Advice needed!(4 Posts)
So, we've just adopted a 3-yr old ex stray from Celia Hammond. He is adorable, massively affectionate, eats like a horse and is settling in well. The problem is that our resident cat, a 7 year old girl, is petrified of him even though he's shown no real signs of aggression.
We made a mistake by trying to introduce them too early and it ended in a little scuffle. Since then we've gone back to basics. They are kept apart. During the day he is in our room with resident cat having the house. When we get home, new cat is given free rein of the house and resident cat is put into the room new cat is in - which also has access to the garden.
They've seen each other through the window and resident cat dealt with it quite well the first time it happened but she's now hiding and won't approach the house.
We've got feliway diffusers in the house but I've not yet seen any improvements. I really would like them to at least cope with being in the same room as each other as it feels so horrible to have to keep one or other of them cooped up.
It seems that the new cat has taken control and our resident cat has lost all of her confidence. Can I do anything to help her get it back? It's only been a week so I know it's early days.
Any tips would be gratefully received.
It's very early days. I always introduce them by putting the new cat in a dog pen in the kitchen (or any room that's well used by all the cats). That way they can all get used to each other while still feeling safe.
It will settle down eventually whatever you do. I generally find that three or four weeks does the trick. The one exception was an extremely difficult boy cat (basically very frightened, but decided that attack was the best form of defence) and he took around 8 weeks to settle down with the other cats.
Celia Hammond did suggest getting a large cage from them to put the new cat in, which I thought sounded mean initially but I can see the benefits now.
3-4 weeks is do-able! I'll keep positive. Thank you.
Just to expand a bit - this is what I've just posted on the similar thread on here:
I set up the crate with a bed and a small litter tray and a sheet over part of it so the cat has somewhere that feels 'safe'. And I put the crate in a well-used part of the house so that the new cat can get used to the house and the existing cats can get used to the new cat without feeling threatened. I would keep it in there for generally two to three weeks, depending on how i was going.
I would let the new cat out for a stretch and a walk around every so often though while the existing cat/s are in a different room.
It seems to work really well.
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