Anxious about new cat - any advice??

mmmccabe

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M mmmccabe , I have found out in my great age that almost 99% of what we worry about DOES NOT COME TRUE! For only having your cats a week or so, I think everything sounds fine! As for Figaro being more playful, that is very common in a male, as being more reserved is for a female. They co-exist because they are a family unit (been together) and they most likely have already established their heirarchy and know where they stand with the other. As you know, cats absolutely HATE change and here they are in a new home with all it's stresses. Everything will work out in time. One day at a time.....
You have known a cat's love and your heart wanted more. To pass on the love of past cats is a great honor and a tribute to their love. They will continue to live on through this love. You will be blessed for opening your home and your heart to these little ones who so desperately needed you. Your love will grow and your fears will calm in time as you all learn a new life's order for yourselves. Life is too short to worry needlessly, enjoy them and share your problems and your joys with us here at this site, you are not alone!
Di and Bob - thank you for the very thoughtful message. You are right, we humans do worry too much. Last night we had our now nightly snuggle session. They have acclimated really quickly to the space and are very comfortable. I am happy to say that Bean, my quiet female, was very playful yesterday which was a surprise. I think she was just getting her bearings and I am so happy to see her playful even if it's in short stints. I am a quiet, introspective person and I think sharing my space, after not doing so for 2 years, was a shock to my system. Learning to live with other personalities is always a learning experience. I am also a pleaser and get nervous that maybe I am not doing enough, especially since cats can be fickle and I know the strain that cause on households.

Thank you again for your advice. This is such a great forum.
 

di and bob

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You all just need time to get used to all the changes. You and them are going through so much right now, big changes to all. I get nervous too, I guess I'm too much like a cat, I don't like change either. I get upset and lash out, good thing I don't have claws, I just iuse my mouth!
 

ottoandgrisou

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Hi!
I’m very glad I found this thread. I adopted two 2-year old cat brothers last Monday and am feeling lots of regret and anxiety. They are both very sweet and already very comfortable in my apartment. I am worried though if I made the right decision. I had been thinking about adopting a cat for quite a while after going through a divorce and custody battle. Now I wish I had given it more time. The cats are very active and scratch and jump everywhere, especially at night when my 2 year old daughter sleeps in the bedroom and I in the living room with the cats. I have been thinking about bringing them back to the adoption center I got them from last week and feel awful, but my anxiety is out of control and it reminds me a lot of my post Partum experience after having my daughter. I am afraid I can’t handle what’s ahead and miss my sleep when they go wild after 2am. Reading through everyone’s posts is helping me but I still am thinking about returning them this weekend.
 

di and bob

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They are trying to get used to a new home, new hours, new experiences. And so are you, having them around. They could be confined to a room for the night, or you could sleep in your daughter's room until they learn to sleep at night, and they will in time. You are experiencing anxiety because you think this is the way it will always be. It won't. You didn't learn to be a parent in a week I'll bet. Just try to relax and enjoy them. Things will get better, you'll see! Remember, we are always here when you need us, you are not alone.....
 

ottoandgrisou

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Thank you. And you’re right, it took me a while to get used to being a mom too. Sleepless nights with a newborn, breastfeeding and so on... it’s all different now. I didn’t know cats can learn to sleep at night, I always thought they were night owls but you saying that they can gives me some hope. Is there anything I can help them with to get them adjusted and used to my schedule?
Thank you again for the encouragement.
 

di and bob

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Yes, you can give them a good playtime, like with a wand or ball,shortly before bedtime. Have your daughter use a long wand too. She could also run around dragging a frayed rope or the wand and let them chase her. Then feed them a good meal if canned food. My cats tell me when it's bedtime and are in bed asleep before me. They get up during the night and snack on some dry food, then come back to bed. You might try to keep them awake towards bedtime. My cats have always slept all night with us. It's just a matter of time to teach them What you want. Just like with kids it's easier too if you go to sleep and getup at the same time. Everyone is happier with a schedule! It WILL happen, in time. Don't think how they are now will be forever, just like your tiny baby, they grow and change with your guidance!
 

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Hi everyone,

I adopted a cat from a local rescue organization on Saturday (today is Thursday) - her name is Jane and she's a gorgeous 1 year and three months old white kitty with brown markings. Adopting a cat is something I've been thinking about quite a bit for the past few months, as I started graduate school for library science this fall. I'm moving into my own place in a little under two weeks, and I thought that a good way to help combat potential loneliness would be to adopt a cat.

So far she has been a sweetheart - she was very scared when I picked her up from the shelter, but she's adjusted to my bedroom remarkably well (one of my roommates is allergic, so I'm keeping her in my room for now, which I feel a little bad about). She loves to cuddle and be petted, and she's been very playful so far - she zooms around the room quite a bit at night. She hasn't scratched any of my furniture, just the rug (instead of the scratcher I got her, so I might exchange that and try some different options in the hopes she'll like those better), and she's been using the litter box without any accidents. Overall a really sweet cat!

Here's where I want some advice, though. Logically I knew that adopting a cat is a big responsibility and I was mentally prepared for that upon adopting her - but I'm not sure I was prepared for anxiety I would feel after adopting her. Is this a normal experience? I had cats when I was a kid and I've always had dogs, but this is the first time I've ever owned a pet by myself. I'm so embarrassed about this, but on Sunday and Tuesday nights I had mini anxiety/panic attacks thinking about it and couldn't stop crying - I kept thinking, "I should have gotten an older cat, maybe I should have gotten a cat that was declawed" (I'm definitely not going to declaw her though!!), "maybe this was a mistake." She's been so good and I've really enjoyed playing with her and cuddling with her, but I'm starting to feel cooped up with her in my bedroom and her zooming around at night has really cut down on my ability to sleep, so maybe that's part of it? Even though I knew adopting a younger cat would be a really large commitment (potentially 15-20 years), I don't think it hit me how real that is until I adopted her.

I don't know, I'm feeling unreasonably stressed about it and about if she's okay when I'm gone, etc. I'm just worried that I'll come to regret adopting her, which I'd feel terrible about because she's been pretty sweet so far. I haven't been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder or seen a therapist or anything but I've been pretty stressed this semester (broke up with my boyfriend of 2.5 years, started grad school, moved to a new city, etc.) and I didn't expect that I would react this way at all to adopting a cat.

I feel very embarrassed about how I'm reacting given she's been great so far, but can anyone give me any advice or insight? I'm afraid that maybe I am not actually ready for this large of a commitment and that I won't be able to handle these kinds of commitments in the future!!

Thanks, everyone, for helping a newbie cat owner out.

Karlyn
I realize this thread is so old, but I needed to find this today. I adopted a cat 4 days ago, and my anxiety is through the roof. I feel like a crazy person. I'm having multiple panic attacks a day, and so much guilt that I'm not going to be the owner she needs me to be. I like my sleep. I like to chill on the couch and watch tv. And she is so active. Shelter said she's 2 which is part of why I got her. I wanted one a little older so she would be more mellow. When I met her in the shelter, she was super chill. Didn't really care that we were there. Didn't beg for pets. Well that's not the case now that we're home. She's still VERY kitten like, and has started causing trouble in the morning when I'm not ready to wake up yet. And she's aggressively needy with wanting pets and attention. It's affecting my sleep hardcore.

Now rationally, I know this will all mellow. She's new. I'm new. We're adjusting. She will get into my routine. I KNOW this. But god the anxiety is eating me alive. It's such an irrational thing. The panics I go through change day to day but the level hasn't gotten better. In fact it's way worse today. I miss my old life of this tiny little thing not making me feel guilty every second. And I've considered taking her back.

This is textbook what anyone with anxiety goes through when getting a pet. It happened to my sister. I've read countless posts online from other people. But it doesn't make me feel better. Fighting through the panic every day is wearing me out. And my cat won't let me sleep.


Wow, I just wanted to say thank you for posting this. I haven't even finished adopting her yet. I'm getting my Kitty from a foster home (because social distancing so everything is shut down!) But I'm already having a LOT of anxiety and this post just made me feel a little less nuts. To know I'm not alone adopting a new cat when you are anxiety prone is super stressful and I'm not alone. And to know it will be hard at firdt but if I stick with it it will be worth it! Thank you!
 

mmmccabe

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@girllovestoread, @jsckiebo, C cantwaite

I am almost 3 months into my time with my new fur kids. As you can see from my post in January, I was anxious and nervous. I can report that the three of us are living well and happy. I am grateful to have them during this super weird time. These two are just over 1 year old and they are playful and active. When they don't get enough attention they tend to act up a bit but I can identify that now. They are 'kids' and I try to be as patient as possible. One loves to bite things and the other likes to scratch. It drives me crazy but they are animals, so all I can do is redirect when possible, use lots of double stick tape and try to just be caring and loving. Do they still do it - yep but I don't yell and I try to laugh at their silly but natural behavior. They love me so unconditionally. They want to be with me and around me and that is so wonderful. Yes, they sit right on my computer when I am working and yes they meow when they feel they are not 'heard' but I have my own versions of that so I can't really blame them. I talk to them a lot - thanking them and loving them and I think they get that I am their person. One thing I did right from the start is not have them sleep with me. It's OK to set boundaries but you need to do so early on. My last cat slept with me for years and when she got older and just wouldn't let me sleep it was so hard because to change my behavior so late in the game would cause stress. My room is off limits at night. Do they love that I close the door - nope - but they know that's how it is. They want to be with me but I give them lots of love during the day. I do have to sleep with earplugs because they are active at night.

The other thing that I also told myself was, and this may be frowned upon, but I told myself it was a trial period and it was OK if maybe it didn't work out. I am not OK with people giving up animals years down the road especially when they don't suit needs or aren't acting as we want them to but I do understand that the first 6 months can be an adjustment. If it's not working out in the early months then be honest with yourself. I do stress that you have to give it time and you have to be OK with shifting your life a bit. It's like sharing your home with anyone - they aren't always going to do exactly what you want. Find happiness in their love and silliness.

Good luck!

Wow, I just wanted to say thank you for posting this. I haven't even finished adopting her yet. I'm getting my Kitty from a foster home (because social distancing so everything is shut down!) But I'm already having a LOT of anxiety and this post just made me feel a little less nuts. To know I'm not alone adopting a new cat when you are anxiety prone is super stressful and I'm not alone. And to know it will be hard at firdt but if I stick with it it will be worth it! Thank you!
 

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Hi everyone, I adopted my first cat 6 weeks ago and this thread really helped me find comfort during my anxiety. I'm a social worker/therapist and I was feeling really stuck! I wanted to share some tips and tricks that helped me overcome the first few days/weeks of adopting Cleo:
- the stress gummies from Olly really helped. I already take a daily anti-anxiety but the gummies helped take the edge off a bit. I took them every morning and I would take melatonin at night.
- eating healthy, very low sugar and no caffeine. If I had no appetite then I would snack on crackers or raw vegetables just to get something in my stomach
- I have certain "anxiety movies" that I watch to help me calm down, such as Inside Out and The Office. Really anything works, it's just to get your mind off what's going on.
- for all my pent-up adrenaline I would take walks around my neighborhood to give myself a break from my cat and get some fresh air during quarantine
- I know not everyone has this option, but going to work for a few days a week helped us establish some routine, especially when I go back to work full time.
- I worked really hard to establish a routine from day 1. Playtime in the morning and evening and not during the day to mimic my work schedule (she naps during that time anyways). I have a little nighttime ritual of turning off the lights, shutting the windows, turning off the TV, etc to show her that it's time for me to go into my room. Even if I don't sleep I try to do this little routine at the same time each night. If she wants to keep playing that's fine, she just needs to know that I am unavailable. Her yowling during this time has decreased, sometimes I use the "stop that" spray when it's incessant (purple can from Petco)
- putting all her super loud toys away at night (I live in a 1 bedroom so there's no escaping loud cat noises)
- I bought a timed feeder ($70 on Amazon but worth it) and recently found that setting the timer to go off at 8pm, 1:30am, and 6am really helps keep her full through the night and calmer! Then by the time I'm home from work she's starving and ready for playtime.

Thank you to everyone before me for all the advice and helpful words!!! It helped sooo much on the second or third day when I was seriously considering returning her. I knew that wasn't the right decision but I was so stuck and confused. I hope this list helps someone!! It gets better!!
 

game misconduct

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Hi everyone,

I adopted a cat from a local rescue organization on Saturday (today is Thursday) - her name is Jane and she's a gorgeous 1 year and three months old white kitty with brown markings. Adopting a cat is something I've been thinking about quite a bit for the past few months, as I started graduate school for library science this fall. I'm moving into my own place in a little under two weeks, and I thought that a good way to help combat potential loneliness would be to adopt a cat.

So far she has been a sweetheart - she was very scared when I picked her up from the shelter, but she's adjusted to my bedroom remarkably well (one of my roommates is allergic, so I'm keeping her in my room for now, which I feel a little bad about). She loves to cuddle and be petted, and she's been very playful so far - she zooms around the room quite a bit at night. She hasn't scratched any of my furniture, just the rug (instead of the scratcher I got her, so I might exchange that and try some different options in the hopes she'll like those better), and she's been using the litter box without any accidents. Overall a really sweet cat!

Here's where I want some advice, though. Logically I knew that adopting a cat is a big responsibility and I was mentally prepared for that upon adopting her - but I'm not sure I was prepared for anxiety I would feel after adopting her. Is this a normal experience? I had cats when I was a kid and I've always had dogs, but this is the first time I've ever owned a pet by myself. I'm so embarrassed about this, but on Sunday and Tuesday nights I had mini anxiety/panic attacks thinking about it and couldn't stop crying - I kept thinking, "I should have gotten an older cat, maybe I should have gotten a cat that was declawed" (I'm definitely not going to declaw her though!!), "maybe this was a mistake." She's been so good and I've really enjoyed playing with her and cuddling with her, but I'm starting to feel cooped up with her in my bedroom and her zooming around at night has really cut down on my ability to sleep, so maybe that's part of it? Even though I knew adopting a younger cat would be a really large commitment (potentially 15-20 years), I don't think it hit me how real that is until I adopted her.

I don't know, I'm feeling unreasonably stressed about it and about if she's okay when I'm gone, etc. I'm just worried that I'll come to regret adopting her, which I'd feel terrible about because she's been pretty sweet so far. I haven't been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder or seen a therapist or anything but I've been pretty stressed this semester (broke up with my boyfriend of 2.5 years, started grad school, moved to a new city, etc.) and I didn't expect that I would react this way at all to adopting a cat.

I feel very embarrassed about how I'm reacting given she's been great so far, but can anyone give me any advice or insight? I'm afraid that maybe I am not actually ready for this large of a commitment and that I won't be able to handle these kinds of commitments in the future!!

Thanks, everyone, for helping a newbie cat owner out.

Karlyn
congrats on getting into grad school my girlfriend is one semester from getting her doctorate in social workjust remember you can do it and theres plenty of people who believe in you and what you can do
 

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Like many others, I found this thread while googling something along the lines of "new kitten is causing me anxiety," and I made this account to say how helpful this thread was for me. I got my 9 week baby fluff ball Luna three days ago, and while she is adorable and doing relatively well overall for a kitten, I've found myself experiencing a ton of anxiety ever since I picked her up and wondering whether I made the right decision. My family had dogs growing up and I did a lot of resdoesn't get sickearch before deciding to get a cat, but the reality of taking care of my first pet on my own is just something I don't think I could fully comprehend until I actually did it.

I don't tend to experience a lot of day to day anxiety (and when I do I'm able to manage fairly well), but I do tend to get a lot of anxiety over major life changes so I guess this issue shouldn't be too much of a surprise. I've lived on my own for a few years now and I live a pretty low-key life at home (a lot of reading, watching Netflix, playing computer games, etc.), and the reality of having another creature in my space who is sometimes bursting with energy (although cute and tiny) is just harder to adjust to than I expected. I also find myself worrying constantly about taking care of her, making sure she's eating/drinking enough, what if she gets sick, what if she's not happy here, etc. Obviously all good things to worry about to an extent, but right now I think I'm kind of in that new parent phase where I'm overworrying about anything and everything.

I know things will get better with time - we've only been together for a few days and we'll both learn to adapt to each other and get used to a new routine together. She'll grow out of her kitten phase and likely mellow out at least somewhat with time. I think it will be great for me to have a little companion in the long run, I just need some time to adjust and stop worrying about every potential scenario that could go wrong. While I know all of that logically, the anxiety is still weighing on me heavily. This thread was incredibly helpful for me to validate that others have gone through the exact same thing, and it does indeed get better! I think I'll probably be feeling much better about things even just a week or two from now - hopefully I'll be able to come back soon and share how much my outlook on everything has improved with my wonderful new roommate!!

And thank you for your list Claire - I'm definitely going to try to implement some of these items! I think working from home due to the pandemic is part of what's making this difficult on me. I figured that adopting during this time would be good for her transition and would help be a bit of a distraction for me from everything else going on, but I think it's really just served to amplify my anxiety because I have so much time to sit and ruminate on things, and I'm with her essentially all day every day. I've been trying to give myself little breaks where I put her in her safe room and take a walk or something which has helped, but I'm looking forward to a time where I'm back at work more and we'll have a bit more of an established routine!
 

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hi, i realize this thread is quite old so i may not get a response but i thought it wouldn’t hurt to kinda rant a little. I’m 17, and i just adopted a cat yesterday, she’s around a year old and she’s super sweet but i just ?? don’t like her very much. I’ve been diagnosed with anxiety but somehow my anxiety surrounding the adoption was still surprising.
for starters, we set her up in my room - litter box, food, water, all in my room which i’m starting to see as a mistake. I’ve moved her litter box to the empty room that’s right across from mine which is much much better. i’d like her to sleep in that room but i’m worried she’ll freak out if i’m not there? i’ve put toys and water in there but i’m still worried.
second, she won’t eat at all, she’s barely drinking water, and i’m not sure what to do?
I’d like to let her explore the house but we have a dog and they haven’t met yet which is the main thing i’m worrying about. i’m sure they’ll be friends but i don’t know how to make that happen.
finally, i had existing plans that i cannot cancel, i live with my parents who are more than happy to feed and play with her while i’m gone (for about a day) but i’m still worried me leaving so soon after she was adopted will stress her out.

i love her a lot i really do, but i feel like i can’t leave her alone whatsoever or she’ll die and i’m not sure if that’s normal. she seems to like me, she seeks me out for pets and to play but she’s very very scared and i feel like i’m doing everything wrong, especially because she won’t eat.

i apologize for the word vomit, i’m not sure if anyone will see this but i appreciate the platform to voice my concerns!
 

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First of all, try to relax and take a long slow breathe...... There is no reason at all that you have to instantly fall in love with a new pet. That just doesn't happen, you have to get to know her,her personality, where she fits in with your life. Cats are independent creatures, although she is really scared right now because cats absolutely hate change and she has been through a lot, she will calm down , start eating and drinking, and start paying you more attention. She will be fine alone for a day, leave food and water and have someone check in on her. New cats usually hide and are really scared for at least a week, maybe two,they usually come out at night to eat and explore while they are new. She may even hiss at you if you pay her too much attention, she is that preoccupied. Right now see if you can get her to eat. Offer her some wet food, like Friskies shredded turkey and cheese, or even that pouched food in chicken or turkey, cats really like that. Leave dry out for her at night. Do not introduce her to your dog yet. She has to gain a little confidence first. Make sure your dog is restrained or on a leash at first so it doesnt get scratched by going up to her. Most of all just get to know each other. Make sure she can't escape or get stuck somewhere, and everything will be fine. We are here for you any time you need advise.If you have anxiety she can be a real friend. We'll help you anytime you need to talk, you are young and just need a little help in the responsibility of having a cat. No one has experience with child rearing either, but somehow we all get through it. You just need time. Try not to think about tomorrows and what ifs, just live in the present like cats do and take one day at a time. 99% of what we worry about NEVER comes true!
 

di and bob

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One more thing,its entirely normal for a cat not to eat the first day or two. Leave so.e food out at night near where she is , especially some dry, I bet she will start eating....
 

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Thank you for this thread! I too am having negative feelings that I did not expect to have after adopting a new cat 3 days ago. He is having a really hard time and I'm realizing how naive I was because my old cat adjusted right away.

To clarify I only have the new cat now - my previous cat died about 2 weeks ago of what the vet believes was heart failure caused by a blood clot. It was horrible to witness... I took him to emergency right away but he died on the way. He was only 6 and apparently healthy so it was very traumatic.

Anyway I had such a close relationship with my previous cat that I felt a strong pull to get another cat sooner rather than later. Not to replace him, but I love cats and have so much love to give, I thought why wait? But now I am wondering if I made a huge mistake.

My new little guy was surrendered by his previous owner so in the last couple weeks he has been bounced around between the rescue organization, foster care and an animal hospital (he only just got neutered last week at 1 year 4 months).

Once I brought him home I thought all was good because he's very sweet, no aggression or hiding, and after 24 hours with me he started eating and using the litterbox. But then last night right in front of me he squatted down in my closet and went pee in my shoe! Right after that he walked over to my dresser and did a big loose poop!

So obviously he is stressed, he had diarrhea again today although thankfully he did use the box. (I put a new litterbox with Dr. Elsey's Attract litter over the place he went and used enzyme cleaner to hopefully remove the smell.) I also found some tiny tufts of hair he must have pulled out from stress, although he doesn't seem to be grooming well because there are some little drips from his bum on my duvet.

Do most cats get over this type of behaviour? I'm so anxious and exhausted, like I have to constantly keep an eye on him to make sure he's using the box and not soiling the carpet or my things. I've been keeping him in my bedroom as his "safe room" and I dread introducing him to the entire house. All of this is making me miss my old cat even more and I feel guilty for thinking about surrendering him. Help!
 

di and bob

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Yes, with guidance, and doing exactly what you are doing, using scent attract and cleaning with enzyme cat urine remover, almost all cats 'get over' this. Especially new ones. He was only neutered a short while ago, and since it takes at least a month for the hormones to leave his body, He is most likely marking what he perceives is his new territory. Your shoes mean he loves you and is marking you as his. Of course, he is stressed, he has been bounced around and hurt with his surgery, so is very confused right now and scared. When cats don't use the litter box, confining them to a small room until they do is a good idea. Definitely have a litter box elsewhere too, for sure in the beginning so he doesn't have to hunt. Keep your clothes picked up and closets shut for now. The change in his surroundings, his surgery, a change of diet, and his sensing of your stress is all leading to his diarrhea. If you are feeling yourself get stressed, lock him in a small room for a while so you don't have to worry about him going somewhere. Then let him out when you can watch him. Praise him when he uses the box and give him a treat, he will soon associate a treat with using the box.
It is perfectly normal to have these feelings. You are still grieving for your other little one. Let this new little one be a distraction for your grief, it really does help. See him as a challenge, rather than something to stress about. It WILL happen, these things just take time, one day at a time.......
 

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Hi,
Like others here- I’m having a hard time adjusting to what appears to be an almost perfect cat. We are newlyweds and we adopted him on 1/29 and he immediately jumped into the swing of things. He immediately used his litter box, was eating and drinking normally and even cuddled us. At night he would meow and roam around the house- which kind of drove me crazy but then he was settle down and relax until the next round of meowing. He would try to scratch the furniture a few times but we would tell him “no” and put up sticky tape and directed him to his cat tree. He’s 5 and a big boy, almost 17lbs! I fell in love with his sweetness and fluffiness at the shelter and my husband agreed to bring him home.

I have horrible diagnosed OCD. And lately this life change has been making me have an anxiety attack almost every day. I want to cry almost every day. I’m concerned about contamination- I discovered flea dirt on him but has no sign of fleas. I’m anxious to go to bed because of his meowing, honestly I’m just anxious to be home when it used to bring me such comfort. Today I promised myself I would at least stick it out for a month- it’s only fair to me, my husband and most importantly the cat.

I have had a cat growing up, she died around 5 years ago at 19 years. I loved her and she was my everything until I met my husband. I’m not new to cats and how they can be and neither is my husband who also grew up with cats. I was bugging my husband for us to get a fur baby of our own. He finally relented and knew it would make me happy. My husband loves him, feels absolutely no stress with this kitty, but for some reason I do. It just breaks my heart to feel this way, because he is such a chill and lovely kitty.

Part of my concern is we like to travel often and I’m nervous to leave him at the house and ask people to stop by. I’m scared he will claw up the furniture while we are gone- or pee places or get lonely. My house is my safe place and has been throughout the pandemic, and I am so particular about it. We used to be able to travel anytime we wanted and now we have to make sure he is taken care of first. I want to board him when we are gone for so long, but my husband thinks that’s very unnecessary. I feel so selfish typing this, I really do.

I just imagine my life without the cat and I love it so much more, to have the freedom to go wherever and do whatever we wanted. I just need some sense talked into me. I would feel horrible giving him up but I also know I would be able to get through that pain.
But as I type this and look over at him sleeping in his cat tree- it makes me cry because he doesn’t deserve to make me feel this way.

I’m just not sure what to do. I need some serious help. I know tomorrow will be the first week and that is still a short amount of time, but right now I feel so unhappy.
 

di and bob

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You are not alone at all! Anytime you get a commitment like this it is scary. As with any relationship it takes time to develop. Try not to worry right now, I know this is hard, but almost 99% of what we worry about DOES NOT COME TRUE! Think about it. Get a large corrugated card board scratcher at Walmart and he will use that. Cats love them. A cat is really easier to leave at home, they are independent. Just have a friend or relative stop by for longer trips. We are here to help you! You are saving a life and he will love you for that. Try to enjoy having him as a friend and companion for now, talk to him. He will capture your heart before you know it. For now just get into a routine of care and play. Bonding takes time, one day at a time....
 

nuit

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Yes, with guidance, and doing exactly what you are doing, using scent attract and cleaning with enzyme cat urine remover, almost all cats 'get over' this. Especially new ones. He was only neutered a short while ago, and since it takes at least a month for the hormones to leave his body, He is most likely marking what he perceives is his new territory. Your shoes mean he loves you and is marking you as his. Of course, he is stressed, he has been bounced around and hurt with his surgery, so is very confused right now and scared. When cats don't use the litter box, confining them to a small room until they do is a good idea. Definitely have a litter box elsewhere too, for sure in the beginning so he doesn't have to hunt. Keep your clothes picked up and closets shut for now. The change in his surroundings, his surgery, a change of diet, and his sensing of your stress is all leading to his diarrhea. If you are feeling yourself get stressed, lock him in a small room for a while so you don't have to worry about him going somewhere. Then let him out when you can watch him. Praise him when he uses the box and give him a treat, he will soon associate a treat with using the box.
It is perfectly normal to have these feelings. You are still grieving for your other little one. Let this new little one be a distraction for your grief, it really does help. See him as a challenge, rather than something to stress about. It WILL happen, these things just take time, one day at a time.......
Thank you so much. That makes sense about the hormones and marking my shoes!

We had another setback as he somehow managed to lick off the stitches from his neutering surgery causing a bleeding ulceration in his scrotum. So he had to go back and have a 2nd surgery to close it up! Not only that but poor guy had to endure 2 hours in the car again and 2 nights away from home (one at the vet's, one at the foster's). And now he has to wear the cone of shame for 2 weeks!

Anyway in the 3 days he's been back he has been using the litterbox properly - and I'm feeling calmer this time which he can probably sense.

Only issue now is the diarrhea is starting to return again! Really soft poops 2-3 times a day. The vet ruled out it being a health issue, and said it was either stress or diet. I've been feeding him the exact food he had in foster care where he was apparently pooping normally. (grain free dry) So I'm guessing it's stress maybe from having to wear the cone? (Or else he just doesn't like me, haha!)

Is there anything else I can do or just wait it out?
 

di and bob

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Make sure he gallery of water. Anesthesia causes diarrhea too. I'm sure it's stress. Poor little boy!. He'll come around, he just needs to get over all this and he'll be fine. It just takes time....
 
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