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-   -   Third cat integration into household (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=81310)

bunnit June 11th, 2012 09:13 AM

Third cat integration into household
 
I recently got a third cat that needs integrating into a home with two other cats.
The new cat has been with my partner and I roughly a month. To help ease the introductions, I have had the new cat with her own room "safe room" to live in while she gets familiar with the scents etc of the home. We have been letting her out periodically to explore and socialize. This frequently results in aggressive behaviours from the new cat towards the resident ones. This I am almost positive stems from territory issues.

My question is: Is there a way to start to contribute to controlling this behaviour so that the other cats are not completely terrified? I want to get the new cat out of the safe room and into the family as soon as possible.

Thank you in advance,
Tess

Barkingdog June 11th, 2012 10:56 AM

[QUOTE=bunnit;1041377]I recently got a third cat that needs integrating into a home with two other cats.
The new cat has been with my partner and I roughly a month. To help ease the introductions, I have had the new cat with her own room "safe room" to live in while she gets familiar with the scents etc of the home. We have been letting her out periodically to explore and socialize. This frequently results in aggressive behaviours from the new cat towards the resident ones. This I am almost positive stems from territory issues.

My question is: Is there a way to start to contribute to controlling this behaviour so that the other cats are not completely terrified? I want to get the new cat out of the safe room and into the family as soon as possible.

Thank you in advance,
Tess[/QUOTE]

I found this web site about introduce cats to a 'new' cat . I hope it helps .

[url]http://cats.about.com/cs/catmanagement101/a/introducecats.htm[/url]

sugarcatmom June 11th, 2012 11:07 AM

[QUOTE=bunnit;1041377]To help ease the introductions, I have had the new cat with her own room "safe room" to live in while she gets familiar with the scents etc of the home. [/QUOTE]

:thumbs up


[QUOTE=bunnit;1041377]We have been letting her out periodically to explore and socialize. This frequently results in aggressive behaviours from the new cat towards the resident ones. [/quote]

Exactly what sort of behaviour would that be? Hissing, growling, swatting, chasing, full out fur-flying fighting...? What are the circumstances prior to these incidents (like where do they tend to occur, what were the cats doing, etc)?


[QUOTE=bunnit;1041377]This I am almost positive stems from territory issues.[/quote]

Maybe, or maybe newbie cat (what's her name, by the way?) is just scared and considers the best defense to be a good offense.

[QUOTE=bunnit;1041377]My question is: Is there a way to start to contribute to controlling this behaviour so that the other cats are not completely terrified? I want to get the new cat out of the safe room and into the family as soon as possible.[/quote]

Some things to try:

Feliway diffusers in the main areas that the cats hang out. This is a synthetic pheromone that helps give cats a sense of peace and calm.

More vertical space, if you don't have enough. This can be in the form of a tall cat condo or two, some shelving, window hammocks, etc. Increasing the amount of vertical territory can help increase the cats' confidence and make them feel more comfortable.

Letting the cats see each other without physical contact. So if there's a way to prop the door to new kitty's safe room open an inch or 2 without risk of her getting out, maybe she'll get more accustomed to the other cats presence. If you can give everybody really tasty treats while they're in each other's sights, they may start to associate positive things with each other. Playing with wand or fishing-rod style feather toys can also help with this, as long as it isn't too frantic.

I really wouldn't try to hurry this process though. You need to go at a pace that fits the cats, and that may take some time.

bunnit June 11th, 2012 12:10 PM

Thank you
 
Barkingdog - Thank you for the website link, it is actually one I reviewed and
derived the idea of a 'safe room' from.

sugarcatmom - Thank you as well for the input.

The new cats name is Chompy, its a chocolate himalayan.
The aggression is expresses is primarily towards our younger resident cat, Hammi, whom would in the hierarchy of things be considered at the bottom.
Hammi is extremely curious and therefore regularly can be found waiting outside the door to Chompy's hideaway.

Chompy has developed a comfort for the second floor of our home, because this is where she has been left to explore most freely. Thusly at times upon immediately seeing Hammi when the door to the safe room is first open, will hiss, growl and sprint immediately after hammi. Both have claws so in other fights some swatting has been present.

What is difficult is when Chompy sprints full speed after Hammi upon opening the door. This I would like to prevent from occuring as I feel they could develop a bad relationship.

I have one of those plugins in Chompy's room (she was very upset when we first received her; now she is extremely loving to both myself and my partner when we are in the room). I could try them in more places in the house.

More vertical space is also an interesting suggestion. We have a cat condo in Chompy's room but the hammock idea could work. Or a shelving unit.

The 'open door' concept I think could work I just don't want them swatting through the door. But I will try.

Overall all good suggestions, thank you!

Edenca June 11th, 2012 10:53 PM

When we brought home a third cat, we had her in a cage or good sized dog crate, in the middle of the living room. The first two got to know her but were unable to get near enough to have a conflict and the third cat was able to see how everyone interacted. After a few days, they were all used to seeing each other nad we had no problems. However, Himi's can be a bit difficult. Superiority complex, I think.


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