How do you coax a stray cat to eat in a multicat household with no seclusion? (Cat's choice)

I took in a stray cat 2 days ago. She goes absolutely mental when I try to shut her in my very small bathroom (think the size of a small cupboard). She was sitting in the windowsill above my bed for 2 days but she has now settled on my bed, beside me. Right now she is less than a metre from my other cat, Percy and probably a metre and a half away from Jacob and Blossom. The problem is she hasn't eaten or drank since I got her. I smeared some Dine Desire on her leg and she licked it off. I just need some ideas cause it makes me anxious to not see her eat. Also she hasn't gone to the bathroom. Honestly I don't care if she goes on my bed at this point. So long as she goes. I can worry about the mess clean up later. Has anyone had any experience with this? I can't separate her so please understand that. It's just not a possibility at this time. I made her hidey spots. She doesn't want to use them. She just wants to stay beside me. Any ideas to coax her to eat would be greatly appeciated.

Asked by Member 227891 on Jul 22nd 2013 Tagged stray, eating, multicat in Other Behavior & Training
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Izadore (Izzie)

First off, if you haven't yet, you need to get this new cat to the vet. Not all of those nasty kitty diseases and viruses are obvious at the beginning, and by the time they are discovered, it's too late and they've infected the other cats. She should also have a general wellness exam, be checked for desexing and vaccinated for rabies. She feels you are her security and that's why she's staying by you. It's good that she's not outright attacking the other cats. She needs her own litter box as some cats don't like to use one that another cat uses. I would not encourage her to 'go anywhere' b/c the other cats will cover it. Invest in a covered litter box if you think she'll use it. It affords her privacy. If it were me, I would leave food down all the time for her. I free-feed my cats and they do well with it. When she is hungry enough, she'll eat. Get her to a vet and then give her time to establish her "place" in your household. And thank you for caring about this little one!

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 7/23/13. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer