Introducing Cats - Logistics Questions.

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Twylasmom

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That is great he is good about "going to bed". Yes, they do have pent up energy in the morning. AND usually around 8 or 9pm. That is the time they hunt in the wild typically.

"It's when they are on the move that the bad stuff usually happens." - Is Twyla walking away? When the bad stuff happens?

Good that Hooper plays with those. Keep trying to encourage that.

Ok, good on them eating. Positive. Yes, they do like to focus on the other cat's food.

"Hooper is in his room at night. Twyla is more nocturnal and likes to roam a bit during the night." - Interesting. DO you think she goes to his room at night?

""Did Twyla "fight" back this morning?" Yes, she did." - That is not necessarily bad as we want her to communicate her disinterest.

""How did they act after these "fights"?" Hooper either ran away and did something else, or came right back for round two. Twyla would either walk away if she had the opportunity or hold her position (usually lying down). She didn't go hide but seemed a bit subdued. Weather was probably a factor, too. It was raining pretty hard and that always stresses her." - Interesting he would run away. He is understanding a little BUT he doesn't seem to really fear her. Was she exposing her belly?

""Did they eat together before this? Did it go well?" No. He did sit and watch her as she ate some of his dry food." - That sounds fine.

"I'm hoping it was just a bad morning. They did have some good moments, it's just that things always seem to escalate to the rough play/fight. It would be fine it it was one and done, but he just doesn't know when to back off. When I get home I am going to give him some time with just me before they interact. I just feel like we are stuck at this stage and wonder if we will ever get past it." - I think it was a "bad morning". It actually doesn't sound all that bad and there were positives. I am not bothered by Twyla's actions and he did get it for a while. No, he doesn't know when to back off because he sees it as play. And he likes her. I am guessing he thinks "oh this is different, should be fun".

Oh, we may be a little stuck BUT we have the change in routine happening and the bad weather. Things don't switch on a dime AND it doesn't sound like it was really a fight. If they were acting differently (hiding etc) then I would be more concerned but they are way past the risk of them not getting along. It is just getting Hooper to stop being infatuated with her 24/7. He will get bored and the novelty will wear off.

We will get past this. Just when not if.

You are welcome. We will get there. I think you are a victim of your success. Hooper loves her and trusts her so doesn't always listen to her (though he seems to at times) and he does respect her. We don't have a fundamental issue here which is great. We just have a novelty, excitement issue. Which we can overcome. I know it is frustrating but we will get through this. Twyla might have to get a bit more forceful to let him know. But it doesn't sound like Hooper has any mean intent (which is great).

Don't worry, we'll get there. I suspect they will cuddle together in the future.
Answers and an update: Yes, Twyla is usually walking somewhere when Hooper jumps her. Not always trying to get away, sometimes just trying to go about her business. Though sometimes she is on her back when he jumps, or they are facing each other and a slap fight escalates. She does sometimes go sit outside his room in the evening.

They did much better this evening, and I ended it at a peaceful moment after not quite two hours. Perfect timing as Hooper ran around like crazy immediately after. I ran pretty heavy interference, but they did have about three full contact loud tussles. But they also ate together, peacefully walked by each other and Hooper let her walk out of her litter box without incident. At times Twyla would sneak off for a little quiet time, but would eventually come back out to see what he was doing. At times she would gently play with a wand toy while he was nearby. They spent a lot of time in the bathroom, she was on the floor and he was trying to figure out how to drink water from the faucet (not very well).

Eventually she disappeared upstairs and I backed off on supervising because I figured she was hiding under the guest bed. After a few minutes I heard Hooper chirping upstairs. I went to see what was going on and discovered him in his room looking at Twyla, who was sitting on the cardboard scratcher next to his empty food bowl. She does that quite a bit, but today I remembered that the scratcher has catnip on it. She loves catnip, so I think she was a little stoned!

I think I am just suffering from a bit of exhaustion with the process. Our progress has been fairly slow and they still require so much supervision/observation and it takes a lot of time and mental and emotional energy. I was feeling pretty low today, so having a better evening helped.

Here is stoned Twyla:
IMG_0182.JPG
 

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They spent a lot of time in the bathroom, she was on the floor and he was trying to figure out how to drink water from the faucet (not very well).
Wow, so Hooper does have other hobbies, ...except that he seems to need/enjoy having Twyla around...a lot.
Eventually she disappeared upstairs and I backed off on supervising because I figured she was hiding under the guest bed. After a few minutes I heard Hooper chirping upstairs. I went to see what was going on and discovered him in his room looking at Twyla, who was sitting on the cardboard scratcher next to his empty food bowl. She does that quite a bit, but today I remembered that the scratcher has catnip on it. She loves catnip, so I think she was a little stoned!
Somehow, I cannot really blame Twyla for loving her catnip. Haha.
She must need it at times, to deal with Hooper's antics.
I think I am just suffering from a bit of exhaustion with the process. Our progress has been fairly slow and they still require so much supervision/observation and it takes a lot of time and mental and emotional energy. I was feeling pretty low today, so having a better evening helped.
Yes, it does sound so tiring if you always have to break up rough cat play-fights.

I was thinking that you're going to have to make certain places in your home....a non play-fight area.
For instance....if Twyla is laying on your lap, or near you,...then Hooper should not be allowed to play fight with her.

If Hooper does respond, when you call his name, clap to distract him, ...or even move towards him...then you could possibly train him to 'not go after Twyla' in those 'safe spaces' ....which are your lap, sofa, bed, etc.
I know this sounds like more work for you, but just think about it....just not tonight....Maybe on the weekend.

(It's probably the hardest thing to have the cats go at it, in the morning, while you are getting ready for work...I just cannot think of any suggestions, that are not too time-consuming, or that helpful.)
You're still doing amazingly well, and now both cats...especially Hooper has to adjust to a new time-schedule.
Hang in there, Twylasmom Twylasmom ...you're doing awesome. Now just to get Hooper to understand what you want.
 

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"Twyla is usually walking somewhere when Hooper jumps her. Not always trying to get away, sometimes just trying to go about her business. " - That is just wanting to play. If it only happened when she was walking away (back turned) it would be more a prey instinct but sounds like wanting to play.

"Though sometimes she is on her back when he jumps" - On her back like exposing her belly? If so, that is a sign of total trust.

"She does sometimes go sit outside his room in the evening." - She is funny. Another sign she does not fear him.

"They did much better this evening, and I ended it at a peaceful moment after not quite two hours." - GREAT. Good job ending it and 2 hours is fantastic. I know it took effort but it was a great evening.

"Perfect timing as Hooper ran around like crazy immediately after." - Probably because he didn't like her going away. :/

"I ran pretty heavy interference" - That is very good. Just to distract him.

" but they did have about three full contact loud tussles." - I think they love that kind of play.

But they also ate together, peacefully walked by each other and Hooper let her walk out of her litter box without incident." - This is so great. It can happen (peaceful existence).

"At times Twyla would sneak off for a little quiet time, but would eventually come back out to see what he was doing." - It is great she could go away but the pull of Hooper seems to be pretty strong.

"At times she would gently play with a wand toy while he was nearby." - This is great, if you can continue with that that could be helpful. Sometimes it escalates the play between them though. So if you can have them playing with the toy (either separately or together) that is very helpful.

"They spent a lot of time in the bathroom, she was on the floor and he was trying to figure out how to drink water from the faucet (not very well)." - They seem to like it in there.

"Eventually she disappeared upstairs and I backed off on supervising because I figured she was hiding under the guest bed. After a few minutes I heard Hooper chirping upstairs. I went to see what was going on and discovered him in his room looking at Twyla, who was sitting on the cardboard scratcher next to his empty food bowl." - This is funny. AND GREAT as they were together without incident in a positive way. A great sign that it can and will happen. :hyper: :clap2:

I know, it is hard in the ways you mention. I know you are worried about Twyla getting accidentally hurt. But I think Twyla is telling us not to worry too much. I think she will be more forceful when needed. And he will reduce his focus on her. But right now they are loving being together and loving the play. Try to "hang out" a bit with one of them (probably Twyla) as the other is out and about. If you can do it safely and not be at risk of being hurt in any way. Anything to achieve togetherness in a positive way without the wild play. It is hard to "outdo" the idea of another cat but just do you best.

Everything you write tells me all is well. Hopefully the novelty of the playmate will wear off a little and more quickly.

You have done a great job with them!!
 
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Twylasmom

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And one other thing.

Twyla is SO GORGEOUS!! I can see how you totally fell in love with her. AND she has a great personality. VERY COOL!!!
Thank you! She is a pretty girl. Twyla is loved by all who meet her. She always comes out to greet guests and may sleep with you if you stay overnight. She is the sweetest.

Today may have been their best day ever! About 2 and a half hours divided between this morning and this evening. Hooper was out all day, while Twyla was in my room. This morning I got up early and let Hooper run around first. When I let Twyla out they just passed each other and she went upstairs to check his bowl. Hooper just continued to play with me and a new wand toy. She mostly hung out upstairs, either observing from the top of the stairs or doing who knows what. When it was time for me to leave I had to lure her out with food so I could put her in her room, which brought Hooper running. They both focused on the food and not each other, even though they were touching. I got home a little late, so I let Twyla out and fixed their wet food. Twyla had already gone upstairs so I just fed her in Hooper's room while he ate downstairs, though a bit later they ate treats right next to each other. The rest of the time Hooper mostly played (I got a new wand toy with a ball on the end and he is obsessed with it) and Twyla would wander around observing him. He would run up to her and dart away and a couple of times he ran and jumped right over her and she was unfazed. She had to swat him twice and they wrestled briefly, but no screaming. I was still observing pretty closely the whole time and decided to stop only because I wanted to eat dinner without distraction. Hooper let me pick him up and put him in his room and Twyla followed us up and they played under the door for a minute and when she left he quieted right down and she is now chilling on my lap.

I think Hooper is enjoying being out all day and Twyla was in a great mood. The new toy also seemed to help. I couldn't believe how good he was with her. Fingers crossed that we keep moving in this direction! If they continue this way I am going to try leaving them out with me all day once the weekend comes.
 

pearl99

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Thank you! She is a pretty girl. Twyla is loved by all who meet her. She always comes out to greet guests and may sleep with you if you stay overnight. She is the sweetest.

Today may have been their best day ever! About 2 and a half hours divided between this morning and this evening. Hooper was out all day, while Twyla was in my room. This morning I got up early and let Hooper run around first. When I let Twyla out they just passed each other and she went upstairs to check his bowl. Hooper just continued to play with me and a new wand toy. She mostly hung out upstairs, either observing from the top of the stairs or doing who knows what. When it was time for me to leave I had to lure her out with food so I could put her in her room, which brought Hooper running. They both focused on the food and not each other, even though they were touching. I got home a little late, so I let Twyla out and fixed their wet food. Twyla had already gone upstairs so I just fed her in Hooper's room while he ate downstairs, though a bit later they ate treats right next to each other. The rest of the time Hooper mostly played (I got a new wand toy with a ball on the end and he is obsessed with it) and Twyla would wander around observing him. He would run up to her and dart away and a couple of times he ran and jumped right over her and she was unfazed. She had to swat him twice and they wrestled briefly, but no screaming. I was still observing pretty closely the whole time and decided to stop only because I wanted to eat dinner without distraction. Hooper let me pick him up and put him in his room and Twyla followed us up and they played under the door for a minute and when she left he quieted right down and she is now chilling on my lap.

I think Hooper is enjoying being out all day and Twyla was in a great mood. The new toy also seemed to help. I couldn't believe how good he was with her. Fingers crossed that we keep moving in this direction! If they continue this way I am going to try leaving them out with me all day once the weekend comes.
Oh that sounds excellent! Or rather IS excellent :clapcat:
 

calicosrspecial

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She really is gorgeous. Very cool that her personality matches her looks. She looks so sweet and lovable. Amazing she will sleep with guests. I can see the confidence in her interactions with Hooper. She seems like a very confident cat. That is why the intro has gone so well. You and the previous home sure have done a great job of building her confidence and letting her know she is loved!!

:clap2: :hyper: :yess: What an amazing day!!!! GREAT job using a toy to distract him.

"He would run up to her and dart away and a couple of times he ran and jumped right over her and she was unfazed." - Sounds like he was trying so hard to get her to play. BUT it sounds like he understood she wasn't interested (for the most part). This is FANTASTIC!!!

"Twyla followed us up and they played under the door for a minute and when she left he quieted right down and she is now chilling on my lap." - She is so funny. She had to play a bit. So glad he quieted down and she was enjoying hanging out with you. One thing is if he hears you two he may get a bit restless. Sounds like he didn't which is great.

"I think Hooper is enjoying being out all day" - I think this was probably VERY helpful with the positive evening.

"The new toy also seemed to help" - I think this also helped a lot. Hooper just wants to play. A toy, Twyla. Great that he decided a toy was good enough. Try to keep that up. Distracting him from Twyla if possible.

"I couldn't believe how good he was with her." - I am not surprised but I am REALLY PROUD of both Hooper and Twyla.

I think you will continue moving in this direction. There may be some blips but fundamentally they are really solid. They love each other, respect each other. Yesterday was proof all will be well.

You have done a great job!! :purr:
 
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Twylasmom

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Two good days in a row! Twyla did her sneaky bit this morning and I let them play for about 30 minutes until I shut her in at a convenient moment so I could get ready and leave for work. My favorite moment was when she walked past him and gave him a bop on the head as she passed.

She wasn't feeling quite as playful this afternoon and eventually went upstairs and took a long nap while Hooper slept on my lap. They had a nice moment in the bedroom looking out the window with him on the cat tree and her right behind him on the bed. They ate within inches of each other. He did start to bother her after a couple of hours and they had a big slap fight, but nothing else major, and I gave her a little more quiet time in my room before putting him up for the night. He is getting about 12 hours of freedom a day and is loving it.

This weekend will be interesting, but hopefully not exhausting.
 

calicosrspecial

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Two good days in a row! Twyla did her sneaky bit this morning and I let them play for about 30 minutes until I shut her in at a convenient moment so I could get ready and leave for work. My favorite moment was when she walked past him and gave him a bop on the head as she passed.

She wasn't feeling quite as playful this afternoon and eventually went upstairs and took a long nap while Hooper slept on my lap. He is getting about 12 hours of freedom a day and is loving it.They had a nice moment in the bedroom looking out the window with him on the cat tree and her right behind him on the bed. They ate within inches of each other. He did start to bother her after a couple of hours and they had a big slap fight, but nothing else major, and I gave her a little more quiet time in my room before putting him up for the night.

This weekend will be interesting, but hopefully not exhausting.

:yess: :hyper::yess:

GREAT job!!! You are definitely doing something right. Really well done!!!

"My favorite moment was when she walked past him and gave him a bop on the head as she passed." - Was she trying to instigate something?

PERFECT job on getting Hooper to sleep on you while she was upstairs

"They had a nice moment in the bedroom looking out the window with him on the cat tree and her right behind him on the bed. They ate within inches of each other." - FANTASTIC!!! Exactly what we try to achieve.

"He did start to bother her after a couple of hours and they had a big slap fight, but nothing else major, and I gave her a little more quiet time in my room before putting him up for the night." - They will get bored and want to get some fun started. Sounds like she told him no which is great and he respected it (eventually).

Really great job!!! Just keep doing what you are doing. Sounds like everything is going as we would like. There may be some moments of setback but they will be aberrations, nothing more. Just distract as needed, handle as you are, and it will be fine.

GREAT WORK!!!
 
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Twylasmom

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Today has been pretty good, though there were a couple of wrestling matches, there were also moments like the video below. We spent about half an hour with me sitting on the bed with Twyla while Hooper crossed the bed several times right by her. The last time he started sniffing and licking her which she tolerated for a second until he opened his mouth to try and either give her a love bite or start a play fight, which started a skirmish. Nothing as vocal as they have been, though. The big challenge continues to be their differing energy levels. Twyla is always ready to quit before he is. If she is able to wander off and nap I keep doors open, but if he is still in play mode and won't leave her alone I usually shut her in so she can get some peace (and he usually settles down right away when I do that as well). Does this seem like an OK practice? Trying to control her stress level.

Here is a great play moment:


A quiet moment:
IMG_0184.JPG
 

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Today has been pretty good, though there were a couple of wrestling matches, there were also moments like the video below. We spent about half an hour with me sitting on the bed with Twyla while Hooper crossed the bed several times right by her. The last time he started sniffing and licking her which she tolerated for a second until he opened his mouth to try and either give her a love bite or start a play fight, which started a skirmish. Nothing as vocal as they have been, though. The big challenge continues to be their differing energy levels. Twyla is always ready to quit before he is. If she is able to wander off and nap I keep doors open, but if he is still in play mode and won't leave her alone I usually shut her in so she can get some peace (and he usually settles down right away when I do that as well). Does this seem like an OK practice? Trying to control her stress level.

Here is a great play moment:
A quiet moment:
I think the video is beautiful. :)
Hooper looks so infatuated by Twyla, but it's so good that he actually leaves Twyla to look out the window.
(If Hooper were an artist, he would be continuously painting her. :bluepaw:)
It's also amazing how Twyla plays with Hooper, in not being too overly rough. I think she is teaching him, constantly, on how to behave.
Such a difference in where they were in their first few videos.

I think your plan of giving Twyla some 'non-Hooper time' is really good, and very necessary so she can relax, and have moments to herself.
Hopefully, eventually, and soon, you'll be getting more of those 'quiet moments' on your bed, and very rarely those ruckus, loud sounding cat play-fights.
Remember though, you might think that younger Hooper causes most of those loud matches, but sometimes it might be smart cat Twyla who causes the drama. It's sometimes hard to tell who started it all. But I suppose it's up to us, humans, to end it, anyhow.
Hope their weekend and yours is good, peaceful, yet sprinkled with a little fun, too. :blackcat: :caticon: :catrub: and no :headshake: :whistle:
 

pearl99

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Twyla is always ready to quit before he is. If she is able to wander off and nap I keep doors open, but if he is still in play mode and won't leave her alone I usually shut her in so she can get some peace (and he usually settles down right away when I do that as well). Does this seem like an OK practice?
That is what I would do also. We humans can referee.
Love the video. He's gazing at her and she's just looking around. cat nap cat nap I think has a wonderful interpretation! Painting her. So sweet.
 

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They are SO ADORABLE!!! I can't get over it!!!

They are so funny. Look how confident Twyla is in the video. And how restrained they both are. And then they stop and Twyla looks away. Total trust in Hooper. I think Hooper idolizes Twyla. Really cool.

"We spent about half an hour with me sitting on the bed with Twyla while Hooper crossed the bed several times right by her. " - Perfect.

"The last time he started sniffing and licking her which she tolerated for a second until he opened his mouth to try and either give her a love bite or start a play fight, which started a skirmish. Nothing as vocal as they have been, though." - Yep, he wants fun. One of mine LOVES to give the little love bite. They are something. He finally got the reaction he wanted from Twyla.

"The big challenge continues to be their differing energy levels. Twyla is always ready to quit before he is. If she is able to wander off and nap I keep doors open, but if he is still in play mode and won't leave her alone I usually shut her in so she can get some peace (and he usually settles down right away when I do that as well). Does this seem like an OK practice? Trying to control her stress level." - Totally the challenge. The age and energy levels are very different. I think your way of handling it is exactly right. As long as it is positive there will not be any negative repurcussion from doing what you are doing (leaving it open or closing it at times).

The picture on the bed is success. Perfect. Exactly what we work to get to. Look at how great the body language is. Not only aer they just so adorable but they look so confident and happy. WONDERFUL!!!!! :purr:
 

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That is what I would do also. We humans can referee.
Love the video. He's gazing at her and she's just looking around. cat nap cat nap I think has a wonderful interpretation! Painting her. So sweet.
pearl99 pearl99 ...I think I might have been a little bit hasty with my video interpretation.
But you're right, Hooper does gaze at Twyla, a lot. :blush:

I re-watched the video...and at the 0.10 mark, it does look like Hooper accidentally, or on purpose, swats Twyla's face.
Twyla does get Hooper back, at the 0.16 mark, by pinning his paw to the cat tree post,...so maybe no 'further payback' will happen, this weekend. ('Payback' often happens with cats, though. Young Hooper has to learn. :wink: :winkcat:)
We won't know, until Twylasmom Twylasmom posts an update.

Hoping that Twylasmom, won't have to do too much 'refereeing'...but it's definitely a job us humans have to happily/non-happily do.
As Calicosrspecial mentioned...'that photo' on the bed is 'success' and 'perfection'...so I am hoping for more, and more photos like that one. Fingers and back paws crossed. :crossfingers: :bluepaw: :greenpaw:
 
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Twylasmom

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Hooper and Twyla are continuing to make good forward progress. They are now up to about 5 or 6 hours out together per day, with separate nap times, play times ranging from respectful to rambunctious, and one or two little displays of affection! I am letting them be together without me in the same room (as long as I am not hearing any screaming or lots of hisses and growls). Today Twyla let Hooper wash her head for a short bit and then just got up and walked away (as opposed to hissing). She also pushed him away from his wet food and he let her finish it without incident. At one point he was nibbling dry food and she sat right next to him and licked his head, just once! And when I went outside to fill the bird feeder I looked over and there were two cat faces looking out of the two patio doors.

I do separate them if he is in play mode and she wants to sleep in her bed. At one point I found her sleeping in the cat scratcher in Hooper's room!

My goal is for Twyla to feel a bit more comfortable hanging out in the living room when Hooper is out there. She will come out but usually doesn't stay. But I think we will get there!
 
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