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Introducing a new cat! Please help!

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Recently, I saved a cat who looked like he was a lost house cat. He was showing up at my job for about 2 weeks. I decided to take him home with me and make lost cat signs. He's such a sweet little kitty! If nobody claims him I'm going to keep him, but I'm a little nervous that my other two cats will never like him! Their names are Camielle (female "panda cat") and Zeus (male orange tabby). They're both 3 years old. The new kitty, who we named Bart (Barthelameow) is a silver tabby, and my guess is he's also about three years old. Well, needless to say Zeus is particularly unhappy about the arrival of our new friend. For the most part Bart is always in hiding. If any of them see eachother they hiss like crazy. I try to prevent them from fighiting, but I can't always be here. I bought them here Tuesday nov 14 and today's saturday the 18th. how long does it take? Will Bart always be hiding?
post #2 of 23
It always seem to take about 10 days to 2 wks (that's 'free range', not following the long separation program many people go by - which I don't think makes much difference, though is very good if one cat's big and mean, and the other's a kitten). I would like to suggest you call the local shelters and SPCA because someone just might be missing their cat, though should know better than to let him roam. Have you taken him to the vet for a check-up (on your other cats' behalf)? Is he neutered?
post #3 of 23
Sometimes it is good to put the new cat into a room (bathroom) by himself and give the resident cats a couple of days to get used to his scent before letting him out.

That does not work for all situations. In Tammy-Timmy's case she walked in the front door yelling, "Who's in charge here", while everyone else scattered.

It will take sometimes a good two weeks before they begin to touch noses or allow the newcomer to feed with the group. Hissing is not too much of a problem, you just don't want any fights.
post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 
He's neutered, he's very clean, doesn't have many fleas. I am planning on bringing him to the vet this week. For the most part I've been trying to keep Zeus away from Bart because he's bigger and Bart is scared of him.
post #5 of 23
It's still bothering me that you might have 'stolen' someone's cat - please call the shelters - how would you feel waiting every day and, if you were a child, crying for your pet? It's not like you even decided to 'get a cat' - and there are lots more out there if this one does belong to someone else.
post #6 of 23
Introductions can be hard. Like one of the other posters said, you need to give them time. Remember that cats are very territorial, and this to them means they have to redivide the territory, and nobody likes handing over territory, including your cats who were there first.

I made the mistake of putting my second cat directly in with my first one, and I had an open war on my hands for a month. They do get along now.
The best way indeed to introduce them is put the newcomer in a seperate room. There are several good reasons for this:

a) if the newcomer has parasites, isolation is always a good thing, this way you can find out about them before your other kitties are infected.
b) This way the newcomer has the time to really get used to the new environment and investigate once space at a time and get comfy, and also, get used to you.
c) Your own cats dont lose that much territory at first, and they get to sniff out the newcomer through the door without the situation escalating.

Also, wash your hands when you have petted the newcomer. The other cats might get 'jealous' if they sniff the smell of their new rival on your hands. Dont forget to give your old cats plenty of attention and play with them to alleviate the stress of having a new cat in the house. Same for the newcomer, if you can, and he does trust you enough, try to play with him, so that he too can get rid of his stress.

It is definitely common for them to take a while to warm up to each other. You can also try to exchange scents and let them investigate each others rooms before letting them actually meet. Try rubbing a sock on each cat and exchange the scents that way. Then put the newcomer in the other rooms, so he can investigate the rest of the house quietly and get used to the smells there, same for your other cats, let them investigate the room your newcomer has been in.

After a couple of days, to a week, depending on how upset both sides are, you can let them meet, just briefly, and built up in time. Never leave them alone, before you re sure they get along, always be there to supervise.
As long as no blood gets spilled, everything will be just fine. Just respect the pace of the cats, and start over if you notice that you went too fast.

Good luck
post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 
Larke,
I don't know if you read my first post quite right. The third line says I made found cat signs. But thanks anyway
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Katje,
Thank you so much for your advice. You're very knowledgeable! I will definitly try this method
post #9 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Palmtreez311 View Post
Larke,
I don't know if you read my first post quite right. The third line says I made found cat signs. But thanks anyway
She may have suggested contacting shelters in addition to putting up flyers because that is one of the first and only places people know to call when their pets are missing. Contacting them by phone and having the cat scanned for a microchip would be the best way to know if someone is looking for him. Flyers are great IF the animal was actually lost in that area. But if the animal got lost elsewhere and wandered far from home-or even if the owner is homebound- there is a possibility the owner would never even see the flyers.

A few of the reclaimed stray cats at our shelter had been found in different cities- and one from a different state!- than where they had been lost, so I thought it was worth mentioning in your search for a previous owner. I wish both you and Bart the best of luck .
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Palmtreez311 View Post
He's neutered, he's very clean, doesn't have many fleas. I am planning on bringing him to the vet this week.

Not many fleas?? This is something that you need to immediately protect your home and other cats from! Even a good flea collar on all your cats for atleast 2 months if fleas have already been in your home. Believe me, it takes no time at all for a flea infestation in your home, Maia brought fleas back from the vets once so I put a collar on everytime she goes.
As well, its a good thing your getting a checkup, there are a lot of parasites that you don't want your kitties to get.
I do agree with a seperate room for a couple of days, bathroom might be a bit small, but this helps them smell each other first.........
post #11 of 23
Thank you Yorda, you're absolutely right - and not everyone 'reads' phone pole signs!
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheylink View Post
Not many fleas?? This is something that you need to immediately protect your home and other cats from! Even a good flea collar on all your cats for atleast 2 months if fleas have already been in your home. Believe me, it takes no time at all for a flea infestation in your home, Maia brought fleas back from the vets once so I put a collar on everytime she goes.
As well, its a good thing your getting a checkup, there are a lot of parasites that you don't want your kitties to get.
I do agree with a seperate room for a couple of days, bathroom might be a bit small, but this helps them smell each other first.........

NO, NO, NO, NO, NO - DO NOT PUT A FLEA COLLAR ON THE CAT. Flea collars are very dangerous and CAN kill cats. The only good use for a flea collar is to cut it up and put pieces in your vacuum cleaner. After vacuuming, take the bag outside immediately. Vacuum every day because fleas do and love to reside in carpets and upholstery.

You should definitely keep the cat isolated in one room (if he has fleas, preferrably a bathroom which would be easier to clean). You will need to get Advantage/Revolution from a vet to treat the cat (you will also probably need to treat the existing two cats now as well since the new kitty has brought fleas into the house).

You can use a flea comb to get them out of kitty's fur (see other threads regarding fleas in Health & Nutrition forum). There is a huge amount of info on flea problems and solutions in the H&N forum.

But - PLEASE do not use any flea collars on your kitty. Also - over-the-counter flea medications seldom work and are also very dangerous to use on the kitty. Get your flea medication from a vet.
post #13 of 23
Grin,its experience talking in my case *sigh*. Trust me, i know how hard intros can be, i had a full blown war on my hands a year and half ago(my first cat didnt like my second cat existing you see), only to repeat it with a guerillawar when my third kitten joined.

There is nothing like a first impression, and that goes for cats aswell. If introduced properly, you can save yourself a world of trouble
post #14 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yorda View Post
She may have suggested contacting shelters in addition to putting up flyers because that is one of the first and only places people know to call when their pets are missing. Contacting them by phone and having the cat scanned for a microchip would be the best way to know if someone is looking for him. Flyers are great IF the animal was actually lost in that area. But if the animal got lost elsewhere and wandered far from home-or even if the owner is homebound- there is a possibility the owner would never even see the flyers.

A few of the reclaimed stray cats at our shelter had been found in different cities- and one from a different state!- than where they had been lost, so I thought it was worth mentioning in your search for a previous owner. I wish both you and Bart the best of luck .
Thats very true, and I have already contacted my local shelters. to be quite frank she offended me by saying I'm stealing the cat. I feel as though I'm doing a good deed. :-) But anway. .I didn't know people put microchips in their pets. . .thats a little weird?
Thank you for the advice.
post #15 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larke View Post
Thank you Yorda, you're absolutely right - and not everyone 'reads' phone pole signs!
you know I do appreciate your advice, I just think you could do without the sarcasim. stop being so arrogant
post #16 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yosemite View Post
NO, NO, NO, NO, NO - DO NOT PUT A FLEA COLLAR ON THE CAT. Flea collars are very dangerous and CAN kill cats. The only good use for a flea collar is to cut it up and put pieces in your vacuum cleaner. After vacuuming, take the bag outside immediately. Vacuum every day because fleas do and love to reside in carpets and upholstery.

You should definitely keep the cat isolated in one room (if he has fleas, preferrably a bathroom which would be easier to clean). You will need to get Advantage/Revolution from a vet to treat the cat (you will also probably need to treat the existing two cats now as well since the new kitty has brought fleas into the house).

You can use a flea comb to get them out of kitty's fur (see other threads regarding fleas in Health & Nutrition forum). There is a huge amount of info on flea problems and solutions in the H&N forum.

But - PLEASE do not use any flea collars on your kitty. Also - over-the-counter flea medications seldom work and are also very dangerous to use on the kitty. Get your flea medication from a vet.


I totally agree with you. I hate putting collars on my pets anyway, and they defanitly don't like it. The newcomer had a flea collar and a regular collar on with a bell when I took him in, but then I removed them because first of all they were way too tight. He has an imprint in his fur around his neck from them!! Second they're so unnatural and I'd rather my furry friends be more comfortable :o) Thank you for your advice, you're also very knowledgeable. Very much appreciated
post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Palmtreez311 View Post
I totally agree with you. I hate putting collars on my pets anyway, and they defanitly don't like it. The newcomer had a flea collar and a regular collar on with a bell when I took him in, but then I removed them because first of all they were way too tight. He has an imprint in his fur around his neck from them!! Second they're so unnatural and I'd rather my furry friends be more comfortable :o) Thank you for your advice, you're also very knowledgeable. Very much appreciated
Chemical treatments can have extreme effects on cats as well.............If your cat has a traumatic reaction to a collar, then maybe thats not the best way to go. A safe treatment of your home and loved pets if fleas have been seen is possible.
http://www.doityourself.com/stry/fleacontrol1
This is a thorough sight on do it yourself treatments......
As far as comfort for your loved pets....my friend's cat Dolly had to have all her teeth removed because of a blood disease she contracted from fleas........
post #18 of 23
I wasn't sarcastic - I meant it. And I didn't exactly say you did steal the cat, just that it could be 'stolen' (in quotes, if you look at that note again). What would you call it (if it turned out to be the case)? You may have done a very good thing if the cat's a stray, but if not, it's important to find out.
post #19 of 23
If the cat was wandering around for a while before you brought it in to your home(you stated 2 weeks at your work), you did the right thing and more than most would do. Chances are, sad to say, it was abandoned or just lost its way. Call your local shelters to inform them but I really would'nt go crazy posting flyers everywhere and so forth, if the owner loves the cat that much you will see thier "lost cat" signs.
post #20 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larke View Post
I wasn't sarcastic - I meant it. And I didn't exactly say you did steal the cat, just that it could be 'stolen' (in quotes, if you look at that note again). What would you call it (if it turned out to be the case)? You may have done a very good thing if the cat's a stray, but if not, it's important to find out.
well i'm doing everything i can okay so just stop being nasty! i really dont want to hear from you anymore. i know the cats not a stray it's pretty obvious. it was showing up at my job every night for 2 weeks looking for food, i witnessed it almost get hit by a car so many times. he had a bell on his collar making it impossible to catch any food. i dont care if you put stolen in quotes or not you're still being really annoying. do u see anyone else talking to me like im an asshole?! besides that i was asking how to get the cats to get along NOT HOW TO FIND HIS OWNER!!! I ALREADY KNOW HOW TO DO THAT AND BELIEVE ME I AM TRYING MY BEST. I HAVE ALREADY THOUGHT ABOUT HOW I WOULD FEEL IF IT WAS MY CAT.
post #21 of 23
I really think you need to chill out and learn some manners! And grow up!
post #22 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larke View Post
I really think you need to chill out and learn some manners! And grow up!
OK you two........it's the Holidays!
post #23 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larke View Post
I really think you need to chill out and learn some manners! And grow up!
OK you two........it's the Holidays!
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