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New cat integration

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Hey all, I'm back using this site again. I was on the site regularly until I had to put my last kitty down a few months ago.... I came to missing having a cat, so naturally I went and got another. I adopted a two-year old female from a local non-profit agency; and she is such a cutie My last cat was very easy to deal with, but this one is different, and I'm sure this gets posted a lot..... when I got her home I put her in a small bathroom for two days just to get her used to being in a new place, and every now and then I'd pop in to pet her, which she absolutely loves. Then over the past five days I've let her have free access to the house. She's exploring every now and then, but normally I find her hiding under a table or my bed. If she's wondering around and anyone comes near her, she scrambles away. She won't like to be pet unless we pet her under the bed or in her "safe" bathroom. Right now I can tell she's still scared of her new environment (she's only been home one week)..... is the best course of action right now to ignore her and let her come up to us?? Or, should I go back to keeping her in the bathroom periodically and give her face time with me and then let her out? As I said I've only had one cat before, and he was pretty easy to integrate into a home. This one will need some time and care, so I'm paranoid and just want to make sure I do everything right and make her happy and begin to trust us.
post #2 of 8
In my experience, that's not too bad for one week.

I have found cats differ as individuals, some adapt very quickly, some take time. Sometimes when they are younger, it goes easier; then there's past "history", some of which we may not know about, that enters the mix.

I'm no expert but I would give her the freedom to move around as she wishes, as long as she can retreat to the area she feels safest. I would talk to her and pay attention to her but let her come to me rather than trying to interact with her before she is ready.

Perhaps someone else will have more experiance/advice than I do.
post #3 of 8
I would give her time.
She is not doing to bad right now.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help.... I just wasn't sure if I was doing everything correctly or not.
post #5 of 8
How about toys to break the ice?
post #6 of 8
Please excuse me if I am not posting this in the right place, but I am new to the site. I've been reading everything I can find on introducing a new cat to the house. I followed all the suggestions about own room, slow intro, exchanging bedding, feeding treats when they're together, etc. Everything was going great between the two (females) after the slow introduction. They were spending supervised time together and had been fine for three or four days when the new cat started attacking the resident cat, who is twice the size of the new one. After a few serious altercations we separated them again and have started over. The new cat is always on the prowl for the resident cat when we let her out of confinement, and the resident cat is always looking over her shoulder as she is terrified of the new cat. The new cat has begun to poop outside the box when she is confined. Someone is always unhappy being behind a closed door. Does anyone have any other suggestions? I hate to return the new cat to the rescue group because she is a wonderful cat otherwise, but I also have to consider my responsibility to my other cat who was here first. By the way, we were a two-cat household until our other cat died a few months ago, so another cat in the house was not a problem for the resident cat.
post #7 of 8
Welcome to the group. Sounds like you are the right step with the integration process - keep on doing the scent exchanges and feeding together - if you can try to play with the kitties together - they need to associate good things with each other. Also, how many litter boxes do you have? The rule is if you have 2 cats - have 3 litter boxes. In the confinement room can you put a baby gate up so that the confined cat can still see out?
Also, Feliway dispensers and sprays also help with inappropriate litter box usage ( I find the dispensers are better) and the use of Spirit Essences help alot I use the Bully, Peace maker, and Grumpy formula for my cats. If your kitty continues to poop outside of the box bring him/her to the vet as there might be a medical problem. I'm in in the process of integrating 2 cats ( I'm 5 months in to the integration slowly making progress) - my female cat (Cleo) started to pee outside of the litter box - I thought she was trying to get back at her new brother until I brought Cleo to the vet only to find out that she had a bladder infection.
Hang in there - you are on the right track Don' t give up!!

Mia, Cleo, and Oliver
post #8 of 8
Thanks for the response. I have three litter boxes already. The only time that Tinsel poops outside the box is when she has been behind a closed door and doesn't want to be. It appears to be very deliberate rather than any physical problem. I have gates and we did use those, but now Tinsel leaps buildings in a single bound to get to Schmackie. Even multiple gates don't stop her from getting out or in. In her foster home she was with other cats and the foster parent said that while she would stand her ground she was never the agressor. I have a feeling that the two cats came face to face on the stairs or in the hallway and Tinsel chased Schmackie, our resident cat. Once she realized that she could intimidate Schmackie she began to attack her every time we had them out together.
I keep seeing references to Feliway, but have no idea what it is. I'll hit the web and find out. I'm willing to try just about anything at this point. I am concerned about the stress on Schmackie and the whole household. It's more than an inconvenience trying to keep them separated, and I'm about ready to throw in the towel and return Tinsel to the rescue group.
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