Kitten hissing at other kitten

TheOldRagdoll

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Hello everyone, I was wondering if anyone can share some insight and help us out with this situation.

We recently picked up a ragdoll kitten, Oscar. He's just over 12 weeks old and is the most loving, affectionate kitten you could hope for. He's also very sociable, which worried us that he would get lonely once we both have to go back to work in September; so we decided to find another kitten so they could keep each other company while we're at work.

We picked up our second kitten, Ivy -also a ragdoll, 2 days ago. She's 8/9 weeks old, but quite a bit smaller than Oscar. Ever since we brought her home, Ivy has hissed at Oscar every time he's come near her. On the first occasion they met, he tried to start grooming her; only for her to take a swipe at him. She missed, but you could see Oscar was quite shaken up by it.

We've kept them separated since then and tried to gradually introduce them. Ivy continues to hiss at Oscar and they'll regularly chase each other round the room. Even though Oscar is bigger and older, he's usually the one to give way. I've read some articles suggesting this could be just rough play, but Ivy always seems to be really flustered around Oscar which makes me think she's afraid of him. Does anyone have any tips for helping with this situation?
 

ArtNJ

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Yes, my tip is to relax! Kittens this age essentially always end up good friends no matter what you do, you literally can't mess it up, but the initial road can be a little bumpy! It is not uncommon for a new kitten to be scared of the house, of the people, or the other pets, for up to a week or so, hissing at it all. They won't hurt each other. You do not actually need a formal introduction process with kittens this young. Well, the new kitten should spend at least a few days in a safe room to help with the adjustment, but you don't need a formal process beyond that. They will be playing for real soon.

Now, do be aware that just because they will be friends and play does not mean that the play will be equal. With a size difference, it wouldn't be uncommon for the smaller cat to decide "enough" mid-way through, and run or squeal a bit. Thats ok. You are not there yet, but just wanted to warn you since you'll likely get there soon enough. They can work through those sorts of issues as well.
 
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TheOldRagdoll

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Thanks for the reply. I brought them into the same room again about half an hour ago to see what happened. They started out giving each other a wide berth, then walked by each other a few times without incident. Then Ivy started hissing and growling again.

After a bit more circling each other, they really seemed to get into it; rolling around on the floor. I don't think they hurt each other, but I thought I could see Ivy's ears pinned back which would suggest she's taking it a bit more seriously than Oscar is.

The strange thing is, this happened 2 or 3 times and after each time they would both go back to grooming themselves or playing with a toy for a moment before getting into it again. I'm also wondering whether their early upbringing might have played a part - Oscar was with his mother and two sisters for the first 11/12 weeks of his life, whereas Ivy was separated at a much younger age and may not be as used to being around other cats (she was originally taken in by a family who had to give her up because one of them was allergic, which is how I came to acquire her)

I have a video of what they were doing, but I don't seem to be able to post it here. Does anyone know anywhere / anyone who could take a look at it and see what they think? This is the first time I've had more than one cat at a time so I'm feeling slightly out of my depth here. They're both such adorable animals that I couldn't stand to see either of them get hurt.
 

ArtNJ

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You can post it on youtube or something and link it here. People do link videos here, but if there is a problem that works too.
 
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