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Adult cat and young kittens

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I have adopted two adorable 3 month old babies. Twice a month my hubby and I go to visit his parents in another state. We take kittens with us. My hubby's parents have a 5 year old female cat who's not very sociable. She doesn't like to be held, she starts hissing. She doesn't like to be petted she bites and scratches if you do. We tried to introduce little ones to her but she starts making a horrible roaring sound like a tiger. And if anyone moves she starts hissing. We put the kittens in a different room, but she'll sit by the door and keep making those scary sounds. It does not seem to bother the kitties they even want to come out and see her but I'm afraid to let her see them. I'm scared she'll beat them up or hurt them. When we hold them in our hands and try to let her smell them she keeps making the roaring noise but does not want to smell them or come near them. The one time we tried to introduce them the boy got scared and started meowing and the girl starting roaring back at her.

Will they ever get along? Will she hurt them if we leave them in the same room? Will her maternal instincts ever show?

Sorry for such a long post.

Thanks in advance.

post #2 of 5
Her stress level is off the charts. Leave the kittens at home under capable hands to care for them. If this older cat becomes to stressed out and stops eating, she could become quite ill. You should never introduce kittens to other cats right away, they need time to adjust to each other, get used to each other's smell otherwise it could go very wrong quickly.
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
The adult cat is fine. So she'll never accept them? How can we get her to like them? My mother-in-law is considering getting a kitten. Should I tell her not to since we only come for a couple of days and she freaks out.

She also reacts the same way to the street cats. She'll chase them and fight with them. Is that a sign that she will do the same thing if my mother-in-law adopts another kitten?

The adult cat was found in the basement when she was a kitten. My mother-in-law took her in and another lady took in the cat's brother. Her brother is a sweet cat, why is she this way?

post #4 of 5
Hissy is right - even though the adult cat seems fine, a very stressful incident can make her stop eating. I went through this with one of my adult cats which, when it went to live with my sister, had a very stressful experience.

At first, it adjusted well (if warily) to the introduction of dogs and children. Then, someone came over with their own dogs for a visit, and one of them was a bit too enthusiastic and chased the cat (it really only wanted to play, but the cat didn't know that). It became so stressed out that it didn't come down for dinner that night, and stopped eating in the days thereafter. The best it did was pick a few nibbles and go away. My sister noticed that the cat looked yellowish around the eyes and ears, and that its appetite was off. The cat became slugglish.

It had only stopped eating for three days but it went into severe hepatic lipidosis, and almost died. It took almost three months of tube feeding through the stomach three times daily to bring her back to health. It was pure hell, and she was so, so sick.

It sounds like the adult cat should never be assimilated with any new animals, and I'd strongly recommend that your mother-in-law does not get another cat, kitten or not. It would be dangerous for both cats, but most especially for the adult cat.

Cats all have different personalities, and maybe your m.i.l's cat is just more neurotic and didn't socialize well during the formative time in kittenhood. I wouldn't have believed it if it didn't happen right before my eyes, but hepatic lipidosis can come on fast and strong, and kill a cat in no time if not quickly identified and aggressively treated. The only reason it happened was because of the stress. That's all it took to turn a perfectly healthy adult cat into a sick one on the edge of death in the blink of an eye.

I agree with Hissy, leave the kittens home and have someone caretake them while you're gone.

Tell your m.i.l to keep a close eye on her cat to make sure it is eating and eliminating regularly after this stressful encounter.
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thank you very much for your advice. The adult cat is fine she eats like a horse and goes to the bathroom as usual. I guess she's just a very anti-social cat. That's a shame.
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