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Progress report

We’re doing fine, thanks. Growing and getting bolder. But there’s an unforeseen snag.

When we explained to the cat rescue people that one of our cats was crazy territorial and aggressive (that would be Mad Jack), they said the thing to do was leave kitten in his cage in a central location. Eventually the other cats would get used to the smell and sight of him and decide he’s no danger.

We got through the initial meeting. There was some hissing, maybe even a growl from the adult cats. Baby trilling and meowing and purring and wanting to make friends in the worst way.

After that…the old cats simply refuse to come into the room with him. It’s the living room…the place we all usually hang out. Even the two grownup cats who hate each other obey a truce in the living room. But now they’re hanging out in the back room or upstairs or outside and refuse to deal with the little one at all.

They’ve gone on strike.

He badly needs to come out of that cage and leap around and do kitten things, but we simply cannot trust Jack until we see them together more.

What do?


Comment from Ric Fan
Time: August 16, 2018, 10:23 pm

My opinion for what it’s worth: Need more time. Eventually, the big cats will want to enter the living room because that is where all the fun is. As to trusting Jack to not murder the kitten — time will tell. The kitten will get bigger and Jack is on the small side, is he not? Maybe all it takes is a good womp by the kitten on Jack to set him straight.

Comment from Ric Fan
Time: August 16, 2018, 10:45 pm

Learned something new. Cats like to be squeeshed and shoulder cats: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAGfx7eB3gA

Also, your cat looks like he’s on drugs.

Comment from Skandia Recluse
Time: August 16, 2018, 10:58 pm

I don’t know cats. Do cats have a ‘pack leader?’

Get the kitten on your lap. Get your scent on him, and his on you. I see video of cats rubbing up against each other and that is what I always think.

I don’t know how you stop cats from fighting each other. A dogfight you can break up, usually, if you are the pack leader, and they get the message.

But we did have a problem dog that wouldn’t leave the cat alone. We couldn’t break him of it either. The dog went back to the pound.

Comment from AliceH
Time: August 16, 2018, 11:09 pm


Maybe move their food dishes to the living room.

Comment from BJM
Time: August 16, 2018, 11:38 pm

I agree with Ric, give them more time. The older cats will soon tire of missing out on companionship and cuddles and come to terms with the situation.

Does the living room have a door? If so, close it and let the new guy out for exercise and human socializing. The older cats will really want to be in the room if fun can be heard to be had behind a closed door.

When the new cat has had some exercise and cuddles return him to the crate and open the living room door, but act natural, don’t pander to the older cats or make it seem out of the ordinary. Create an evening routine around limited access to the room and new cat.

Cats will accept change sooner if they perceive it as a new normal.

Bribery can help if the older cats have a desirable high-value food/treat. Put a little into a bowl, out of the view of the new cat. When the older cats finally slink back into the living room they will find an unexpected treat. They may eat and run at first but soon you’ll notice that they visit the bowl often at other times to see if a treat is waiting…a new normal.

Oh…and be sure to pick up the bowl when the new cat is free in the room…cats scent mark with their lips…thus the older cats will shun a marked bowl.

Comment from Pupster
Time: August 16, 2018, 11:46 pm

How long did it take for Jack and Charlotte? Meh, give him a special treat, it will be fine.


Comment from Armybrat
Time: August 17, 2018, 12:49 am

I’ve only ever had one cat at a time…and that was plenty! I’m in awe of people who can manage more than one with all their litter boxes and litter throwing out of the box and tossing their cookies whenever and whereever they are. They are exhausting to clean up after!

Comment from Stephen Falken
Time: August 17, 2018, 3:52 am

A kitten is less threatening than a cat so you might be OK to put them together. But, you need to have a spray bottle of water handy. You can separate two cats by spraying water in the aggressor’s face and nose.

Comment from catnip
Time: August 17, 2018, 5:39 am

BJM has it right. The adjustment may take what seems to you like a very long time, but the sooner you start the process, the better. If there are two doors to the living room, you may want to install a more see-through, full-length gate in one to give the kitten more freedom and allow Charlotte and Jack to get used to his presence from a distance, while you enter and exit through the other door. We’ve used two cheap, adjustable wooden baby gates from Walmart, fastened together one atop the other and bolstered with a spare chair to thwart sneak attacks from a male with murderous intent at the outset. A crate could come in handy, and some ingenuity may be required, but cats are sociable and accept the inevitable, given enough attention, and enough time to realize that acting pouty gets them no response from their people at all.

Comment from AliceH
Time: August 17, 2018, 3:19 pm

Also, d’awww. He’s a cutie.

Comment from Wolfus Aurelius
Time: August 17, 2018, 3:59 pm

Stoaty, I can’t help much. Wolf and Chekov, my current thugs, got used to each other in an hour. The first I knew, they were sitting in the window together and watching birds. Both were adult males, but altered, if that means anything.

My late red tabby Arizona disliked other cats, but he didn’t attack them. He basically ignored them and tolerated their presence. He was 3 years old when my mother’s little tri-color girl cat came to live with us, and 15 when Linda’s ultra-friendly black cat Marie-Antoinette moved in — and he had the same “Maybe if I ignore her she’ll go away” attitude for both.

The suggestions the other commenters have given sound very reasonable.

Comment from steve
Time: August 17, 2018, 5:11 pm

I’m not sure what you should do next.

Has Uncle B. suggested getting one or more additional cats….to, you know, relieve the awkwardness of the single new cat?

Comment from Jeff Weimer
Time: August 17, 2018, 8:39 pm

I have a cat who refuses to come in the *house* if there is another animal present. For years. Nothing will shake it, except thunder, and only for as long as she’s still scared of it.

Comment from BJM
Time: August 17, 2018, 9:06 pm

I would be remiss if I didn’t add that adult male cats are programmed to kill male kittens not of their making….and often even their own spawn. So I wouldn’t let Jack and the kitten mix it up as Jack is an experienced rabbit hunter and fighter, even if he is often the loser.

A spray bottle won’t be of much use as Jack could snap the kitten’s neck in a trice.

See if you can borrow a large dog crate so Jack has more room…rescue groups often have them to loan.

Comment from drew458
Time: August 17, 2018, 11:23 pm

What to do? Maybe you should try Jack in the box?

Somebody had to say it, especially as most of them play “pop goes the weasel”

Comment from Spunkus
Time: August 17, 2018, 11:30 pm

Roberta McCain

Comment from technochitlin
Time: August 18, 2018, 5:05 pm

Not to be a downer, but Lady TC and I have been staff for a male cat for close to 13 years. About 10 years ago Lady TC brought home a Siamese lady cat for us to be staff for. Male cat was not impressed. 10 years later he is still not impressed and will attack said lady cat if he thinks he can get away with it.

Over the years I’ve been staff for multiple cats that co-existed with no problems whatsoever, but these two have an abiding hatred that time has, so far, failed to assuage…

You just never know. Cats are as unique as people.

Comment from Subotai Bahadur
Time: August 19, 2018, 10:18 pm

This might be why the other cats are . . . cautious:


Subotai Bahadur

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