Introducing new adult cat to older residental cat

Babypinkweeb

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Hello everyone! I would just love some insight to see if I'm doing this properly.

I recently adopted a 6 yr old female cat who used to get bullied by other cats at her previous home. She is chill being in her cage at the shelter's cat social room (free roaming cats). I have an 11 yr old male cat who's been with me for 10 years also adopted from same shelter.

I've been following proper introduction procedures as best I can, got her basecamp in the spare bathroom and doing meal times by the door. She never cared about resident cat's (RC) smell or sounds. RC is very chill like a dog and he only trills and meows. NC never hid and even rolls around purring right up against the door. After doing meal time basically right up against the closed door on either side with no issue, I eventually moved to eating with door open but a pet gate and a blanket to block full visual. Eventually slowly moved the blanket so they can see eachother.

At this point I guess I'd just like some assurance or correction if I'm doing it right. NC sees RC and vice versa but both don't seem to care much, going back to eating and both have no physical signs of fear or aggression. Sometimes NC even turns her butt towards RC, or RC eats with his side facing NC. However once in a while, RC bring friendly would trill curiously and want to slowly move a little closer to sniff and NC would just give 1 small hiss and resume eating. RC usually respects her hiss and walks off. When the hiss happens I end visual feeding and let them finish eating with the blanket back on.

Am I doing this right? I don't want to push her much since I know of her past, but she's so eager to go outside her room everyday and even climbed the gate once.
 

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Hi, it sounds like you are doing the cat intros really well. :)

How long have you been at the stage of Visuals...and eating by the gate?

Has the NC been allowed to Scent mark the rest of the home, yet?....as in room swaps?,
as well as scent swapping with various items such as cat toys, cat blankets, cat beds? placing them in each other's territory.

Have you had a chance to look at the Cat Site Article on cat to cat introductions.
How To Successfully Introduce Cats: The Ultimate Guide – TheCatSite Articles
 
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Babypinkweeb

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Thank you for the reply! I've read that guide as well a few others with similar steps (as well as watched tons of Jackson Galaxy videos), but I'm kind of on the paranoid side so don't want to do anything that could be affecting how they get along haha!

I have done site swapping 3 times. I have a smaller apartment and not great options to swap them without ever letting them not sea eachother but neither has shown negative reactions. I let NC come out into the main room and she does not show fear. Even went to stick her head in to RC's favorite cat cave and litter box to sniff! However she hadn't really rubbed herself on anything outside her basecamp yet. Most of exploration time end up being us trying to keep her off the kitchen counter and redirecting her to the cat towers.

RC cat does not show any negative reaction to NC smells or items but he does feel kind of timid after being told off even after trying to give friendly introductions. I know this will sound fast but it's been a week since I bought NC home. They both just did not show any care when the visuals were cut off even if they're very close while eating, that I thought I could move to the next stage. She was basically purring and wiggling on the floor with her paws and tail sticking out under the door while my RC was on the other side on day 3!

It's a little difficult as RC is kind of a grazer (I've been trying to get him on a meal time) So he leaves soon into visual feeding. She just goes between eating and taking peeks at him. They show no interest in scent marked items I bring between the rooms. There hasn't been any hiding.
 

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Thank you for the reply! I've read that guide as well a few others with similar steps (as well as watched tons of Jackson Galaxy videos), but I'm kind of on the paranoid side so don't want to do anything that could be affecting how they get along haha!
Sure, that makes sense, Babypinkweeb Babypinkweeb ,...you're just making sure that you have a 'solid foundation'...laid out by doing the steps...and building upon each stage...then moving to the next...based on what you observe from each cat's reactions, body language, and time frame.
I have done site swapping 3 times. I have a smaller apartment and not great options to swap them without ever letting them not sea eachother but neither has shown negative reactions. I let NC come out into the main room and she does not show fear. Even went to stick her head in to RC's favorite cat cave and litter box to sniff! However she hadn't really rubbed herself on anything outside her basecamp yet. Most of exploration time end up being us trying to keep her off the kitchen counter and redirecting her to the cat towers.
That's a good start for the Site Swaps.
Having each cat's Scent everywhere in the apartment, will totally help in the cat intros..since mingling of the Scents, and each cat recognizing their own Scent, and learning the other cat's Scent...will help them in becoming so familiar with one another...and also being able to claim and share their mutual territories.

Yeah, I guess the keeping her off the kitchen counter...would have added another adventure and 'brain storming' of ideas ....to prevent her from further wanting to jump up.
It sounds like NC is more of a 'tree dweller'...and likes to be up higher...off the floor...so really good that you have those cat towers.
Maybe you can add some cubes, boxes, side tables or chairs...so she can feel safer...off the floor...if she likes.
Also, remember to make sure to not have any 'dead ends'...and plenty of escape routes for each cat...when they do eventually meet.
RC cat does not show any negative reaction to NC smells or items but he does feel kind of timid after being told off even after trying to give friendly introductions. I know this will sound fast but it's been a week since I bought NC home. They both just did not show any care when the visuals were cut off even if they're very close while eating, that I thought I could move to the next stage. She was basically purring and wiggling on the floor with her paws and tail sticking out under the door while my RC was on the other side on day 3!
Oh, okay. Yeah, a week is a tad fast. :blush:
But yes, I understand, it's because of the reactions that you are seeing from each cat.

It does sound like RC is a very chill cat.
And hissing is not always such a bad thing. It's total cat communication...and can mean many things from 'not too close'...to 'hey, stop', ...or 'not so fast'. She could have also just been telling RC...that her food is excellent...and that he better not get any closer...or try to take it from her.

What is great is that your RC did respect her 'hiss'...and did walk away.
That means that he doesn't want to engage, escalate or stay for any drama.
It's a little difficult as RC is kind of a grazer (I've been trying to get him on a meal time) So he leaves soon into visual feeding. She just goes between eating and taking peeks at him. They show no interest in scent marked items I bring between the rooms. There hasn't been any hiding.
Does RC like cat treats? or favorite wet food as a treat? maybe you could use those to bring him to the gate.
Or even try to get him to the gate using some wand toys, flat strings toys,...Playing with him...near the gate...so that NC can also see him better.

Another thing you can try, is to videotape them...while you are doing the gate Visuals...and then play back the videos for yourself.
Pay attention, to the little subtle signs from NC...right before she hisses...or how she watches RC.
You are already doing this, but by videotaping it for yourself, and playing it back,...you might notice small changes in her ear movements, tail, body and where her eyes are looking at. This all helps, in seeing how relaxed...over time...she becomes.
 
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Babypinkweeb

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Thank you for the detailed response! I've been putting some in work. I found a treat RC seems interested in, but as I'm still working on getting him used to set meal time, he's not super motivated by it.
--------------
Just a general update in case anyone is willing to read and give me some much appreciated advice or perspective.

NC gets way too excited when she sees treats or food, and cannot associate food with RC during feeding time, so I've taken some time to click train her to sit calmly even when Im holding a treat. It's going well so far.

The latest problem is that, even though NC still hisses at RC if he appears too suddenly, she has become an escape artist. She has figured that if she cannot jump over the pet gate she can squeeze through it, by running to the gate before I can. She's quite skinny and fast. I'm happy she's not shy, but it's hard to manage when I constantly worry her running about and then suddenly hissing and swatting at RC if she notices him. He's just trying to live and say hi! I've watched very carefully the times when she would hiss or once smack him. It's almost comical as she would be walking around not giving a crap when she turns her head and suddenly notices RC, and then hisses like he surprised her (even tho he's been sitting there unmoving and observing calmly with relaxed ears)

She doesn't really respond to toys compared to the draw of exploring the rest of the home. She only responds to treats and even then it's temporary. It's very hard to lure her back to her room, and if I pick her up and put her down, she complains by meowing and would often immediately run back out before I can leave.

RC is still as eager to see her as always. Even after being hissed at and once almost smacked, he still goes to hang out by her door and trills or meows. Once in a while one of them will lie down and stick their paws under the door while the other one is watching. It's hard to understand what NC wants since she hisses at him but also wants to keep going into his space.
 

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The latest problem is that, even though NC still hisses at RC if he appears too suddenly, she has become an escape artist. She has figured that if she cannot jump over the pet gate she can squeeze through it, by running to the gate before I can. She's quite skinny and fast. I'm happy she's not shy, but it's hard to manage when I constantly worry her running about and then suddenly hissing and swatting at RC if she notices him. He's just trying to live and say hi! I've watched very carefully the times when she would hiss or once smack him. It's almost comical as she would be walking around not giving a crap when she turns her head and suddenly notices RC, and then hisses like he surprised her (even tho he's been sitting there unmoving and observing calmly with relaxed ears)

She doesn't really respond to toys compared to the draw of exploring the rest of the home. She only responds to treats and even then it's temporary. It's very hard to lure her back to her room, and if I pick her up and put her down, she complains by meowing and would often immediately run back out before I can leave.
Maybe NC is just so happy to finally be out of a shelter cage, or shelter room...that she cannot wait to explore the rest of the home.
It must be such an amazing feeling to finally be free, and have the room to run around.:cloud9:
To have found a forever home, with you,...must mean she is over the moon with excitement, security, freedom and joy.

Good on you, for doing the clicker training as well.
Keeping her mind stimulated is just as important as Play and exercise, too.
Here's a site for food puzzle feeders, if you're into making some, or trying to see if she'd be interested:
Homemade Puzzles - Food Puzzles for Cats

She might also be hissing and swiping at RC, first, since you mentioned that she was bullied before...so in her mind...she would naturally go into defensive mode...or more like offensive mode...to protect herself, from what she might think is a perceived threat.
RC is still as eager to see her as always. Even after being hissed at and once almost smacked, he still goes to hang out by her door and trills or meows. Once in a while one of them will lie down and stick their paws under the door while the other one is watching. It's hard to understand what NC wants since she hisses at him but also wants to keep going into his space.
I think it's because it's the early stages of the cat intros...so you will be seeing a lot of this initial hissing and swiping, too,...until each cat establishes their own boundaries, and communication...so they can share and accept each other in their shared territory.
They are basically 'talking to each other' ...and setting up their own forms of communication...with body language, movements, scent and vocals/trills/murmurs/mumblings and such.

The other thing, too, is that NC might be wanting to Play with RC...in her own way.
Either that, or she is also trying to establish...some Confidence and Dominance in her new home.
 
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Maybe NC is just so happy to finally be out of a shelter cage, or shelter room...that she cannot wait to explore the rest of the home.
It must be such an amazing feeling to finally be free, and have the room to run around.:cloud9:
To have found a forever home, with you,...must mean she is over the moon with excitement, security, freedom and joy.

Good on you, for doing the clicker training as well.
Keeping her mind stimulated is just as important as Play and exercise, too.
Here's a site for food puzzle feeders, if you're into making some, or trying to see if she'd be interested:
Homemade Puzzles - Food Puzzles for Cats

She might also be hissing and swiping at RC, first, since you mentioned that she was bullied before...so in her mind...she would naturally go into defensive mode...or more like offensive mode...to protect herself, from what she might think is a perceived threat.

I think it's because it's the early stages of the cat intros...so you will be seeing a lot of this initial hissing and swiping, too,...until each cat establishes their own boundaries, and communication...so they can share and accept each other in their shared territory.
They are basically 'talking to each other' ...and setting up their own forms of communication...with body language, movements, scent and vocals/trills/murmurs/mumblings and such.

The other thing, too, is that NC might be wanting to Play with RC...in her own way.
Either that, or she is also trying to establish...some Confidence and Dominance in her new home.
Thank you as always for the kind reply. She is always so interested in everything else in the rest of the home that she has hard time focusing on play with toys, but I'm happy she can feel some fulfilment with training. I will add more meal times for her with smaller portions each time to see if it can help with her eating. And I will continue to slowly introduce them with your advice and tips!!
 
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Babypinkweeb

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Took a video of the kind of hiss she does with my RC pretty much everytime he gets close. He can get this close without visuals and she doesn't even recognize he's there. If she hears his meows she would just look and then go back to doing whatever.

As a note she was playing happily right before this, and she was hiding under the stool as part of play and does not stay under that stool otherwise. She might seem shy in this short clip but she already jumped this gate 5 times since we got it hours ago even though she knows he is out here. RC just stares, no hiss or growls, sometimes trills and meows.

 

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That video is fantastic and really helpful to see. :)
Yes, NC has more of a 'cobra sounding hiss'...since it sounds more drawn out.
If you notice her back,...her fur is standing right up...on her hackles...so taken with the hiss...it just means that she is still very scared.

It is really good that she walks away, too.
And also good that your RC does not really react negatively to her hissing.

What might be happening, though...is because RC...is not really moving...but only staring...then NC is getting very worried about RC ..since cats that 'stalk their prey'...usually only 'stare and watch'...and 'don't move'.:bluepaw:
But in time, as NC gets more used to RC...and how they move around each other...then both cats will be okay.
Especially, NC...since she is new...and still very scared.

Your idea of feeding NC in smaller portions...and more times per day...is really excellent. :thumbsup:
Could you rub a t-shirt, or sock...or even cat blanket...onto RC...especially around his cheeks, and bottom of paws ...and place this item of 'scented clothing'...right next to the food dish ...that NC is eating out of.

I know that you said she gets too excited...and does not pay attention to anything but food...but if she has his 'scented item' right there beside her...then she will come to associate 'only good things with his Scent'.
Since she likes food, ...she will also come to like his smell.

I cannot remember if you said if RC likes to Play or not...but if you can get him to Play...right near the gate...and allow NC to watch this...then she may get even more relaxed...seeing him doing something else...rather than just stare at her.
Take your time, ...it's still early days...and your cats really look good. :catrub:

They are so beautiful, too. :lovecat2:
It's really good that your RC is so calm.:bluepaw:
 
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Babypinkweeb

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That video is fantastic and really helpful to see. :)
Yes, NC has more of a 'cobra sounding hiss'...since it sounds more drawn out.
If you notice her back,...her fur is standing right up...on her hackles...so taken with the hiss...it just means that she is still very scared.

It is really good that she walks away, too.
And also good that your RC does not really react negatively to her hissing.

What might be happening, though...is because RC...is not really moving...but only staring...then NC is getting very worried about RC ..since cats that 'stalk their prey'...usually only 'stare and watch'...and 'don't move'.:bluepaw:
But in time, as NC gets more used to RC...and how they move around each other...then both cats will be okay.
Especially, NC...since she is new...and still very scared.

Your idea of feeding NC in smaller portions...and more times per day...is really excellent. :thumbsup:
Could you rub a t-shirt, or sock...or even cat blanket...onto RC...especially around his cheeks, and bottom of paws ...and place this item of 'scented clothing'...right next to the food dish ...that NC is eating out of.

I know that you said she gets too excited...and does not pay attention to anything but food...but if she has his 'scented item' right there beside her...then she will come to associate 'only good things with his Scent'.
Since she likes food, ...she will also come to like his smell.

I cannot remember if you said if RC likes to Play or not...but if you can get him to Play...right near the gate...and allow NC to watch this...then she may get even more relaxed...seeing him doing something else...rather than just stare at her.
Take your time, ...it's still early days...and your cats really look good. :catrub:

They are so beautiful, too. :lovecat2:
It's really good that your RC is so calm.:bluepaw:
This is going to sound horrible but I'm kind of glad that it's confirmed she is scared! I do my best to learn, but sometimes I worry if she is the aggressor. It helps that she is more scared, since I know my RC is a very friendly and gentle boy, so I hope he can slowly change her mind.

I thought of that as well, with RC being a creeper just unmovingly staring. I'm not sure what I can do because he's kind of just like that as a cat. I've had him for 10 years, and he is always very interested in seeing other animals and humans and observes quietly without moving much. I can totally see how to NC, he seems like a big scary predator who might hurt her! The down side is that he doesn't really get tempted by much, whether play or treats. It's my fault as I've free fed him until recently, trying to switch him to meal plans. He's just fully focused on meeting and getting to know her. One of the times she escaped, she didn't notice him at all as she walked past her, only to be startled when he was trying to sniff her butt.

In terms of scent items, I've done sock scent swaps a few days at the start, and recently I've tried to do something like take a soft boar hair brush and brushing RC, and then bringing it to NC. She doesn't react to it in general but she lets me brush her with that brush. I will continue to do both and make sure she eats with his scent items near her. Maybe I will reduce visual feeding for a while and focus on that first.

Today we played with him in the living room while she watched and during then she did not hiss! But she just looked like she felt left out, as she kept looking up and trying to figure out a way to get over the gate. He can focus on play if we keep a distance from NC, but if he gets closer, he notices her and wants to go over and say hi.

Thank you for the kind response and compliments! Seeing them everyday brings me so much joy!
 

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This is going to sound horrible but I'm kind of glad that it's confirmed she is scared! I do my best to learn, but sometimes I worry if she is the aggressor. It helps that she is more scared, since I know my RC is a very friendly and gentle boy, so I hope he can slowly change her mind.
No, it doesn't sound horrible at all.
That's really what cat-to-cat intros are for...to lessen the 'automatic fear responses' in our cats...so they come to feel Security that there will always be food, water and litterbox available...plus space to sleep and rest in, and attention, play and love, as well.

I did have a few quick questions:
  1. the times when you saw NC escape, ...and they both had actual face-to-face meetings...did NC hiss the same way? Did she automatically try to hit and lash out at RC?
  2. I know you said that NC didn't even notice RC watching her, and then turned and saw him...and hissed...and swiped at him...but was this after RC was smelling her butt? or they got too close to one another?
  3. Did NC actually make a bee line to RC...and try to run him away...from any space...or was she more interested in just exploring...and RC just happened to be watching and following her around. I guess what I'm asking is ...when she escaped...who seemed to make the other cat more nervous first?
  4. Can you also create some special space for her outside of her 'basecamp'...so she will know that it's okay to lay there, and sleep. Preferably higher up, off the floor...so she feels safer.
I thought of that as well, with RC being a creeper just unmovingly staring. I'm not sure what I can do because he's kind of just like that as a cat. I've had him for 10 years, and he is always very interested in seeing other animals and humans and observes quietly without moving much. I can totally see how to NC, he seems like a big scary predator who might hurt her! The down side is that he doesn't really get tempted by much, whether play or treats. It's my fault as I've free fed him until recently, trying to switch him to meal plans. He's just fully focused on meeting and getting to know her. One of the times she escaped, she didn't notice him at all as she walked past her, only to be startled when he was trying to sniff her butt.
(I like the way you used the word 'creeper'.:blush:..I think I'm going to use that on my almost 6 year old male cat, too. He's always trying to get his female sibling to play with him, especially when she is just sleeping under a chair, on her cat bed,...so he creeps up to her..and watches her while she's sleeping..and I have to tell him..."Nope, Tripp, don't bother her while she's sleeping. It's not like she likes to play rough and wrestle with you at all". My female cat does hiss, too, but very quickly, when her brother is annoying her, or gets her cornered...wanting to play.)

I honestly don't think you have to do much in changing his behaviour.
Because he is so relaxed and non-confrontational...like you said before...this will help NC...to relax, too. :)
Plus, if you can get him to Play...and she sees that...then really...even if he's playing for short periods of time...and then focuses his interest on her...that is entirely normal...and not anything I would interfere with. The more they see each other through the gate...the better.

(I've always free fed mine, too. Though, now that I think about it...I may have to change that...only because my male cat seems a bit overweight. I just hate to have mine be hungry at night...so wet is fed twice...and some dry is down, too.)

I really wouldn't change RC's feeding schedule, unless it's for health reasons, and you think it's healthier. You just don't want to make any major changes...around food and eating...if it interferes or causes one of the cat's an issue.
(I know all cat intro guides talk about using food as a motivator, and to make positive associations...but if it only works with one cat...then that's okay, too.) You just kind of use the cat intro guides...as a Plan...and then adjust them to your own situation...and to how you see that your own cats are doing.
In terms of scent items, I've done sock scent swaps a few days at the start, and recently I've tried to do something like take a soft boar hair brush and brushing RC, and then bringing it to NC. She doesn't react to it in general but she lets me brush her with that brush. I will continue to do both and make sure she eats with his scent items near her. Maybe I will reduce visual feeding for a while and focus on that first.
That's another great idea about using the hair brush. (I've only ever read about it ...when someone was trying to get their cat over 'non-recognition aggression' ...after one cat went to the vet and the other cat didn't.)

I forgot to mention, ...that when you are placing RC's scent items near her food dish...that you should also be placing something of NC's scent items...near RC, too. :greenpaw:
This way, RC gets to thoroughly know NC's smell...and even though he will probably still want to sniff NC's butt...since cats get to know everything that way...maybe he won't have to do it all the time...to annoy NC...if she does not like it.

Honestly, I would not reduce visual feedings...since you are doing great.:thumbsup:
And both cats have already seen each other.
So adding more to their environment...and making it more interesting...and not taking anything away from it...will be a more positive.
They won't get bored.
Does that make sense.
Today we played with him in the living room while she watched and during then she did not hiss! But she just looked like she felt left out, as she kept looking up and trying to figure out a way to get over the gate. He can focus on play if we keep a distance from NC, but if he gets closer, he notices her and wants to go over and say hi.

Thank you for the kind response and compliments! Seeing them everyday brings me so much joy!
If you think that both cats would be okay with wearing a harness...then you might be able to allow both to be in the same room with each other.
It takes some getting used to, ..and they might hate it at first...so usually you start off slowly getting them used to wearing one.
Then when they are calm with them on...you can keep them at respectful distance from each other...but still allow them to walk around.

"Seeing them everyday brings me so much joy!"
That's so true. :cloud9:
Your thread makes me notice things in my own cats...that I tend to not see...about their behavior.
It is really fun, and joyful, when we have cats around.

Remember to take your time.
And even when...at times...things get a bit stressful, ...just remember to laugh at them...and know that you are doing great.:biggrin:
Stay neutral and calm...even when hisses and escapes happen.
Hope your week goes well.
 
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No, it doesn't sound horrible at all.
That's really what cat-to-cat intros are for...to lessen the 'automatic fear responses' in our cats...so they come to feel Security that there will always be food, water and litterbox available...plus space to sleep and rest in, and attention, play and love, as well.

I did have a few quick questions:
  1. the times when you saw NC escape, ...and they both had actual face-to-face meetings...did NC hiss the same way? Did she automatically try to hit and lash out at RC?
  2. I know you said that NC didn't even notice RC watching her, and then turned and saw him...and hissed...and swiped at him...but was this after RC was smelling her butt? or they got too close to one another?
  3. Did NC actually make a bee line to RC...and try to run him away...from any space...or was she more interested in just exploring...and RC just happened to be watching and following her around. I guess what I'm asking is ...when she escaped...who seemed to make the other cat more nervous first?
  4. Can you also create some special space for her outside of her 'basecamp'...so she will know that it's okay to lay there, and sleep. Preferably higher up, off the floor...so she feels safer.

(I like the way you used the word 'creeper'.:blush:..I think I'm going to use that on my almost 6 year old male cat, too. He's always trying to get his female sibling to play with him, especially when she is just sleeping under a chair, on her cat bed,...so he creeps up to her..and watches her while she's sleeping..and I have to tell him..."Nope, Tripp, don't bother her while she's sleeping. It's not like she likes to play rough and wrestle with you at all". My female cat does hiss, too, but very quickly, when her brother is annoying her, or gets her cornered...wanting to play.)

I honestly don't think you have to do much in changing his behaviour.
Because he is so relaxed and non-confrontational...like you said before...this will help NC...to relax, too. :)
Plus, if you can get him to Play...and she sees that...then really...even if he's playing for short periods of time...and then focuses his interest on her...that is entirely normal...and not anything I would interfere with. The more they see each other through the gate...the better.

(I've always free fed mine, too. Though, now that I think about it...I may have to change that...only because my male cat seems a bit overweight. I just hate to have mine be hungry at night...so wet is fed twice...and some dry is down, too.)

I really wouldn't change RC's feeding schedule, unless it's for health reasons, and you think it's healthier. You just don't want to make any major changes...around food and eating...if it interferes or causes one of the cat's an issue.
(I know all cat intro guides talk about using food as a motivator, and to make positive associations...but if it only works with one cat...then that's okay, too.) You just kind of use the cat intro guides...as a Plan...and then adjust them to your own situation...and to how you see that your own cats are doing.

That's another great idea about using the hair brush. (I've only ever read about it ...when someone was trying to get their cat over 'non-recognition aggression' ...after one cat went to the vet and the other cat didn't.)

I forgot to mention, ...that when you are placing RC's scent items near her food dish...that you should also be placing something of NC's scent items...near RC, too. :greenpaw:
This way, RC gets to thoroughly know NC's smell...and even though he will probably still want to sniff NC's butt...since cats get to know everything that way...maybe he won't have to do it all the time...to annoy NC...if she does not like it.

Honestly, I would not reduce visual feedings...since you are doing great.:thumbsup:
And both cats have already seen each other.
So adding more to their environment...and making it more interesting...and not taking anything away from it...will be a more positive.
They won't get bored.
Does that make sense.

If you think that both cats would be okay with wearing a harness...then you might be able to allow both to be in the same room with each other.
It takes some getting used to, ..and they might hate it at first...so usually you start off slowly getting them used to wearing one.
Then when they are calm with them on...you can keep them at respectful distance from each other...but still allow them to walk around.

"Seeing them everyday brings me so much joy!"
That's so true. :cloud9:
Your thread makes me notice things in my own cats...that I tend to not see...about their behavior.
It is really fun, and joyful, when we have cats around.

Remember to take your time.
And even when...at times...things get a bit stressful, ...just remember to laugh at them...and know that you are doing great.:biggrin:
Stay neutral and calm...even when hisses and escapes happen.
Hope your week goes well.
Thank you so much! I'm continuing to do the scent swapping and as before NC doesn't have any negative or positive response. I put a shirt in RC's bed and later brought it to NC. She was more interested in getting pet and immediately stepped all over the shirt. RC doesn't react much to NC's scent, but the sniffing seem to have reduced his curiousity for now. That, or her continued hissing has made him become pitiful and he doesn't approach her first even when she escaped. He's such a good boy as once he was keeping his distance while watching her thru the gate but she jumped over the gate and landed really close to him, and then hissed at him like it was his fault! He could only walk off slowly to sit under the coffee table to not offend her 😢

I feel guilty seeing her on camera since everytime we walk by she comes down and waits by the door. I can see she really wants to spend more time with us and be free but I don't want things to go badly, so I am going to not let her roam freely permanently until she no longer hisses or swats RC.

In the last few days she started meowing funny, a meow I've heard from my RC before. I assume it's their way of saying they are lonely and want attention? I've included a video. RC meows like this sometimes when he's in another room, and we just call him and he comes over to us happily.

 

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I feel guilty seeing her on camera since everytime we walk by she comes down and waits by the door. I can see she really wants to spend more time with us and be free but I don't want things to go badly, so I am going to not let her roam freely permanently until she no longer hisses or swats RC.

In the last few days she started meowing funny, a meow I've heard from my RC before. I assume it's their way of saying they are lonely and want attention? I've included a video. RC meows like this sometimes when he's in another room, and we just call him and he comes over to us happily.
Oh, wow. yeah, I don't think I could listen to that sad meow...and leave her in there alone.:frown:
(I just played the video, ...and my black retriever dog reacted to it.. each of the four times he heard it. He just stopped chewing his rawhide bone, and listened. So yes, it has to mean something in the cat world, too.)
(You're right...I think it's a meow of loneliness, too, since my male black cat...also now heard it...and is wondering where it is coming from.:bluepaw: )

Is there any way that you could open up the door, and just leave the gate in place.
So at least she would be able to see you all out there.
Maybe get a bedsheet and attach it to the top of the door frame...or a larger piece of cardboard...on the top..so she could see from the bottom...but the top would be blocked off.
Or get two baby gates and stack them up in the doorway.

There is this barrier that people have used to block off a doorway which is higher.
It's made of wire shelving...and then the wire shelves could be used for something else after intros are over.
How to Build a Free-Standing Cat, Dog, or Pet Gate Cheaply, Without Tools

or this set-up...from another member here:
See Post #47...of this thread: Need help introducing two cats

I don't think that NC wants to hurt RC at all.
She is only hissing at him, and swatting at him...since she is scared.
She also may use the hiss all the time...as a way of talking...but eventually she will hiss less.

If NC is not actually wanting to fight with RC...or run at him...then you don't really have to worry so much.
No fighting, when she escaped is a very good sign. Hissing is okay.

Would you be able to move NC basecamp to a bedroom? Where she would have more space, and feel more relaxed...by having a window to look out from.
If she had her own room with a window, and more to see...then I think she would lessen her fear, and build her confidence.
How many hours is she spending out of her basecamp, with you all?
 
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Oh, wow. yeah, I don't think I could listen to that sad meow...and leave her in there alone.:frown:
(I just played the video, ...and my black retriever dog reacted to it.. each of the four times he heard it. He just stopped chewing his rawhide bone, and listened. So yes, it has to mean something in the cat world, too.)

Is there any way that you could open up the door, and just leave the gate in place.
So at least she would be able to see you all out there.
Maybe get a bedsheet and attach it to the top of the door frame...or a larger piece of cardboard...on the top..so she could see from the bottom...but the top would be blocked off.
Or get two baby gates and stack them up in the doorway.

There is this barrier that people have used to block off a doorway which is higher.
It's made of wire shelving...and then the wire shelves could be used for something else after intros are over.
How to Build a Free-Standing Cat, Dog, or Pet Gate Cheaply, Without Tools

or this set-up...from another member here:
See Post #47...of this thread: Need help introducing two cats

I don't think that NC wants to hurt RC at all.
She is only hissing at him, and swatting at him...since she is scared.
She also may use the hiss all the time...as a way of talking...but eventually she will hiss less.

If NC is not actually wanting to fight with RC...or run at him...then you don't really have to worry so much.
No fighting, when she escaped is a very good sign. Hissing is okay.

Would you be able to move NC basecamp to a bedroom? Where she would have more space, and feel more relaxed...by having a window to look out from.
If she had her own room with a window, and more to see...then I think she would lessen her fear, and build her confidence.
How many hours is she spending out of her basecamp, with you all?
Yes that meow tugs at my heart when NC or RC does it. Hence why I don't mean to rush things but I also want to move things forward, if she is comfortable. I have a 41in pet gate which she easily jumps over. A hanging blanket over does not deter her at all as she is smart and just works around it. I will try to tape a flat cardboard to see if it helps. I rent so I cannot secure things to the wall, but tape and hooks aren't really strong enough if she really makes an effort. I'm considering a second gate but for now I rather put those funds to getting her things to make her more comfortable, such as new litter box, cat tree, more beds all on the way.

The reason I put her in the bathroom is because the other rooms are less ideal. The room across from that has windows but is the office. I run a store online from home and that room has lots of electronics, wires, shipping, products etc. She has not shown interest to mess with things in the time I allow her to explore there, but I don't feel comfortable leaving her in there unsupervised. It's also a favorite spot of RC since he hangs with us when we work. The room isn't fully fitted for a cat, which is fine for RC as he just wants to chill on a spare chair, but otherwise there are boxes and shelves of stuff next to the windows, no cat tree or beds, etc.

The only other room with a door and window is our bedroom but we are only in there for sleeping, and it's on the other side of the apartment so she will be even further from the places we frequent. There isn't much space in there right now for cat furniture items yet as well, and our RC sleeps with us at night so that might be too much of a change for him. The window is actually above a balcony, and there aren't much to see. We barely even get sunlight in there.

We tried to see how she would fare being behind pet gate and can see us hanging out in the living room, but all she wants to do is jump out and come to us in person. In 1 hours she jumped out 5 times! The rest of the time she was either trying to figure out how to bypass the blanket wall, or me trying to figure out how I can have her stay there.

I visit her during her 3 meal times as well as give her petting and brushes until she looks like she's ready to sleep and gently nips me to let me know no more pets. I brought in mouse toys, feather wand, etc to play with her but usually she just wants attention instead and the space is kind of too cramped. I also do at least 1 session of clicker training with her a day but those aren't very long as I don't want to give her too much food and have her vomit again. We let her have exploration time at least once a day, usually for 10-20 mins, and try to play with her during that time but she's usually distracted and just wants to explore and look out the windows which we let her indulge.

My girlfriend and I have swapped sleeping time now because I have to work uninterrupted so I stay up all night to work while the cats and her sleep, and spend my afternoons taking care of NC and making sure RC isn't neglected. My gf has online classes and meetings during the day and play with them in morning and afternoon to help as well. NC loves attention and being very close to us which would be no issue if she was the only cat. I have 2 projects I still need to finish for my work and my GF is at the tail end of another big project as well so we are kind of swamped atm. We would happily let her hang with us in the office while we both worked but like I mention the room doesn't have much cat space right now. Only a spare chair for RC.

Once at least one of us is finished with most of our work, I will try to let her out for extended amount of time, with RC in the room, and see how it fares. I hope there will be no fights!! I'm not sure if there is no fights due to me not giving them the chance to at all, or if they will likely not fight.
 

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You're doing real well with the cat intros Babypinkweeb Babypinkweeb .
Thanks for explaining all that you have going on. That definitely is a lot.

I had to look back at your first few posts, because I forgot how long NC has been with you.
NC seems likes she's been at your place longer...but if it's only been two weeks tomorrow...then I think you're doing amazingly well.

Anyhow I think you and your gf are doing a great job. That's a lot to be doing all that, and spending time with each cat, too. :catrub::bluepaw:
 
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You're doing real well with the cat intros Babypinkweeb Babypinkweeb .
Thanks for explaining all that you have going on. That definitely is a lot.

I had to look back at your first few posts, because I forgot how long NC has been with you.
NC seems likes she's been at your place longer...but if it's only been two weeks tomorrow...then I think you're doing amazingly well.

Anyhow I think you and your gf are doing a great job. That's a lot to be doing all that, and spending time with each cat, too. :catrub::bluepaw:
Thank you. I hope our conversation hasn't been a bother to you. I just wanted to share a nice moment, after I took your advice and let them hang out in the main area.

 

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Thank you. I hope our conversation hasn't been a bother to you. I just wanted to share a nice moment, after I took your advice and let them hang out in the main area.

That is such a beautiful video.:blush: :loveeyes: She looks so relaxed.:cloud9:
Thanks so much.
And no, our conversation has not been a bother at all. :)

(I just thought I might have been annoying you a bit too much...with my, "try this"...then "try that"...when you're both so busy. :lol:)
I think you might all be actual 'cat whisperers' over there...since isn't this the same cat ...that was hissing like a cobra..just a couple of days ago. :think: Wow. I am so impressed.
May this 'progress' continue each and every day. :petcat::tabbycat:
 
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That is such a beautiful video.:blush: :loveeyes: She looks so relaxed.:cloud9:
Thanks so much.
And no, our conversation has not been a bother at all. :)

(I just thought I might have been annoying you a bit too much...with my, "try this"...then "try that"...when you're both so busy. :lol:)
I think you might all be actual 'cat whisperers' over there...since isn't this the same cat ...that was hissing like a cobra..just a couple of days ago. :think: Wow. I am so impressed.
May this 'progress' continue each and every day. :petcat::tabbycat:
You give me too much credit!! As today has been a little rocky.

I'm not sure what happened, and like with these things it happened fast and I couldn't observe every detail. I unknowingly tend to stare at RC carefully so I know he doesn't observe any predator or aggressive posture. I don't think I recall NC having ears back and GF agrees. I couldn't record these incidents.

Last night during free roam, they had 2 mistake confrontations. 1st was NC exploring the tub in my bedroom bathroom, and RC was watching from afar but he must not understand cat language as he thought she was playing (RC sometimes play in the tub). He run up to the tub in non-stalking nor aggressive way, but NC turned around and saw him. Of course she was startled and hiss/growled and swatted him. I couldn't see well if it made contact and NC's body language. RC was startled too and ran off. NC stayed in the tub for a bit after before leaving as well but she didn't growl or hiss after he left. 2nd was when I opened a drawer, NC always curious went inside. She's thin enough to and even squeezed into the space behind the drawer. Of course I started trying to coax her out, which got RC's attention to see what's going on. He wanted over and took a peek, and NC inside hissed and tried to swat at him again while growling. RC ran off once more. Both cats seem fine after.

Today is another story. While I was resting my gf played with the cats during free roam and NC finally started focusing on play. However she messed up and moved the feather toy near RC who was observing and NC chased it and then (according to my gf) kind of lunged at RC and hissed/swatted him. RC ran off as usual. I wasnt there to see it so I do not know if it was an actual lunge. After I let them both just do what they want and cool off, RC eventually went to drink from his fountain, and NC saw him and walked to about 3 ft behind him and stared at his back, starting to growl a bit. I tried to distract or cut off her growling by trying to get her attention, and eventually after a while she wandered off and I went to see if RC is feeling ok.

The last incident is the most puzzling one which made me end free roam time today. NC likes climbing so I've been trying to redirect her to use the cat tree instead of the fridge. She understood well and climbed all the way to the top. She was kind of chilling until RC cat saw she was up there and also wanted to hang at the cat tree. He jumped up to the 2nd ledge (there are 4 ledges total, NC was on highest 4th ledge and RC is on 2nd from the ground ledge). He was gonna look out the window but this time NC was the one really focused on staring at RC. Soon RC was looking at NC too but we kept trying to wave toys to distract them which only worked a tiny bit (I know play distraction works for others but it really doesn't work for them much). After a few minutes of that NC actually made the move of coming down to the 3rd ledge, and then hiss/growl/swatted at RC. RC got startled and ran off once more. NC was tense for a minute and then was distracted by noises outside and I went to comfort RC. After NC calmed down I lured her back to her room and ended free roam time.

I'm really not sure what's going on, and it's hard to not let me bias and human emotions get in the way. Of course I have more bias to RC since he's been nothing but perfect cat, and seeing him run off and hide under coffee table or behind car stools and looking pitiful makes me feel so bad for him. Meanwhile I'm not sure how to manage NC because even tho it's suppose to be scared, she often goes into his space or goes towards him and then get mad. Play distraction works maybe once and it only lasts momentarily before they're back to being focused on eachother. I don't want RC to continuously get scared away from all the places he's used to going like water fountain and cat tree. So far it doesn't seem like he is too scared and as usual when I put NC back in her room, he goes to meow outside her door. RC is such a big sweetie and it really hurts to see him treated like this, but I know I shouldn't let my human judgement define their cat interactions. It's just hard since it felt like there was progress recently, with feeding them around 5 ft apart thru a gate and NC hasn't hissed in 5 meals.
 

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You give me too much credit!! As today has been a little rocky.
You all do deserve a lot of credit.:)
Nothing that you actually wrote, Babypinkweeb Babypinkweeb ...is at all that bad,...especially this early in the cat introductions.
Today is another story. While I was resting my gf played with the cats during free roam and NC finally started focusing on play. However she messed up and moved the feather toy near RC who was observing and NC chased it and then (according to my gf) kind of lunged at RC and hissed/swatted him. RC ran off as usual. I wasnt there to see it so I do not know if it was an actual lunge.
The only part that might have been a little concerning would have been the part where your gf noticed that NC wanted to lunge after RC...but because you said it seemed accidental...and done during Play...(with a wand toy that got too close to RC)...then I think, like you,...that it might have not been intentional, at all.

But rather just done perhaps because NC was enjoying herself too much, (which is good)...and did not want RC to 'steal' that action away from her.
Also could have been...because in Play, our cats really do think they are 'hunting'...so really...they don't want another cat to 'steal their prize/toy'. (It would be like one cat trying to steal a 'newly caught mouse' away from the other.)
After I let them both just do what they want and cool off, RC eventually went to drink from his fountain, and NC saw him and walked to about 3 ft behind him and stared at his back, starting to growl a bit. I tried to distract or cut off her growling by trying to get her attention, and eventually after a while she wandered off and I went to see if RC is feeling ok.
The part about NC staring and sitting behind RC...and then beginning to growl...would be worrying...but not if it occurred shortly after the "gettting too close Play incident"...which is still fresh in NC's mind...so she would still be a bit riled up...or might want to get back at RC, too,...depending on how upset everyone was ...after the "Play incident".

What you did was really good, in Distracting and Cutting off her growling by getting her attention...so she could wander off...and cool off on her own.
You handled that really well.

Did you want me to go through your post...and make some more comments...about each incident?
I just don't want to write too much...to 'bore you to tears'. :blush: 😂
Then you'd be like..."oh, no...another long post from cat nap. I wonder what's on netflix tonight." 🤔haha.😸
 
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You all do deserve a lot of credit.:)
Nothing that you actually wrote, Babypinkweeb Babypinkweeb ...is at all that bad,...especially this early in the cat introductions.

The only part that might have been a little concerning would have been the part where your gf noticed that NC wanted to lunge after RC...but because you said it seemed accidental...and done during Play...(with a wand toy that got too close to RC)...then I think, like you,...that it might have not been intentional, at all.

But rather just done perhaps because NC was enjoying herself too much, (which is good)...and did not want RC to 'steal' that action away from her.
Also could have been...because in Play, our cats really do think they are 'hunting'...so really...they don't want another cat to 'steal their prize/toy'. (It would be like one cat trying to steal a 'newly caught mouse' away from the other.)

The part about NC staring and sitting behind RC...and then beginning to growl...would be worrying...but not if it occurred shortly after the "gettting too close Play incident"...which is still fresh in NC's mind...so she would still be a bit riled up...or might want to get back at RC, too,...depending on how upset everyone was ...after the "Play incident".

What you did was really good, in Distracting and Cutting off her growling by getting her attention...so she could wander off...and cool off on her own.
You handled that really well.

Did you want me to go through your post...and make some more comments...about each incident?
I just don't want to write too much...to 'bore you to tears'. :blush: 😂
Then you'd be like..."oh, no...another long post from cat nap. I wonder what's on netflix tonight." 🤔haha.😸
I am not bored at all!! You're the only person here who was willing to listen and help me, even though I'm sure my situation is quite common and probably posted often here. I just worry it's too much work for you. I actually look forward to your responses and reread them to remind myself of what to do. Im sorry I wrote so much, but it's because today it seemed different than usual, and I don't want to have NC start becoming more aggressive or bullying RC. I write out every detail in case I miss out any important information. Please don't feel obligated to give detailed reply to everything, if it's not trouble I'd just love to know if there are warning signs I need to look at for due to this new behavior.

A detail I forgot was that prior to the lunge incident, I used some cat nip to have her sit on a new bed. RC doesn't react to car nip at all but NC gets pretty happy with it. I read sometimes cat nip can make a cat more hyper or riled up, so I wonder if that also made the later situation worse.

At the meal time after all these incidents, they both ate with no issue after I moved their bowls a little closer. She has not hissed at him for the last 2 days of meal time being 6 ft apart. Now they are 5 ft apart.
 
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