Not Accepting New Kitten ;(

Conniew

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hi,

I’m having trouble getting my cat Marley to accept our kitten.
I’ve had chase 6 weeks now and kept seperate due to his small size, he’s around 12 weeks now but weighing around 7!
I’ve tried a few introductions before but have resulted in Marley pouncing so I left it a little bit until he was bigger. Marley doesn’t seem to hiss/ growl show aggression, he’ll show hunting behaviour crouching etc, he’ll bat at him which seems playful but then the second he has a chance he pounces and attacks. I retried them this morning and Marley had hold of him biting and kicking him, I seperated straight away.
I’m at a loss now. They play under the door and make noises at each other and seem desperate to see each other but then it doesn’t end nicely.

Chase was supposed to be female, as I thought Male Female relationships work better but turns out he is Male.

Has anybody got any suggestions as I’m starting to feel like this is never going to work &it’s really upsetting

I did post this in another thread but made the title my email address by accident and can’t edit it! Not thinking straight today
 

rubysmama

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I know you probably don't want to hear "wait till Chase is bigger", but I think that is what you need to do. At 12 weeks, he's still young, but if he's only the size of a 7 week old kitten, that means he is really tiny. No wonder Marley considers him prey or a toy. Even if he considers him another cat, and just wants to play with him, the size difference is still way too big.

Can you try stacking baby gates to block the door to Chase's room, so that they can see each other. You can see a picture of how one member set it up in the How To Successfully Introduce Cats: The Ultimate Guide article.
 

di and bob

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Two boys actually get along better, females tend to get diva like and standoffish when they get older. I would try keeping the kitten in a big dog cage or some kind of cage and let Marley get used to the sight and movement of him. You could also get Marley trained to a harness and keep a leash on him to pull him away when he pounces too, it takes just really putting the harness on for longer times a day until he accepts it. The first couple of days are comical, my Chrissy actually fell over on her side and wouldn't move! It took a week of trying with her.
Is there blood, scratches or bites on the little one when Marley attacks? If not, it may just be rough play. Kittens get this all the time, even with each other, then they scream and squeal and run away. Cats often appear to be fighting when it is 'mock'. if the kitten comes back for more and doesn't run from Marley then everything is fine.
I agree, once the kitten is big enough to handle itself better, everything will work out, these things just take time and exposure, often weeks to months.
 
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Conniew

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Thank you!
It’s just a bit disheartening seeing them like this, and I feel so guilty that they seem to want to see each other and ply but it doesn’t end so well. I hope Marley is just trying to playwith him. They are still seperate at the moment.

I just wanted to ask - when is enough is enough? I mean somebody told me once an intro has gone pear shaped then that’s it. I’m persevering as long as is possible (I’m thinking at least another few months) but when is it time to admit defeat is a few months fair? My mum is willing to take on little Chase if necessary but obviously that’s last resort and I really don’t want it want it to come to that,
 

FeebysOwner

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Hi. Have you implemented any/all of the tactics in the article rubysmama rubysmama provided to you? Waiting at least a few more months is the right way to go. The kitten will have a chance to grow some more during that time, and continuing on with introductions in a consistent manner will also take more time.

I mean somebody told me once an intro has gone pear shaped then that’s it.
Actually, that is not necessarily true. I have seen numerous cases on this site where an initial introduction didn't work out, so the process was started all over again - and was successful.
 
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Conniew

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Hi. Have you implemented any/all of the tactics in the article rubysmama rubysmama provided to you? Waiting at least a few more months is the right way to go. The kitten will have a chance to grow some more during that time, and continuing on with introductions in a consistent manner will also take more time.



Actually, that is not necessarily true. I have seen numerous cases on this site where an initial introduction didn't work out, so the process was started all over again - and was successful.

We’ve been trying the gates which seems to be going pretty well - a lot of play going on and vocals(such a beautiful sound!!) although Chase managed to escape past my feet when I opened the door yesterday which resulted in what looked like an attack but have been quite happy playing through the gate again this evening.
Thank you for replying, you saying a few months was really reassuring as I felt it was way too long but obviously not :) I WILL make this work I’m determined.
 

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I hope Marley is just trying to playwith him. They are still seperate at the moment.

I just wanted to ask - when is enough is enough? I mean somebody told me once an intro has gone pear shaped then that’s it. I’m persevering as long as is possible (I’m thinking at least another few months) but when is it time to admit defeat is a few months fair? My mum is willing to take on little Chase if necessary but obviously that’s last resort and I really don’t want it want it to come to that,
No no no. You have a long way to go before needing to worry. Cats are remarkable because they don't hold grudges.

It doesn't even sound like real aggression but play aggression. You say Marley is in hunting and pouncing mode. It could be that Chase is not used to the area outside where you've been keeping him so he is using the body language of a prey item. So I'd separate them and then make sure you give Chase enough time out of his safe area alone without Marley so he's confident for the next introduction and won't act like something Marley would want to pounce on.

That said biting and kicking is part of play and it's also part of kitten socialization. It looks aggressive and can go from play to serious just like it can with human children play wrestling. But what you are describing doesn't sound like it's real serious.

Absolutely cats can be reintroduced and be fine.
 

rubysmama

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Don't give up yet! I really think once Chase is a bit bigger, he'll be able to hold his own against Marley, as it does sound more like play than fighting.

How old is Marley?
 
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Conniew

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Don't give up yet! I really think once Chase is a bit bigger, he'll be able to hold his own against Marley, as it does sound more like play than fighting.

How old is Marley?
Marleys 9 months old. I’m pretty certain he is hitting his teenager stage atm! He’s being very moody with me. He is being neutered on January 2nd.
 

di and bob

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Hormones play a BIG part in feline aggression. Marley will be much calmer and play nicer when he is neutered. i would have it done sooner rather than later, he is plenty big enough and neutering is so much easier then having a female spayed.They usually don't have any down time after the initial wooziness of the surgery itself. Right now the urge to drive off intruders and get them out of his territory is big, his aggression may lead to injury. The hormones remain in the body after neutering for up to six weeks also! He'll start spraying too, they usually do, and will be a houdini on getting outside.
 
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Conniew

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Hi - just an update and cry for help really.
I’ve kept them seperate and tried a few times to introduce - one just now.
I’ve linked two YouTube videos (unsure if this is allowed) This is the result - I separated them straight after - I only videoed to try and display the behaviour for advice.





I can see Marley is stalking him, is this normal?
Marley is a real hunter, we had mice when he was younger and he took at least 20 our within two days, ate them all whole it was awful. He spends all day at the windows watching the birds etc so i know his hunt instinct is really strong.. could this be part of the problem?


(also please excuse the mess I’m in the middle of a big sort out lol)
 

war&wisdom

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Kitten play can look intense/scary, but as long as no one is hiding or gets injured, everything is fine. Even hissing and meowing are fine -- my girl is quite vocal during play.

My girl even scampers off when she's had enough of her brother's shenanigans (which include gnawing on her neck), but then she comes back to show him who's boss. She used to be more timid, especially because she's smaller by a few pounds, but she's gotten more and more bold as she's gotten older.

Here's an example from when they were really little, in case it helps ease your mind:

View media item 422190
 

rubysmama

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I’ve linked two YouTube videos (unsure if this is allowed)
Yes, Youtube videos are fine, and if you get longer ones, do post them too. From the videos you posted, it does look like play. We always say that the things to watch for are fur flying, blood, or one cat acting really scared. If both cats keep coming back for more "fun" then everything is probably fine.
 

duncanmac

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The other thing to look for in play vs. fight is what they do afterwards: Does the "loser" come back for more? Does the "winner" relentlessly chase the "loser"

This morning my little 7-pound kitten was wrestling with her 2 year old, 16 pound brother and started crying and hissing when she was losing (the boy doesn't always stop when he should). I watched them, and she was giving it to him pretty good too, but it was a little too rough for her. She got separated, took literally one breath and then circled behind him for a sneak attack. Then we all went downstairs for breakfast as pals.

Your cats seem to be at a point now where you kind of have to let them work it out - cats play really rough, but unless one of them is screaming or bleeding, let them go. The stalking in the second video was pure play - both cats seemed to know what was going on and continued to engage.
 

jen

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Please stop separating them. They are having a wonderful time playing as kittens do. They are rough and tough boys and need to play and stalk and hiss and growl and roll and tumble to learn boundaries of the other cat. If you keep interfering you will end up with neurotic cats. THEY ARE PLAYING. They are having a blast. Ignore them and let them be. Even if they have a scuffle they will hiss and growl and eventually learn the other cat doesn't like it. No big deal. They also pick up on your stress so calm down and relax and let them play :)
 
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Conniew

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Hi,

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while. Thought I’d update.. not much has changed, they’re still seperate most of the time with ten minutes here and there.

This is from today..

I separated them shortly after as the little one was pretty distressed at the time. We seem to be making progress and I’m aware I’m probably a very over protective cat mum and this is more than likely play

This is a few minutes before


Is it time to just leave them to it?
 
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