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Will they ever get along?

phoozles
July 19th, 2008, 11:40 AM
I'm trying to do things right this time - I'm just worried that some damage has been done..

Alley and Ethel have the biggest problems with each other, so I've taken to feed Alley right by Ethel's door. The problem - she'll eat maybe two bites, and then refuse to eat the rest (keep in mind, this is the kitty that will eat ANYTHING).. Because I can't afford to have her not eat at all, I came up with a new plan..

Ethel's door is open a slight crack - no cats can get in or out. I've been feeding the kitties treats by the door - I squish some through the door for Ethel, and feed the others right by it.. However, even mellow Jake hissed the first time I did it, and he won't eat the treat (which isn't too surprising - he wasn't much of a treat guy).. Alley loves to eat, so will eventually come up to the door, but growls and hisses the whole time.. Ethel just moans..

I know slow and steady wins the race, but it's so frustrating! I bring Ethel into the rest of the house for a couple hours each day (locking up the other guys), but it just seems to stress her out..

Anyway, I guess I'm just venting.. I just don't really see a light at the end of this tunnel.. *sigh*

krdahmer
July 19th, 2008, 02:15 PM
Sounds kinda familiar... AG's Czarina situation is much the same... and just look at how many baby steps they've made so far. It takes a lot of patience, and if you are getting Ethel fixed, her scents will change again and there will prob. be even more hissing! Don't worry, a few months from now you'll be wondering what you were so stressed about. :goodvibes: :fingerscr

rainbow
July 19th, 2008, 03:12 PM
Is there anything you can put across the door so you can have it open but still keep Ethel in there? It may be cuz they can't really see each other completely that stresses them more. :shrug:

I know if you use a baby gate that they can just jump over but what if you tacked something above it to prevent that? :shrug:

phoozles
July 19th, 2008, 05:25 PM
Sounds kinda familiar... AG's Czarina situation is much the same... and just look at how many baby steps they've made so far. It takes a lot of patience, and if you are getting Ethel fixed, her scents will change again and there will prob. be even more hissing! Don't worry, a few months from now you'll be wondering what you were so stressed about. :goodvibes: :fingerscr

I hope you're right - I will definitely wait until she gets spayed before they meet up again..

Is there anything you can put across the door so you can have it open but still keep Ethel in there? It may be cuz they can't really see each other completely that stresses them more. :shrug:

I know if you use a baby gate that they can just jump over but what if you tacked something above it to prevent that? :shrug:

Right now all I can do is have the door open a tiny crack - both Ethel and Alley are pretty tiny, so they can squeeze through small spaces. It seems as though they are fine until the door is slightly open - then the growling and the hissing takes place..

I wish there was a way I could put up a screen of some sort, but I really don't see how.. :shrug: Maybe we can figure something out - I agree, it would be nice if they could see each other all the time, like Czarina and the other kitties can..

ancientgirl
July 19th, 2008, 06:33 PM
OMG, do I ever feel your pain. It's been a little over a month so far and it feels like this has been going on forever. But, little by little I see some bits of progress. It's funny, I was actually just getting ready to post a small update.

But here, this is what I have up. This is my old apartment, but I've got this screen set up blocking the kitchen opening, in a similar fashion.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v516/ancientgirl/IMG_0623.jpg

This is a rattan screen. It was fairly inexpensive and you might be able to get something like it perhapsy in a discount shop or garage sale or something.

Or, if FH is handy, maybe he can get some of this lattice.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v516/ancientgirl/New%20apartment/IMG_0770.jpg

If he can make a frame around it and set it up as a door, you can keep your regular door on one side and use this on the other side. You can then leave the regular door open but still have this, and no way they can get through these holes. There are some with smaller holes too, and this stuff was super cheap at Home Depot.

I think them being able to see each other has at least helped this whole process.

14+kitties
July 19th, 2008, 06:44 PM
Yep, I was thinking lattice too. Build a frame around it and make it stronger to fit like a door. You could use hinges on one side and a few fasteners/locks on the other to make it like a door. Or if you could get an old screen door (with animal proof screen for Ms Alley) to put on that doorway. :shrug:
Oh, and even you can do it. You don't need FH to be handy. :rolleyes:
And remember - baby powder, baby powder, baby powder. Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps.

Love4himies
July 19th, 2008, 07:33 PM
I can feel your pain too, it has been a year of keeping Puddles and Sweet Pea separated, BUT part of the problem was they have had spats throughout this time, usually because DH was incharge and wasn't watching them:rolleyes:. I am now thinking of driving down to Florida and dropping them off at AG house for a while since she has had such good success.:laughing:

Growling and hissing is fine, very rarely will cats not do that, the important is no physical fights.

Keeping them separated, but still able to see, smell each other I think is key.

Good luck.

ancientgirl
July 19th, 2008, 07:54 PM
I am now thinking of driving down to Florida and dropping them off at AG house for a while since she has had such good success.:laughing:



Can you pick me up some Georgia peaches on your way down?:D

Chaser
July 19th, 2008, 08:08 PM
And I was worried about introducing dogs....

I really admire all of you for having so much patience and determination to take cats into your home and ride out all these difficulties! I don't think I realized just how long the process of socializing cats can take, and I really respect all of you for even the smallest successes you've had, now that I know just how much work goes into every single baby step!

rainbow
July 19th, 2008, 08:10 PM
The lattice is a great idea as long as your cats won't climb it. I've seen cats climb over a 8 ft. tall section.

If they are climbers then the screen door would be a good option or just buy some screening to cover the door. If you don't pull it taut then it should deter them from climbing it.

phoozles
July 21st, 2008, 10:23 AM
Thanks guys for your support - it can be so frustrating! :grouphug:

I think if I got the lattice, Alley would climb it for sure.. :evil:

So far the only growler is really Alley.. When I have Ethel in the main room and Alley and Jake locked up, I'll feed Ethel some treats by their door and she has no problem - even while Alley is growling and hissing at her from the other side..

Alley is getting better at coming up to Ethel's door - but sometimes she'll just grab the treat and run to eat it in the other part of the room.

I'll talk to him about the potential of a screen.. The only thing I'm worried about is I think Ethel is still protective of her room.. and if she sees Alley coming up to it, even with a screen, she might freak out - :shrug:

I had Ethel out in the open this weekend and she peed behind the couch.. I think she's too nervous to go back in her room where her litter box is.. she never goes in by herself, but gets really excited when I walk her over there..

FH wants us to do the carrier introduction as soon as possible, but I think we might need to wait a bit longer.. I'm just afraid that I'm going to make some permanent bad vibes between them.. and Ethel's spay isn't until next Tuesday.

But I'll definitely use the baby powder and try to remember that patience is key.

Ancient, you're doing such a great job.. I'm sure it won't take long before Czarina will be hanging out with your crew on a permanent basis..

Chris21711
July 21st, 2008, 10:53 AM
Fingers and toes crossed for you Phoozles you are an :angel: for putting the time into Ethel and Alley. Wish you all the luck :thumbs up

ancientgirl
July 21st, 2008, 10:55 AM
Thanks, hopefully Czarina will be out and about soon too.

You know, she growls at the others big time too. This weekend she got out of the kitchen and walked around the apartment. I thought maybe giving her treats, since she's discovered how tasty they are, would lure her back. I gave her and the rest of the gang some in the same area. She growled and swatted at Vlad as well as poor little Maks.

It really is a matter of patience. I'm going on close to 2 months now. *sigh* Now some of the others get into the kitchen and Czarina sits in her pyramid. She'll hiss and swat at them if they come close but she is tolerant of the others being in HER kitchen.

I really think the fact they can see each other through the screen has helped immensely. Now and then they touch noses, so that's good.

I think if Ethel and Alley can at least see each other that could help. Having the door open with a screen will at the very least allow them to come up to the screen and just sort of sit and watch each other. Vlad and Oksana do this a lot. They will go to the screen and sit there, even if Czarina is hiding in her pyramid.

At this point, I'm just hoping for everyone to just be tolerant of each other with no violence.

I've decided to just keep my expectations low regarding progress. If I tell myself it's going to take a lot of time, and something great happens, all the better, but I'm preparing myself for the long haul. I don't know about you, but in my situation, I have no choice with Czarina. I cannot let her out again or it will mean her life. This has to work no matter how long it takes.

Oy, I kind of thread jacked, :sorry:

Good luck though. I think you are doing really well. At the very least, Ethel is safe, she's getting food, water has a comfy place to sleep, out of the rain and cold or heat. She's getting spayed, she's getting love and in time she and Alley and Jake will learn to deal with each other.

Love4himies
July 21st, 2008, 11:02 AM
I am hoping it works out :fingerscr

Don't be rushed into an introduction, after their last "meeting", it will take time for feelings to subside. If Ethel is still protective of her room, she may still think there are kittens around, I am sure she still smells them and thinks they are there somewhere, just not asking her for food right now. She can't count and reason like humans. Minimum, I would wait for at least 2 weeks after spaying.

Baby powder did not work for me, even when I was trying to get Sweet Pea to stop hissing at her kittens when the kittens came back to the house after spaying. All I ended up with is baby powder all over the house and kittens trying to get their momma to love them again :frustrated:.

katherine93
July 21st, 2008, 11:11 AM
What about a Scrren door? A heavy duty one of course that they cannot rip through, they aent expensive, just go to like Kent or whereever you go for stuff like that and get one. Ive seen them go for CHEEAP! Here, Kinda like this one- http://www.uki.net/php/files/insectocutorpages.uki.net/l_screen_door.jpg

rainbow
July 21st, 2008, 02:09 PM
Good luck Phoozles .......I know you will figure something out. :fingerscr :goodvibes:

phoozles
July 21st, 2008, 02:27 PM
I definitely will wait until after the spay - it's so heartbreaking to hear Ethel in her room - she'll cry and cry, so I'll sit with her, but I can't spend forever in there.. so I try to steel myself against it and know that eventually they'll all live together.. But having a screen up would allow Ethel to at least see us when she's in her room, so maybe that will help..

Ancient, I can't return Ethel to the streets either - I couldn't live with myself if I saw her hit by a car, or even just trying to get by out in my neighbourhood where noone seems to care about the cats..

Oh, and it looks like this is the time of year for cats to not get along.. My sister, who took two of the kittens, still hasn't been able to introduce them to her resident cat Lenny (who is actually more :evil:ish than Alley - I still have a scar on my leg from three summers ago when I made the mistake of bringing Jake over for the weekend - luckily Jake was in his carrier at the time).. He's apparently lunged at them several times, so they are in the same boat..

phoozles
July 22nd, 2008, 11:21 AM
Guess who's in heat again?? :yell:

Yep, seems like Ethel had just gotten out of it, and now she's back in wailing and presenting mode.. I can't wait until she gets fixed - poor little thing..

I came home last night and saw the carrier out - I got worried that FH had tried to reintroduce them while I was away, but turns out he was just letting Alley smell it.. I told him that if he reintroduced them and it went poorly and they never became friends, it would all be his fault :D Nothing like laying on the guilt to keep him in line ;) :laughing:

ancientgirl
July 22nd, 2008, 11:30 AM
OH, poor Ethel! Thankfully she's going to get spayed soon so she won't ever have to go through this again.

Good work on the guilt trip :D

Love4himies
July 22nd, 2008, 11:44 AM
I
Oh, and it looks like this is the time of year for cats to not get along.. My sister, who took two of the kittens, still hasn't been able to introduce them to her resident cat Lenny (who is actually more :evil:ish than Alley - I still have a scar on my leg from three summers ago when I made the mistake of bringing Jake over for the weekend - luckily Jake was in his carrier at the time).. He's apparently lunged at them several times, so they are in the same boat..

Sweet Pea does the same thing to my foster kittens, I just clap my hands and she backs off, I don't think she would hurt them, but her paw does do a swipe (she did the same to her own kittens when they got older), I think it is a "I am the elder and I demand respect, period" The kittens will learn to back off quickly and that is what Jake probably wants, well, until they grow up and then they may seek teenage revenge on Jake:evil::laughing:.

ancientgirl
July 22nd, 2008, 12:18 PM
I definitely will wait until after the spay - it's so heartbreaking to hear Ethel in her room - she'll cry and cry, so I'll sit with her, but I can't spend forever in there.. so I try to steel myself against it and know that eventually they'll all live together.. But having a screen up would allow Ethel to at least see us when she's in her room, so maybe that will help..

Ancient, I can't return Ethel to the streets either - I couldn't live with myself if I saw her hit by a car, or even just trying to get by out in my neighbourhood where noone seems to care about the cats..



:laughing::laughing:This is so eerie. It's like we are living these parallel lives with these two girls. I feel the same way.


Sweet Pea does the same thing to my foster kittens, I just clap my hands and she backs off, I don't think she would hurt them, but her paw does do a swipe (she did the same to her own kittens when they got older), I think it is a "I am the elder and I demand respect, period" The kittens will learn to back off quickly and that is what Jake probably wants, well, until they grow up and then they may seek teenage revenge on Jake:evil::laughing:.

Oh boy, I've seen Oksana do that to Maks a couple of times. I feel so bad for the little guy, because I can hear that whack! He looks at me like "mom!" I give him cuddles and send him on his way and he's okay. :D

phoozles
July 25th, 2008, 08:58 PM
Just me, just venting.. *sigh*

Ethel is due for her spay on Tuesday (thank goodness - the poor thing does NOT need to go through another heat cycle - at least this one is finally dying down now).. I'm not planning on introducing the kitties again until a couple weeks after that, but I thought I would let Jake and Alley have the run of her room once again just to get them used to her smell..

I put Jake in the room and he didn't have too much of a problem - he was just a little tense. Alley, on the other hand, absolutely refused to go in. As I brought her closer she started growling and hissing and then screamed a bit and ran away. :sad:

I haven't got the screen for the door yet - still not sure how that is going to work, but I'm starting to feel low again. If I can't even get her to get into the room, how am I going to have them meet whisker to whisker?

I know - patience patience patience - but I'm not a very patient girl :o It's just some days it's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm also really worried that that fight Ethel and Alley had has scarred Alley :sad:

Okay, that's all - just trying to keep my chin up, but it's hard when Ethel is moaning in her room so loudly it sounds like a baby is being maimed and I have to let her be because I already spent 2 hours with her in the living room and Jake and Alley need a chance to come out too..

ancientgirl
July 25th, 2008, 09:24 PM
Chin up Phoozles. Right now you have Ethel in heat so that's not helping the situation. The first time around, back in December, I'd have Czarina in the living room and the others would go upstairs. They were so turned off by her being here, even when I didn't have Czarina out in the living room they still stayed upstairs.

I'm going on two months and even though I'm giving her Prozac, it really hasn't kicked in since I've had to stop and start several times.

I have days like you are having. Where I see no light at the end of the tunnel. Yesterday Maks was walking down the stairs and Czarina who was there also lunged at him. He almost fell down, off the edge of the stairs over 10 feet. Thank goodness he's an agile and quick little guy so he was able to hang on and swing over to another stair. She will allow Vlad and Maks to touch her nose, then she'll hiss and swat at them.

The biggest rivalry here is with Kiska. Kiska and her are not going to be easy.

All we can do is just wait and be patient.

I think once Ethel gets spayed and her body has settled, because remember she's still going to have hormones in her system for a bit, I think things may calm down. Someone mentioned earlier Bach products. The people that make Rescue Remedy, they have flower extracts for specific things. I have been thinking about getting this for Czarina as well. But perhaps one of those extracts will help with Ethel and Alley.

:grouphug: Don't get depressed. It will all work out eventually.

phoozles
July 27th, 2008, 03:48 PM
Thanks for that ancient - I really appreciate it.. :grouphug: We are kind of going through the same thing, so it's good to get out the frustrations now and then.. Some days just drive you nuts, don't they?

I'm feeling a bit better because Ethel is coming out of her heat .. I've got the radio playing for her all day, so she's not screaming .. as much.. Once she has mellowed out, hopefully things will be different - but it's mostly Alley that has the problem - I think it will take her a while to get over 'the incident'..

ancientgirl
July 27th, 2008, 04:05 PM
Oh yeah, they do drive me nuts some days. What keeps me going is knowing there are others her that have made it work. Look at L4H's Sweet Pea and Puddles. Krdahmer has her hands full too with 6! And well 14+!

I tell myself that they can't all be best of friends but as long as they learn to coexist I think I can deal with that.

It'll work out in time I know it will.

krdahmer
July 27th, 2008, 07:04 PM
That's exactly it... cosexisting... thats the goal to shoot for. And expect the unexpected (cha... Big Brother has nothing on a multi-cat household I tell ya!!! :rolleyes:)!! Some days there'll be peace and quiet :cloud9:, other days you'll have world war 3 brewing and you'll want to pull out your hair!! :frustrated:

And I hear ya about patience Phoozles... it's like a gene we are missing in my family... none of us have a lick of it! (and unfortunately I learned the hard way how important it is when dealing with cats and made some poor decisions when I was first fostering and trying to rescue ferals)

Both you and Ancient are doing amazing jobs with your wild girls! They are both really lucky to have you guys in their corner... and sooner or later they'll realize that and finally take that first calm deep breath, knowing they are safe and loved. And that day you will never be more proud of yourselves. :grouphug::thumbs up

14+kitties
July 27th, 2008, 10:18 PM
I second what kr says. Both you and ancient are doing great! You are saving a life that otherwise would not have been saved. It doesn't matter if all is sweetness and light all the time. It never is. Just so at some point within the next few months the kitties can actually get to the point where they can be in the same room without mangling each other. I watch the dynamics with mine all the time. Most times it's great! If one really can't tolerate someone else, they go live at the other end of the catuary for a while. An hour or so later the one who moved is back, usually snuggled with the one they hated earlier. :rolleyes:
Patience is not something I am familiar with either. I want to see results when I want to see them! Not when the timing would be better. But guess what, we can't always have it the way we want it. Sometimes we just have to let common sense take over and give our heads a shake.