Introducing Cats - Logistics Questions.

calicosrspecial

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I think that is absolutely fine. You did a great job with it. I am so glad she did well today. It is better to be safe and to check in with the vet.

They had a good amount of time together, they had a positive encounter, and she didn't have any ill affect from the encounter. I call that a great day. I think you did exactly the right thing.

We'll see what the vet thinks and says and see how best to progress. I don't think there is any harm or chance of negativity from limiting the exposure. Just try to make it as positive as possible for each of them when separated. I know they love each other and their encounters and humans have a hard time replacing that but the human interactions are very positive as well and should be able to tide them over. 2 hours is a good amount of time together so I am not worried at all.

Good job!!
 
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Twylasmom

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They have already spent two hours together today, much of it without me being involved or providing minor interventions. Twyla woke up feeling great and went and hid so I couldn't shut her in the bedroom, so I just let Hooper out. They were both in playful moods and spent about 45 minutes upstairs together, often in Hooper's room. I ended it on a high note by just shutting the bedroom door at a point where Hooper ran out. Still trying to limit Twyla's activity a bit until after her vet visit so didn't want it to get to the point where they start to play rougher. Am planning to give them more time together later today.

I do have a question about post vet visit interaction. Twyla will obviously smell of vet and will most likely be feeling a bit stressed from the visit. Is it better to keep them apart the rest of the day so she can relax and get the vet smell off so Hooper won't freak out? I don't want any incidents that might cause a setback. One of my previous cats always freaked when the other came back from the vet.
 

calicosrspecial

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Sounds like a great encounter. I think you did the right thing, great job.

It is so funny how they love each other. So cool.

That is a good question. It could be that Hooper could help ease the stress of the vet visit or that Twyla's stress could cause Hooper to be more on edge. We just don't know. Also, changing routines or limiting access to Twyla that he would have had could cause unease. I will say I don't think any setback at this point would be anything more than a blip. They love each other and are intro'd so any blip will be easy to overcome. My sense is Hooper would be fine with the scents judging by how confident he seems.

If you sense there might be an issue then you can use something positive to distract them and then play with them or feed them or something positive to ease the negativity that may have been felt.

When they do get together (whether after the vet visit or after some time apart) I would use food or treats or something positive to help make things seem good. Also, stay as calm and confident around them so they can take on their emotions.

I don't think you have to worry. Even if I am wrong and it doesn't go well we can get over it as they are in a great place. At this point I am highly confident we can handle anything and they will be fine.
 

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Twyla will obviously smell of vet and will most likely be feeling a bit stressed from the visit.
You don't want to take Hooper along? That could help concerning the vet smell.

Musicforcats . Com or Relax My Cat might be useful for her when she gets back home.
 
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Twylasmom

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You don't want to take Hooper along? That could help concerning the vet smell.

Musicforcats . Com or Relax My Cat might be useful for her when she gets back home.
I think it would do more harm than good where Hooper is concerned. He is so scared of other people that I think it would just agitate him.
 

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They have already spent two hours together today, much of it without me being involved or providing minor interventions. Twyla woke up feeling great and went and hid so I couldn't shut her in the bedroom, so I just let Hooper out. They were both in playful moods and spent about 45 minutes upstairs together, often in Hooper's room.
I'm so glad that Twyla is feeling better.

Can they tell at a Vet's office, if her asthma is acting up,....or if it's a furball?
Do you have to bring in some video of her coughing, for the Vets to determine that?
And how was Twyla the last time you took her to the Vet?

(I swear in the past, I sometimes got more nervous, than my animals were...and now just try to relax, breathe,....write up all the questions I want to ask the Vet ahead of time, and try not to worry about them too much. It's just really hard to do this when they were ill.)
I do have a question about post vet visit interaction. Twyla will obviously smell of vet and will most likely be feeling a bit stressed from the visit. Is it better to keep them apart the rest of the day so she can relax and get the vet smell off so Hooper won't freak out? I don't want any incidents that might cause a setback. One of my previous cats always freaked when the other came back from the vet.
I was wondering this, too, about how Hooper would act post vet visit ...only because your Hooper seems like a sensitive, attentive little cat. From what you said about Hooper being frightened with music/radio or new people, ...then he might get initially frightened of Twyla's scent when she returns from the vet. But maybe not, since he also adores her so much.

Cats may get stressed at the Vet, adrenaline, fear, .... so add that scent, mixed with vet office smells, ...and the stress of getting there....then I'd think it's okay to bring Twyla in, and allow her to rest for a bit.
I'd just go according to how Twyla seems to be acting afterwards.
Knowing her, she'll just want to rest for a bit, then run around afterwards.
I wonder if Twyla will be more grumpy post vet, or just happy to be home. It's a coin toss.

Remember to bring a blanket of hers, or towel from home, and extra paper towels or plastic bags, in case she has to relieve herself in the carrier, or vomits.
Once Twyla gets home, just rub her down again with her favourite cat blanket, blanket or towel, so she relaxes and feels the comfort.

I hope everything goes well for Twyla, you, and Hooper, on Monday.
Smooth sailing vibes, meaning mega health vibes for Twyla, sent your way.
 
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Twylasmom

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I have a list!

It's her mid-year geriatric check up so she doesn't have to get any shots, but she is due for blood work. Her last check up was good, with her weight not budging at all and all her vitals good. She did have a bit of age-related lenticular sclerosis in her eyes. I am going to ask about that because she does squint in bright sunlight and has teary eyes on occasion. When she had her first bout of asthma over a year ago it was diagnosed by X-ray and in a follow up X-ray her lungs looked clear. So we will start by just having them listen to her lungs. She tends to get a flare up about every 4 months and they give me enough prednisolone that I can start her on it at the first sign without having to contact them. I just hesitated this time because I wasn't sure it was her asthma, and I haven't observed any shortness of breath or coughing in 48 hours.

I am curious if she has lost any weight. She has been much more active since Hooper arrived and I also switched her to FF pates as opposed to the "grilled" versions with gravy. Since I add water to her food to ward off constipation the pates work better for that, as well as being a better choice.
A slight weight loss wouldn't be a problem and could be a positive in regards to both her asthma and her arthritis.

She hates the carrier and the car ride, but is pretty good at the vet, except when they trim her nails.
 

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It's her mid-year geriatric check up so she doesn't have to get any shots, but she is due for blood work. Her last check up was good, with her weight not budging at all and all her vitals good. She did have a bit of age-related lenticular sclerosis in her eyes. I am going to ask about that because she does squint in bright sunlight and has teary eyes on occasion.
Thanks for this info.
I've never heard of age-related lenticular sclerosis of the eyes in cats, (so just googled it).
(I always thought that my previous senior cats and dogs were just developing cataracts, since none of my Vets ever mentioned lenticular sclerosis.)
You sound like you have a really good Vet, and one which is very thorough, as well.
When she had her first bout of asthma over a year ago it was diagnosed by X-ray and in a follow up X-ray her lungs looked clear. So we will start by just having them listen to her lungs. She tends to get a flare up about every 4 months and they give me enough prednisolone that I can start her on it at the first sign without having to contact them. I just hesitated this time because I wasn't sure it was her asthma, and I haven't observed any shortness of breath or coughing in 48 hours.
(I so wish that if I ever have to come back as a cat, I'd find someone like you, to be my cat-guardian.) :bluepaw:
Yay,...to not having observed any shortness of breath or coughing in Twyla. :cheerleader:
She hates the carrier and the car ride, but is pretty good at the vet, except when they trim her nails.
(My female cat is like this too, in the car, and will meow all the way there. My male cat is quiet.
I tried turning on the radio...that didn't help the car ride. Talking to her, ...no help either.)

Ah, yes, trimming the nails. Have you ever noticed that they always have some extremely docile cat on youtube videos, when they show 'how to trim a cat's nails', ...but in reality, that's not the case.
I would really like to see a Vet, have a regular cat on a youtube video, and then watch their technique and tricks/hints.

Hoping that Hooper is chilled and peaceful on Monday, when Twyla comes home, and that Twyla does not attempt to try out her newly trimmed nails on Hooper, ...just because she has to flex them, and who better to flex them on.
Here's to you having an all around peaceful Monday.

Try the 'vanilla extract trick' if there are any problems.
I've read that it works, but have not tried it myself.
 
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Twylasmom

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We are back from the vet. As suspected her asthma has flared up again so she is back on a course of pred. The vet detected some noise in her lungs, though it was a challenge as Twyla kept meowing throughout the exam. Her respiration rate was really high, though part of that was definitely the stress of the visit. Her blood pressure was normal. Unfortunately we couldn't get blood or trim her nails. She was not cooperative at all, plus my vet (who normally does the blood draw and the trim) is recovering from hand and wrist surgery so the techs had to try and were unsuccessful. So in order not to stress her out further we decided to delay for six months and do gabapentin prior to the next visit.

I thought that Twyla might have lost weight due to her increased activity level but apparently sneaking kitten food and using treats for praise balanced that out and she actually gained about half a pound! Oops!

I am giving her some quiet time in the bedroom for a few hours and then may try and give them some together time a little later. Vet said they should be fine together but to watch if she overdoes it.

We talked about the Aerokat for her asthma. I have one and had tried training Twyla on it before without much success, even with just the mouthpiece, but I am going to start working on that again. She just hates anything near her face. We also talked about regularly monitoring her respiration rate so I might be able to diagnose a recurrence before the coughing starts. Twyla is easy to pill, so that's a positive. I know the inhaler is the best option long term and am not concerned about the cost, but am worried that I am not going to be able to acclimate her to it.
 

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Thank you for the update. Very helpful.

Twyla probably gained some muscle mass as well. :)

Yes, an inhaler could be a challenge. Just please be careful so you aren't hurt in anyway.

Let us know how Hooper responds to her visit and how they do.

Just an FYI, for some reason I am not being notified on updates on this thread so if I fail to respond that would the the reason.
 
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I tried to give them some time together but it was obvious Twyla wasn't in the mood so it was only about twenty minutes. However, it wasn't bad. She was on my bed in her bed and Hooper jumped up and they greeted each other. It even looked like he was trying to groom her, though he was licking her in the wrong direction. So that was pretty great. She didn't get up and he wandered a bit and then repeated the greeting behavior, so no bad reaction to vet smells. Once she got up and started moving around she would growl if he got close and didn't want to engage in play. They did slap a little. She did venture upstairs to check for food but once again growled if he got too close. So once she wandered back to her room I closed the door.

She wasn't her usual alert selfI think she just needs to sleep it off a bit and adjust to being back on the pred.

I do feel like I tried to put them together too soon, but hopefully this isn't a setback in their progress.
 

calicosrspecial

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Oh no, I think that was absolutely fine and I think there are positives here.

Hooper did not have a negative reaction to her. Positive.

Hooper groomed her. Positive

Twyla was not negative to him as he jumped up then groomed her. Positive

She growled and he respected that. Positive.

She had a stressful day so it is understandable.

I don't think this is at all a setback in any progress and I think we actually learned some things (that were really positive). I honestly think we are well, well past the risk of any important setbacks. They are intro'd, no question in my mind.

I think you did the right thing and I would say it was positive. Don't worry, all will be fine.
 
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Oh no, I think that was absolutely fine and I think there are positives here.

Hooper did not have a negative reaction to her. Positive.

Hooper groomed her. Positive

Twyla was not negative to him as he jumped up then groomed her. Positive

She growled and he respected that. Positive.

She had a stressful day so it is understandable.

I don't think this is at all a setback in any progress and I think we actually learned some things (that were really positive). I honestly think we are well, well past the risk of any important setbacks. They are intro'd, no question in my mind.

I think you did the right thing and I would say it was positive. Don't worry, all will be fine.
It was the sweetest moment they had ever had when he was trying to groom her. :redheartpump: She hasn't really wanted to get out of her bed except to eat today so I have just been leaving her alone. I think her back leg where they tried to get blood was a little sore.
 

calicosrspecial

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"It was the sweetest moment they had ever had when he was trying to groom her. :redheartpump: " - I can actually feel how heartwarming it is. It is those moments that are just so amazing. It is so incredible to see the love. SPECIAL moment!!!

:( Poor Twyla. That sadly happens. Just give her some rest and love and she should be back to herself soon.

You have done such an amazing job with them. And Twyla and Hooper have been just perfect. I am so proud of you all!!! :purr:
 
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Someone is feeling much better today! She was actually instigating some mischief and rather than taking opportunities to go nap would keep coming back for more. When I put Hooper in his room with his treat for their timeout, because I thought she wanted a break, she had actually come up the stairs and was waiting outside of his room. This after a couple of moments of very rough play (Hooper pounced on her back a couple of times resulting in some very heated wrestling matches, I am really not a fan of that behavior). They had about 45 minutes this morning and two hours this afternoon. Both had moments of calmly watching the other one play, or both would pick locations within sight of one another and hang out. They haven't gotten to the point where they will nap in each other's presence yet and are not good at leaving one alone when they want to nap.

I am still being a little more cautious than I was before Twyla had her asthma attack so have eyes on one cat (usually Hooper) the majority of the time. And once again I called the timeout because things were getting crazy. I've noticed that it gets that way when they start to tire out but don't want to call it quits, because they both pass out almost immediately afterward.

Twyla is doing great and her resting respiratory rate is perfect. The pred makes her even more hungry than usual, so I am diligent in picking up Hooper's food when they are both out.
 

calicosrspecial

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So good to hear she is feeling better!!!

Wow, Twyla!!!

"She was actually instigating some mischief and rather than taking opportunities to go nap would keep coming back for more. When I put Hooper in his room with his treat for their timeout, because I thought she wanted a break, she had actually come up the stairs and was waiting outside of his room." - This she loves him??? :itslove: That is so awesome!!!

"This after a couple of moments of very rough play (Hooper pounced on her back a couple of times resulting in some very heated wrestling matches, I am really not a fan of that behavior)." - No, agreed because of her arthritis. Sounds like she doesn't mind too much though. Hooper is being a boy so we need Twyla to tell him when it gets unacceptable. She is you can help her and distract him if at all possible.

"They had about 45 minutes this morning and two hours this afternoon." - WOW, that is great!! :hyper:😻:yess:

"Both had moments of calmly watching the other one play, or both would pick locations within sight of one another and hang out." - This is fantastic!! :clap2:

"They haven't gotten to the point where they will nap in each other's presence yet" - Probably because they are too excited t be in each other's presence.

"and are not good at leaving one alone when they want to nap." - Nope it is like a kid at Disneyland. There is plenty of time to sleep later!! In the meantime "let's have fun!".

"I am still being a little more cautious than I was before Twyla had her asthma attack so have eyes on one cat (usually Hooper) the majority of the time. And once again I called the timeout because things were getting crazy." - I think that is perfectly fine and good to do.

"I've noticed that it gets that way when they start to tire out but don't want to call it quits, because they both pass out almost immediately afterward." - Yes, they can't resist. They sure do love it.

"Twyla is doing great and her resting respiratory rate is perfect. The pred makes her even more hungry than usual, so I am diligent in picking up Hooper's food when they are both out." - That is great, I am so glad she is doing so well. Yes, pred will do that sadly. :( Luckily they are doing so well that taking food away will not cause a setback. Especially if you do it when she is not around (seeing you take the food away).

Great update!! So glad to here things are going so well. I am so happy to hear Twyla is feeling better (really it sounds like she is back to normal which is great!).

Keep up the great work.
 
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Feeling a little bit discouraged this morning. Their wrestling matches seem to be getting more intense and this morning Hooper pulled a tuft of fur off of Twyla. I worry that he might hurt her (whereas before she seemed to always have the upper hand). I don't know if she just isn't feeling her best self right now and he can sense it or what. I know she is usually not as energetic when she is on the steroids.

I try to prevent him from pouncing on her but he is fast. He had a good half hour of super energetic play while she was hiding upstairs but it didn't seem to help much. As soon as he saw her he went right after her. Will this behavior ever end?

Any advice?

ETA: She didn't seem overly upset after the big brawl. He ran out of the bedroom and I shut the door and she went right at it and they swatted paws underneath with her growling some. But I am giving her a few hours of quiet time in the bedroom.
 
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calicosrspecial

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Sometimes tufts will come out by accident.

How did she act after this?

I don't get a sense Hooper wants to hurt her intentionally. Accidentally it is possible but it would not be on purpose.

"I don't know if she just isn't feeling her best self right now and he can sense it or what." - It is possible but I would have to see it. I get every indication Hooper LOVES her so I just don't see bad intent. It wouldn't switch so quickly.

"I try to prevent him from pouncing on her but he is fast." - Yes, it is hard to avoid.

"He had a good half hour of super energetic play while she was hiding upstairs but it didn't seem to help much." - What do you mean by hiding? Would she really choose to "hide" there? Or was she just hanging out up there?

"As soon as he saw her he went right after her." - That is normal. He loves to play with her.

"Will this behavior ever end?" - Yes, it will lessen. But they love playing with each other. Yesterday Twyla initiated. That tells em she is enjoys it. (If I am getting the correct picture but I am judging by how they behave after and also all the hanging out, grooming, etc.). So I think my picture of their relationship is correct.

Also, remember, our emotions have a big impact on the cat's emotions as cats take on our emotions. I can sense you are a little frustrated, stressed, nervous. Just try to stay as cam and confident around them as possible. I know you are worried about Twyla and rightly so but watch how she behaves after. If there was a problem she would be avoiding him, having bad body language, and hiding. You would see a difference in her. I don;t get a sense we are seeing that (though she was sore from the vet visit and the pred may not be allowing her to be at her normal best).

I honestly believe they are well past any risk point. They are successfully intro'd. Maybe just give Twyla a break from him and occupy his time with play etc. I know a human can't replace a cat friend but he will be fine. And watch for any change in Twyla (body language, actions).

Don;t worry, I truly believe they totally love each other so I don't see anything to really worry about. Twyla will tell Hooper if things are too rough/dangerous etc. But for now, just maybe keep their time together reduced until Twyla gets back to herself.
 
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Sometimes tufts will come out by accident.

How did she act after this?

I don't get a sense Hooper wants to hurt her intentionally. Accidentally it is possible but it would not be on purpose.

"I don't know if she just isn't feeling her best self right now and he can sense it or what." - It is possible but I would have to see it. I get every indication Hooper LOVES her so I just don't see bad intent. It wouldn't switch so quickly.

"I try to prevent him from pouncing on her but he is fast." - Yes, it is hard to avoid.

"He had a good half hour of super energetic play while she was hiding upstairs but it didn't seem to help much." - What do you mean by hiding? Would she really choose to "hide" there? Or was she just hanging out up there?

"As soon as he saw her he went right after her." - That is normal. He loves to play with her.

"Will this behavior ever end?" - Yes, it will lessen. But they love playing with each other. Yesterday Twyla initiated. That tells em she is enjoys it. (If I am getting the correct picture but I am judging by how they behave after and also all the hanging out, grooming, etc.). So I think my picture of their relationship is correct.

Also, remember, our emotions have a big impact on the cat's emotions as cats take on our emotions. I can sense you are a little frustrated, stressed, nervous. Just try to stay as cam and confident around them as possible. I know you are worried about Twyla and rightly so but watch how she behaves after. If there was a problem she would be avoiding him, having bad body language, and hiding. You would see a difference in her. I don;t get a sense we are seeing that (though she was sore from the vet visit and the pred may not be allowing her to be at her normal best).

I honestly believe they are well past any risk point. They are successfully intro'd. Maybe just give Twyla a break from him and occupy his time with play etc. I know a human can't replace a cat friend but he will be fine. And watch for any change in Twyla (body language, actions).

Don;t worry, I truly believe they totally love each other so I don't see anything to really worry about. Twyla will tell Hooper if things are too rough/dangerous etc. But for now, just maybe keep their time together reduced until Twyla gets back to herself.
You are right - "hiding" is the wrong word. "Lurking" is more accurate, because I took the opportunity to look up the stairs while playing with Hooper and she was sitting there listening.

And she was fine after, as I added to my original post as soon as I closed the door on him she went right to it and they batted paws for a bit, and she growled some. But then she was ready to settle down (as was he). She always orchestrates the morning anyway, because my preference would be to let him run about an hour before they get together. She goes and waits under the guest bed until I let him out so she can try and eat his kitten food. One of the reasons I think they were both agitated this morning is because I had picked up all the food so they wouldn't eat each other's. Hooper especially is a grazer and is fairly picky about his wet food. He had barely touched his wet breakfast but made a beeline for her bowl when he came downstairs. They did share some treats.
 
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