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How can I sort this ridiculous cat stand off?

(10 Posts)
Hassled Sun 12-Nov-17 07:53:31

I had two cats, and then my lovely very elderly boy died a few months ago, leaving neurotic middle-aged woman cat (we have a lot in common), who seemed very glum. So probably against my better judgement, we got a rescue kitten 3 weeks ago. The kitten is a sweetie - very playful but quite timid - he's not what you'd call feisty.

We kept him in the sitting room for the first few days. He and the other cat met early on and hissed at each other, and then old cat retreated to the kitchen where she has stayed ever since (she has a catflap there). Kitten will not leave the sitting room - if we take him out he just runs back in. Old Cat will not leave the kitchen. There's a corridor between the two which seems to have an invisible Berlin Wall across it. I've moved the kitten's food out of the sitting room to the top of the corridor and he will go to find it but clearly hates it.

So do I force the issue? Give it more time? I don't want a litter tray in the sitting room forever and the kitten must be bored as hell, trapped in one room (except the door is open - he's trapped himself). I feel so sorry for old cat. Is there a solution?

thecatneuterer Sun 12-Nov-17 12:16:39

Three weeks is nothing. Give it a lot more time. Three months would seem to be more realistic.

I don't think there is much you can do to force the issue but I'm sure they will get used to each other in time. And of course you can try Feliway.

Hassled Sun 12-Nov-17 14:03:42

Oh thanks for replying - and reassuring that 3 weeks is too soon to expect happy co-existence. I just feel so sorry for both of them. Older cat has Feliway in the kitchen which I suspect is all that's stopping her packing her bags and leaving home.

LunaFortuna Sun 12-Nov-17 14:11:31

There's a Feliway Friends version which is for multi-cat households, maybe worth a try. Have they got their own things? Each should have their own water bowl, litter tray, scratching post etc.

Still early days though, hopefully they'll get used to each other in their own time. Good luck.

ChishandFips33 Sun 12-Nov-17 14:50:01

We're having a Mexican stand off here too!

It took months for the two original cats to get used to one another; both were kittens at the time. 16 yrs together and I would still say they only ever tolerated each other!

The eldest (18) has now been on their own for a year and a 6month kitten has wandered in to her life - a few months on and she tolerates it now (hisses and grumps for effect) and even lets it share her our bed
I've begun to relax a little and don't fear a scrap as much now -
The kitten climbs, the eldest doesn't and isn't especially mobile so I'm happy the little one can make an escape if needed.

We used a stair gate for a long time across a door way after watching a cat whisperer type programme. They need to see each other but know they have their own space

Justbookedasummmerholiday Sun 12-Nov-17 14:52:14

Some new toys placed in the middle? Few treats nearby? Curiosity could work getting them together!!

sashh Sun 12-Nov-17 14:57:03

build the kitten a 'walkway' through the old cat's territory. You can do it with book shelves, furniture, a plank even.

Kitten and cat both need a bolt hole where they can get way from the other.

shhhfastasleep Sun 12-Nov-17 16:04:56

Agree with Sashh. Google Jackson Galaxy who has some great ideas for multi cat households.

MaudesMum Sun 12-Nov-17 16:22:08

I have a very feisty kitten and a grumpy older cat, and that doesn't seem to lead to anything better. After 5 weeks the kitten is still bouncing up to the older cat, and the older cat is still hissing and trying to twat the kitten.

I'm trying a lot of food-related bribery to get them in the same place, which only works for as long as it takes for them to eat - once the food has gone it kicks off again. Big cat is going out more to escape, but tbh the additional fresh air and exercise is quite good for her!

I'm currently only intervening at night, when the kitten gets shut in one room, and that's because she comes upstairs to my room which is also the old cat's room and I can't get to sleep with the two of them kicking off!

I have no idea if Feliway is helping whatsoever, but I'm currently putting my faith in time, in that I hope eventually the kitten will realise that bouncing up to the older cat doesn't work! But now off to google Jackson Galaxy to get some more tips.

Hassled Sun 12-Nov-17 18:58:26

Jackson Galaxy was really useful - thank you. I'm going to do the mealtime at opposite sides of the door thing if I can - I'd have to get one of them to get down the corridor for this to work, but it sounds like the road to cat-peace. And thank you everyone for the tips. Maude and Chishandfips - sorry you're in the same boat. It's bloody frustrating but I think I've probably been expecting too much too soon.

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