Rescued a "semi feral", have a resident cat, 1 bedroom but I want to make it work so badly!

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noani

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Yes that was a whole experience. Now they're both 1yr 4 months and 1yr 8 months so they have settled a lot compared to a year ago :)
 
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noani

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Here's a new picture of Yoda recovering well. He's slowly getting back to being more active and in good spirits.
Forgive the mess in background, we moved all the furniture in the flat so the bed is up against the wall, the couch in the bedroom and the mattress on the living room floor for me and Charly. It's all a bit of a mess but the best way I could think of making the small space work for this situation and also not having the huge area under the bed full of boxes and bags where Yoda could get stuck with his cone. And continuing to sleep with Charly but in the living room so he wouldn't feel abandoned and excluded if I shut him out at night and sleep in the bedroom with Yoda.
 

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tarasgirl06

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I started BINGEING Jackson galaxy, read his books and also reading articles and posts here. Oh and kittenlady when he was a wee little squish. From the very first day, i was and still am obsessed with learning as much as I can about cats, their needs, behaviours, how to interact respectfully, how to provide the best environment possibile ever since I got the first one. I'm hoping it will help me also now with the new challenge of integrating Yoda into our little family.
It sure can't hurt!!! :lolup:
 

fionasmom

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You have received tons of good advice here already, so I am only going to add that I have done this my whole adult life....as I only work with ferals and strays, I have brought cats into the house on an emergency basis as necessary. It absolutely can work and in the case of your two, I agree that it is almost going to work itself out with the need for extra people involved. Thank you for helping these cats and this little boy who needed you so desperately.
 
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noani

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You have received tons of good advice here already, so I am only going to add that I have done this my whole adult life....as I only work with ferals and strays, I have brought cats into the house on an emergency basis as necessary. It absolutely can work and in the case of your two, I agree that it is almost going to work itself out with the need for extra people involved. Thank you for helping these cats and this little boy who needed you so desperately.
Thank you for your kind words!
I do hope it will work out and I'm doing right by both of them.

Sometimes I worry, because Charly gets a bit skittish and he's a bit of a nervous cat in general. He doesn't like being touched when he doesn't feel like it, he will fake bite (open his mouth and jerk his head a little as if he was gonna bite but doesn't) or swatting at the person's hand (no nails).

My neighbour just came up to visit Yoda and they have a dog - I've noticed before they treat cats the same. So lots of "rough" petting and hand wrestling. They won't be corrected.
So she was rubbing his head rather vigorously and he was letting her, then he backed up and hissed at her once. She leaned down and tried to pet him again and he hissed/spat at her and swatted. I'm not sure if he did the "fake bite" gesture too.
It all happened very fast and I invited them to leave my flat after this interaction. She was laughing about it... Anyways. Some people are like that and i guess you have to pick your battles.

So what worries me is, what if Charly will show the same diffident, sus, don't come to me attitude to Yoda and what if that starts a fight? He might hate having a cat he doesn't know as much as he isn't a fan of people he doesn't know :ohwell:
 

fionasmom

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Cats don't have to be best friends to live together. If you get them to the point of just coexisting peacefully that is fine as well. At this point, with Yoda still healing. When you are ready to start the real intros, you can begin to try all the techniques that you are reading about. But I do want to say that the "house smell" theory often works it out. Once the animals all realize that they are living with the same scent of their environment and the scent is on all of them they often accept each other.

As for your neighbors, there is that cross section of the population who believe that all animals are Labrador retrievers and want their head fluffed up. My husband adores my cats Jamie and Chiquita but continually reaches over their heads no matter how many times I have shown him the Jackson Galaxy videos. Yes, you do have to pick your battles and maybe you can limit the contact with the neighbors. Poor Yoda has been through enough in his hard short life.
 
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noani

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Thank you for your kind words!
I do hope it will work out and I'm doing right by both of them.

Sometimes I worry, because Charly gets a bit skittish and he's a bit of a nervous cat in general. He doesn't like being touched when he doesn't feel like it, he will fake bite (open his mouth and jerk his head a little as if he was gonna bite but doesn't) or swatting at the person's hand (no nails).

My neighbour just came up to visit Yoda and they have a dog - I've noticed before they treat cats the same. So lots of "rough" petting and hand wrestling. They won't be corrected.
So she was rubbing his head rather vigorously and he was letting her, then he backed up and hissed at her once. She leaned down and tried to pet him again and he hissed/spat at her and swatted. I'm not sure if he did the "fake bite" gesture too.
It all happened very fast and I invited them to leave my flat after this interaction. She was laughing about it... Anyways. Some people are like that and i guess you have to pick your battles.

So what worries me is, what if Charly will show the same diffident, sus, don't come to me attitude to Yoda and what if that starts a fight? He might hate having a cat he doesn't know as much as he isn't a fan of people he doesn't know :ohwell:
Maybe I should have specified, the interaction mentioned was between the neighbour and Charly. Yoda when they got too rough just ran to hide between my legs.
 
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noani

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Thank you for the reassurance. I instinctively felt the same as what you have said, based on what I've learned online theoretically and observed practically with cats here, but it did freak me out a bit thinking what if he's just gonna hate another stranger and get aggressive... Probably overthinking it. So thank you!

In other news, no new fleas have been spotted and the flea comb came away almost clean. Yoda loved the flea comb. He was purring his little head off like a maniac.:redheartpump:
 

Mamanyt1953

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OH...tech tip if you go with the baby gate...get two. A cat can easily jump over one, but two, one atop the other, will stop all but the most determined cat.
 
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noani

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Thank you! My boyfriend is looking into making something out of sturdy wire fencing which we've used to secure the balcony, and also the entrance door as Charly would door dash like a lunatic when he was little and I'm on the fourth floor so I was scared he'd fall when he shot out so excitedly. He's now clicker trained to wait on his perch when the door is opened and we no longer need the wire fencing there, so we thought using it could be good as at least Charly is already familiar with it and won't be weirded out by it.
I've seen the pictures of dyi ones made out of shelving which looks amazing! But we don't have home depot here and I haven't been able to find any similar long shelves sold separately here. I'll have a look around some bigger shops in the industrial area this weekend.
I might go the baby gate route if the other options don't work. Thank you for the tip! I was thinking the same. The high ones seem to cost a fortune..
 

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To Noani, as we say in my country, "good on you!" People like you who are not just kind, considerate and loving to nature's ones but also practical in ways enough to get positive things done. I wish you all fortune and hope your cats become friends and I don't see why not if they are related. You have done so well with just a small apartment and both kittys. As for the large $ debt, I'm sure you will be surprised one day in the near future with it becoming less. People who are genuine and good, get rewarded in other ways (as long as they don't expect it).
 
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noani

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Hi everyone,

I wanted to give you all an update and have some questions too :).

Yoda went for his third and last check up with the surgeon on Friday morning and he still has to keep on his cone until the wound closes. It is very small now so I'm expecting it to be closed within next week.
He can now come out of the crate for good, so tomorrow my partner will be here to help me move more stuff around (get the bedframe and boxes out of the bedroom so he can't get stuck/stuff can't fall on him.

It's been three weeks now, they both hang out close to the door, they both seem relaxed about the others presence. Occasionally they will whip their head when they hear the other and run to the door to sniff or listen, and sometimes paw under the door at each other. Only one time has Yoda hissed briefly when Charly kind of pushed his paw up at him which caused his claws to pop out.

In general they both just seem so curious and I think they are starting to get frustrated with not knowing what exactly is going on in the other room like, ever.

So I was thinking.. they might be ready for site swapping? It would mean my partner staying in bedroom as Charly explores it - not only has Yoda been in there for three weeks but we've moved the furniture around and he might be confused?
And I would be in living area with Yoda cause he still has the cone so he won't be unsupervised as I can't cone-cat proof the whole apartment possibly.

Do you guys think they are ready for site swapping? How should I go about it (how often, how long for)? Do I observe them as they explore? Leave them alone? Stay out of the way? Give treats? Watch?

I want to continue to stay with Charly at night as per usual while we go through the stages introductions so that means staying in living room, so I really do want to get my bedframe, not just the mattress.. it's been three weeks and my back is killing me. Or will further furniture moving around destabilise them once they get used to each other further on and we have to move it all back, could that tip the balance somehow?

Not sure if this all makes sense. I'm apprehensive because I really really don't want to muck this up.
 

Mamanyt1953

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They sound as if they are ready to make some more forward progress. And site-swapping is the simplest next step, as they will still be separated. Charlie should do just fine, as this will be just old territory with new smells. Yoda will be in new territory just FILLED with new smells, and may need a little encouragement. I imagine that he will do fine, though.
 
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noani

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Thank you! We will give it a try today! How long should we keep the switcheroo session to?

Another thing I was wondering is if it would be okay to switch their cat posts - both have a scratcher that is about 2' 7" (80cm) tall (different but similar style. Obviously Charly's is much older and yoda's quite new still).

I've switched the cardboard ones which Yoda loves but Charly never cared for them as much. He doesn't react negatively when I bring out the one that has been with Yoda for a day, but he also doesn't really use it (never really does). They both don't like blankies so the scratching post came to mind when thinking about how to further mingle their scents. Or could it be counter productive?
 

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Cat Introductions Part 2: Welcome Home! - Jackson Galaxy

I agree that these two seem to be getting along and site swapping would be a good next step. Maybe site swap first, and the next time move the cat scratchers. I don't see it as counter productive.

Near the end of the Jackson Galaxy blog on cat introductions, he talks about site swapping and says there is no hard and fast rule about time.
 

Mamanyt1953

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No, there is no hard and fast rule about how long the sessions are, but each one should be long enough for Yoda to explore the new territory, and start becoming more comfortable in it.

You can swap the posts, it certainly won't hurt a thing, but it one cat is really picky about posts, it might be a bit frustrating to him.
 
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noani

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Yoda's wound has opened again slightly (fresh blood from below and around the new tissue) so he has to stay in the crate to limit his movement again :( luckily, he is very tolerant of it and while not exactly ecstatic about it, doesn't seem to mind much. I know some have said crating is not necessary if it's just a wound but it's in a delicate location and jumping or running will tear it open unfortunately.

So I am still on wound care, spending as much time as possible with both of them, and work.
In the meantime I'm trying different gating options for later. For now no site swapping unfortunately. It feels like ages, it's been almost a month. I just want Yoda to be healed and be able to come out of his cone and crate. Poor little one.

I really hope the prolonged isolation won't be of detriment to the whole introduction process, I don't want them to become frustrated with not being allowed access to the respective areas and the paw that comes out under the door..
 
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noani

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Also just found what I strongly believe to be a tapeworm segment. Off to the vet tomorrow I suppose. :ohwell:
Probably more isolation for Yoda at this point now.
 
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