Boyfriend and his cat planning to move in. What do I need to know/do?

(16 Posts)
DioneTheDiabolist Sat 04-Jan-14 21:26:24

DBF is planning to move in with me later this year. He's bringing his cat who will be about 2yo at the time of the move and I'm a bit worried.

The cat is one of two from the same litter who have always been together (his housemate is taking the other cat). They are housecats and due to DBF's and housemate's work schedule, the cats are often left home alone and have free run of the house. I often joke that the house belongs to the cats with humans just visiting occasionally.

Neither I nor any of my family have any experience with cats, so lovely Littertray people, what do I need to know/do to make this move as painfree as possible for me and the cat?

issey6cats Sat 04-Jan-14 23:06:00

im sure your boyfriend will bring any bowls, litter trays etc that belong to the cat basically just let the cat have a wander round and come to you in his or her own time, if you have a house with ornaments around that have any sentimental value maybe move them into a cupboard for a while as exploring he might knock them over, your boyfriends house sounds like mine cats comfort and food and needs come before mine

DioneTheDiabolist Sat 04-Jan-14 23:12:04

Thanks for taking the time to reply Issy. DBF will bring the necessaries and I don't have any ornaments. Think I will have to keep the kitchen counters clearer though.blush

I think the thing I am most concerned about is the impact on her of being separated from her sister. Will it even be an issue?

sashh Sun 05-Jan-14 08:15:52

I often joke that the house belongs to the cats with humans just visiting occasionally.

This is not a joke, this is a fact. You dbf and cat are not moving in, the cat is moving house and acquiring a new servant.

feliway plug ins will help the cat settle and expect it to hide for a day or two, just put out food and keep the litter tray clean.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 05-Jan-14 08:54:06

Just remember dogs have owners, cats have staff. As long as you remember this you will be fine.

catameringue Sun 05-Jan-14 15:21:27

Are there signs in his house of the cats damaging things like using table legs or sofa as a scratching post? If so you can get throws to cover your sofa etc now to minimise damage.

I would set the cat up with a 'base' initially where he has water food bedding and tray close at hand, in case he finds it disorientating at first. Don't put food and tray too close together.

It may be tempting to give lots of strokes and attention as you feel worried he might be lonely. I would offer him attention by getting down to his level and holding out a hand, or creating a nice lap he can jump on, but if he doesn't come to you or cowers I'd leave it. Just play with him, give a few treats etc. Or he might not be shy at all and act like the lord of the manor like my boy. You never know til he arrives.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 05-Jan-14 19:52:10

The cat that is coming is the least troublesome of the two girls, her sister is mad. They have had scratching problems in the past, but it seems to have settled down now. I'm not that bothered about being friend's with the cat as I'm not really an animal person, but she'll get plenty of from DS once they get used to eachother (they've met a few times and he is very careful around her).

She will not have such freedom of movement here as she has in her current house. Does she need a bed? Does anyone know if separating the 2 cats will be a problem? They're from the same litter.

Thank you for your replies and sorry about all the questions but I really haven't the first notion about cats.blush

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 05-Jan-14 19:52:45

Should she come to visit before moving in?

Fluffycloudland77 Sun 05-Jan-14 21:19:58

You don't know how they will react to being separated until you do it, don't bother with a visit the car journey might be too distressing to her.

She'll probably sleep on the sofa if you let her, otherwise buy a small/medium dog bed. Cat beds are too flimsy and the bases aren't padded enough.

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 05-Jan-14 22:05:31

Thank you Fluffy. And thank you to everyone who replied. You have made me feel much more prepared. I'm sure the cat will be grateful too.smile

cozietoesie Sun 05-Jan-14 22:08:38

Be aware - in the way of cats, there's every chance that it will develop a fixation with you and start ignoring DBF. You may have to be awfully tactful!

grin

DrNick Sun 05-Jan-14 22:13:07

aw i love the idea of a man and his cat

Lovethesea Sun 05-Jan-14 23:23:36

If like my cats she will ignore all cat beds and suggested sleep places and sleep on your bed, kids bed, sofa or top of the stairs in the dark where Huntercat will one day trip and kill someone!

Congrats, cats are mad, fab and utterly self focused. They don't even pretend to be interested in how your day was. Like a mini tiger in your life. Brilliant.

IAmNotAMindReader Sun 05-Jan-14 23:41:47

Ours greets you in the morning by weaving her way in and out of your legs as you sleepily have a morning wee.

She bestows night time visits on any worthy persons bed she sees fit and moves on if they fidget too much.

Any specifically bought cat beds are looked at with derision as an attempt to control her when we should know our place as staff to service her.

Cats love to play either with rolled up balls of paper or with toys with feathers that can be flicked around like birds. They also will chase the dot from a laser pen and stalk and pounce on twitching toes under a duvet.

Make sure she has access to places she can sit at ground level away from the hustle and bustle of the house as well as high places she can survey her territory from, this all helps them to feel secure.

Cats are not dogs when they roll onto their backs this is not an invitation to tummy rub, its a show of trust and all they want in return is a little head rub or chin tickle. Tummy rubs overstimulate and this is where most people end up in the jaws of death with a cat wrapped firmly round their hand chewing on it while raking the arm with their back feet.

Purring isn't necessarily a sign of happiness, its a self soothing mechanism they can use when hurt or stressed to reassure themselves. Although when combined with kneading actions (which they use as kittens use to stimulate their mothers milk) closed eyes and a beatific expression this means they are happy and secure.

If you wish to make friends with the cat don't stare at her just ignore her as she wanders in and when she is in eyeline look at her and slowly blink, when she returns the slow blink, you are in. It doesn't matter if she sits on your knee or seems to treat you with disdain, the amount of human interaction a cat deals with is subjective to each cat. However if they return the slow blink they have accepted you as a part of their household and they love you, trust you and accept you as dearly as anything a cat can.

Floralnomad Sun 05-Jan-14 23:51:04

When you say she will not have as much freedom of movement in your house that may be an issue ,particularly as she is a housecat ( by saying which I assume she doesn't go outside) . If she is not going out she will need to be able to have the run of several rooms or she may get very bored ,my mum has an indoor cat and he does like to spread himself about !

livinginawinterwonderland Tue 07-Jan-14 10:03:02

Second what Flora said. If she's a housecat you can't keep her in one room, it's unfair. She needs to be able to access several rooms of the house. Ours are housecats an they're allowed everywhere and are only shut out of the bedroom at night.

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