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My two older cats LOATHE the new kittens - I am very worried, please has anyone any advice?

(19 Posts)
GetOrf Mon 13-Jun-11 13:43:10

I have 2 3 year old brothers - we have had them from kittens and love them so much.

I have just collected 2 sister kittens. I have kept the kittens in a utility room in the evening, taken them out for cuddles and play time in teh day whilst the older cats are out. Have tried to intrdoduce kittens and cats gradually.

The cats hiss and retreat from the kittens as if they are terrified. The kittens are not scared of the cats at all, it's the other way round.

We were playing with the kittens last night in the sitting room, cats were looking at us from outside, in the rain. sad. We went and put the kittens in the utility room and went outside to get the cats in. They wouldn't come in. They came in via their catflap in the end but stayed in the hallway.

I feel very bad that the kittens are making out much loved cats very unhappy.

Has anyone got any advice re integrating?

Thanks very much

GetOrf Mon 13-Jun-11 15:29:36


CallMeSusan Mon 13-Jun-11 17:09:58

I'm sure they'll be fine, just give it time. My poor old cat was most put out when I got 2 kittens last year, but he came round in the end. He just tolerates them really and as long as they leave him alone then he is OK. Just make sure your cats get some fuss. I did read that cats see kittens as less of a threat than a grown cat so hopefully it won't take too long. Poor cats probably have their noses massively put out of joint by having some cute little kittens stealing all the limelight!

TheOriginalFAB Mon 13-Jun-11 17:12:25

Put the kittens somewhere secure - carry case, play pen, so that the cats can see them but the kittens can't annoy them.

noddyholder Mon 13-Jun-11 17:16:08

I have had this scenario many times! One of my cats stayed outside and had to be fed outside for 2 weeks once! They come round eventually. Usually the big cats seemed scared then the little ones annoyed them a bit and gave them a wallop and the pecking order was established. I love kittens and am planning on getting another so my 2 will probably object to that. After fiddling about separating etc I have found the 'let them get on with it' quickest and easiest

fridakahlo Mon 13-Jun-11 17:16:33

You might need to bear in mind that your elder cats might be feeling that you, their mummy, has some new babies and therefore it's time to move on. You will need to convince them that that is not the case.

noddyholder Mon 13-Jun-11 17:18:31

Yes they do get jealous. Someone advised me to feed the older cats something they love like tuna so that they think Its better since these little buggers arrived! grin

Hassled Mon 13-Jun-11 17:21:42

When we got Cat2 as a kitten, Cat1 was 3 - and he did sulk for a good week or so. Sulking mixed with hissing and the odd swipe. It passed - eventually Cat1 worked out there was no actual threat and they seem to have resolved territorial issues - they seem quite close now.

It will take a bit of time but unless older cats are going to cause actual damage to the kittens I don't think isolating them from each other will help - it will just prolong the agony. They need to get to know each other.

Geordieminx Mon 13-Jun-11 17:21:46

It will probably take a week or 2 for them to get used to the new arrivals. Make sure you put the kittens away somewhere for an hour or two each night and have time with the older cats. (like in another room, not in a drawer or bag or anything grin)

Also have a short period of time where they are all locked in the same room together... With you to supervise.

They will be fine eventually, just give it time. At least the older boys aren't trying to batter the kittens.

We had one older cat and got a kitten, old boy hated the kitten for weeks... They are now snuggled up asleep in ds's their bed.

Oh and I presume the boys have been snipped? wink

Geordieminx Mon 13-Jun-11 18:23:42

Oh and these kittens sound like a substitute for babies that you are dreaming about with office boy wink

GetOrf Tue 14-Jun-11 12:15:35

Geordie - you minx grin

I sound slightly unhinged about these cats don't I. I am going to be one of those old ladies in a house of 85 cats when I am older. Good. grin

We have just decided to let them loose together and see what happens. The elder statesmen cats got a but closer to the kittens last night - one of them seemed fine (albeit a bit scared, the big wuss) but the other one was completely hostile - he has always been a bit highlu strung in any case.

Agree that we have special elder cat cuddle time - we took the boys into bed with us this morning, bless them.

The kittens are very, very cute and a lot more affectionate than the cats ever were (we got our cats as quite old kittens - 12 weeks - and they had barely been handled so they have always been pretty standoffish, it is only lately that they have responded to affection).

Am very happy though in a house of 4 cats - DP is smitten (he is worse than me and DD for being completely soppy about animals).

paddypoopants Tue 14-Jun-11 12:25:54

It depends on the cats really. I have found the older cats do come round eventually - it could take at least a month. One of our elder cats RIP never took to a new kitten and I think the best you could say was they tolerated each other. The kitten used to spray inside which was rank but he stopped as soon as the OAP died. Just a personality clash really.

onclefestere Tue 14-Jun-11 14:24:24

it definitely takes a while GetOrf - my two big cats were so jealous when we got the little ones. Don't worry too much, they will come round to it and get used to it. Like paddy says, we're talking months for them to get used to it - expect some spitting and sulking meantime but bear with it smile

Geordieminx Tue 14-Jun-11 14:26:48

"special cat cuddles" WTF????

You sound totally fucking unhinged grin

GetOrf Tue 14-Jun-11 15:01:14

I know, I sound like a complete Cat Twat don't I? grin. I am going to end up ELDERLY and ALONE and with CATS.

<peruses websites which sell costumes for cats and diamond collars>

SparklyCloud Tue 14-Jun-11 20:19:07

they will adjust, may take a few weeks.
Do you have a Feliway plug in - great for reducing stress in a multi cat house?

noddyholder Tue 14-Jun-11 21:24:57

I am terrible I have special cat kisses and songs and mine both have xmas t shirts grin

bubble2bubble Tue 14-Jun-11 21:34:20

we found these really good. Recommended by our cat obsessed vet I was a bit dubious at first but we moved house & introduced a new kitten within the space of a few weeks and I definately think it helped
Does make your house smell of cat a bit more than usual ( which is probably nice if you're a cat I imagine ) grin

Lizcat Wed 15-Jun-11 14:44:21

I have used Feliway whenever a new arrival enters our house and poor old Beautiful Moggy girl has had to deal with a lot of them. She and arrogant posh boy still maintain that they hate each other and then look all shocked when you find them cuddled up together. She still comes for her special cat cuddles - after all she is my first born child pre-existing even DH in the household.
I will be an elderly mad cat owner. In fact I would be if DH hadn't saved me from owning too many pets and restricted me to only 4 animal placements (mobile mop the dog takes two).

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