Cat is my little girl, nearly four years old, all four of it spent inside my apartment. This place is her world, her territory and her home. Cat is slightly aloof, but not the least bit shy. She’ll accept pets from anyone, but only seeks them out at bedtime. She’s a picky eater and ridiculously clean. She is afraid of The Horrible Outside.
Dodge is a stray alley cat that we adopted this week. He is about two, not neutered (he will be on Tuesday) and possibly the friendliest cat in the world. He follows my boyfriend around like a dog and climbs into any available lap (or up your pant leg should you not have a lap available).
Dodge is adjusting amazingly well. He is curious about Cat and doesn’t seem to miss the outside at all. He barely even notices the very same window where we used to find him clamouring for our attention. Our vet says that he is happy, healthy and almost stupidly cooperative with the treatments and tests and needles that he underwent.
Cat is not adjusting very well at all. She is peeved and mopey, vocalizing pathetically whenever we spend time with her. We had them separated for the first few days, with separate litter and food, and let them have a scant few supervised meetings. Cat would hiss angrily at Dodge before stalking off growling to herself. Dodge would sniff at Cat, lay down in front of her and meow plaintively with perky ears and wide eyes. Now we have them at a stage where they are only separated at bedtime or when no one is around to supervise them, but she is still madly pissy.
I didn’t want to derail the depressed cat thread, but I’m curious about other people’s experiences with turning one-cat households into two-cat households. Tips? Tricks? A rough timeline of how long this process takes if it takes at all?
It can take from a few days to a few weeks. There is a chance it might not take at all; some cats simply do not want to share their slaves.
Do keep them separated when you can’t supervise. Is there a door between the areas where they are separated? It helped with mine if they were able to smell each other without being able to see each other; they were able to get accustomed to the idea of another cat.
I had Neko for a few years before Furrball wandered in and decided to stay. After about 6 years they still walk in wide circles around each other, eye each other with caution and every month or so there’s a little hissing and a couple of paw swats but for the most part there is an understanding that they just stay away from each other and all is fine. They are both female and that may be part of it as Shimi, the male who was adopted within days of Neko, gets along well with both of them.
Since her brother/littermate Max died, Tammy (13) has been alone. We’ve thought idly about adopting again, but the OP is exactly why we’re afraid to. She’s a little small for her age, and had a history of hypergrooming (out of nervousness), but now she’s the Queen of the Castle and we’d hate to introduce any element that would have her regress in any way.
But yesterday we saw Prince, a 3-year old, incredibly gentle, and with only one eye. He seems like he’d be a sweet addition to the house, but I don’t think he would pass as “non-threatening” in Tammy’s eyes, so even though he needs a good home, we’re hesitating.
Never heard of Feliway, so maybe we can give it a go. Still, we love Tammy to death and we’d hate to have her “golden years” (and I wouldn’t be surprised if she had many) turn unhappy because of our good intentions.