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Are we making a mistake?

(26 Posts)
MargaretCavendish Tue 23-May-17 09:20:51

We have an absolutely adored three year old male (neutered) cat. He is pampered and catered to, probably excessively (we don't have children!).

A friend has been looking after and hand rearing some kittens whose mother abandoned them. She suggested that we take one; we really agonised over it, and read lots of stuff about the challenges of introducing a kitten to a house with an adult cat, were going to say no and then decided to go for it (it was quite an emotional decision, which is part of what's worrying me now - for reasons entirely unrelated to cats, we've had a horrible time of it recently and it was definitely a bit of a 'let's cheer ourselves up' decision if I'm honest with myself - not a good reason!). Now the kitten is arriving on Friday and I'm completely gripped with anxiety that we're doing something stupid and that it might make both our cat and the kitten unhappy. What do people think? It wouldn't be easy to pull out of getting the kitten now, but should we do this rather than risk a really unhappy cat household?

Londonjam Tue 23-May-17 09:23:41

We have an adored pampered 5 year old cat and I don't think we would get a kitten for the same reasons you say. He would NOT be happy about it! I couldn't bear to upset him.

That said, I know plenty of people who have and they've made it work. It's hard work at first- keeping them apart etc and will take your resident cat a long time to adjust.

Feliway may help to ease the way. Hopefully resident cat will come to tolerate / accept them. Good luck!

thesunwillout Tue 23-May-17 09:27:07

It's a chance you take, but it went wrong for us and we had to re home the second cat. First cat was so miserable.

9GreenBottles Tue 23-May-17 09:38:40

I've recently come to the conclusion that the male cats I've had have been pretty accommodating, including one who had a kitten introduced at 5 years old. Assuming your boy isn't really territorial outside, you'll have a settling in period, but should be fine. Be prepared for play fighting that looks worryingly aggressive but the kitten goes back for more as soon as you separate them.

If he is territorial outside, it's not to say it won't be ok in time (because indoors is different), but it might be more of a challenge. Kittens are very resilient, and Feliway does help.

neonrainbow Tue 23-May-17 09:40:22

It doesnt sound like you actually want the kitten. "Cheering yourselves up" is a BAD reason to get an animal that could live 20 years.

saladsmoothie Tue 23-May-17 09:44:34

My adored 1st cat utterly loathes her little brother. She was happier without him.

fuzzywuzzy Tue 23-May-17 09:45:57

We introduced two kittens to our household of two grown and very spoilt male cats.

We kept the kittens in our room for a while and feliway plugs everywhere.

The older boys were cross at being shut out of our room (they have urn of the entire house), and would sit outside our bedroom trying to see under the door and hiss when we opened the door to them.

We slowly introduced the kittens to them by bringing them downstairs to the dining room in their cage so the boys could observe them without the kittens running all over the place.

Eventually when kittens were a bit bigger I think we took two weeks we let them out to play.

The boys were hissy and suspicious of the kittens but tend to ignore them mostly. Ocassionally our most spoilt boy will play with them and then when he's tired will bop them to make them go away (theyu dont they think he's still playing).

We did have to really make time for and fuss the younger of our older boys as he was extremely upset at DP for loving kittens that were not him. He didn't talk to DP for ages and was grumpy and angry at him for weeks, I took to really fussing him and giving him treats and letting him in the garden more, and giving him tuna etc.

It worked as he stopped being grumpy and is back being cuddly with DP again.

We did use a lot of feliway both the plug in and spray kind.

MargaretCavendish Tue 23-May-17 09:46:07

We really, really want the kitten, and my anxieties are just as much about him as our older cat - I don't want a situation where either are unhappy. The decision was more 'let's get the kitten we want!' than 'let's get a kitten, on a total whim!'. We had been thinking about a second cat for a while. What I want is definitely to have both cats, but I'm worried that I'm being selfish.

Jenda Tue 23-May-17 10:46:09

We just got a kitten, a brother for our needy, neurotic, wimpy 8 year old boy. I felt so guilty as if I was going to ruin his life. For the first two days he moved into the garage and sat in the rain and stared at us.

Very very unexpectedly, a week later and he is obsessed with her. He wants to be cleaning or monitoring her constantly. He's very patient with play although does tell her off. They are sleeping near each other and he generally seems much more relaxed, it's almost given him more confidence

So you never know!

NightWanderer Tue 23-May-17 10:52:03

It depends on the cat. I got 2 6-month-old cats to add to our family and my boy cat was absolutely fine about it. They have the odd spat but usually they are all cuddled up sleeping together and grooming each other.

MargaretCavendish Tue 23-May-17 12:03:29

Thank you for all your comments, and particularly for the positive stories! Good news - I spoke to my friend (who is a vet nurse) about my fears, and she suggested that we treat the first month or two as a 'trial' and she'll take him back if it's not working (I think they're actually quite reluctant to let him go!). That made me feel a lot better about the whole thing.

TheCatOfAthenry Tue 23-May-17 12:13:28

Introduced a new kitten last week and they're best friends already and sit on my lap together and snuggle all the time.

I was terribly nervous but it worked out really nicely!

MargaretCavendish Tue 23-May-17 13:23:56

Lovely to hear that, Athenry - how old is your older cat?

TheCatOfAthenry Tue 23-May-17 13:31:17

Cookie is still young (about 8 months) , but had a history of being bullied in the rescue, so we thought she might be threatened.

Just popped home at lunch to find them cuddling on sofa!

TheCatOfAthenry Tue 23-May-17 14:21:36

And hisses at any feline that dares darken the window!

MargaretCavendish Fri 26-May-17 10:59:21

Wish me luck - going to get the new little kitten today and couldn't be more excited! Still a bit nervous, but thrilled about the idea of having two balls of fluff around the house.

Toddlerteaplease Fri 26-May-17 11:53:20

Place marking for pictures. We introduced new cats when I was a teenager. They weren't friends but there was no hostility or fighting between them. Our existing cat already had a group of freinds he played with so did t need the company.

TheCatOfAthenry Fri 26-May-17 14:34:45

Crossing everything!

Fiona1984 Sat 27-May-17 09:29:46

I'm looking to get a second cat in a few months time. I've sadly just lost one, and the remaining cat seems to miss her.
I started with one female cat, and added a male kitten, who is now fully grown. Female cat (who is no longer with us) tolerated the kitten but didn't want him in her personal space, used to hiss and growl at him if he got close. During the last few months, they seemed to come to an arrangement where she spent all day on our bed, then kitten got to sleep there at night, and have morning cuddles (he's very affectionate).
I'd really like to get him a friend, but I worry that he would get jealous or not get along with a new cat. He is a friendly cat, so I think he would be OK. He did always try to greet female cat (she just growled at him but he wasn't intimidated) and he seems to play with the neighbourhood cats, and is not territorial (he's also neutered, although his temperament never altered, had it done quite late at a year old).

OhWhatFuckeryIsThisNow Sat 27-May-17 09:46:21

Ive had experience of both. Much loved only cat, but we worked. Thought he was lonely(he was very social) so we got satan's kitten. A tiny black ball of malevolence, who soon grew to a huge furry monster. Titus took to the attic and our room and was miserable. When the cat from hell was rehomed he was fucking delighted and forgave us.
Years later, ds was given a tiny flea ridden scrap. About 4 years later I got another ginger boy, who he loathed on sight, but kitten was the most placid thing ever and gave no shits. Without feliways and such they eventually got on and would often be found asleep on back of sofa with Billy's head resting on Mackie's bum. But after Mack had to be pts Billy doesn't miss him. Funny things.

Daffodils8 Sat 27-May-17 10:12:14

I have two cats - one eight and the other not even a year!

My older cat was an only cat - absolutely loved and spoilt. When we got our new kitten, we followed all the advice about keeping them in separate rooms and letting them smell things of each other. I made sure they each had their own space and made a massive fuss of my older cat when kitten arrived.

My older cat got into a big silk and hid under the bed every day for about 2 weeks! I was devastated about it as I thought they wouldn't get on.

However, we are now a few months on and they are absolutely the best of friends; always playing together and sleep cuddled up to each other as well.

There might be a period of unsettlement but they will end up loving each other, I'm sure!

Good luck! Let us know how you get on!

SplodgeBear1988 Sat 27-May-17 11:32:20

We did this 2.5 years ago, our adult cat was the same age as yours but we choose a female kitten. We had the same agreement that if they didn't get on after 6 months the kitten would be rehomed. Here are the things that got us through -
Feliway diffuser on all the time,
2 separate litter trays,
Fed them in different places,
2 different beds in different places,
Kept the kitten shut in a different room at night,
Always put the kitten on the floor of the adult cat wanted to sit on our lap and she was already there,
Lots of play time with both,
Generally try to keep them from getting under each others feet.
We brought a blanket that smelt like each other to be swapped so they got used to a different smell.

After about a month of growls the adult cat accepted her and after about a year they get on fine just like brother a sister. They great each other when they come in.

SplodgeBear1988 Sat 27-May-17 11:35:51

Oh forgot to add that we tried to choose a kitten that was outgoing and didn't hide away too much so she could stand her ground. (We had the pick of the litter)
Good luck

MargaretCavendish Sat 27-May-17 12:13:52

They've now met, and it didn't go as I thought it would. Assumed adult cat would initially hiss, growl and even attack - but he's actually completely uninterested! He looked at the kitten and then wandered off. He went under the bed for literally five minutes and now is acting entirely normally again (the kitten is being kept in one room for now). This is an ok sign, right?!

MargaretCavendish Sat 27-May-17 12:14:25

The kitten, incidentally, is mental in that amazing kitten way. He will not stay still!

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