Cat intros at a standstill

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acari

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Not so good for us humans who are not as fast in getting our hands away. (I think our cats must think we are the slowest creatures on earth, especially when getting their food ready, playing, typing, dressing, etc)
Yes, when we're prepping breakfast or dinner, the way they both whine/complain, you would think that we'd been starving them and that the prep is taking us ten years, instead of just a minute or two.
I actually don't use cat nip with my cats, because I was always afraid that it would hype them up too much while playing, and since they get running, chasing, and wrestling, then I figured that they don't really need anything added to get to that amped up stage.
I've read that you're not really supposed to give them catnip that often, so we put those toys away and give them once in a while, sort of like a "treat". There are so many toys that have catnip inside though! I had a hard time last time I made a bunch of toy purchases, finding ones that didn't include catnip.
If there were a way in which you could do it, with having control over K from charging, running, or pouncing on T...then I'd say okay.
But I do think it's still too soon, yet you're very good in your cat observations, so if you think that T would be able to handle K's actions, and have plenty of escape routes, or some sort of plan, as Calicosrspecial mentioned, then it might go okay.

Opening up the gate more is what I would do....(I know...total broken record...constantly on repeat....time to unplug cat nap.
No, you're both right, we should probably wait. If we've gone this long being patient we shouldn't rush it. It is really dragging us down in our day-to-day life though, having to deal with the gate and all, and so since we saw some visible progress (K playing with T) we were like, LET'S GO!!
But we still see that K gets a bit negative, and while it's not always indicative of aggression, her ears go back sometimes (very briefly though). So we can wait until we don't see that before thinking of trying anything else.

So we placed a book under each side of the gate to open up the space underneath for paws (any more than that and I think T could shimmy out, she can get surprisingly flat, like a puddle). We're not sure how to open up more space in other gate configurations but for now we're going to see if this extra paw space leads to anything.

T sticks her paws out but K ignores her, which I would consider a neutral or positive thing. Because if K was feeling aggressive then wouldn't she pounce on T's vulnerable paws?

IMG_20200121_215533.jpg

Don't worry if either cat jumps the gate. Just have a towel, or light bed sheet/blanket, pillow,...handy if you have to block line of sight, or break up some extremely rough cat play.
Well, my worry is that they'll do it when I'm not around, usually I'm at my computer during the day for work and not always within sight. And of course, if they've done it once, they'll just keep doing it, and then I don't know what we would do!
Best not to "force' attention on a cat.
C calicosrspecial We try to stay within their boundaries, but since they're still young (T especially) we want them to get used to being handled and touched, and hopefully enjoy it.
Anyway, with K since she doesn't seem to react to our voices at the gate, if we don't want to give a treat, the only thing left is to pet her. It's more of a neutral distraction than a positive, that's all.

-----

Anyway, as I showed in the picture above, they now have some paw room at the bottom of the gate, and T sticks her paws out often. But K hasn't gone for them at all. Let me know if you have any interpretation of this!
 

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Yes, when we're prepping breakfast or dinner, the way they both whine/complain, you would think that we'd been starving them and that the prep is taking us ten years, instead of just a minute or two.
Exactly. My cats will try to rush me along, with the female cat meowing, and the male cat walking back and forth. I think if my kitchen were a 'cat diner/food place' that both my cats would leave extremely negative reviews for my waitress abilities. I add some warm water to their wet pate foods, and have to sort of mush it up to blend it, which apparently takes all but a few minutes too long for them.
Lol. Yeah, they do act like it's taking 'ten years', and they're starving. :tongue: :crazy:
No, you're both right, we should probably wait. If we've gone this long being patient we shouldn't rush it. It is really dragging us down in our day-to-day life though, having to deal with the gate and all, and so since we saw some visible progress (K playing with T) we were like, LET'S GO!!
But we still see that K gets a bit negative, and while it's not always indicative of aggression, her ears go back sometimes (very briefly though). So we can wait until we don't see that before thinking of trying anything else.

So we placed a book under each side of the gate to open up the space underneath for paws (any more than that and I think T could shimmy out, she can get surprisingly flat, like a puddle). We're not sure how to open up more space in other gate configurations but for now we're going to see if this extra paw space leads to anything.
Yeah, I wanted to write up another post, before you posted this one, because I kind of felt bad for yesterday.
I'm not apologizing for the advice I gave, but maybe in the way I said it. I explain below:

It's like you're both super excited for T and K to meet, and then we come along and 'rain on the parade'.
We tell you to 'hold the horses', 'lean on the brakes' and 'slow down'. Ah, these saying can be endless.
I know we didn't intentionally do it, and we both want what is best for these cat-intros, but I think I did forget how exciting and joyful cat introductions are. :)

(It's like you both are planning a parade, and we are like the 'parade police' and tell you that the traffic or weather will not work out, so you have to change your plans. Or like you're planning the perfect picnic, and we "ants" come along and slightly ruin it. Unless you're like the t.v. show "the Munsters" where they plan their picnic but want to bring along their own 'ants' to make their picnic better. I'm digressing now, and you'd only get that reference if you've seen the show. :blush: :paperbag: )

Anyhow, I don't want to be that person to ruin your excitement and joy. Happiness, even, that the cats are getting along, and happy excitement and anticipation for the future meeting. I think I forgot how truly great that feels, and how the anticipation is wonderful and exciting. So I hope that you both have not lost any of that.

"(any more than that and I think T could shimmy out, she can get surprisingly flat, like a puddle)"
(Because I watched "Terminator: Dark Fate" over the weekend,...I now have this visual of your cat T becoming an actual 'Terminator cat', and morphing into that dark puddle. :jawdrop: :eek2: And yeah, T can be short for Terminator, now. yikes. :cringe: I better get this scene out of my head. :blush: I'm not sure who K would be in that movie.) :cool2: :cloudy::biggrin:
T sticks her paws out but K ignores her, which I would consider a neutral or positive thing. Because if K was feeling aggressive then wouldn't she pounce on T's vulnerable paws?
IMG_20200121_215533.jpg
Yes, I totally agree. If K were feeling aggressive then she would have totally pounced on T's paws, already.
Anyway, as I showed in the picture above, they now have some paw room at the bottom of the gate, and T sticks her paws out often. But K hasn't gone for them at all. Let me know if you have any interpretation of this!
To me it looks like K is looking away, and kind of looks sleepy.
It would be great if K decides to lay on her side and relax, but she is within 3-4 feet, and totally unexpected that K does not pounce on the paws. I'm hoping that K will walk over and try to sniff them, or continue with some more play.

The way T looks so relaxed is also amazing. Huh. I did not expect this at all.
This is exactly what you want to happen.
Familiarity, no fear, no aggression....only play. :thumbsup:

Update us, on when K does go to the gate, and what she does then.
I think cats never cease to amaze me. They all have their own time-schedules.
All the best vibes in things progressing this way, acari. You both and your cats are amazing. :cloud9: :)
 
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acari

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Yeah, I wanted to write up another post, before you posted this one, because I kind of felt bad for yesterday.
I'm not apologizing for the advice I gave, but maybe in the way I said it.
Anyhow, I don't want to be that person to ruin your excitement and joy. Happiness, even, that the cats are getting along, and happy excitement and anticipation for the future meeting. I think I forgot how truly great that feels, and how the anticipation is wonderful and exciting. So I hope that you both have not lost any of that.
What! No need for any apology at all! We were just too excited and it's good to have someone tell us to calm down. We definitely CANNOT wait until they are free to roam together without issues and we're looking forward to it - with your help!
I'm hoping that K will walk over and try to sniff them, or continue with some more play.
They have been doing some tentative nose-to-nose sniffing, but it usually gives way to pawing. If T puts her paws up and K doesn't paw at them, K will sniff them briefly (then it usually gives way to pawing).
I think K never puts her paws up like T, so T doesn't have the opportunity to sniff.

-----

I took some videos tonight for you guys, K seemed more agitated than she has been the past few days (just so you have context). And they didn't really "play" today like we saw before (running, hiding, pouncing, etc.). But I figured any videos would be helpful. The videos are not spread over a very long period of time, so anytime T runs away, she basically came back shortly after (but not immediately, tonight - she's been a bit more subdued in general today).

cat nap cat nap , we set up the gate so there's a sliver of space on the right side (left side is more difficult) but they didn't really use it. T stuck her paws through at first but K wasn't there, and then K nosed it a bit but T wasn't there. But we'll keep doing that next time too.

(Sorry for all of the noise in the background, we're watching a basketball game.)

1. I thought they might play, but K just walked away - I'm including it so you can see what she's like when she's walking away. And T looks like she wants to play, to me, following K with her eyes and body.



2. At around 20-21 seconds you can hear K make what I call a "worried" noise.
This interaction felt fine to me. K's not playful (to me) but T seems to be interested?



3. This happened right after the previous video, I just cut it off in case T was walking away. Not much happens here either, though you can see K react slightly to T reaching her paw out.



4. T takes her chances, then based on K's reaction she nopes out of there. I asked my partner to comfort T in case she was feeling badly (since she walked away with her tail down) but he told me T didn't care/was fine.



5. Normally around 15 seconds, I would be talking to K, but I wanted to see what would happen (and show you their interaction without our interference). So in my opinion, K is kind of anxious - or at least not very positive here. But not overtly negative either, until the very end. At around 1:02, I don't like that. But I have no idea where it falls on an aggression scale of 1 - 10. And T runs away, which is understandable to me, because K stuck her whole arm through for that one.
I guess this is a good example of us still needing to build T's confidence.
I'd like to know your thoughts on the sounds K is making, because I'm not really sure what they mean. Don't cats only meow to talk to humans and not other cats? Or are these sounds not really meows?



6. Nothing much happens here, I think I took this as an example for what K looks like when she's not engaging but just watching T. And at the end I'm trying to show more of her so you can see her body language, but I wasn't sitting in a good position.
At 47 seconds K does a weird little front hop, I don't know what that was about.
And at the very end of this clip, you can see K nosing at the gap we left on the side.



7 (last one). Another pawing from K that I don't like that caused T to run away. I also don't know where this falls on the aggression scale but it doesn't seem horrible, just not what we want. And her body language isn't horrible either, but I guess the tail says something, since it's moving a bit fast?



After this, I was mildly scolding K for being mean (just talking to her, like "why are you a meanie-mean face bully") and she decided she had enough of the gate and T, so she walked away. We then played (or, I tried to, with K) with each of them on their respective side of the gate.

K started asking for food, which I didn't give her (not quite time yet, she ate at the beginning of this gate session), so she settled into her bed. I'll include a GIF of her kneading:



T, like I said, has been pretty subdued today, we're going to keep an eye on her but maybe it's just that she tired herself out playing so much yesterday. In fact, she's sleeping upstairs right now even though the gate is up at the bottom of the stairs, which is unusual.
 

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What! No need for any apology at all! We were just too excited and it's good to have someone tell us to calm down. We definitely CANNOT wait until they are free to roam together without issues and we're looking forward to it - with your help!
Whew! Okay, I'm glad. Though I hope I didn't actually say or convey the meaning of, "calm down"...that sounds a tad worse. :lol::fear::blush:
But I know what you mean, and I'm glad that you know what my intentions and meaning were, now. :)
The best part is that you both have not lost an ounce of your enthusiasm, fun and joy. :biggrin:
(I'm actually getting excited myself. It's really hard not to. :cool2::cloud9::clover:)
They have been doing some tentative nose-to-nose sniffing, but it usually gives way to pawing. If T puts her paws up and K doesn't paw at them, K will sniff them briefly (then it usually gives way to pawing).
I think K never puts her paws up like T,
so T doesn't have the opportunity to sniff.
That's alright, since I think that, as Calicosrspecial mentioned,...it's actually K that needs to get over her insecurity, and so if she sniffs T's paws, she will get more used to the scents that T gives off. Any sniffing or touching is good. At the same time, T is still building confidence, too.
I took some videos tonight for you guys, K seemed more agitated than she has been the past few days (just so you have context). And they didn't really "play" today like we saw before (running, hiding, pouncing, etc.). But I figured any videos would be helpful. The videos are not spread over a very long period of time, so anytime T runs away, she basically came back shortly after (but not immediately, tonight - she's been a bit more subdued in general today).

cat nap cat nap , we set up the gate so there's a sliver of space on the right side (left side is more difficult) but they didn't really use it. T stuck her paws through at first but K wasn't there, and then K nosed it a bit but T wasn't there. But we'll keep doing that next time too.

(Sorry for all of the noise in the background, we're watching a basketball game.)
The videos look fantastic to me.
I'm not seeing an agitated looking K, (no where near how she looked in the 'classical music video 6.')
It looks like excellent play, and like you said, a lot less intensity and speed in pawing. Total great movements from both cats, and a lot of playful engagement. It's great to see T flopped out, and coming back.

It's also okay if they didn't use the 'sliver of space to the right' when both cats were there.
Because they did see it, mark it, and use it individually, it just tells me that they are open to approaching something different, and maybe more accepting of changes.

I'll comment on the videos in my next post.
 

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1. I thought they might play, but K just walked away - I'm including it so you can see what she's like when she's walking away. And T looks like she wants to play, to me, following K with her eyes and body.
Great interaction. T does look like she wants to play. K turns and walks calmly away.
2. At around 20-21 seconds you can hear K make what I call a "worried" noise.
This interaction felt fine to me. K's not playful (to me) but T seems to be interested?
Another cute video. K puts her paw through the gate, and does look playful to me. You're right, T is definitely interested.
The noise does not sound worried...more like a 'mumble-grumble-meow'.
3. This happened right after the previous video, I just cut it off in case T was walking away. Not much happens here either, though you can see K react slightly to T reaching her paw out.
Great reaction from K at the 0.10 mark, she does not mind T's paw at all, and does not over-react.
At the 0.18 mark...K seems more interested in the basketball game.
4. T takes her chances, then based on K's reaction she nopes out of there. I asked my partner to comfort T in case she was feeling badly (since she walked away with her tail down) but he told me T didn't care/was fine.
Haha. Yeah, why would K want her basketball viewing to be interrupted by T.
T has to learn to wait for a commercial break.
That looked pretty tame and adorable to me.
5. Normally around 15 seconds, I would be talking to K, but I wanted to see what would happen (and show you their interaction without our interference). So in my opinion, K is kind of anxious - or at least not very positive here. But not overtly negative either, until the very end. At around 1:02, I don't like that. But I have no idea where it falls on an aggression scale of 1 - 10. And T runs away, which is understandable to me, because K stuck her whole arm through for that one.
I guess this is a good example of us still needing to build T's confidence.
I'd like to know your thoughts on the sounds K is making, because I'm not really sure what they mean. Don't cats only meow to talk to humans and not other cats? Or are these sounds not really meows?
No, I actually don't think that was aggression at all.
I would call it play. I think what scared T is that the gate vibrated against the wood on the other side, and actually T first hits the gate at the 1.01 mark and scares herself. T probably felt vibration or noise. (I might be wrong, but that's what it looks like to me. slow the video down, to see who hits first.)
You're right about K putting her whole paw through, as well, but I think T was already turned and running at this part.
T was evening out the pawing in this one. (you might owe K an apology for blaming her for this one. ha.)

As far as the sounds that K is making, it's just her way of communicating.
I've never read that cats only meow at humans, so I'm not sure about this.
I thought that cats use all sorts of vocal communication sounds: from meows, to mumbles, trills, chirps, grrs, growls, murmurs, squeaks etc.
Meows can be any pitch, so I'm not really sure what you are hearing.
I thought T was making some of those sounds.
6. Nothing much happens here, I think I took this as an example for what K looks like when she's not engaging but just watching T. And at the end I'm trying to show more of her so you can see her body language, but I wasn't sitting in a good position.
At 47 seconds K does a weird little front hop, I don't know what that was about.
And at the very end of this clip, you can see K nosing at the gap we left on the side.
I think this video 13, has to be my favorite. T does some sort of strange paw moves, 0.42 mark, like she's playing a game of shells, on the black table. K does that weird little front hop,0.48 mark, like you said. That hop is either: a) K looking at whatever she thinks T left for her, b) thinking about jumping up on the table but in mid-thought changing her mind, c) doing some sort of stretch which seems good, or d) practicing her basketball 'free throw shot', since her team must be losing. :crackup:

Then K walks over to the right side opening, and wonders how she can break-in to see the game.
K does not think it is fair that T gets 'court-side seats' and has no interest in the game, while she has to watch from way back in the bleachers. This is so unfair, in K's mind. :wink:
7 (last one). Another pawing from K that I don't like that caused T to run away. I also don't know where this falls on the aggression scale but it doesn't seem horrible, just not what we want. And her body language isn't horrible either, but I guess the tail says something, since it's moving a bit fast?
This is the only one where I think that K's pawing is aggressive at the 0.06 mark.
I'd rate it a 7 of 10, and yes the tail is a bit agitated.
After this, I was mildly scolding K for being mean (just talking to her, like "why are you a meanie-mean face bully") and she decided she had enough of the gate and T, so she walked away. We then played (or, I tried to, with K) with each of them on their respective side of the gate.

K started asking for food, which I didn't give her (not quite time yet, she ate at the beginning of this gate session), so she settled into her bed. I'll include a GIF of her kneading:
Well, K was not that upset if she ends the time with that gorgeous kneading.
I think she must have been like 'whatever' when she walked away from the gate. :blush:
It's still great that K walks away.

If you can teach her to do that kneading on your back or legs, with jeans on, then you'll realize that it's a wonderful massage.
As my friend calls it...a cat pawsage. You just have to make sure that your cats can retract their claws. My female cat sometimes forgets to, and yikes, that's not relaxing at all.
If K purrs while doing it, even better. :)
 

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"It is really dragging us down in our day-to-day life though, having to deal with the gate and all, and so since we saw some visible progress (K playing with T) we were like, LET'S GO!!" - I know, it is frustrating. But moving too fast can possibly elongate the process. It is tricky. That is why I ask the questions about how you are feeling. Hang in there, once they are intro'd it will be well worth it.

"But we still see that K gets a bit negative, and while it's not always indicative of aggression, her ears go back sometimes (very briefly though). So we can wait until we don't see that before thinking of trying anything else." - I would like to see this diminish or end ideally.

"We try to stay within their boundaries, but since they're still young (T especially) we want them to get used to being handled and touched, and hopefully enjoy it." - Yes, as long as it is viewed as positive it is good. If a cat is saying "don't touch me" then you just have to build more of a bond and trust and let them rub then headbutt etc and then stick your hand out and let them rub and move forward from there. It is just a process. I do it with older ferals all the time. If old ferals on the street can trust cats inside surely can.

"Anyway, as I showed in the picture above, they now have some paw room at the bottom of the gate, and T sticks her paws out often. But K hasn't gone for them at all. Let me know if you have any interpretation of this!" - I like that K doesn't react as she must not feel threatened and must be trusting more. I like that.

"They have been doing some tentative nose-to-nose sniffing, but it usually gives way to pawing. If T puts her paws up and K doesn't paw at them, K will sniff them briefly (then it usually gives way to pawing). I think K never puts her paws up like T, so T doesn't have the opportunity to sniff." - Nose to nose is another good sign. It is a process so some pawing is understandable. Again, they are building trust.

Video 1 - I love K's body language and that she walked away. Positive.

Video 2 - I like this a lot. K is really restrained. Body language looks good for both. And wow, they are REALLY ADORABLE!!! Positive.

Video 3 - Really positive. No negative reaction from K to T's pawing. There is more trust than I thought. I am starting to see why you think they may be ready.

Video 4 - Wow is T playful and how goo dis K's reaction to the pawing. There is more trust here again. I am really happy.

Video 5 - T looks really good, wanting to play. K is doing well. At the end there is a little step up but nothing worrying really. Overall, I think that video was absolutely fine. I really have no worry about it. Sure would I like the pawing at the end to be a little more restrained? Yes, But it is not that worrisome.

Video 6 - T so wants to play. T is trying so hard to be friends with K. K is really good here. And then K wants to join T. I think this video is pretty amazing. I think you are right, they are closer than I thought.

Video 7 7 - I don;t think that was so bad. Maybe a bit more forceful but doesn't seem that bad. T again is trying so hard. K is doing really well. They have definitely made progress!!

Video of kneading. - Awwwww, K is so adorable!!! That is a pretty happy cat!!

Overall, I REALLY like what I am seeing on the videos. I have definitely moved on when they can meet face to face. They are closer than I previously thought. I would like a little less of the pawing but overall I like the interactions, I liked the body language. I am really impressed with how far they have come!!
 
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acari

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Thank you both for your wonderful and thorough feedback on the videos!!

The noise does not sound worried...more like a 'mumble-grumble-meow'.
Oh, okay. We really need practice interpreting cat sounds!
I think what scared T is that the gate vibrated against the wood on the other side, and actually T first hits the gate at the 1.01 mark and scares herself. T probably felt vibration or noise. (I might be wrong, but that's what it looks like to me. slow the video down, to see who hits first.)
You're right about K putting her whole paw through, as well, but I think T was already turned and running at this part.
Eagle-eyes at it again. I rewatched carefully and think you're right, T scared herself at first. The wood table on the other side is new (we needed something heavy and tall to brace the gate but would still leave room on the "open" side), so they'll have to get used to it. At the end though, I think she was thinking about running away, and K reaching through sealed the deal. I bet if K hadn't done it, T would have come back.
I thought T was making some of those sounds.
In Video 5, T makes a sound when she flops over, farthest from the gate. But all other sounds are coming from K.
That hop is either: a) K looking at whatever she thinks T left for her, b) thinking about jumping up on the table but in mid-thought changing her mind, c) doing some sort of stretch which seems good, or d) practicing her basketball 'free throw shot', since her team must be losing. :crackup:
I'll go with D because that's so funny and appropriate! But in all seriousness I think B is what that was.
This is the only one where I think that K's pawing is aggressive at the 0.06 mark.
I'd rate it a 7 of 10, and yes the tail is a bit agitated.
A 7 out of 10 is quite high, isn't it? I guess it's good that it wasn't a prolonged reaction then, it was very short, and they were both "normal" again quite soon after.
You just have to make sure that your cats can retract their claws. My female cat sometimes forgets to, and yikes, that's not relaxing at all.
If K purrs while doing it, even better. :)
I didn't know that cats could knead and not have their claws out, I thought the claws had to be part of it. They don't get pushed out automatically with the kneading action?
I would be thrilled if 1. that's possible and 2. I could somehow train K to not use claws. Once in a blue moon when K is feeling REALLY affectionate she will hop up in our laps and knead away, which is a problem for me because her claws get through whatever pants I'm wearing, and it'll hurt and it'll itch (since I'm allergic).
I've mentioned it before but K doesn't purr. I've caught a whisper of a purr maybe three times, only when she is just waking up from a deep sleep, if my face is close to her face, and it only lasts a second or two. I'm really talking about a whisper, like, I'm not sure I wasn't imagining the sound.
T on the other hand has a really loud motor and it's almost always going. At first it was because she was scared, but now it's just something she does when she's happy.
"But we still see that K gets a bit negative, and while it's not always indicative of aggression, her ears go back sometimes (very briefly though). So we can wait until we don't see that before thinking of trying anything else." - I would like to see this diminish or end ideally.
Me too, and it's great that you suggested to wait before having them meet. I hadn't remembered this earlier. It didn't happen yesterday, which is great, but I'd like to go more days in a row without "negative" things happening.
Video 6 - T so wants to play. T is trying so hard to be friends with K.
She has tried so hard from the very beginning! I really have to appreciate that she has been patient and so loving.

-----

No update, but if anything interesting happens tonight I'll let you know. :)
 

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cat nap said:
The noise does not sound worried...more like a 'mumble-grumble-meow'.
Oh, okay. We really need practice interpreting cat sounds!
Ha. I probably wouldn't go by my 'non-scientific'... 'mumble-grumble-meow' description, in your learning to interpret cat sounds.:lol: :crackup::einstein:
But I'm not sure if I agree with some of those online articles, where they did say that 'meows' are only for humans. What??
Who makes these studies up, and what books are they trying to sell? Yes, in the one reference they said that 'feral cats meow less at each other', and therefore they concluded that cats do not meow at each other to communicate. But ferals are out there to survive, so of course they remain silent, and don't go around meowing to let every other being know their location.

Idk, I guess I'm skeptical when it comes to some info out there. Though some of it makes interesting reading.
My female cat meows and yawns at the same time, some mornings,...what's that supposed to tell me? Probably that I could have pressed the snooze button one more time, instead of getting up and feeding her, at that exact time. Or it's a clear signal that she needs more oxygen to wake up, to get her day going, so she can eventually go to sleep again.
Eagle-eyes at it again. I rewatched carefully and think you're right, T scared herself at first. The wood table on the other side is new (we needed something heavy and tall to brace the gate but would still leave room on the "open" side), so they'll have to get used to it. At the end though, I think she was thinking about running away, and K reaching through sealed the deal. I bet if K hadn't done it, T would have come back.
Yes, I figured that wood table type of stand was what you were using to brace the gate. It actually looks multipurpose, since it allows for a 'jungle-gym' or 'cat gym' type of set up, and T enjoyed going under and over it, and using it as a shield. I was just surprised that T hit first, and then ran. K did reach in quite far, but in another video K also reaches in but more softly. It happened so fast that the noise probably scared them both, ...but only T ran.:running:

It would be fun to see K running, and doing more of those K hops...those are totally only done by her. lol. K will now start a viral trend, and give out 'cat classes' on how to do those 'K hops'.
In Video 5, T makes a sound when she flops over, farthest from the gate. But all other sounds are coming from K.
This info changes how I see and hear the videos even more.

There is a part in that video 8, at the 0.07 mark where K makes a plaintive type of mew sound ..sort of like 'awwhh', which I had originally thought T was making, and later at 0.20 mark is where I thought that 'mumble-grumble-meow' sound happened...sort of like 'owrrr'.
Anyway, my whole point is that if K is the one making these different plaintive mew sounds, and using different vocals to communicate, then K, too, is trying to engage with T in different ways. The sounds are more inviting, plaintive, and softer,...versus growling, hissing or no sound at all and then just strike.
It's kind of cute, too, how T tilts her head, as in trying to listen or understand K.
A 7 out of 10 is quite high, isn't it? I guess it's good that it wasn't a prolonged reaction then, it was very short, and they were both "normal" again quite soon after.
Yeah, the only reason I gave it a 7 out of 10, is because K makes direct contact, with T's paw, and then hits the gate another 3 times.
Maybe I rated it too high, but the previous classical video 6 would have been rated a 9 out of 10, so again a bit high.
(Maybe I rate a bit too high, and should take a point off for the 'prolonged reaction, length, and return to normal' factors. I guess that would be more fair.)
I didn't know that cats could knead and not have their claws out, I thought the claws had to be part of it. They don't get pushed out automatically with the kneading action?
I would be thrilled if 1. that's possible and 2. I could somehow train K to not use claws. Once in a blue moon when K is feeling REALLY affectionate she will hop up in our laps and knead away, which is a problem for me because her claws get through whatever pants I'm wearing, and it'll hurt and it'll itch (since I'm allergic).
I've mentioned it before but K doesn't purr. I've caught a whisper of a purr maybe three times, only when she is just waking up from a deep sleep, if my face is close to her face, and it only lasts a second or two. I'm really talking about a whisper, like, I'm not sure I wasn't imagining the sound.
T on the other hand has a really loud motor and it's almost always going. At first it was because she was scared, but now it's just something she does when she's happy.
(Yeah, my Tripp is like that with purring. He's really loud and does it a lot. We also call him little motorboat. He does retract his claws while kneading, and sort of steps on his front paws back and forth. He's always been able to do this, though, so the only time I have to remind him to retract his claws, ...is if I start to play with him a bit rough, while he is belly up, and then he likes to grab my hand. I just gently tap his paw, and say "ah, ah, ah", and it seems to work. He will then try to hold my hand without claws.)

(My female cat does not purr as much either, but still does, just very quietly, and she tends not to want to retract her claws that much. She also likes to constantly lick. As in she will lick Tripp's ear, the dog's ear or face, human hands, and faces. Her tongue is like sandpaper, so it gets a bit too rough at times. )

The only thing you can really do is have a thick blanket/quilt on you then, if the cats decide they want to knead, since I am not sure if all cats can be taught to retract their claws, by softly touching the tops of their paws, or if it's just natural to them.
The way K looks in the GIF, she looks to be really enjoying that pink fabric blanket or cat bed. She looks like a total kitten there.
No update, but if anything interesting happens tonight I'll let you know. :)
Yeah, they are doing tremendously well.
If it went from video 6 to those videos last night....video 13, video 14 being a tad feisty,...then the direction is good.

Maybe K gets slightly more aggressive only when she gets tired.
(some humans get grumpy when tired, so maybe cats do to.)
 

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"Once in a blue moon when K is feeling REALLY affectionate she will hop up in our laps and knead away," - WOW, that is really good and shows her affection for you.

"I've mentioned it before but K doesn't purr. I've caught a whisper of a purr maybe three times, only when she is just waking up from a deep sleep, if my face is close to her face, and it only lasts a second or two. I'm really talking about a whisper, like, I'm not sure I wasn't imagining the sound." - Some cats are like that. Some just sound like heavy breathing. If she is doing it when you are face to face that is really positive.

"She has tried so hard from the very beginning! I really have to appreciate that she has been patient and so loving." - T's behavior/personality is going to be (and has been) very helpful in getting them intro'd.
 
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Yes, in the one reference they said that 'feral cats meow less at each other', and therefore they concluded that cats do not meow at each other to communicate. But ferals are out there to survive, so of course they remain silent, and don't go around meowing to let every other being know their location.
I like your summary because it's so straightforward. I wouldn't be surprised if it's not true, and your reasoning makes perfect sense.
My female cat meows and yawns at the same time, some mornings,...what's that supposed to tell me?
K does this a lot too (myawning?). I wonder if T has heard her doing it because T did it for the first time today too. It just sounds so funny, I love it.
The only thing you can really do is have a thick blanket/quilt on you then, if the cats decide they want to knead, since I am not sure if all cats can be taught to retract their claws, by softly touching the tops of their paws, or if it's just natural to them.
Yes, we have been trying to keep various thicker fabrics handy in different locations so that we can save our legs. We're not always successful.

-----

Last night we weren't able to do a kitchen/living room gate session, nothing out of the ordinary happened.

But K seems to be waiting for T sometimes, turkeying at the gate if T is playing or just elsewhere. However, when T appears, K will ignore her. 🤷‍♀️

Tonight, though...so they had a lot of running around and pawing before I thought to take video. The videos I'm going to show you don't include me interrupting them - but they started off more chill, then got progressively less so, and for the earlier interactions I was talking to K the whole time (but she was ignoring me). So the videos are of the later interactions.
However, I feel like things to note are that K always walks away quite normally and confidently, and if I've come over to get a closer look at what's happening, she'll brush up against me as she's leaving.
Both K and T repeatedly went back to the gate to each other to paw, though with T she also zoomed around a fair bit between interactions.
At the very end, my partner went to play with T and K went over to the gate to watch. I tried playing with K but she was entirely focused on the other side of the gate - either sounds T was making or the toy, or T herself, I couldn't tell.

You guys aren't going to like this but I feel like K might have had extra agitation because she wanted to use her litter box but was too distracted/worried about T's presence. You might recall that when we are doing a kitchen/living room session, K doesn't have access to her regular litter box (it's impossible to configure). She has been using the litter box without issue on the kitchen side but hasn't done it/hasn't needed to on the living room side.
She was on the living room side today, and was stepping into the box and leaving without using it throughout the gate time tonight, I really can't tell if she felt uncomfortable or if she just really wanted to play (?) or teach T a lesson.
Anyway, just throwing out some possible reasons for her being more rough today.

(Also, sorry for numbering the videos in the post but not matching the numbers of the videos in my album last time. I'll match them this time.)

15. This really looks like play to me. T runs away at the end but she was doing this sort of dashing away, dashing back, dashing past, thing the whole time.



16. This is only 5 seconds long. So T had dashed up the stairs and K was waiting, and I was trying to catch T running back down but still wasn't fast enough. Just to show K's reaction as T runs by, and how she acts after.



17. You can hear T running, and K reacts to it. Mostly this is about her reaction and then to show her body language walking away.



18. T dashes away, and I show K coming over. Then, she gets down into possible pouncing position, and you can hear her back claws digging into the carpet, but she doesn't wiggle. I was hoping they would play but T dashes away upstairs (which I didn't catch, because I have the reaction time of molasses), and K walks away when you hear T using a scratching pad upstairs (also new behavior).



19. K makes noises I really don't like here, but I don't know what you guys think (and I'm just so unfamiliar with cat sounds). I'm looking at her tail and I think it's kind of puffed out, which I also don't like. But T stays there and it seems like T thinks they're playing (bless her). Then, when K walks away, she looks alright, and brushes against my legs as she goes.



Again, after this is when my partner began playing with T (we use a toy to get her back into her room so we can take the gate down), and K was interested enough to go right back to the gate. There wasn't any lasting negativity and K ate her treats without issue right after this last video (I went over to give her some treats and talk to her).

I'm not sure how often I should be interrupting them. Talking at K from a distance doesn't seem to do anything, and if I'm close enough to give treats, then they both just wait for treats and don't interact with each other. Tonight they definitely only interacted when I wasn't right there. And I kind of feel like, since T is staying in place (more confident), it might be okay to let them do their thing?

It's when it gets like the last video that I would want to interrupt, I think, only that time I was already recording and I wanted to see what you guys thought of something I felt was pretty negative.

Thanks again for all of your time and for continuing to respond through this saga. I really, really, really appreciate it. Have a good weekend!
 

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"But K seems to be waiting for T sometimes, turkeying at the gate if T is playing or just elsewhere. However, when T appears, K will ignore her." - Fantastic.

"However, I feel like things to note are that K always walks away quite normally and confidently, and if I've come over to get a closer look at what's happening, she'll brush up against me as she's leaving." - Great that she walks away in a good way. Yep, she is saying you are hers.

I am not sure on the litter box actions. But it doesn't seem worrying to me.

Video 15 - Total play. They are having fun especially around the corner.

Video 16 - Didn't tell me much other than that looked pretty normal and I am not worried by it. Anytime a cat might act like prey you wil get that usually.

Video 17 - K looks playful, good body language. Love how she walks away.

Video 18 - I love K's body language. It is play relaxed not attack tense. I think K has made a lot of progress. I am really liking what I am seeing in her body language.

Video 19 - T is acting like how we would make a toy act (going around a corner and hiding). So the fact K goes after her in a way is not surprising. BUT cats play like this. Sure K was a little more forceful but she was also gentle when T was pawing. Then T runs past which of course is like prey and make K respond. But then K walks away tail up (confident). Not worrisome to me. And the noises were not bothersome or worrying. It wasn't "I am going to kill you" type noises.

"There wasn't any lasting negativity and K ate her treats without issue right after this last video (I went over to give her some treats and talk to her)." - This is great. This is them telling us they think everything is ok.

"if I'm close enough to give treats, then they both just wait for treats and don't interact with each other." - I like this and tend to do this more than anything.

"Tonight they definitely only interacted when I wasn't right there. And I kind of feel like, since T is staying in place (more confident), it might be okay to let them do their thing?" - As long as you think there is no or not much negativity I think that is fine. Just try to make it as positive as possible and distract as needed in a positive way.

"It's when it gets like the last video that I would want to interrupt, I think, only that time I was already recording and I wanted to see what you guys thought of something I felt was pretty negative." - I think I would probably interrupt on that last video but I don;t think it was "pretty negative". I am not sure I would even call it negative. It may not have been positive but not sure it really was negative. It is just a natural reaction from a cat with another cat acting like prey (or trying to get them to play).

Overall, I like where they are. They are doing really well. I don;t think it is a saga, I think this is totally normal and I am really pleased to see the progress. I think it s easier for us to see it then being right there. The last few days of videos have been pleasantly positive. I really like what I am seeing. They are definitely much closer than I thought a week ago. Keep up the great work.
 

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K does this a lot too (myawning?). I wonder if T has heard her doing it because T did it for the first time today too. It just sounds so funny, I love it.
"myawning"...that is such a great name for it.
It does sound so funny.
(I just never knew that other cats did it. I don't recall my previous cats being so obvious about it....'myawning') :crackup:
Yes, we have been trying to keep various thicker fabrics handy in different locations so that we can save our legs. We're not always successful.
It's going to be a little hard, too, if you're laying down on the sofa, and one cat decides to walk all over you, and then knead.
You'll sometimes find that the heavier cat might have better balance or weight distribution, on all four paws, while the lighter one will pinpoint target certain places on your abdomen, such as bladder, appendix, stomach,...and you'll be wondering 'why is the lighter one so heavy?' ...No particular reason, just a different way of balancing their weight, is my guess. Sometimes the cats' pawsages/massages/kneading get to be a little too heavy, so perhaps that nearby blanket, or empty spot near the human is much more preferable.
Tonight, though...so they had a lot of running around and pawing before I thought to take video. The videos I'm going to show you don't include me interrupting them - but they started off more chill, then got progressively less so, and for the earlier interactions I was talking to K the whole time (but she was ignoring me). So the videos are of the later interactions.
However, I feel like things to note are that K always walks away quite normally and confidently, and if I've come over to get a closer look at what's happening, she'll brush up against me as she's leaving.
Both K and T repeatedly went back to the gate to each other to paw,
though with T she also zoomed around a fair bit between interactions.
At the very end, my partner went to play with T
and K went over to the gate to watch. I tried playing with K but she was entirely focused on the other side of the gate - either sounds T was making or the toy, or T herself, I couldn't tell.
I think your videos show how well and awesome both K and T are doing.
You've both done such a tremendous job in these cat-intros, in lowering each cat's fears, and getting them both to a place where it looks mainly like they enjoy playing with each other.
You guys aren't going to like this but I feel like K might have had extra agitation because she wanted to use her litter box but was too distracted/worried about T's presence. You might recall that when we are doing a kitchen/living room session, K doesn't have access to her regular litter box (it's impossible to configure). She has been using the litter box without issue on the kitchen side but hasn't done it/hasn't needed to on the living room side.
She was on the living room side today, and was stepping into the box and leaving without using it throughout the gate time tonight, I really can't tell if she felt uncomfortable or if she just really wanted to play (?) or teach T a lesson.
Anyway, just throwing out some possible reasons for her being more rough today.
I don't actually see K as being more rough, in the videos. Both cats just look more lively, and faster moving, but the play does not look rough.
As far as K not using her litter box, it could be any of the reasons you mentioned, or also K was just going to a familiar scent place, and leaving more scent there by using her paw pads. It could be like another scent marking instinct, or feeling more secure with having her own scent around.

I'll make some comments on the videos, but I do think you are 100% correct in your original observations, and that both K and T are ready to meet.

Hopefully, C calicosrspecial will be by, and give her take on the videos, and what she thinks about if they are ready to meet or not.

ETA: Oh, calicosrspecial beat me to it, and already posted above. :blush:
 
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cat nap

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15. This really looks like play to me. T runs away at the end but she was doing this sort of dashing away, dashing back, dashing past, thing the whole time.
I really like how they are playing.
16. This is only 5 seconds long. So T had dashed up the stairs and K was waiting, and I was trying to catch T running back down but still wasn't fast enough. Just to show K's reaction as T runs by, and how she acts after.
T is so fast. And K really wants to play.
17. You can hear T running, and K reacts to it. Mostly this is about her reaction and then to show her body language walking away.
To me, K seems to be moving much more calmer than before.
18. T dashes away, and I show K coming over. Then, she gets down into possible pouncing position, and you can hear her back claws digging into the carpet, but she doesn't wiggle. I was hoping they would play but T dashes away upstairs (which I didn't catch, because I have the reaction time of molasses), and K walks away when you hear T using a scratching pad upstairs (also new behavior).
If you notice at the 0.02 mark, T actually arches her back, in that famous 'halloween pose', and does this also while turning, with her tail slightly up and arched...This actually is not a bad thing at all, since she is doing it in play-mode, and T will probably do it again, when they meet, to appear bigger than K. I think for some cats it actually happens much quicker and more naturally, because T was still behind the gate, so therefore she didn't really have anything to fear from K, at this point. This type of reaction/posturing is often seen in small kittens while playing for defense or intimidation....not sure which,...so it's kind of interesting that T still uses it.

I've noticed how T puts up her hackles-up in other videos,too, so maybe this is just her 'go-to-move'.

I like the way K uses that brown paper to crouch behind...that is strategic.
It's good that you told us, what T was doing upstairs...'using a scratching pad'...since when I heard that noise...I thought T was:
a) throwing things against the cardboard, b) starting some home renovations, c) running with elephants, or d) barricading her room.
(Using a scratching pad that loudly, was no where on my list of possibilities. lol. :lol: )
19. K makes noises I really don't like here, but I don't know what you guys think (and I'm just so unfamiliar with cat sounds). I'm looking at her tail and I think it's kind of puffed out, which I also don't like. But T stays there and it seems like T thinks they're playing (bless her). Then, when K walks away, she looks alright, and brushes against my legs as she goes.
Those cat vocalizations sound more plaintive to me. It sounds more like K is trying to get T to play more, and not anything aggressive at all. K is a little insistent, but not anything threatening.

It's so interesting that it's so much more of a 'give and take' type of interaction now, then before.
That is really good to see.
Again, after this is when my partner began playing with T (we use a toy to get her back into her room so we can take the gate down), and K was interested enough to go right back to the gate. There wasn't any lasting negativity and K ate her treats without issue right after this last video (I went over to give her some treats and talk to her).
You're ending all the interactions in a very positive way.
I'm not sure how often I should be interrupting them. Talking at K from a distance doesn't seem to do anything, and if I'm close enough to give treats, then they both just wait for treats and don't interact with each other. Tonight they definitely only interacted when I wasn't right there. And I kind of feel like, since T is staying in place (more confident), it might be okay to let them do their thing?

It's when it gets like the last video that I would want to interrupt, I think, only that time I was already recording and I wanted to see what you guys thought of something I felt was pretty negative.
Nope. I didn't think it was negative at all. I can understand your thinking, though, ...since it looked and sounded more insistent and different than the other videos.
I wouldn't be interrupting at all. I think you are getting clearer and more natural interactions when you are not interrupting.

Eventually, when they meet, you will have to do some 'interrupting' and distracting, refereeing,...since there may be times when T or K will get a little too loud, or a bit too rough, but the way they are both playing now...is so different than that video 6, where I find it hard to believe that that was just a week-and-a-half ago?

Wow, is K ever changing. I guess both T and K are changing, in such positive ways.

I think I got stuck on video 6 where I was trying to figure out what was triggering K and why she was lashing out.
When Calicosrspecial said that K was insecure, I never would have thought of that, because for some reason K always seemed like the more dominant, stronger cat. But it makes sense in the aspect of losing and gaining territory, having to share territory, and sharing resources such as humans, food, attention, quiet time, etc.
Those are all big adjustments for cats.
Thanks again for all of your time and for continuing to respond through this saga. I really, really, really appreciate it. Have a good weekend!
Haha. That is way too much appreciation being thrown our way. I'm going to get a large head again. :cool:

I enjoy this saga. :agree: :cloud9: It's the best kind, filled with caring, determined and creative humans (you both) and inspiring cats (K and T).
That would make a great title of the eventual book that you will write called "the saga of K and T."...'it all began long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away'....ooops...cannot use that one. "it began on an ordinary day, in a special way". :biggrin:
Anyhow, the book you write will have suspense, drama, interesting plot twists and action. The saga continues...

Have a fantastic weekend, as well. :)
 
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acari

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Thank you for your feedback on the videos! It really made my morning, because I had been kind of worried, and then both of you were like, "Nah, they're fine!" How wonderful to hear. I won't respond to every comment you guys made for the videos but know that I've read them all and really appreciate it. And I rewatched the videos with your commentary in mind, and am learning more about cat sounds and body language. :rock:

It's going to be a little hard, too, if you're laying down on the sofa, and one cat decides to walk all over you, and then knead.
You'll sometimes find that the heavier cat might have better balance or weight distribution, on all four paws, while the lighter one will pinpoint target certain places on your abdomen, such as bladder, appendix, stomach,...and you'll be wondering 'why is the lighter one so heavy?' ...No particular reason, just a different way of balancing their weight, is my guess. Sometimes the cats' pawsages/massages/kneading get to be a little too heavy, so perhaps that nearby blanket, or empty spot near the human is much more preferable.
There is nothing heavier than a cat that has decided to put all their weight into one paw while stepping directly onto your stomach.
K doesn't like to wander on us much, I think she dislikes the uneven footing (we're too squishy!). And T is not quite at that point yet, but she will floomph down against our legs occasionally.
If you notice at the 0.02 mark, T actually arches her back, in that famous 'halloween pose', and does this also while turning, with her tail slightly up and arched...This actually is not a bad thing at all, since she is doing it in play-mode, and T will probably do it again, when they meet, to appear bigger than K. I think for some cats it actually happens much quicker and more naturally, because T was still behind the gate, so therefore she didn't really have anything to fear from K, at this point. This type of reaction/posturing is often seen in small kittens while playing for defense or intimidation....not sure which,...so it's kind of interesting that T still uses it.
Oh, interesting! I didn't really notice this but now that you've pointed it out, I do see her do it often. I just chalked it up to her being weird while running around.
I'm wondering if my suspicion from the beginning is correct, that T hasn't been around older cats much, so she has a lot of things to learn. For example, she didn't know what to do with a scratching pad until a few days ago, and I'm 99.9% sure she picked it up from watching K do it through the gate. But she loves it now.
I just mention this because you said it's interesting that T is using a common tactic for small kittens - maybe she thinks she's still a small kitten!
It's good that you told us, what T was doing upstairs...'using a scratching pad'...since when I heard that noise...I thought T was:
a) throwing things against the cardboard, b) starting some home renovations, c) running with elephants, or d) barricading her room.
(Using a scratching pad that loudly, was no where on my list of possibilities. lol. :lol: )
I swear there's no way that she can make that much noise by herself in her room that I can hear it so clearly through the ceiling unless she has elephant friends. And maybe some whales too.

-----

Tonight: I have a very exciting video (at least to us)! I had to split it up into three parts.
But first, context. T was kind of jumpy and distracted, and didn't seem very interested in playing with K. K turkeyed at the gate almost the entire time, it looked like she was waiting for T to play with her, and she seemed disappointed whenever T ran past.
Finally, T decided to settle on the step behind the wall/corner, and K gently pawed at the gate (I guess inviting to play).
This is when I started filming. Then, they didn't do anything else but stare at each other, then they both stared at me for some reason (I was hidden halfway around another corner, recording them), for about a full minute. Maybe they were making sure I wouldn't interfere? Haha.
Then they started playing!

Sorry for recording in portrait mode, by the way. It's a bad habit and I realized it too late, then didn't want to turn/move.

20. (Part 1) You can see here that T gets her paw "stuck" but she's really just pretending, because she unsticks herself easily. It happens again at the very end, she freed herself shortly after the video cuts off.
You can hear K making more noises which I won't worry about now based on your feedback (this type of noise, anyway).



21. (Part 2) First of all, !!! (You'll see when you watch the video.)
So you can hear my partner tell me what K is doing, and then whisper "sorry" when he realizes I'm recording. :lol: :lol: :lol:
K's full name is Kaya and T's full name is Toast - since you can hear my partner say K's name, the cat's out of the bag!



22. (Part 3) !!! !!!



So what K was doing is good, right?! I really hope so.
 

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Tonight: I have a very exciting video (at least to us)! I had to split it up into three parts.
But first, context. T was kind of jumpy and distracted, and didn't seem very interested in playing with K. K turkeyed at the gate almost the entire time, it looked like she was waiting for T to play with her, and she seemed disappointed whenever T ran past.
Finally, T decided to settle on the step behind the wall/corner, and K gently pawed at the gate (I guess inviting to play).
This is when I started filming. Then, they didn't do anything else but stare at each other, then they both stared at me for some reason (I was hidden halfway around another corner, recording them), for about a full minute. Maybe they were making sure I wouldn't interfere? Haha.
Then they started playing!
Haha. Yes, the staring at you part is funny. It could be that they were making sure you wouldn't interfere. :blush: :thumbsup:
It also looks like both cats have to let you know that 'they are paparazzi savvy' and know that you are videotaping them.
T : " Are they videotaping us again?"
K: "Yes, just act natural."
T: " But why do they do it so often? I noticed the camera in video 12 last time, too."
K: "Not sure, but it makes the humans happy, so just roll with it." :caticon::blackcat:
20. (Part 1) You can see here that T gets her paw "stuck" but she's really just pretending, because she unsticks herself easily. It happens again at the very end, she freed herself shortly after the video cuts off.
You can hear K making more noises which I won't worry about now based on your feedback (this type of noise, anyway).
I really like the background classical music in this one. Now that's what I would call relaxing. :cloud9:
(I'm glad you told me about those 'cat lullabies', because...umm...they're awful. Not sure if my male cat Tripp just does not like xylophones, and whatever else they use, or if he just prefers his own purring sound.)

I like the way K moves back from sneaky T's fast jab...at the 0.14 mark.
You're right, at the 0.17 mark, T just hangs her paw on the gate, and K has to actually look underneath...to make sure that she's faking it. haha. What a cat actress/actor (whatever the proper term is) T is...in the 'pretending to get your claw stuck' again. :bluepaw:

It's actually very cute at the 0.29 mark...where T once again leaves her paw on the gate,...but K just gives her a slap-five kind of tap with the paws, and does it once again at 0.31. Adorable, and very gentle looking.
21. (Part 2) First of all, !!! (You'll see when you watch the video.)
So you can hear my partner tell me what K is doing, and then whisper "sorry" when he realizes I'm recording. :lol:
:lol: :lol:
K's full name is Kaya and T's full name is Toast - since you can hear my partner say K's name, the cat's out of the bag!
:yess: :thumbsup::cloud9::clap::cheerleader::woo::banana2::jive::dazzler::lovecat2::geekcat::cool: :clover: :updown:

(I wasn't actually sure what your partner said. It sounded like they said, "oh, (name?) is like rolling over-ish", but it's adorable anyhow.
I'm glad you mentioned K and T's full names. I wanted to ask before, but then thought, 'they want to keep it private, it's too long to spell, it's something from mythology or ancient names, marvel universe names, or anything else under the sun.' :blush:

Those are beautiful names...which I will probably forget because I've been calling them Kay=K and Tee=T , for so long now.
(at least it's not Terminator for T, and Sarah K Conner for K...lol. Sarah Conner likes to blow everything up in the movie...much like K in the beginning of these cat-intros.)

You might have to explain what the inspiration was for these lovely names, and what the meaning is behind them, if you feel like it. :biggrin:

Not sure now if this video 21 is my new favorite...or it's still video 13. (It's a close one, in that the action is fascinating.)
At the 0.05 mark...is where K does her roll. That is the most awesome, stunning, wonderful, amazing scene that I have now seen. :loveeyes:
I would have been so excited, too, and probably been talking the whole time, not been able to videotape, and no where near as steady as you are. Fantastic!

Both cats continue to play. Then T takes a short time-out to adjust her 'uniform' (groom and lick)...right in the middle of play.
Play continues, and at the 0.20 mark,...K does some sort of 'bite in the air'...as though she is going to bite T's paw for that 'illegal time-out'. The rules of this cat-game keep changing. Back to play-pawing.
Another amazing roll-over by K at the 0.24 mark. More upside-down play continues. :thumbsup:
22. (Part 3) !!! !!!
More turn around, upside-down play continues....0.03 mark.
Then somehow...the music changes...and we see cute T doing some extraordinary 'head bobs' to the music...0.10 mark... Hilarious.
K lies down fully, exposing her belly, ...and placing her head behind the wall. Total trust there.
I wish this video never ended.

Again, the background music goes so well with the video.
I can watch this over and over again. It's so relaxing, and enjoyable that both K and T are getting along.
Kaya and Toast...amazing and beautiful.
So what K was doing is good, right?! I really hope so.
I think I ran out of synonyms for awesome...a while back...so I'll just repeat them, here:
stunning, wonderful, amazing ...with beautiful, exciting, and dazzling.

The question: "So what K was doing is good, right?! "....What K was doing was beyond good.
So both cats are copying each other... with not only T copying K in her cat-scratcher routine,... but K now using 'T-moves to play'.
Rolling around upside-down...these moves are up there....with K's famous K-hop, now. :blush:
 

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Video 20 - So playful. Great. Look how gentle they are to each other. This is great. When we have them without a barrier we'll what to distract them with something good at this point so it doesn't escalate.

Video 21 - WHOA!!! WHAT GREAT BODY LANGUAGE!!! K went on her side and exposed her belly to some degree????? AWESOME!!! TRUST!!! Then T grooms her chest and K relaxes. FANTASTIC body language. This is exactly the things we want to see leading up into a true face to face meeting. I am ecstatic at what I am seeing!! GREAT WORK everyone!!

Video 22 - WOW!! Again, exposing her belly (which is a VERY VULNERABLE position). I see such a change in K, totally playful, more relaxed. I am kind of amazed at how fast things seem to have progressed. And then K walks away confidently, and T is like "don't leave".

These videos are AMAZING!! I think we should reinforce these encounters this week and start planning for how we will handle a face to face meeting (so being emotionally prepared, prepared to distract, reassure, etc). So this week I think I would work on distraction techniques. Like in one of the videos they stopped what they were doing and looked at the camera. Things like that. And being emotionally prepared. The first meeting can go really well but it can also be unnerving. So being able to calmly and confidently distract them and break up any negative encounter and then to observe how the react after and to use something positive to help them rebound quicker.

When we do the face to face we'll probably want to use food. So if we can get them to be a bit hungry so the food interest will be highest so they can focus on that and not realize that the gate is not there, that the other cat is not "after" them.

And we tend to want to have it as positive as possible even if it is short. The amount of time at this point is not as important as the quality of time in a positive way. And if they do start to focus on each other we'll want to observe the body language, if it looks negative use distraction, if it seems ok then be reassuring and try to be calm, confident and loving and try to get them to break the focus on the other cat. And be ready with cardboard or a pillow or a toy, anything to break up a potentially negative situation.

Wow, I know it may not feel like fast or large progress but I see a incredibly change and am really pleased with where they are at.

I am SO PROUD of you, your partner, K and T. GREAT work. There is more to do but it is a question of WHEN they will be intro'd not IF. That is a great place to be. :hyper: :clap2:
 
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acari

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Thank you for your comments! We are so happy that we got here, it felt like K would never accept T and we thought maybe she would ignore T forever.
But the last few days with the playing sessions and now with K rolling over (which she doesn't do with us much at all unless she is sleeping!) it's so exciting.

Just now, they were playing at the gate but some of our precariously stacked cardboard boxes on top starting sliding. They both stopped playing, watched a box start going down, and then both ran away simultaneously before it fell. I apologized profusely and they both came right back to the gate (not to play, just see what was happening). But it's a possible example of what to expect if we have to distract them.

I really like the background classical music in this one. Now that's what I would call relaxing. :cloud9:
(I'm glad you told me about those 'cat lullabies', because...umm...they're awful.
Haha! Yeah, I'm not really a fan of the cat lullabies, but there are definitely cat owners out there who swear by them. You just can't know until you try, I guess.
What's playing in the background, if you're curious, is Saint-Saens' Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso.
Those are beautiful names...which I will probably forget because I've been calling them Kay=K and Tee=T , for so long now.
I call them K and T accidentally sometimes now since I type it out that way so often!
You might have to explain what the inspiration was for these lovely names, and what the meaning is behind them, if you feel like it. :biggrin:
We named K after a super delicious coconut jam: Coconut jam - Wikipedia
And we hadn't expected to get another cat, but T happened, so we named her something to go with K, which is a snack called kaya toast: Kaya toast - Wikipedia
That is the most awesome, stunning, wonderful, amazing scene that I have now seen. :loveeyes:
K lies down fully, exposing her belly, ...and placing her head behind the wall. Total trust there.
I wish this video never ended.
Me too! My hands didn't move but in my head I was going absolutely nuts. I've rewatched the video so many times. I hope it happens again soon.
So both cats are copying each other... with not only T copying K in her cat-scratcher routine,... but K now using 'T-moves to play'.
Copy cats!! It's adorable. I just want them to only learn the good and cute habits from each other though.
Video 22 - WOW!! Again, exposing her belly (which is a VERY VULNERABLE position). I see such a change in K, totally playful, more relaxed. I am kind of amazed at how fast things seem to have progressed. And then K walks away confidently, and T is like "don't leave".
C calicosrspecial Me too! I didn't think this would happen ANYTIME soon. And I feel like it must be significant that for her last roll, she rolls over, showing her belly, but puts her head behind the wall where she definitely can't see T. It seems like that's even more vulnerable than just rolling over.
When we do the face to face we'll probably want to use food. So if we can get them to be a bit hungry so the food interest will be highest so they can focus on that and not realize that the gate is not there, that the other cat is not "after" them.
Your plan sounds great (wait a week and prepare in the meantime), thank you for outlining it for us!

I was wondering if you had any tips on how exactly to get them face-to-face since T has to go down the stairs in order to see K, and I don't want T to rush down there and startle her (which would probably be a bad start).
We could put the gate up at first, without all the ties and books and cardboard, but do you think it might be too distracting, or too sudden, to remove the gate?
Or perhaps we could put the gate up in a way where we could remove it easily - but feed them as usual, and when they start eating we remove the gate?

How do most people approach "removing the barrier"?
 

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There is nothing heavier than a cat that has decided to put all their weight into one paw while stepping directly onto your stomach.
K doesn't like to wander on us much, I think she dislikes the uneven footing (we're too squishy!). And T is not quite at that point yet, but she will floomph down against our legs occasionally.
"floomph"...haha..that is such a cute word. I can actually picture T floomph-ing down against your legs. :blush:
Yes, exactly, I don't know how a small cat can focus all their weight on one paw. (It's some sort of secret 'cat-martial-art' or something. :wink:)
Oh, interesting! I didn't really notice this but now that you've pointed it out, I do see her do it often. I just chalked it up to her being weird while running around.
I'm wondering if my suspicion from the beginning is correct, that T hasn't been around older cats much, so she has a lot of things to learn. For example, she didn't know what to do with a scratching pad until a few days ago, and I'm 99.9% sure she picked it up from watching K do it through the gate. But she loves it now.
I just mention this because you said it's interesting that T is using a common tactic for small kittens -
maybe she thinks she's still a small kitten!
Copy cats!! It's adorable. I just want them to only learn the good and cute habits from each other though.
Lol. Well...I'm sure in time, both cats will have far more good and cute habits versus the not so good ones. Cats are so smart, and do understand what their humans want, so as long as you're lovingly showing them alternatives...then I think they catch on pretty fast.
But I do agree, that when they see another cat doing something they haven't yet tried...they think, "I gotta try that, too."

I think our cats actually do act like kittens, until about 1.5 years old, but they still have a lot of energy well until 3 years, and only gradually start to slow down. It's actually wonderful to watch how they mature, yet because it is so fast, you end up fondly remembering those young crazy zoomy days, remembering all the slightly destructive parts, and all. Even when they are older, you'll still get the zoomies, and playful kitten-like behaviour, so it's still awesome to see.

I should have clarified that even though T uses those small kitten-like postures, that these postures are also displayed by older cats, in that they never really lose the type of learning they did while young.
For instance, you'll probably notice that T will do the 'side-ways' hop/approach, arched back, or fluffed-up tail,...even while she's happily enjoying playing with K. It just might diminish with time, and change...but you'll be able to distinguish her play postures, from true fear postures by the other things she does...eg. if T freezes, doesn't come back, and also how her usual style of play is.

Your two cats seem to be changing a lot, in excellent ways, so who knows what their eventual play styles will be.
I swear there's no way that she can make that much noise by herself in her room that I can hear it so clearly through the ceiling unless she has elephant friends. And maybe some whales too.
:crackup:" And maybe some whales too."....Well, I guess if you ever take a bubble bath, and T is right there, and has no fear of water...then yeah, ...T might have some whale friends, too. Never know. :lol:🐳 🐘 :blackcat:
Just now, they were playing at the gate but some of our precariously stacked cardboard boxes on top starting sliding. They both stopped playing, watched a box start going down, and then both ran away simultaneously before it fell. I apologized profusely and they both came right back to the gate (not to play, just see what was happening). But it's a possible example of what to expect if we have to distract them.
That is good. Falling cardboard makes them run, and separate. I hope that anything falling would. :biggrin:
And great that they came back to inspect the repairs. :agree: :thumbsup:
Haha! Yeah, I'm not really a fan of the cat lullabies, but there are definitely cat owners out there who swear by them. You just can't know until you try, I guess.
What's playing in the background, if you're curious
, is Saint-Saens' Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso.
You're right, you have to try them out.
Thanks for that extra info, I shall bookmark it, to listen from my phone, later. :musicnote:
I call them K and T accidentally sometimes now since I type it out that way so often!
We named K after a super delicious coconut jam: Coconut jam - Wikipedia
And we hadn't expected to get another cat, but T happened, so we named her something to go with K, which is a snack called kaya toast: Kaya toast - Wikipedia
That's adorable and sweet, how the names go together so well. (sweet pun not intended...since I'm not sure how sweet the jam is.)
Cocunut in chocolate is sweet, and rich, :yummy: but never tried it in jam.
I may have to go looking for this Cocunut jam and Kaya toast now, just to try the taste.
Me too! My hands didn't move but in my head I was going absolutely nuts. I've rewatched the video so many times. I hope it happens again soon.
You mean, you're not actually using some sort of 'tripod' to do the filming??
How do you get it so steady then?
...We could put the gate up at first, without all the ties and books and cardboard, but do you think it might be too distracting, or too sudden, to remove the gate?
Or perhaps we could put the gate up in a way where we could remove it easily - but feed them as usual, and when they start eating we remove the gate?

How do most people approach "removing the barrier"?
When we do the face to face we'll probably want to use food. So if we can get them to be a bit hungry so the food interest will be highest so they can focus on that and not realize that the gate is not there, that the other cat is not "after" them.
I'm kind of curious on what C calicosrspecial will advise on this, too...since I've never heard that the 'cats have to be a bit hungry.'

I'd say just remember to clip the tips of their claws, since you know that both T and K love to paw, and will no doubt swat at each other, in play.
I would move the gate after an individual round of playing, feeding, and when they seem a bit tired, ...and just open the gate partially, or just have it handy, to put back into place.
Perhaps even have the cat carriers near-by, if you think that one of the cats would use that as a 'safe place' to be around, and then if a cat enters or is close, you could swoop them up, and close them inside.

I would open the gate up partially, if you can, so that if one cat decides it has had enough, you can easily close it again.
Or just have it close by, so that you can close it fairly easy again.
Like you mentioned, keep the first meeting fairly short...say 10-20 minutes...depending on how both cats react.

Expect hissing, swatting, posturing...some growling...but I'd only distract or intervene if the play or interaction looks too rough, and one cat is not allowing the other one to escape.
Expect a lot of running and chasing, so try to look at your layout with escape routes in mind, with no 'dead end' corners.
There will probably be wrestling, too,...so don't get too frightened if it looks like an unfair play fight.
If one cat is doing really high pitched vocalizations, then use your chosen distraction method by voice, clapping, and separating safely with cardboard, blanket or toss a towel.

And remember to feed treats afterwards, to end on a positive note.

(If there is another basketball game on, it seems to distranct K enough, that she'll probably just watch it with your partner, and not even bother with T, unless it's a commercial. You never know. Both cats seemed very playful, during that game. I wonder if it was the whistles, game noises, or movements on t.v. that got K's attention.)
 

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"Thank you for your comments!"- You are welcome. I am so happy the comments are so positive!!

"We are so happy that we got here, it felt like K would never accept T and we thought maybe she would ignore T forever." - I am as well. Most people go through those emotions (the cat will never accept the other cat) but usually there are "tells" that show. So with an experienced eye we can pick up on those that the family can't. We still have work to do and there will be ups and downs but I think it is only a question of WHEN they will be intro'd not IF. Honestly, this week was a watershed event. We really crossed the threshold. It happens like that all the time. I have to give you credit, you did pick up on it faster than I did. I am impressed.

"But the last few days with the playing sessions and now with K rolling over (which she doesn't do with us much at all unless she is sleeping!) it's so exciting." - It really is. The watershed event. REALLY COOL!!!

"Just now, they were playing at the gate but some of our precariously stacked cardboard boxes on top starting sliding. They both stopped playing, watched a box start going down, and then both ran away simultaneously before it fell. I apologized profusely and they both came right back to the gate (not to play, just see what was happening). But it's a possible example of what to expect if we have to distract them." - That is a good test of where they are. They didn't turn on each other. They came back to the gate after. Something negative could have happened but it sounds like it didn't. There is trust there. Really good. They passed the test.

"Me too! I didn't think this would happen ANYTIME soon. And I feel like it must be significant that for her last roll, she rolls over, showing her belly, but puts her head behind the wall where she definitely can't see T. It seems like that's even more vulnerable than just rolling over." - TOTALLY. It was adorable in of itself and the trust factor was AMAZING. That moment was like "yep, it's all good". It is pretty much always the resident cat that has the most difficult transition as it is "their" territory being "invaded". When the resident cat tells the new cat "I trust you" it is really a great moment. K gave us that moment here.

Typically I remove the barrier while they are being distracted. So typically I try to have them eating and then remove the barrier carefully so as not to distract them. Then they realize the barrier is gone and I use distraction. Where they look at the other cat but find the toy more interesting. If I can get them to focus on something else with the barrier gone it is all good. Then I tend to play it by ear watching their body language and see if I can get positives between them so they might look at each other then have them look away and try to make the encounter as positive as possible (trying to avoid any negativity). And staying as calm and confident as possible as the cats will sense and take on our emotions. Anytime we get them to look away from each other it is a big positive because again no cat would take their eyes off a potential threat.

I probably would avoid having T come down the stairs as it could be interpreted as "threatening".

I would start playing around with the gate and see if you can figure out how to remove it in a smooth way.

"'cats have to be a bit hungry.'" - cats don't have to be hungry but I find it does help to facilitate the ease in having them distracted and helps them be like "yeah, I know the gate/barrier is not there but I am enjoying something good and the other cat isn't threatening me so all is good". To me it is all about maximizing positive encounters and minimizing negative encounters.So if we get the focus on food and not the other cat and they know the barrier isn't there it is a big positive.

This part is all art rather than science, people do it different ways. But as long as you keep it as positive as possible (no matter how long it is) and then build on that it will be fine. And remember to watch the body language and how they react after the meeting. They will tell us how it went.
 
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acari

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I think our cats actually do act like kittens, until about 1.5 years old, but they still have a lot of energy well until 3 years, and only gradually start to slow down. It's actually wonderful to watch how they mature, yet because it is so fast, you end up fondly remembering those young crazy zoomy days, remembering all the slightly destructive parts, and all. Even when they are older, you'll still get the zoomies, and playful kitten-like behaviour, so it's still awesome to see.
I will see how long T keeps up being endlessly energized, but K is already soooooo lazy. She really just sleeps the day away. I wonder if T will bother K during the day once they are out together?
You mean, you're not actually using some sort of 'tripod' to do the filming??
How do you get it so steady then?
I think my phone has a setting for helping stabilize video, it's not all me!!
I'd say just remember to clip the tips of their claws, since you know that both T and K love to paw, and will no doubt swat at each other, in play.
Oh, a good reminder. I might try to get one claw at a time now, between the two of them I expect that will take the whole week if I'm lucky.
Typically I remove the barrier while they are being distracted. So typically I try to have them eating and then remove the barrier carefully so as not to distract them. Then they realize the barrier is gone and I use distraction. Where they look at the other cat but find the toy more interesting. If I can get them to focus on something else with the barrier gone it is all good.
Do you use two toys? What happens if they both want the toy?
I get the feeling we will have to use lots and lots of treats...so we will probably feed them just a bit less in the first half of the day. That way they will be hungrier for their meal and the treats might have more impact.
I probably would avoid having T come down the stairs as it could be interpreted as "threatening".
That's what I thought too. So if we do it during mealtime like you suggest, then T would come all the way down with the gate mostly in place, and hopefully they would both eat as usual, and then we would remove the gate...?
I would start playing around with the gate and see if you can figure out how to remove it in a smooth way.
It's kind of impossible since it's so large and cumbersome. I wouldn't be surprised if T runs away if we move it. And if that happens then it would create a problem when she comes back down...

Maybe it would be easier to set up the gate blocking off the kitchen (and without all the cardboard, bracing tables, etc), feed K on that side, and T on the other, and then slowly slide the gate to the side as they eat? So the gate would stay partially in place, but be open enough for them (and us!) to get through. Hopefully they would be flexible (and hungry) enough to not mind that they're eating in slightly different places than usual.

-----

I'll update if anything interesting happens! In the meantime I'm going to try my best at clipping their nails. Wish me luck.
 
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