exercise Them Before You Leave
Take your kitten for a nature walk in your backyard, or play a variety of games with them in the house before you leave.
This makes them exert a lot of energy during the day and tire out. They will therefore be less anxious when you leave.
Raising one Kitten Properly
Adopting your kitten is a special time in a household of a cat lover. Whether your kitten is a Ragdoll, Persian, Siamese, or just an unknown breed, it’s important to know how to raise them properly.
The first few months you bring them home are crucial in shaping your little one’s emotional and physical well-being.
Here are things to do when raising your kitten:
1. Wait Until They Are Old Enough to Leave Mom
A kitten should stay with its mother and siblings until they are ready to leave them. Never take a kitty from its mother before they reach 8 weeks old. Doing so ensures they are healthy and start their life naturally.
The first milk, which is colostrum, is rich in antibodies and helps protect the kitten from infections and diseases.
Very young kittens cannot control their body temperature, and need to stay in an enclosed place with their mother for warmth.
Therefore, experts recommend waiting for a kitten to stay with their mother until they are 8 weeks old before adopting them.
During this time, they also learn how to socialize with each other as they play and interact with their mother and siblings.
If you take away a kitten from its mother when it is still too young, it can get so lonely and even develop behavioral issues later.
2. Provide Proper Nutrition
Your kitten should be eating good quality vet-approved kitten food. This should be their primary food even if you intend to introduce them to other foods.
Your kitten’s nutritional needs differ from that of an adult cat. They are growing at a fast rate and to support this explosive growth, they need high-calorie content food .
Kittens have a high requirement for protein, amino acids, and minerals. Most experts recommend giving your kitten specially formulated kitten food.
3. Avoid Overprotection
Granted, loud sounds and unfamiliar environments might initially scare your kitten. But you still need to expose your kitten to different environments, sights, and smells, so they can grow comfortable around sensory stimuli.
Your kitten should also feel comfortable playing with a variety of toys of different shapes and colors.
It will be easier to send someone to stay with your kitten while you are away, because they are used to different smells and sounds.
4. Restrict Their Space
Place your kitten in a small space with toys and their necessities. They will less likely feel lonely when they keep themselves busy playing.
Furthermore, leaving your kitten to roam the entire house can spell disaster. As playful and curious creatures, they can wreak havoc on your house.
You can start by placing them in a small room, and then increasing their range the more they get used to your surroundings.
Later, your cat can navigate a bigger territory, and choose its own ‘safe space’ in the house.
Reasons Why Two Kittens Are Better Than One
The main reason for adopting two kittens is to prevent loneliness in your kitten. But there are other advantages of bringing two adorable cuddly kittens to your home.
1. It Makes Training Easier
Kittens learn a lot by watching others. Litterbox training becomes easier when you have an extra kitty. If your kitten has an inappropriate elimination problem, it will learn to use its litterbox by watching the other kitten use it.
Having a picky eater as a kitten can be frustrating, even scary when it goes on for a few days. But when the other kitten eats, the picky eater will want to join too. No feline wants to be left out when the other is feasting.
The point is, if one kitten learns good behavior, the other is likely to follow suit, and faster than it would have learned on its own.
2. Your Kittens Mentally Stimulate Each Other
Most people assume that cats are solitary animals, but they are not independent creatures as such. If you leave your kitten alone for a long time, it gets bored and acts out through destructive behaviors.
By adopting two kittens, you ensure your furry friends keep each other company. The other kitten is a reliable source of entertainment. If you have a busy schedule, this is a good way to keep your kittens stimulated.
3. They Will Play With Each Other
As cat owners, we must admit that kittens have hilarious ways of playing. Some will leap into the air while others chew on your feet.
All these are ways in which your kitten burns off excess energy through playtime. A kitten needs to play as a form of exercise and is an important part of a kitten’s development. It helps your kitten to develop social and predatory skills.
Social play helps your kitten learn to communicate with other cats and humans. It may play with objects by stalking, pouncing, and chasing.
Play also helps your shy kitten develop self-confidence.
However, to be realistic, even the most dedicated and loving cat owner may not have all the time in the world to dedicate to playing with their pet.
That’s where a second kitten comes in. The two will play together and entertain each other, which keeps them active and happy.
4. You Might Save Another Life
Perhaps if all these reasons above haven’t convinced you yet that you need a second cat, consider this strong argument.
If you adopt a second cat, you are saving two lives.
Not every kitten in a shelter home finds a forever home. Many of the adult cats that you see in animal shelters probably entered there as kittens, but were never adopted.
So, if you adopt an extra kitten from a shelter, you prevent it from spending its entire life there. What’s more, you create more space for the shelter to bring in more kittens in need, thus saving lives.
If kittens aren’t available for adoption, older cats have a better chance of being adopted.