Day 3 (or 4?) of introducing my cats! Advice needed!!

HHorst1446

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Hi!!
So I recently got a 4 month kitten named Marceline! My resident cat is Soybean, she is 2 years old. I am trying my best to do the separation method but in the evening after separating for so long (and listening to Marceline cry from the bedroom) I give in and let her out.
When she is out in the main area, I play with her and Soybean watches most of the time. Sometimes she stares but sometimes she just causally watches. I was able to get both of them to play with their own toys next to each other.
If Marceline got too close to Soybean in general, or her cat tree, Soybean would hiss and swat at Marceline causing a fight (which I broke up before it got too intense and put Marceline back in her room)
So basically my questions are:
1. If Soybean hisses when Marceline gets too close, is that normal? Or does that mean I have to start the entire process over?
2. During scent swapping/site swapping, Soybean doesn’t ever hiss or growl at the scents and such, but seems wary and then perhaps disinterested? Is it normal for this reaction to her scent swap but hissing at Marceline from the door?
3. Finally! Soybean is not food motivated and rarely likes treats. I tried moving her food bowl to the door so she could eat and smell marceline but she would kind of just not eat at that time and go back later when Marceline wasn’t at the door. Any non food related ways to create positive association?

as you can probably tell, I am a very anxious person. I am doing my best to be patient as I want this process to work and have my cats at least tolerate each other without Soybean growling and hissing! I appreciate any tips or encouragement as Im feeling discouraged and feeling like I messed up!
 

catloverfromwayback

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Congrats on adding to your feline family!

I haven’t introduced a kitten to an adult cat in a very long time, but about two years ago I introduced Daisy, aged about three, to Phoebe, aged about six. Now the advantage there was that Phoebe loves company and had been lonely since my Maddie (she of the avatar) died. The disadvantages were that I didn’t know how Daisy would go, though she was the only cat at the shelter listed as suitable to live with other cats, and that I was living in a granny flat. There were two bedrooms, a bathroom and a kitchen-living room. Separating them all night wasn’t possible as my mother needed bathroom access. So the first day saw Daisy in Mum’s bedroom and Phoebe sniffing and occasionally hissing under the door, just as you described Soybean doing. Yes, it’s very normal! I’d be surprised if a cat didn’t do it. This is her territory and she has to let the new cat (or kitten) know that.

Daisy was out by the second day because of the impracticality of keeping them separated. The hissing went on sporadically for a couple of days more but they got accustomed to each other pretty quickly. I’m sure more TCS members will have more specific and useful tips, but I think you’re doing fine. It just takes a while.
 

Mamanyt1953

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OK, breathe deep and RELAX. Marceline is young enough still that she and Soybean are almost certainly going to get along just fine. First, for the length of time we are talking about, these gals are doing VERY well, indeed! Yes, there will be a certain amount of hissing, and even a swat or two is normal. Soybean, as the elder, has decided to teach this little new upstart her manners, and that's as it should be. There's nothing to worry about unless Soybean gets so rough with Marceline that Marceline is cowering and hiding, and doing everything in her power to avoid being seen by Soybean, and you are a LOOOOOOOOOONG way from that!

Remember...Rule of thumb: if there is no blood or pee on the floor, and no fur in the air, it is a heated discussion, not a cat fight!
 

Zara12345

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Hi!!
So I recently got a 4 month kitten named Marceline! My resident cat is Soybean, she is 2 years old. I am trying my best to do the separation method but in the evening after separating for so long (and listening to Marceline cry from the bedroom) I give in and let her out.
When she is out in the main area, I play with her and Soybean watches most of the time. Sometimes she stares but sometimes she just causally watches. I was able to get both of them to play with their own toys next to each other.
If Marceline got too close to Soybean in general, or her cat tree, Soybean would hiss and swat at Marceline causing a fight (which I broke up before it got too intense and put Marceline back in her room)
So basically my questions are:
1. If Soybean hisses when Marceline gets too close, is that normal? Or does that mean I have to start the entire process over?
2. During scent swapping/site swapping, Soybean doesn’t ever hiss or growl at the scents and such, but seems wary and then perhaps disinterested? Is it normal for this reaction to her scent swap but hissing at Marceline from the door?
3. Finally! Soybean is not food motivated and rarely likes treats. I tried moving her food bowl to the door so she could eat and smell marceline but she would kind of just not eat at that time and go back later when Marceline wasn’t at the door. Any non food related ways to create positive association?

as you can probably tell, I am a very anxious person. I am doing my best to be patient as I want this process to work and have my cats at least tolerate each other without Soybean growling and hissing! I appreciate any tips or encouragement as Im feeling discouraged and feeling like I messed up!
Hi! In answer to your questions you are doing completely fine and this kind of behaviour when introducing cats is very normal. If soybean is not motivated with treats then you can use play, cuddles or praises.
Introducing cats is a long process and it takes a lot of patience. It may seem like it will never work out but trust me it will and you'll get there. And from what you've described it seems like the two will get along just fine.
Just keep lengthening their interaction sessions by the day and if a fight breaks out separate them and you can try again the next day. Just make sure to chip their nails. That way everyone's protected.
 

di and bob

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Perfectly normal. Swats and hisses, growls, and even the occasional tussle are normal. Just give them a time out like you have been doing after a tussle. Leave them if it is hisses and swats. Like said above, if Marceline does not avoid Soybean and does not hide from her, she is NOT getting hurt, just disciplined. Females are very territorial and will defend it against intruders until they realize the intruder is staying. Then they will accept each other as family. Soybean will be wary for weeks, maybe months. You are doing VERY well, it took me a year to have everybody get along!
 
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HHorst1446

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UPDATE! Today felt like a great day for progress! We kept Marceline in her room for most of the morning and early afternoon. She then got to explore the living area! When we let her out Soybean explored the bedroom (to this day she’s never hissed or growled at scent soaked items or the room!). Marceline has been trying to use Soybean’s tree and Soybean allowed it. There has been minimal hissing and growling today but lots of chasing and swatting. The chasing has been going both ways where Soybean will chase then Marceline will chase. There has been no growling or hissing during any swatting, and ears have been forward facing all day! Soybean only hisses and growls when Marceline gets a tad up in her face too much. Or for some reason will hiss when Soybean sniffs Marcelines literally butt… (don’t smell it then?!). We are still keeping them fully separated at night so Soybean can enjoy some downtime without any kitten mayhem. My favourite part of today was when they touched noses several times and Soybean only growled once! Here is a picture of them sharing the tree! I’m excited for more progress but also understand that hissing and swatting can happen at any time!
 
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HHorst1446

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The photo didn’t upload ;(
 

catloverfromwayback

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UPDATE! Today felt like a great day for progress! We kept Marceline in her room for most of the morning and early afternoon. She then got to explore the living area! When we let her out Soybean explored the bedroom (to this day she’s never hissed or growled at scent soaked items or the room!). Marceline has been trying to use Soybean’s tree and Soybean allowed it. There has been minimal hissing and growling today but lots of chasing and swatting. The chasing has been going both ways where Soybean will chase then Marceline will chase. There has been no growling or hissing during any swatting, and ears have been forward facing all day! Soybean only hisses and growls when Marceline gets a tad up in her face too much. Or for some reason will hiss when Soybean sniffs Marcelines literally butt… (don’t smell it then?!). We are still keeping them fully separated at night so Soybean can enjoy some downtime without any kitten mayhem. My favourite part of today was when they touched noses several times and Soybean only growled once! Here is a picture of them sharing the tree! I’m excited for more progress but also understand that hissing and swatting can happen at any time!
Wonderful news! They’re adjusting to each other really quickly.
 

Alldara

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UPDATE! Today felt like a great day for progress! We kept Marceline in her room for most of the morning and early afternoon. She then got to explore the living area! When we let her out Soybean explored the bedroom (to this day she’s never hissed or growled at scent soaked items or the room!). Marceline has been trying to use Soybean’s tree and Soybean allowed it. There has been minimal hissing and growling today but lots of chasing and swatting. The chasing has been going both ways where Soybean will chase then Marceline will chase. There has been no growling or hissing during any swatting, and ears have been forward facing all day! Soybean only hisses and growls when Marceline gets a tad up in her face too much. Or for some reason will hiss when Soybean sniffs Marcelines literally butt… (don’t smell it then?!). We are still keeping them fully separated at night so Soybean can enjoy some downtime without any kitten mayhem. My favourite part of today was when they touched noses several times and Soybean only growled once! Here is a picture of them sharing the tree! I’m excited for more progress but also understand that hissing and swatting can happen at any time!
Wonderful news and progress since your last post!

It's okay if she won't eat near the kitten. We skipped that step with Nobel

You can try a REALLY high reward treat like a Churu.

You can also do silvervine sticks or catnip.

But really, it's going great. Remind yourself when anxious that hissing usually means, "Hey don't do that!" Or "back off!" Sometimes "What the heck?!" You might find a cat even hissing during play.

Throw on some cat-calming music from YouTube or similar (with purring in it if you can), and that helps too.
 

sillygirlfun

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Hi!!
So I recently got a 4 month kitten named Marceline! My resident cat is Soybean, she is 2 years old. I am trying my best to do the separation method but in the evening after separating for so long (and listening to Marceline cry from the bedroom) I give in and let her out.
When she is out in the main area, I play with her and Soybean watches most of the time. Sometimes she stares but sometimes she just causally watches. I was able to get both of them to play with their own toys next to each other.
If Marceline got too close to Soybean in general, or her cat tree, Soybean would hiss and swat at Marceline causing a fight (which I broke up before it got too intense and put Marceline back in her room)
So basically my questions are:
1. If Soybean hisses when Marceline gets too close, is that normal? Or does that mean I have to start the entire process over?
2. During scent swapping/site swapping, Soybean doesn’t ever hiss or growl at the scents and such, but seems wary and then perhaps disinterested? Is it normal for this reaction to her scent swap but hissing at Marceline from the door?
3. Finally! Soybean is not food motivated and rarely likes treats. I tried moving her food bowl to the door so she could eat and smell marceline but she would kind of just not eat at that time and go back later when Marceline wasn’t at the door. Any non food related ways to create positive association?

as you can probably tell, I am a very anxious person. I am doing my best to be patient as I want this process to work and have my cats at least tolerate each other without Soybean growling and hissing! I appreciate any tips or encouragement as Im feeling discouraged and feeling like I messed up!
It takes longer for two female cats to adjust to each other than it does for males. You only need to give it some time. Cats have a hierarchy between them as well, so since your kitten is younger and new, Soybean is letting Marceline know where she stands
between the two. She is also probably jealous of Marceline. Eventually, they will adjust to each other, so just be patient and do not
try to rush them. Let them be in the same room and when Soybean hisses and swaps at Marceline let Marceline handle it. As long
as Soybean does not literally rip into her, and just gives her warning slaps, growls or hisses that is normal behavior and it will get
better. It can be scary for a while but it will work out.
 

ArtNJ

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So you have play swatting now? Its more like poke poke, lets play! As already noted, its OK if you still have real "get away from me" type swatting.

But if you have no hissing and actual play, your already done, let them be together full time.
 

Mamanyt1953

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OH, as for the butt-sniffing...that's very important in a cat's world. When a cat sniffs another one's bottom, they learn all sorts of things, from general health, to mating status, and even the sniffee's mood/mental state, to some degree! Which is why it is such a compliment when a cat presents its butt to you for sniffing! They are saying that you are trusted, and worthy of knowing these things about them!
 
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