After losing our cat to FLV, my fiance and I decided to take in a foster cat. The experience has been interesting to say the least. I offered to take a cat who may have behavioral or confidence issues. The cat we have is a sweet little thing, maybe a year old with no real history other than that he was rescued from the pound. With the lack of history it makes it difficult to judge how he will handle certain situations, like being introduced to our resident cat. Our foster cat is very interesting. Currently he is afraid of open spaces, in other words he doesn't like being out in the open for long periods, instead he "hides" under objects that have low height, like the chair or coffee table. He also doesn't like people standing but prefers them sitting or lying down on the ground. Any movements that look like we could be standing or moving to leave give him a little spook. He's made excellent strides as he is confident enough to come out from hiding on his own, and he can stay out for hours, but one wrong move or sound and he's back under the furniture. I realize this takes baby steps and eventually he'll have enough confidence to jump up on chairs and things. He took an interest in our resident cat, another male around the same age. He's so interested in our cat that he comes out of hiding just to see him. The foster cat was exposed to other cats frequently, so I wasn't expecting much fear or confrontation. At first, he seemed to invite my pet cat to play with him. He'd coo and paw gently at him. It didn't appear aggressive at all. My resident wasn't too stoked to meet our new foster cat, he growled a few times and kept his distance, mostly from high vantage points. Today seemed no different. The foster was gently pawing at my res and cooing to him. Out of the blue he got up, pounced and attempted to repeatedly bite my resident cat on the neck. I took my res out of the room and cleaned him up, the poor thing was definitely shaken and he's a big guy. This little cat was just going at him full force. I realize this must be a dominance issue, but I was genuinely concerned for the safety of either cat. Is this something that can be overcome in time?? Is there anything I should do?
I've had fights between cats before, but they were minor. This seemed a bit intense and relentless. I'm sure if I had let it go it could have gone on for quite awhile. I'm also worried about health. During his stay with the organization our foster was undergoing treatment for a cold. He had already finished his meds a few days before we picked him up. He seemed fine, but today he's had two or three coughing fits. Is it possible it's come back? I'm worried my res may get it now. : /
Any advice is greatly appreciated!
Thanks. : )