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Are they REALLY getting along??

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
So after agonizing (about a year) over whether we should add a second cat to our family, we took the plunge. It's been 2 months and definitely need some reassurance that I did the right thing for Cat (now ~3 years, spayed, brown/white DSH).

Here is a picture of Cat and Milo's relationship...I would say...75% of the time:


However, there are the times when I feel like Cat just wants to throw up her paws and say, "I didn't sign up for this crazy kitten!" I've had loads of difficulty getting her to play with toys (mostly because Milo is a normal hyper kitten and will get to the toy before Cat does). I take her to another room and close the door and try to get her to play, but it's been increasingly difficult to get her to play with ANYthing. None of her favorite toys, none of the new ones I bought to try to get her going...nothing! The few moments I DO get her going, she stops within a minute.

When I play with Milo, she sort of sits in a corner watching. Sometimes when the toy passes close enough to her, she'll stick out a paw, but won't commit to playing.

My husband says I'm crazy trying to get her to play because she gets all her playtime in with her new favorite toy - Milo. They do chase each other all over the apartment and play wrestle.

Cat has always been a "hard to please" kitty when it comes to toys, but this is just beyond that now. She's been a little less affectionate, but nothing out of the norm for during the summer (our laps have never been good nap spots for her during the summer, she's more of a winter lap cat).

Is Cat trying to tell me something? I feel so snubbed! Is she getting enough exercise/play from playing with her new buddy that it's ok I don't play with her much? I just feel so bad when I'm playing with Milo that she's not getting in on the fun, but she doesn't seem to want to get in on the fun when Milo isn't there either!
post #2 of 23
Sounds (and looks) to me like everything is going great.

The dynamic within your fur family has changed with the addition of Milo. Her relationship with you may never be exactly like it was before. Things are different now. Not better, not worst, just different. Actually, I think it is better when a furbaby has a furfriend to play with rather than having to depend on a human for play.

I think meowmy needs a chill pill!
post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mschauer View Post
I think meowmy needs a chill pill!
Sounds about right!

Hahaha, throughout this whole process I've freaked out about EVERYthing!
post #4 of 23
You know, I've been having some similar issues. My first cat was only in my family for 2 months before I got the 2nd. They snuggled 24/7 while Sebastian was a kitten, but when they got older, they don't cuddle anymore. I feel like they tolerate each other. Sometimes they wrestle, but it seems like they're actually fighting. Sometimes when I'm playing with Amadeus, I think Sebastian gets jealous or something because he comes over, meows quietly, and gently bites Amadeus' back and holds on. It's weird.

I am sure you did the right thing by getting a new kitty because every cat needs a companion. Trust me, if you took one cat out of the house, the other would be lonely and sad. That cute picture of them snuggling and sleeping is a perfect sign that you brought in a good addition to your family!
post #5 of 23
What you're describing is perfectly normal behavior, sounds like they are very accepting of one another, but they have different needs.

My two will trade off playing, one will have their fill, get tired and the other will take over. Part of that is their relationship (someone has to be alpha) but the other piece is that Stanley is younger and wants more play. Bella will let him tire himself out and then take over, or come to the toy later on her own.

Have you tried something more interactive like a laser pointer or Da Bird? these are the only toys my two will use together and even then they regularly trade off chasing and watching.
post #6 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by greenvillegal View Post
Sometimes when I'm playing with Amadeus, I think Sebastian gets jealous or something because he comes over, meows quietly, and gently bites Amadeus' back and holds on. It's weird.
Oh man, this totally happens with mine too!!

For some reason, Milo loves to visit me in the bathroom while I'm brushing my teeth. Cat was never a big fan of that. But when Milo comes in for his little pat on the head and purrfest, Cat will come along, sit moodily at the door (by then I'm back to brushing my teeth, and Milo is walking away). Cat will take this opportunity to gently bite onto the scruff of Milo's neck and they will get into a little roly-poly wrestle!

Every time I see it, I wonder if this is catspeak for, "That was TOTALLY not appropriate! Not allowed! My momma!"

I just hope I'm not unknowingly creating some sort of jealous fighting between them!
post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JellyBella View Post
Have you tried something more interactive like a laser pointer or Da Bird? these are the only toys my two will use together and even then they regularly trade off chasing and watching.
Most of the time, when I play with them, it's with interactive toys like a laser pointer or a wand toy (kinda like Da Bird) or the Cat Dancer. What usually happens is when the older one sort of starts to make a move for it, the younger one will come crashing over in a desperation to get to the toy.

It really is just the younger one being a silly kid who's going gaga over the toy, leaving no chance for the older one PLUS the problem of her not being very interested when I put her in a separate room for some alone playing time.
post #8 of 23
Our first cat sounds a lot like Cat and acted quite a bit the same when we first brought in Lily. Actually, he didn't really start playing a lot again until about a year after we introduced Lily. Now she is less hyper so he can actually have a turn to jump in. He is now more aggressive about "getting" the object than she is. He still isn't quite the same because he is older now too. Plus, he likes his space from her, I think. They've made their agreement to get along about 70% of the time. We actually seperate them sometimes if they keep getting at each other though. I've heard from the vet and others that cats sort of have to figure out their agreement, but will settle into a pattern eventually. I think my cats would be lonesome without each other....
post #9 of 23
Btw, we're still working out the kinks. I had no idea until recently just how territorial and finicky cats can be about other cats. The vet told me that more often than not, cats that are from different litters do not get along 100%. They take time to work it out I guess. It's prob not a problem unless one cat seems extremely unhappy for a long period of time. But even kids get their noses out of joint at some point or another when there is a new baby. I think it's very normal.
post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chelsinator View Post
Our first cat sounds a lot like Cat and acted quite a bit the same when we first brought in Lily.
Hehe...you have no idea how confusing this was when I first read this! "Cat" was the name my husband said we had to name her if I wanted to adopt her! Lily was her name from her previous owners and at the shelter so she gets called both!

My two are very interesting. Cat sometimes looks like she's just plain exhausted from having to "kittensit" Milo. She just wants to climb into the tent bed (which we actually keep on the couch) and rest and he'll be batting the bed from all sides. See this picture:


I'm sure this will all be a distant memory when Milo calms down a little with age. He's already a lot calmer than he was when we got him 2 months ago. It's just so cute because I look at Cat and I'm like, "You were like this once too, you know..." It's just we're at a point where the age difference seems really huge because of how energetic kittens are!
post #11 of 23
I know, the first year or two takes a lot of patience and understanding. I still have a container full of glass and ceramic objects in need of glue, that once or twice fell prey to a hyper kitty.
post #12 of 23
I'd say they are fine. Its just the typical attitude of male/female cats. We've had Charlie for almost 7 months and Ling is 2 yrs old and still doesn't accept him totally.

Females just are that way. She acts a lot like Ling in the reactions involving Milo. Males are just more outgoing.
post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
Females just are that way. She acts a lot like Ling in the reactions involving Milo. Males are just more outgoing.
It's good to hear that everything we're going through is normal. I know things are going to take a little while to normalize and the cats are going to go through loads more phases as they get used to each other and Milo gets older.

I think I'm just feeling bad because Cat was so much more outgoing before and I'm trying really hard to prove to her that she's still my "top cat" (since everything I've read regarding cat introductions told me to make sure that I don't show the newcomer more love than the resident), but it's hard when she's been hiding in a corner, you know?

We've entered a phase of Milo chasing Cat under the bed because he wants to run/play/wrestle. I think my family enjoys his energy but at the same time, we're all anxiously waiting for the day he calms down just a smidge!
post #14 of 23
I totally know how you feel, I'm in the process of introducing a new kitten to our resident cat and she's 10! I worry about every little thing We're still in the stage of the adult hissing at the kitten when she gets too much, and she gets a little swipe now and then. I get really worried that the adult might just loose her temper, did that ever happen with yours? The kitten seems to adore the adult, she'll just sit and look at her, wanting to play!
I think it sounds like you're doing really well, and it will continue to get better.
post #15 of 23
Now, I've only had a 2nd cat in my household for a few days now but already I can tell that my Shinya doesn't really need me as much as she used to anymore. When both cats are in the room, they COMPLETELY ignore me.. it's like I don't exist! They're too busy chasing each other around the room! When I'm just in a room with one of them (I still keep the new baby, Yuna in a seperate room sometimes so she can rest), they play with me and talk to me and sit near me, but I'm guessing that I'm just not as good company as another feline friend they can chase around the house!

Shinya and I still sleep together (Yuna has her own room for now) and she's really attentive to me, but I can see that changing when I let Yuna stay with us.

I think we simply just have to accept that if our cats become best friends, they don't need us as much as they used to anymore!
But I'd take them being best friends and ignoring me over them hating each other any day!
post #16 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessy View Post
I totally know how you feel, I'm in the process of introducing a new kitten to our resident cat and she's 10! I worry about every little thing We're still in the stage of the adult hissing at the kitten when she gets too much, and she gets a little swipe now and then. I get really worried that the adult might just loose her temper, did that ever happen with yours? The kitten seems to adore the adult, she'll just sit and look at her, wanting to play!
I think it sounds like you're doing really well, and it will continue to get better.
Oddly enough, our hissing phase only lasted about 3 days and there was never any losing of tempers. For the most part, cats will do whatever they can to avoid conflict so all out war is unlikely, especially if the kitten backs off when the adult gives a hiss/swipe. What's important in your situation is to make sure your adult gets some rest from the kitten with boundless energy!

For our cats, Cat wants some time when Milo doesn't bug her...which he enjoys doing. Actually, if Cat is lying/sitting, sometimes the young'un will actually SIT on her rear end just to get a rise out of her. He's in a funny phase where he LOVES to pester his "older sis" (boys sometimes have funny ways of showing affection).
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by die_to_xxx View Post
I think we simply just have to accept that if our cats become best friends, they don't need us as much as they used to anymore!
But I'd take them being best friends and ignoring me over them hating each other any day!
Yeah, I'm totally happy that she ignores me when she's busy chasing the other kitty around...but it's kind of sad when we'll have "alone time" and she still ignores me.

Although, that may be nothing because she's not all that affectionate during the summer months. It's probably too hot for all that. She's much more of a lap kitty when it's cold...so we'll have to see how things in a few months.
post #18 of 23
My Scarlett gets envious when I play with Da Bird with our other cats. She wants it, is the queen of the house and gosh darn it, why am I not paying full attention to her? She actually pouts.

A friend taught me that you can somewhat control play with the interactive toys by calling out their names as you swing around the toys. My youngest is now 4 and it works here, but I'm not sure that Milo is old enough to be taught that behavior. Scarlett is very happy when I give her a turn.

Cat will come back to you when the weather cools down. If Milo bugs her when she is in your lap, tell him NO. He will soon learn that there is a time and place for play, and laptime is not one of those times.

Your cats sound very cool!
post #19 of 23
Sounds like my two cats but I sort of see that behaviour as a sibling-type relationship. You know, they have their close moments and the next thing you know they're bickering and swatting at each other.
post #20 of 23
I went through the same thing when I decided to get a second cat. It was a big decision, lots of thought put into it. They are not best friends but they do tolerate each other and while Ang did seem off put originally now they have worked things out and could not be happier.

I think your cats really like each other, and that pic is just darling.
post #21 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post
A friend taught me that you can somewhat control play with the interactive toys by calling out their names as you swing around the toys. My youngest is now 4 and it works here, but I'm not sure that Milo is old enough to be taught that behavior. Scarlett is very happy when I give her a turn.

Your cats sound very cool!
Hehe...thanks. They certainly are funny little furbabies. Since Milo's younger, the recommended food has been about double of Cat's...and Cat is a food wolfer and she got kinda mad she got less food, so I took the time to feed her one dry piece of food at a time so I trained her how to sit on command!

I think I'll have to try the name thing, but Milo just gets so amped to see any interactive toy, he just runs straight for it, even if it's clearly not his turn. This has caused him to run head first right into Cat and she does NOT enjoy that.
post #22 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moz View Post
Sounds like my two cats but I sort of see that behaviour as a sibling-type relationship. You know, they have their close moments and the next thing you know they're bickering and swatting at each other.
I know! I have a feeling they sleep together in one big fluffball while my husband and I aren't home to "catch" them (they sleep next to each other frequently and we've seen them during the weekend they're used to us being at work), but when we're home, it's a whole different story.

Cat was always more of a daddy's girl (like, I didn't EXIST if she was having her daddy time), but when Milo came along and he's waaay more attached to me, Cat decided she wanted to fight for my attention!

It makes it so much harder!
post #23 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sassy42 View Post
I went through the same thing when I decided to get a second cat. It was a big decision, lots of thought put into it. They are not best friends but they do tolerate each other and while Ang did seem off put originally now they have worked things out and could not be happier.

I think your cats really like each other, and that pic is just darling.
We took a reeeaaally long time to go for it too. I wanted to do it a year ago, but talked myself out of it...so it really took me a year to decide to do this. But the lots of thought is definitely a good thing...we really cared about whether this was the right thing for our "primary" cats, you know?

Yeah, I'm probably just worrying unnecessarily because Cat was definitely a lonely girl before Milo.

Cat used to be big meower (whenever she wanted us to wake up or when we were coming home she'd meow at us like she was really lonely), but now she waits at the door for us (with her sidekick Milo), but she's seems way less attention starved.
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