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Introducing older kittens to wee kittens

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone! Excellent forum!

I have a 4 month old male kitten (Mugglesworth), and am now introducing him to a 6 week old female (had to be adopted because many kittens/cats at the shelter were sick.) We decided to get a second cat, younger than our first (tough to find outside of kitten season!) because soon I will be going to school all day and didn't want our indoor cat to be bored in our apartment. But now the fun begins with kittensitting these two!! I have two questions (for now!)...

We are gradually letting the two socialize, which now seems to consist of Mugglesworth wrestling the female... play fighting. It is very very closely supervised (basically my husband or I holding one/both.) They seem to like each other, and pine to get at each other (even the little one-quite a spitfire) but we will do this slowly. My question is: how do you know if the older is hurting the younger one when they play? I don't want to leave them together too early. When do you guys think she will be big enough to be left with him - or to play without being so closely monitored? Also, how should I divide my time amongst the two? I don't want the older to feel abandoned but understand the younger needs to be socialized...

Secondly about the spay/neuter. I realize it is best to have both, or the older one, fixed. Mugglesworth is still too young (I think?), but when would be the best time to get him done? And similarly, for the young one. Thanks for any help!

post #2 of 5
Dear Jen,
Hi there welcome. It sounds like you're both having a wonderful time with your new baby. Congrats! I definitely don't think Mugglesworth will hurt her (intentionally). Although, there will be times where he will want to show her who is dominant, but, I'm sure you know that. I would suggest that supervised sessions last another 2 weeks with your kitten (at least, depending upon her size, weight). I'm sure you did vaccinate her; you didn't mention that, so, I'm just stating that here now. I would also allow give Mugglesworth another four months before I nuetuered him; but then again, I'd contact my vet prior just to ask his opinion as well; I'd do this with both of your kitties...as he would know best since he would be treating them and getting to know them a little. As far as socialization is concerned, for me...I would love them both together as much as I could. I've found that if I did that, then the other would see that they were just as important as the other. Good Luck with your babies
God Bless You & Yours
post #3 of 5
Welcome to the forums Jepo!

This must be so much fun for you! Cherish this time and take lots of pictures!

When to leave them together depends a lot on their character and the little one's physical size. 6 weeks is very young. I would also wait at least 2-3 weeks and even more before leaving them unsupervised.

As for spaying and neutering - 4 months is actually the recommended age for both sexes. Some vets prefer to neuter males a bit later, but you have to be careful and do it before the male reaches sexual maturity and begins to spray! As for females don't wait after she's 5 months tops. You want to fix her before she goes into first heat. That way you'll drastically reduce her risk for getting mammary cancer later on.
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much for the help!

At the vet trip today, we found out she is actually only 4 or *maybe* 5 weeks old (why my other kitten seemed so big at 7 weeks!!). The vet told me the same sort of things you guys did!

Nope, she didn't have her vaccination because of her age (have to wait another 3 weeks) and can't have flea meds for her fleas (just a comb). The vet said she had a bit of an irregular heartbeat (a little pause here and there.) It may be because of a meeting with a Bull Mastiff at the vets and the outdoor walk there and general uproar of the past few days. Has anyone else here run into that? (perhaps this belongs in health section, but I think it'd be better in an established thread..?)

One more quick question: I was phoned about some possible work over this next month which would probably mean 7-8 hours a day (full time-ish) out of the house. I am taking some time off before I start school full time (VERY full time) in 5 weeks, and this work would last until then. Do you guys think it is a real bad idea to leave them at this time? I have had some people tell me it is fine, but I am not too sure, because they have a long way to go socially and meow to get together when awake... I don't know what to expect with the socialization. We are not well off with money at all, but can survive obviously. What would you guys suggest?

It'll be an interesting time with these two! But I am sure they will be the best of friends before long, and all the work will be worth it.
post #5 of 5
I think that you can take the job. You'll just need to seperate them while you are gone and give them extra quality time when you are at home.
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