Introducing Cat Troubles

kitkath

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Hey there, I need some help! I know this is a long read, I want to lay out the details to see if I've missed something, and seek any advice!)

I got a new cat almost 2 months ago and we've had a challenging go of things. My new cat is a fixed male 1 yr old oriental shorthair, and my older cat is a fixed male 13 yr old oriental shorthair. I have desperately wanted a second oriental but my living situation has not allowed it until now. My 13 yr old is a "young" old cat, looking at him you'd never know he was 13. We have stray outside kitties too that he's always been intrigued by, no issues with them so I thought I'd try a second kitty.

I was careful on choosing one I thought would fit in, a breeder posted a very friendly, docile cat who made friends with anyone she put him with. She had him as a breeder cat she was retiring. Unfortunately I don't have oriental shorthairs near me so the only option was to have him flown from the west coast to me. On the flight he broke out of his carrier (apparently that's never happened!) and once we had him he was understandably nervous. Once home, he got his own room that I put calming music/sound machine/new toys/hiding spots/etc. I "catified" his space as best as I could. He was very nervous for the first few days, was friendly to us but also attacked our hands/arms.

My older cat knew something was different but he never growled/hissed/showed any issues.(We've had marking issues with him in the past and I thought for sure we'd deal with that, and surprisingly we haven't!) I put a barrier so they coudln't even play under the door for awhile until I could get the new cat to the vets. I moved onto the scent exchange with rubbing a sock over both and letting them sniff the others, and then moved onto switching blankets. (and during this time the new cat got time out in our house, with my older cat closed in a bedroom) I saw no issues, both were rubbing the sock or disinterested, and both laid on the other's blankets. They were using communal space litter boxes no problem, and I had Feliway plug ins to help.

I moved onto sight after about 3 weeks, and used a tall glass shelf barrier in the door with a blanket draped over the top. They saw each other we gave treats and they honestly were mostly disinterested- just wanted the food. The new cat kept doing all he could to get out and kept jumping the barrier. This wasn't a great set up for them to see each other and I didn't see any issues so I moved onto letting them out together. They sniffed for awhile and my older cat walked away but the new cat would not leave him alone, he chased him, got all up in his face. My older cat was swatting/hissing at first and later meet ups he was growling. I tried toys to distract but the new cat was laser focused. I found a screen you can tape over doorways to allow them to safely see face to face in a better set up. Put it on the new cat's door and my older cat went up and was curious. The new cat hated this set up and did all he could to get out-climbed the screen a few times to escape, tried digging underneath, and was non stop yowling when he was "contained". He would jump at my older cat which of course he didn't like so he tended to not go by the doorway. I tried this for awhile but knew it wasn't a good set up.

I moved the screen to my older cat's door and it worked ok, my older cat was not as incessant to get out and they had some decent sniffs, some growling/hissing by my older cat if the new one was too close or jumping at him. I then started putting a harness on my new cat to allow them a safer meet and greet out in the house. He didn't love it but I was working with training him and he's very smart, was doing better. I saw slight improvement with the cats, my older cat gained some confidence knowing the new one couldn't jump/chase him and seemed content as long as he could walk around and do his things. The new cat would stare and swishy tail at my older cat, sometimes laying on my lap which I thought maybe claiming me? They had a few stare downs, which would turn into growling/hissing by my older cat if I let it go on, but most times I tried splitting them up.

One night after a few really good encounters, my new cat FREAKED out while wearing his harness :( he was hissing/uncontrollable and bit me hard when I tried to get it off) I'm unsure what set him off, I don't believe it was my other cat as they weren't even close. My new cat DOES have some fears and hasn't fully settled so he is jumpy and I think once realized he was "contained" he freaked out further. The next day he seemed totally fine and thankfully wasn't too upset.

This new cat's history is where its challenging :/ He was bred in Russia and my breeder got him around 6 months old, and I got him just after turning 1. She bred him once and retired him, said he came over with his sister and was fearful for a time when she first had him. But calmed down and fit in well with any of her cats. I've since put together that he is fearful about being contained. I would guess this stems from the Russia transport. He broke out of his cat carrier when being flown here, FLIPPED out in the carrier when we took him to the vet (hissing/rolling/scratching/anything to get out),did not like being closed in with the screen barrier on his door, and now couldn't handle the harness.

I'm just at a loss as I've fallen in love with him and don't want to give up, but I'm not sure what to do. I just am unsure what (if any) other options there are. I do believe they would learn to get on as long as my older cat could get used to him without being chased/followed/etc. But I can't think of any way to contain the newer one without stressing HIM out further.

And I"m not the best at reading body language, I can't decide if this is fear? a Dominance thing? they don't know how to communicate? My older cat would run away always but lately he's seemed a little more "strong" and initiates swatting/hissing/etc. when the new cat was sitting by him. They have stare downs and swishy tails, so maybe this just won't work out :/

Has anyone ever experienced anything like this? or have any insight that I may have missed? I always want to do what's best for my pets and am thinking it's best to find him a new home but wanted to exhaust every option first! Thank you so much for reading through
 

ArtNJ

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Well, its pretty normal for a young cat to not take no for an answer and bug the bleep out of an older cat. Its not great, but its not the end fo the world. You let them work things out, and it -- very slowly -- gets better. I call it the long slow road to toleration. Its a very common outcome when one introduces a young cat to a senior cat, unfortunately. I understand you had reason to hope for better, but the long slow road seems to be the path before you. Maybe you'll get lucky and things will dramatically improve, but most likely your stuck with the long slow road. Its not what you hoped for, but its not so bad.

Now the complicating factor here is that the young cat seems to have some stress issues too. If you give the long slow road to toleration a try, I think over time you'll learn more about the young cat's issues, and whether its a serious problem or not, and can go from there.
 

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I agree with A ArtNJ . You have two challenges here: first, introducing a new, young cat to an older resident cat, and second, significant stress in the young cat. The poor guy has been through a lot. (What are their names, btw?) Both require patience and understanding which you’re already showing! No shortcuts unfortunately.

For the first, it doesn’t sound too bad. If the older cat is hissing and swatting, he’s trying to teach the newbie the rules of the household and how he expects him to act. If there’s been no all-out warfare with bloodshed, you’re probably in an okay place at this point. The new cat will probably continue to try to chase the older cat. He’s got lots of energy and needs to release it. Will he play with you? You can try distracting him with play to burn off energy. You might find some tips here: Playing With Your Cat: 10 Things You Need To Know – TheCatSite Articles

In terms of the new kitty’s stress, here’s an article that might provide some ideas: Stress in Cats – The Ultimate Guide – TheCatSite Articles He’s been through a lot and needs some help to acclimate. I know you’d hate to do it, but can you contain your older cat instead of new cat when you need to separate them? It might actually give your older cat some relief.
 
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kitkath

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Thank you both for taking the time to respond! Older boy is Chai, and younger guy is Oswald (Ossie for short) :)
I figure their reactions are pretty typical, I'm just nervous as they did have a fight. Most of their time together results in stare down/swishy tails, and Ossie going after Chai. I admit I didn't see the fight, they ran down the hall into the other room but I heard one of them make more of a meow/squeal and was hissy. By the time I got there, Ossie paused for one sec and I was able to grab him (thankfully he didn't go after me!) So no one was hurt but I'm super nervous of that happening again and it being worse :/

Ossie does play thankfully, he loves wand feather toys! I make sure to give him a few good play sessions per day, to do my best to tire him out. I'll definitely read that article for more tips though

We live in a 2 bedroom/2 bathroom place, so not a TON of room but it's decent sized. Ossie has his room, and I've been closing Chai in our bedroom when Ossie is out. I put Ossie to bed in the evening and then switch them for a few hours to the main area to be out with me during the day. I've started giving Ossie more time out with me and playing with him since he has the energy but Chai isn't loving being closed in :/ Orientals are vocal cats as we know, and Chai has started meowing when closed too :frown: Ossie is much more of a talker and he's incessant when he is done being closed in, but it's making me go crazy as I pretty much always have at least one of them meowing :cringe: It's a small price to pay if I can ever have them get along though!

We were making good progress with Chai feeling more brave around Ossie as long as I had Ossie on the harness and he couldn't go after Chai, but I dont' feel I can safely do that anymore after he freaked out and I'm sure has bad memories from that :/
 

vansX2

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Hey there, I need some help! I know this is a long read, I want to lay out the details to see if I've missed something, and seek any advice!)

I got a new cat almost 2 months ago and we've had a challenging go of things. My new cat is a fixed male 1 yr old oriental shorthair, and my older cat is a fixed male 13 yr old oriental shorthair. I have desperately wanted a second oriental but my living situation has not allowed it until now. My 13 yr old is a "young" old cat, looking at him you'd never know he was 13. We have stray outside kitties too that he's always been intrigued by, no issues with them so I thought I'd try a second kitty.

I was careful on choosing one I thought would fit in, a breeder posted a very friendly, docile cat who made friends with anyone she put him with. She had him as a breeder cat she was retiring. Unfortunately I don't have oriental shorthairs near me so the only option was to have him flown from the west coast to me. On the flight he broke out of his carrier (apparently that's never happened!) and once we had him he was understandably nervous. Once home, he got his own room that I put calming music/sound machine/new toys/hiding spots/etc. I "catified" his space as best as I could. He was very nervous for the first few days, was friendly to us but also attacked our hands/arms.

My older cat knew something was different but he never growled/hissed/showed any issues.(We've had marking issues with him in the past and I thought for sure we'd deal with that, and surprisingly we haven't!) I put a barrier so they coudln't even play under the door for awhile until I could get the new cat to the vets. I moved onto the scent exchange with rubbing a sock over both and letting them sniff the others, and then moved onto switching blankets. (and during this time the new cat got time out in our house, with my older cat closed in a bedroom) I saw no issues, both were rubbing the sock or disinterested, and both laid on the other's blankets. They were using communal space litter boxes no problem, and I had Feliway plug ins to help.

I moved onto sight after about 3 weeks, and used a tall glass shelf barrier in the door with a blanket draped over the top. They saw each other we gave treats and they honestly were mostly disinterested- just wanted the food. The new cat kept doing all he could to get out and kept jumping the barrier. This wasn't a great set up for them to see each other and I didn't see any issues so I moved onto letting them out together. They sniffed for awhile and my older cat walked away but the new cat would not leave him alone, he chased him, got all up in his face. My older cat was swatting/hissing at first and later meet ups he was growling. I tried toys to distract but the new cat was laser focused. I found a screen you can tape over doorways to allow them to safely see face to face in a better set up. Put it on the new cat's door and my older cat went up and was curious. The new cat hated this set up and did all he could to get out-climbed the screen a few times to escape, tried digging underneath, and was non stop yowling when he was "contained". He would jump at my older cat which of course he didn't like so he tended to not go by the doorway. I tried this for awhile but knew it wasn't a good set up.

I moved the screen to my older cat's door and it worked ok, my older cat was not as incessant to get out and they had some decent sniffs, some growling/hissing by my older cat if the new one was too close or jumping at him. I then started putting a harness on my new cat to allow them a safer meet and greet out in the house. He didn't love it but I was working with training him and he's very smart, was doing better. I saw slight improvement with the cats, my older cat gained some confidence knowing the new one couldn't jump/chase him and seemed content as long as he could walk around and do his things. The new cat would stare and swishy tail at my older cat, sometimes laying on my lap which I thought maybe claiming me? They had a few stare downs, which would turn into growling/hissing by my older cat if I let it go on, but most times I tried splitting them up.

One night after a few really good encounters, my new cat FREAKED out while wearing his harness :( he was hissing/uncontrollable and bit me hard when I tried to get it off) I'm unsure what set him off, I don't believe it was my other cat as they weren't even close. My new cat DOES have some fears and hasn't fully settled so he is jumpy and I think once realized he was "contained" he freaked out further. The next day he seemed totally fine and thankfully wasn't too upset.

This new cat's history is where its challenging :/ He was bred in Russia and my breeder got him around 6 months old, and I got him just after turning 1. She bred him once and retired him, said he came over with his sister and was fearful for a time when she first had him. But calmed down and fit in well with any of her cats. I've since put together that he is fearful about being contained. I would guess this stems from the Russia transport. He broke out of his cat carrier when being flown here, FLIPPED out in the carrier when we took him to the vet (hissing/rolling/scratching/anything to get out),did not like being closed in with the screen barrier on his door, and now couldn't handle the harness.

I'm just at a loss as I've fallen in love with him and don't want to give up, but I'm not sure what to do. I just am unsure what (if any) other options there are. I do believe they would learn to get on as long as my older cat could get used to him without being chased/followed/etc. But I can't think of any way to contain the newer one without stressing HIM out further.

And I"m not the best at reading body language, I can't decide if this is fear? a Dominance thing? they don't know how to communicate? My older cat would run away always but lately he's seemed a little more "strong" and initiates swatting/hissing/etc. when the new cat was sitting by him. They have stare downs and swishy tails, so maybe this just won't work out :/

Has anyone ever experienced anything like this? or have any insight that I may have missed? I always want to do what's best for my pets and am thinking it's best to find him a new home but wanted to exhaust every option first! Thank you so much for reading through
I see Chai being quite a bit older resents the intrusion of Ossie into his domain. Being the same breed really doesn't matter. I experienced a similar situation when I added a spayed 3 yr old Maine Coon into my household with a neutered 6yr. old Maine Coon. There was no affection from the beginning. This was the Males territory that had been violated by a unwanted Female. During their time together in the house they tolerated each other. There was never kiss and makeup. This perhaps maybe the same situation in your case.
 
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kitkath

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I see Chai being quite a bit older resents the intrusion of Ossie into his domain. Being the same breed really doesn't matter. I experienced a similar situation when I added a spayed 3 yr old Maine Coon into my household with a neutered 6yr. old Maine Coon. There was no affection from the beginning. This was the Males territory that had been violated by a unwanted Female. During their time together in the house they tolerated each other. There was never kiss and makeup. This perhaps maybe the same situation in your case.
I'm sure that's a big part of it :/ I'd be totally fine for my two to just tolerate each other but I"m unsure if it can get to that point even. How did your situation turn out, did you keep both?
 

vansX2

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I'm sure that's a big part of it :/ I'd be totally fine for my two to just tolerate each other but I"m unsure if it can get to that point even. How did your situation turn out, did you keep both?
Yes both cats remained in my household until they passed away. I learned from that experience not to combine Cats with ages far apart. My current Turkish Van's were both purchased as kittens in 2019. Miles at 10 months and Jackpot at 3 months. Their both neutered Show Alter Males. Miles whom is older was very compassionate when first meeting Jackpot. As Jackpot got older he became the dominant cat. Jackpot is much more outgoing. Miles is laid back. They get along pretty well. Often grooming each other. Plus sleeping together. Miles is the Black/White in my photo inset. Jackpot the Red/White.
 

ArtNJ

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Real fights tend to involve screaming or howling, so you may not have had one. In fact, with a playful younger cat bugging an older cat, it generally seems there are more problems when the older cats are too skittish to get physical. If they are ok getting physical, the younger cat tends to get the message better. There are exception of course, and real screaming/yowling rolling around fights are destructive of all progress. But I wouldn't necessarily assume you had one without more evidence.
 

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Hey there, I need some help! I know this is a long read, I want to lay out the details to see if I've missed something, and seek any advice!)

I got a new cat almost 2 months ago and we've had a challenging go of things. My new cat is a fixed male 1 yr old oriental shorthair, and my older cat is a fixed male 13 yr old oriental shorthair. I have desperately wanted a second oriental but my living situation has not allowed it until now. My 13 yr old is a "young" old cat, looking at him you'd never know he was 13. We have stray outside kitties too that he's always been intrigued by, no issues with them so I thought I'd try a second kitty.

I was careful on choosing one I thought would fit in, a breeder posted a very friendly, docile cat who made friends with anyone she put him with. She had him as a breeder cat she was retiring. Unfortunately I don't have oriental shorthairs near me so the only option was to have him flown from the west coast to me. On the flight he broke out of his carrier (apparently that's never happened!) and once we had him he was understandably nervous. Once home, he got his own room that I put calming music/sound machine/new toys/hiding spots/etc. I "catified" his space as best as I could. He was very nervous for the first few days, was friendly to us but also attacked our hands/arms.

My older cat knew something was different but he never growled/hissed/showed any issues.(We've had marking issues with him in the past and I thought for sure we'd deal with that, and surprisingly we haven't!) I put a barrier so they coudln't even play under the door for awhile until I could get the new cat to the vets. I moved onto the scent exchange with rubbing a sock over both and letting them sniff the others, and then moved onto switching blankets. (and during this time the new cat got time out in our house, with my older cat closed in a bedroom) I saw no issues, both were rubbing the sock or disinterested, and both laid on the other's blankets. They were using communal space litter boxes no problem, and I had Feliway plug ins to help.

I moved onto sight after about 3 weeks, and used a tall glass shelf barrier in the door with a blanket draped over the top. They saw each other we gave treats and they honestly were mostly disinterested- just wanted the food. The new cat kept doing all he could to get out and kept jumping the barrier. This wasn't a great set up for them to see each other and I didn't see any issues so I moved onto letting them out together. They sniffed for awhile and my older cat walked away but the new cat would not leave him alone, he chased him, got all up in his face. My older cat was swatting/hissing at first and later meet ups he was growling. I tried toys to distract but the new cat was laser focused. I found a screen you can tape over doorways to allow them to safely see face to face in a better set up. Put it on the new cat's door and my older cat went up and was curious. The new cat hated this set up and did all he could to get out-climbed the screen a few times to escape, tried digging underneath, and was non stop yowling when he was "contained". He would jump at my older cat which of course he didn't like so he tended to not go by the doorway. I tried this for awhile but knew it wasn't a good set up.

I moved the screen to my older cat's door and it worked ok, my older cat was not as incessant to get out and they had some decent sniffs, some growling/hissing by my older cat if the new one was too close or jumping at him. I then started putting a harness on my new cat to allow them a safer meet and greet out in the house. He didn't love it but I was working with training him and he's very smart, was doing better. I saw slight improvement with the cats, my older cat gained some confidence knowing the new one couldn't jump/chase him and seemed content as long as he could walk around and do his things. The new cat would stare and swishy tail at my older cat, sometimes laying on my lap which I thought maybe claiming me? They had a few stare downs, which would turn into growling/hissing by my older cat if I let it go on, but most times I tried splitting them up.

One night after a few really good encounters, my new cat FREAKED out while wearing his harness :( he was hissing/uncontrollable and bit me hard when I tried to get it off) I'm unsure what set him off, I don't believe it was my other cat as they weren't even close. My new cat DOES have some fears and hasn't fully settled so he is jumpy and I think once realized he was "contained" he freaked out further. The next day he seemed totally fine and thankfully wasn't too upset.

This new cat's history is where its challenging :/ He was bred in Russia and my breeder got him around 6 months old, and I got him just after turning 1. She bred him once and retired him, said he came over with his sister and was fearful for a time when she first had him. But calmed down and fit in well with any of her cats. I've since put together that he is fearful about being contained. I would guess this stems from the Russia transport. He broke out of his cat carrier when being flown here, FLIPPED out in the carrier when we took him to the vet (hissing/rolling/scratching/anything to get out),did not like being closed in with the screen barrier on his door, and now couldn't handle the harness.

I'm just at a loss as I've fallen in love with him and don't want to give up, but I'm not sure what to do. I just am unsure what (if any) other options there are. I do believe they would learn to get on as long as my older cat could get used to him without being chased/followed/etc. But I can't think of any way to contain the newer one without stressing HIM out further.

And I"m not the best at reading body language, I can't decide if this is fear? a Dominance thing? they don't know how to communicate? My older cat would run away always but lately he's seemed a little more "strong" and initiates swatting/hissing/etc. when the new cat was sitting by him. They have stare downs and swishy tails, so maybe this just won't work out :/

Has anyone ever experienced anything like this? or have any insight that I may have missed? I always want to do what's best for my pets and am thinking it's best to find him a new home but wanted to exhaust every option first! Thank you so much for reading through
Hello! I feel your pain. I have a 11 year old resident cat that I rescued at age 7. Macy Green is the sweetest, most well behaved, social, loveable kitty and is was declawed in front when I got her. I have always wanted 2 cats and was unsure if Macy would accept a new cat in the house but I felt if I did not try I would never know. I finally adopted another rescue, also declawed, female, age 2 and come to find out a very sweet temperament to me but shy and hides if others come over. I named her Rina Rose.

I followed all the intro introductions, safe room, doors, feeding, cracking the door, switching spaces etc. I even have tried Feliway spray, plug ins and even recently CBD for cats. Bottom line, I could not play the "intro" dance anymore and let them together. Rina pursues Macy and will not leave her alone either. I'm not sure if she is wanting to play or antagonizing her... Macy gets up on a stool and they fight because Rina comes to the foot of the stool. Macy tends to steer clear of her but here comes Rina again. I have separated them again... I think I did not do a good job of switching their locations so I am beginning again with one cat upstairs and one down and then alternating days and nights. I am feeding them at the door again... Wish me luck and we can commiserate together.

I feel bad for your cat that got out in the plane's baggage area. That had to be terrifying and so traumatic. I'm sure she will need a great deal of love and time but will get through this with you. I pray that we can at least get to a monumental place of living cohesively in all my space without growling, hissing and chasing. It seems we are both in for the long haul but I am not giving up yet!
 
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kitkath

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Hello! I feel your pain. I have a 11 year old resident cat that I rescued at age 7. Macy Green is the sweetest, most well behaved, social, loveable kitty and is was declawed in front when I got her. I have always wanted 2 cats and was unsure if Macy would accept a new cat in the house but I felt if I did not try I would never know. I finally adopted another rescue, also declawed, female, age 2 and come to find out a very sweet temperament to me but shy and hides if others come over. I named her Rina Rose.

I followed all the intro introductions, safe room, doors, feeding, cracking the door, switching spaces etc. I even have tried Feliway spray, plug ins and even recently CBD for cats. Bottom line, I could not play the "intro" dance anymore and let them together. Rina pursues Macy and will not leave her alone either. I'm not sure if she is wanting to play or antagonizing her... Macy gets up on a stool and they fight because Rina comes to the foot of the stool. Macy tends to steer clear of her but here comes Rina again. I have separated them again... I think I did not do a good job of switching their locations so I am beginning again with one cat upstairs and one down and then alternating days and nights. I am feeding them at the door again... Wish me luck and we can commiserate together.

I feel bad for your cat that got out in the plane's baggage area. That had to be terrifying and so traumatic. I'm sure she will need a great deal of love and time but will get through this with you. I pray that we can at least get to a monumental place of living cohesively in all my space without growling, hissing and chasing. It seems we are both in for the long haul but I am not giving up yet!

Thank you so much for posting! definitely helps me not feel so alone :) I'm with you! I have wondered ever since I've had Chai if he would accept a new cat, so really wanted to try.

How are your girls doing? I've backed off and just have the screen up between my boys (but have it on Chai's door, as Ossie goes too crazy if it's on his door :/) They sniff and honestly leave each other alone, but if Ossie stands up on it or is too close Chai will be hissy at him. Today Ossie jumped at it when Chai was hissing at him :/ I know I need to try them out together again, but I'm so nervous a fight will break out. But I'm not sure how long I can keep this on like this. Neither cat likes being closed in a room, but I just don't know if I can safely have them out together :(
 
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kitkath

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Hello! I feel your pain. I have a 11 year old resident cat that I rescued at age 7. Macy Green is the sweetest, most well behaved, social, loveable kitty and is was declawed in front when I got her. I have always wanted 2 cats and was unsure if Macy would accept a new cat in the house but I felt if I did not try I would never know. I finally adopted another rescue, also declawed, female, age 2 and come to find out a very sweet temperament to me but shy and hides if others come over. I named her Rina Rose.

I followed all the intro introductions, safe room, doors, feeding, cracking the door, switching spaces etc. I even have tried Feliway spray, plug ins and even recently CBD for cats. Bottom line, I could not play the "intro" dance anymore and let them together. Rina pursues Macy and will not leave her alone either. I'm not sure if she is wanting to play or antagonizing her... Macy gets up on a stool and they fight because Rina comes to the foot of the stool. Macy tends to steer clear of her but here comes Rina again. I have separated them again... I think I did not do a good job of switching their locations so I am beginning again with one cat upstairs and one down and then alternating days and nights. I am feeding them at the door again... Wish me luck and we can commiserate together.

I feel bad for your cat that got out in the plane's baggage area. That had to be terrifying and so traumatic. I'm sure she will need a great deal of love and time but will get through this with you. I pray that we can at least get to a monumental place of living cohesively in all my space without growling, hissing and chasing. It seems we are both in for the long haul but I am not giving up yet!
Oh! and thankfully when Ossie was on the plane and broke out of his carrier, he was riding in the cabin with a flight nanny. She sent pics and he was happily curled up on her lap for the duration of the flight. I do feel bad though for how scared he must've been to break through the carrier though :eek: when we took him to the vet, he flipped out :/ swirling around, hissing, clawing like crazy and when he was out of the carrier he was fine!

I have a feeling it's some kind of ptsd or something from his flight over from Russia, the breeder mentioned cats can stay in their carriers for 2 days :eek: it's so crazy! and he did have his sister with him when coming from Russia. So I'm beginning to think he had to relive that trauma but not with another cat friend, and when he came to me, I had him separate from my cat for 3ish weeks, so now I think he's all "I want a friend!" to Chai and Chai is like "nope, hate you!" so it's a hard mix :/
 

BoaztheAdventureCat

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I wonder if Oswald would benefit by you bringing home another cat his age? Oswald has some energy to burn and sometimes a human playing with him just isn't enough.

Please don't wait and "let the cats work it out". The staring, tail swishing, laser-focused constant stalking from Oswald are all the same signs that my cat Boaz displays whenever my brother's cat Asher enters the room. These are all very bad signs that a fight is about to happen. A fight has broken out many times following one or more of the signs that Boaz displays.

Chai is the only other cat for Oswald to focus on and his energy is clearly too much for Chai. Plus, both cats are males. I've read that as a general rule, cats of the opposite sex get along best and I've found this to be the case for my family's 4 cats.

I've had to keep Boaz separated from my dad's girl cat Posie since their relationship fell apart, but I'm working hard at getting them re-introduced again. Before I had to separate Boaz from her, Posie did a good job of keeping the boys in line. Boaz and Asher had another cat to focus on besides each other.

My hope is that when I'm finally able to bring Posie into the picture with Boaz again, that her presence will help referee the boys and their energy.

Sometimes, in my opinion, the best cat combination is two boys and a girl. Boy cats, as a general rule, play more roughly than female cats, so the rough play from the boy might be too much for the girl cat. Too much rough play over time can result in the relationship getting highly damaged. This is where another boy cat to play with helps a good deal.

However, as I'm coming to learn, two boy cats alone may compete for status and territory. Adding a girl cat in with the two boys can put a stop to the competing. Girl cats tend to be, in general, more dominant than boy cats.

In the wild, outdoor cats usually live in one of two ways: in a colony, or usually solitary. Most of the time, a colony consists of a mother cat and some of her offspring that have chosen not to leave. Most solitary outdoor cats are males. Males hang around the edge of a cat colony in hopes of winning a female in heat. The rest of the time, the males generally keep to themselves. I think this is why female cats seem to have a knack for maintaining law and order in a group of cats.

Maybe you should consider adding a female cat to your group?
 

BoaztheAdventureCat

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Hello! I feel your pain. I have a 11 year old resident cat that I rescued at age 7. Macy Green is the sweetest, most well behaved, social, loveable kitty and is was declawed in front when I got her. I have always wanted 2 cats and was unsure if Macy would accept a new cat in the house but I felt if I did not try I would never know. I finally adopted another rescue, also declawed, female, age 2 and come to find out a very sweet temperament to me but shy and hides if others come over. I named her Rina Rose.

I followed all the intro introductions, safe room, doors, feeding, cracking the door, switching spaces etc. I even have tried Feliway spray, plug ins and even recently CBD for cats. Bottom line, I could not play the "intro" dance anymore and let them together. Rina pursues Macy and will not leave her alone either. I'm not sure if she is wanting to play or antagonizing her... Macy gets up on a stool and they fight because Rina comes to the foot of the stool. Macy tends to steer clear of her but here comes Rina again. I have separated them again... I think I did not do a good job of switching their locations so I am beginning again with one cat upstairs and one down and then alternating days and nights. I am feeding them at the door again... Wish me luck and we can commiserate together.

I feel bad for your cat that got out in the plane's baggage area. That had to be terrifying and so traumatic. I'm sure she will need a great deal of love and time but will get through this with you. I pray that we can at least get to a monumental place of living cohesively in all my space without growling, hissing and chasing. It seems we are both in for the long haul but I am not giving up yet!
Do you think it would help any if you brought home a male cat the same age as Rina Rose? It might give her something else to focus on besides Macy.
 
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kitkath

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I wonder if Oswald would benefit by you bringing home another cat his age? Oswald has some energy to burn and sometimes a human playing with him just isn't enough.

Please don't wait and "let the cats work it out". The staring, tail swishing, laser-focused constant stalking from Oswald are all the same signs that my cat Boaz displays whenever my brother's cat Asher enters the room. These are all very bad signs that a fight is about to happen. A fight has broken out many times following one or more of the signs that Boaz displays.

Chai is the only other cat for Oswald to focus on and his energy is clearly too much for Chai. Plus, both cats are males. I've read that as a general rule, cats of the opposite sex get along best and I've found this to be the case for my family's 4 cats.

I've had to keep Boaz separated from my dad's girl cat Posie since their relationship fell apart, but I'm working hard at getting them re-introduced again. Before I had to separate Boaz from her, Posie did a good job of keeping the boys in line. Boaz and Asher had another cat to focus on besides each other.

My hope is that when I'm finally able to bring Posie into the picture with Boaz again, that her presence will help referee the boys and their energy.

Sometimes, in my opinion, the best cat combination is two boys and a girl. Boy cats, as a general rule, play more roughly than female cats, so the rough play from the boy might be too much for the girl cat. Too much rough play over time can result in the relationship getting highly damaged. This is where another boy cat to play with helps a good deal.

However, as I'm coming to learn, two boy cats alone may compete for status and territory. Adding a girl cat in with the two boys can put a stop to the competing. Girl cats tend to be, in general, more dominant than boy cats.

In the wild, outdoor cats usually live in one of two ways: in a colony, or usually solitary. Most of the time, a colony consists of a mother cat and some of her offspring that have chosen not to leave. Most solitary outdoor cats are males. Males hang around the edge of a cat colony in hopes of winning a female in heat. The rest of the time, the males generally keep to themselves. I think this is why female cats seem to have a knack for maintaining law and order in a group of cats.

Maybe you should consider adding a female cat to your group?
Thank you so much for saying all of that, I have wondered that same thing! Unfortunately I don't think we're at a place to get a third cat, we live in a 2 bedroom/2 bathroom place so wouldn't be able to happily keep a 3rd cat separate while we wait on introductions again :/ And it took everything to convince my husband to get a 2nd cat :p

But I believe you're absolutely right. I've kept the boys separate, one out at a time and putting up the screen on Chai's door at times so they can see each other. But I've noticed Oswald will sit behind the wall and look like he wants to pounce on Chai, or on the scratching post high up just staring at him. I have wondered on the fighting for territory too as Chai is very bonded to me and since I spend most time with Oswald between my husband and I, I think he's bonding to me too :/ so I would imagine they would probably fight over me.

I've had a feeling now that the best thing will be to rehome Oswald, I'm just having a very difficult time as I've fallen in love with him :( He's the perfect cat for me minus the fact he doesn't get on with Chai :/ The breeder said he was totally perfect with all of her cats, so I"m wondering if he'd do better with multiple cat friends and not just one male. Just stinks when things don't work out as you hoped :/ I'm absolutely about doing what's best for the animals over me though, even if it's going to be difficult
 

yemiya

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Hey there, I need some help! I know this is a long read, I want to lay out the details to see if I've missed something, and seek any advice!)

I got a new cat almost 2 months ago and we've had a challenging go of things. My new cat is a fixed male 1 yr old oriental shorthair, and my older cat is a fixed male 13 yr old oriental shorthair. I have desperately wanted a second oriental but my living situation has not allowed it until now. My 13 yr old is a "young" old cat, looking at him you'd never know he was 13. We have stray outside kitties too that he's always been intrigued by, no issues with them so I thought I'd try a second kitty.

I was careful on choosing one I thought would fit in, a breeder posted a very friendly, docile cat who made friends with anyone she put him with. She had him as a breeder cat she was retiring. Unfortunately I don't have oriental shorthairs near me so the only option was to have him flown from the west coast to me. On the flight he broke out of his carrier (apparently that's never happened!) and once we had him he was understandably nervous. Once home, he got his own room that I put calming music/sound machine/new toys/hiding spots/etc. I "catified" his space as best as I could. He was very nervous for the first few days, was friendly to us but also attacked our hands/arms.

My older cat knew something was different but he never growled/hissed/showed any issues.(We've had marking issues with him in the past and I thought for sure we'd deal with that, and surprisingly we haven't!) I put a barrier so they coudln't even play under the door for awhile until I could get the new cat to the vets. I moved onto the scent exchange with rubbing a sock over both and letting them sniff the others, and then moved onto switching blankets. (and during this time the new cat got time out in our house, with my older cat closed in a bedroom) I saw no issues, both were rubbing the sock or disinterested, and both laid on the other's blankets. They were using communal space litter boxes no problem, and I had Feliway plug ins to help.

I moved onto sight after about 3 weeks, and used a tall glass shelf barrier in the door with a blanket draped over the top. They saw each other we gave treats and they honestly were mostly disinterested- just wanted the food. The new cat kept doing all he could to get out and kept jumping the barrier. This wasn't a great set up for them to see each other and I didn't see any issues so I moved onto letting them out together. They sniffed for awhile and my older cat walked away but the new cat would not leave him alone, he chased him, got all up in his face. My older cat was swatting/hissing at first and later meet ups he was growling. I tried toys to distract but the new cat was laser focused. I found a screen you can tape over doorways to allow them to safely see face to face in a better set up. Put it on the new cat's door and my older cat went up and was curious. The new cat hated this set up and did all he could to get out-climbed the screen a few times to escape, tried digging underneath, and was non stop yowling when he was "contained". He would jump at my older cat which of course he didn't like so he tended to not go by the doorway. I tried this for awhile but knew it wasn't a good set up.

I moved the screen to my older cat's door and it worked ok, my older cat was not as incessant to get out and they had some decent sniffs, some growling/hissing by my older cat if the new one was too close or jumping at him. I then started putting a harness on my new cat to allow them a safer meet and greet out in the house. He didn't love it but I was working with training him and he's very smart, was doing better. I saw slight improvement with the cats, my older cat gained some confidence knowing the new one couldn't jump/chase him and seemed content as long as he could walk around and do his things. The new cat would stare and swishy tail at my older cat, sometimes laying on my lap which I thought maybe claiming me? They had a few stare downs, which would turn into growling/hissing by my older cat if I let it go on, but most times I tried splitting them up.

One night after a few really good encounters, my new cat FREAKED out while wearing his harness :( he was hissing/uncontrollable and bit me hard when I tried to get it off) I'm unsure what set him off, I don't believe it was my other cat as they weren't even close. My new cat DOES have some fears and hasn't fully settled so he is jumpy and I think once realized he was "contained" he freaked out further. The next day he seemed totally fine and thankfully wasn't too upset.

This new cat's history is where its challenging :/ He was bred in Russia and my breeder got him around 6 months old, and I got him just after turning 1. She bred him once and retired him, said he came over with his sister and was fearful for a time when she first had him. But calmed down and fit in well with any of her cats. I've since put together that he is fearful about being contained. I would guess this stems from the Russia transport. He broke out of his cat carrier when being flown here, FLIPPED out in the carrier when we took him to the vet (hissing/rolling/scratching/anything to get out),did not like being closed in with the screen barrier on his door, and now couldn't handle the harness.

I'm just at a loss as I've fallen in love with him and don't want to give up, but I'm not sure what to do. I just am unsure what (if any) other options there are. I do believe they would learn to get on as long as my older cat could get used to him without being chased/followed/etc. But I can't think of any way to contain the newer one without stressing HIM out further.

And I"m not the best at reading body language, I can't decide if this is fear? a Dominance thing? they don't know how to communicate? My older cat would run away always but lately he's seemed a little more "strong" and initiates swatting/hissing/etc. when the new cat was sitting by him. They have stare downs and swishy tails, so maybe this just won't work out :/

Has anyone ever experienced anything like this? or have any insight that I may have missed? I always want to do what's best for my pets and am thinking it's best to find him a new home but wanted to exhaust every option first! Thank you so much for reading through
Check out Jackson Galaxy videos on YouTube or Animal Planet---addresses this issue, as well as in his book, Cat Mojo.
 

yemiya

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Check out Jackson Galaxy videos on YouTube or Animal Planet---addresses this issue, as well as in his book, Cat Mojo.

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