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Introducing new kittens / mum to existing elderly cat

(18 Posts)
AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 09:36:03

Our fifth batch of foster kittens from Celia Hammond is reaching the end of their stay with us, they’re 9/10 weeks old I think, and for the first time we’re considering keeping a couple of them, because my DD’s cat sadly died of a heart tumour last year. We have one remaining cat who is elderly (15) and chilled, but still fairly active. House is on five levels so she wouldn’t have too much trouble staying out of the way of kittens having a mad half hour.

To date the three kittens and their mum have been living in the dining room.

So we have to choose which to keep and we have to work out the most stress free way to introduce them to our old lady.

Would mum and one kitten be better that two kittens or would that be too likely to territorial? Is there a sex mix which would be more likely to succeed or is that not an issue once they’re done? And what’s the most stress free way to introduce them? The fosters have had a bit of a run round the house when senior cat’s been out of the way on the theory that they’ll get used to each other’s smell (and of course all the humans smell of all five cats), and I’ll break out the Feliway plugin but does anyone have any other top tips? And will we be able to tell whether our cat is compatible with mum? Or is mum too risky a mix with old cat and we should just bring the kittens out?

We’re good with kittens but this is a new situation for us so any expert advice much appreciated.

Photos to follow: I know the rules.

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AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 09:56:14

Apologies for slightly crap photos -Safari randomly stopped accessing my photo library so I’m having to take them on the fly. This is Keith.

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AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 09:57:46

Minerva is a tortie and difficult to take a photo of

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AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 09:59:24

Mum is Bella, youngish but surprisingly well-nourished for a stray mum.

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AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 10:05:01

Eustace is an enormous fluffy monster.

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AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 10:06:11

Not ignoring Senior cat - of course she deserves photo but she’s buggered off.

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AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sat 13-Jun-20 15:46:39

Bumping in search of advice and to include Senior Cat.

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Elieza Sat 13-Jun-20 15:51:40

Aww they are adorable 😍
That’s me had my cat fix for the day!
No advice to offer but bumping for you grin

OnceUponACat Sat 13-Jun-20 15:56:14

I am in love with Eustace. I’d keep two kittens. Possibly Two that appear to have a stronger bond.

AintOverUntilTheCatLadySings Sat 13-Jun-20 17:18:08

I would go for two kittens because the mum might be overprotective over her baby.

We've tried to be 'smart' with cat sex choices in the past but found the most unlikely mixes became best friends. Our strongest pair bonding was an elderly former stray male (Celia Hammond helped us by neutering him and removing a jaw full of rotten teeth) and a 9 week female kitten. He loved that kitten from the get go and it gave him a whole new lease of life. He also adores our toddler too despite being at least 15-20.

Ellmau Sat 13-Jun-20 17:56:59

I'd keep the two boy kittens. That should be the least likely to result in conflict with your old girl.

crimsonlake Sat 13-Jun-20 18:17:55

Definitely keep 2 kittens.
I introduced a kitten last year to my cat who is roughly the same age as yours. Looking back I should never have done it, I had lost his elderly partner several months earlier and thought he needed company and stimulation. All I can say is that the kitten is now 16 months old and still very prone to jumping on him and stalking him constantly. Luckily he has a lovely temperament to have been subjected to this and not resorted to hurting the kitten. I am sure he had a scowl on his face for the first 6 months.

Haffdonga Sat 13-Jun-20 18:22:36

I've been told that introducing a female to a female is the hardest combination. Plus introducing an adult to an adult is harder than introducing a kitten to an adult.

So I'd agree, the 2 baby boys is the way to go. smile

hopeforlucky3 Sat 13-Jun-20 21:26:45

Lovely cats & kittens! In my experience males tend to get along better with each other. My 2 females tolerate each other just confused

BlackCrow Sun 14-Jun-20 10:06:51

Introducing a female kitten to a elderly female cat made the last couple of years of my very gentle old cat's life really miserable and I regret it hugely. They never bonded, the kitten just wanted to pounce on her and playfight and the poor older cat was very unhappy.
Perhaps that was to do with them both being female, perhaps I got the introductions wrong or perhaps I was just unlucky with personalities, but I still feel guilty at how unhappy and withdrawn the older cat became and in future would absolutely wait until the senior cats had died before bringing another cat or kitten home.

AintNobodyHereButUsKittens Sun 14-Jun-20 10:42:10

Yes that’s my worry BlackCrow. I’m hoping that two kittens together will take most of their play-fighting out on each other - they’re certainly leaving their mum alone at the moment while they engage in massive and hilarious three way battles. As I said it’s a well spread out house and the kittens won’t be going outside for a while yet so she’ll have the garden to herself as usual in dry weather.

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Catsrus Mon 15-Jun-20 16:31:38

two boys gets my vote. In my experience the boys are generally easier to integrate.

Oldestchild90s Mon 15-Jun-20 20:08:46

But if you're gonna keep two you might aswell keep them all... 😭😂 i'm just a sucker for them, i couldn't bear to leave one and keep the others!

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