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Needing Some Reasurance

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Hi I am new to the group and have a few questions. I got a new kitten Isis 2 wks. ago she was aprox. 8 wks at the time. She was born to a farm cat. I already have a 2 yr. old Cleo(patra). Cleo has not been fixed yet. (I know it's important) I got another cat because I am away from home alot and I felt that Cleo was lonely.

I got Isis on a Friday got her shots on the same day and brought her home. Cleo had the typical reaction. She hissed and growled. Isis just look at her like she was crazy but never backed down. She would try to hiss with her little voice. It was funny because she was the runt and I was told she was always over powered by the other cats on the farm.

Anyway that weekend I only let them socialize while supervised. Cleo continued to have a bad attitude about the whole situation. Isis continued to enjoy herself in her new home and pay Cleo no attnetion.

It was clear very quickly of their different personalities. Isis is very loving and people freindly and boy can she eat. She is almost half the size of Cleo and she was the runt. The vet says she will be a big cat. Cleo is more stand offish and doesn't eat a lot and is small but the vet says she's normal.

Because I work alot I knew that weekend would be the only time they would be supervised. I decided to let them loose on Monday and see what would happen. Well I'm confused because nothing happened. For about a week they drew lines in the sand and marked their corners of the room. But no real fighting that I could tell. By this week they were playing and havign a grand time. Some times they do seem to fight rough but they aren't making much noise other than what sounds like panting and maybe a small growl. No one seems to be hurt.

I'm just confused because everyone told me these horor stories about how it would take them weeks to get used to each other. But that has not happened. When I come home both of them are not injured and sometiems running around chasing each other playfully. I'm worried because I will be gone for 4 days. Cleo is used to it but this is a 1st for Isis. Is their behavior normal and do you think they will be ok while I'm gone?

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 11
Glad to hear that u are having an easy time of introducing the cats to each other! Some cats take to it easier than other cats.

My cats aren't too bad. I leave them alone all day all (it's my 2nd week with them) and haven't found any wounds yet. I have witnessed a few attacks using paws (declawed) to swat at the younger cat and have yelled at Sunni (older & declawed) for that. I'm hoping that as time goes by that they will play together but so far, Sunni is just putting up with Zebra where Zebra WANTS to be friends with Sunni so it's sad to see Zebra try to approach Sunni & get swatted for it. I am working on that.

I would suggest for the first few times u'll be gone for a while, let them be alone (don't separate) and have a friend or neighbor check on them once a day to make sure everything's okay so u can have peace of mind while u're gone..

post #3 of 11
With cats its always a crap shoot. I have had cats that take several weeks and then there are those who don't take but 2 days. My last kitten spent one night in the bathroom and she has been playing with the rest of the cats since then. If they are getting along now, then I would not worry at all about them being alone. Once they are friends they usually stick together unless seperated for ahwile. I would however consider having them both spayed when the baby is 6 months. It will make things easier when they get older and then they can recoupe together. Unspayed females run the risk of serious uterine infections. When they go into heat the uterus can become infected if not bred and then close up and trap the bacteria and puss. It can lead to death. You are also increasing the chances of teritorial behavior along with mamory cancer.
post #4 of 11
Hi Pamela

Why declawed? It can cause a great deal of ongoing discomfort for cats, also various behavioural problems including litter box problems because of discomfort associated with trying to scratch. The worst case scenario is declawed cats being dumped or abandoned (it does happen), they have no hope of fending for themselves. The practice seems to be common and accepted in America but it is seldom done here in Australia, in fact there's a strong move to outlaw it totally unless for some medical reason. About.com - cats (under "Links") is one site that has lots of info on declawing, especially for/against arguments.
post #5 of 11
Hello Mary.

I myself am very against declawing for the last 10 years after hearing someone say it was like cutting off fingers..

Unfortunately, Sunni was already declawed by the family who owned her before I adopted her. I can tell she misses her claws because she still kneads her paws on couches, carpet and scratching post..

It doesn't seem to bother her in the litter box so far but I'll keep an eye on her regarding that.

Thanks for ur concern.. Wish more people were like u..

post #6 of 11
Hi Babygay and welcome to the Forums,

I've never had any problem integrating new cats into the household, but then I use a controversial approach. I know the accepted method is to keep them separate and introduce slowly, but I have always had faster success by being a bit sneakier than that. *grin*

I know that cats depend heavily on their sense of smell to identify and recognize just about everything...new cats included. My experience is that if all the cats in the house smell alike, I normally don't have any problems at all with introductions. It's almost like they don't even know a stranger is in the house, then all of a sudden one day they wake up and realize, "HEY! You weren't here before, but you haven't threatened me yet, so I don't think I'll be afraid or mean to you at all for there is no reason to be."

This has worked for me time after time again. I do not advocate the use of this method by anyone else - as always my advice is to stick with the tried and true for the greater number of cats - but sometimes, just sometimes...what works for everyone else may not always work for me. I tend to be cranky and peculiar that way you see *grin* so I have to find alternative ways (read faster, cheaper, less sweat equity) to get the same job done.

Best of luck with your crew,

post #7 of 11
So how do you make them smell all the same? This could be very useful when coming back from the vets!!!!

Heather V. Havel
post #8 of 11
Well, gosh - I could have added HOW to make them all smell alike to my post, couldn't I??? Sheesh! Somedays, I am just as dumb as God's own ancient dirt and have about as much sense as He gave to peas!

Anything ... well, smelly ... would work. I have used vanilla extract, perfume, Vicks Vapo-Rub...I don't like using the Vick's though even if it does work the best. I apply a small amount to the palm of my hand and rub my hands together, then stroke the cat's fur behind the neck where they can't easily wash. Most all of the time, the cats are so busy washing the smell off of each other they don't even notice a new cat is in the house! But then I have bene told my cats are dorks. *grin*

post #9 of 11
Hi Gayef

Your method isn't controvertial at all but novel when it comes to introducing strange cats - I doubt too many people have thought of it and it's a great idea. Smell is certainly one of the main ways animals recognise each other. I come from a horse industry background and if a foal loses its mother, it's sometimes possible to get another nursing mare to take it by disguising the orphan foal's smell. Interestingly I read in the paper here the other day that the scent cats rub on you with the side of their faces has been made artificially and that it has a calming effect on cats in strange places or situations, like being transported or undergoing a vet examination.
post #10 of 11
I beleive the artificial stuff they were referring to is Feliway. It is pricy but is supposed to be VERY effective in lots of situations.
post #11 of 11
Hi Sandie
Looks like you were exactly right. I knew about Feliway but hadn't realised it was an artificial facial pheromone, but it is, I've just checked it out. That's newspapers for you, about two years or more out of date with some of their "breaking news stories". I wonder if Feliway would work in cat introductions? I guess it would.
Thanks for the info.
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