GO!

Is this going well? Or not so much lol

This is a place to gain some understanding of cat behavior and to assist people in training their cats and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other cat owners and lovers...not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  
Tao

Flopsalot- Extrordinaire
 
 
Purred: Tue Oct 23, '12 2:50pm PST 
Let me just preface by saying I am not a cat person. I know I know.....but for honesty's sake they've never tripped my trigger so I haven't invested much time into learning much about them.

I ended up with a rescue (took her only because after a lengthy stay in the shelter I was volunteering at I learned she was about to get put down). I grew to love her and she was around for about 10 years before she passed. Swore I'd never get another. I cared about her deeply, but figured she was an anomaly as far as the cat world goes. A mere year or so later the rescue I got one of my dogs from contacted me desperate for homes for cats from a hoarding situation, and I relented. Enter Tao. Tao LOATHED other cats, which was no problem because I had zero intention of (once again) ever getting another one ever. I grew to love him too. He is far more like a dog in every sense. I adore him. Tao had no desire to go outside until this past summer. He started venturing out catching gophers and mice, and chasing off (read. near killing) the strays that dared wander onto the property. He'd go out for maybe an hour at a time, always supervised, never leaving the yard within our property, and come right back in the house when he was called to. One day however I had gone grocery shopping and the kids let him out. Because he always stuck around they didn't think they had to keep as close of an eye on him. He disappeared and we all were devastated. To this day I have no clue what inspired him to wander off. Fliers, phone calls, desperate searching...nothing. We live out in the boonies and thought for sure an animal had gotten him.

Again I swore I'd never get another cat. Especially because it near killed me to have no clue what had happened to Tao. I had never lost a pet before and it literally made me sick at night. However....now my husband who claimed to dislike cats as much as I did admitted Tao had grown on him. For my birthday he took me to the shelter and we ended up taking home the sweetest saddest guy there, Acorn.

Ok, so I'm done saying I'll never have cats, as that obviously just lands me with more lol

A mere week later, we are all settling in with Acorn(who is awesome) when our vet (who lives just a hop skip from our property) calls and tells us Tao just showed up at her house.........

eek eek eek eek

We were a combination of beyond relieved he was still alive, and completely overwhelmed at the thought of not just having one, but now, TWO cats. Especially when we knew Tao HATED other cats and there was no way we were bringing Acorn back to the shelter.

We've given Tao a bit of time to recoup as he was super wormy, had lost quite a bit of weight and his beautiful fur was matted and thinned out. Meanwhile, not having a clue how to introduce cats we defaulted and did what we've always done with the dogs....we kept them separated by a gate, fed them side by side with the gate between, gave them lots of positive attention when they even looked at each other and swapped blankets so they got used to each others scents. Their mews would change tone when they'd look directly at each other but there was no outward signs of aggression (that we could identify anyway).

Because of that, about a week ago started letting them into the same room as each other.

To our surprise Tao didn't try to kill Acorn as he had every other cat he's ever seen. They largely ignored each other until Acorn picked up on the fact that Tao seemed almost intimidated by him and has since taken full advantage. When they happen to pass each other now Acorn will posture up, hiss and growl these God awful sounds, Tao will slink, and when he tries to retreat Acorn will pursue him and swat at his behind (he's front declawed so no damage). Tao will scoot away to avoid a confrontation. Acorn's back fur will twitch but he eventually settles back down. And then the whole thing will repeat itself 10-20 minutes later.

Last night however Tao started growling and hissing back party

Is this the normal behavior of cats simply getting acclimated to each other? Is the behavior escalating (sure seems like it...), and I need to be intervening somehow? If so how? And at what point? Take things slower? Scold Acorn when he starts to get ridiculous? Offer more positive attention when they're together? Is it near impossible or even unlikely for two males (both neutered) to become friends? Is this a dominance thing and does that even exist in the cat world? If so will Acorn always pick on Tao? If they do end up in a full on fight at some point what do I do?

I feel absolutely clueless when it comes to cat behavior. I can look at a dog and tell you near exactly what he's thinking and feeling but I know NOTHING about how to tell what's going on in a cats head.

Help!
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Beatrice- (Miss You!- '94-'12)

The very Beast- of all

moderator
 
 
Purred: Thu Oct 25, '12 1:52am PST 
It sounds pretty normal to me! way to go

As long as they aren't attacking each other to the point of drawing blood, they're probably just establishing their places within the household hierarchy.

You can try pheromone products like Feliway (aka Comfort Zone) that help kitties feel more secure in their territory, or calming products like Rescue Remedy to help relieve stress.

Overall, though, it sounds like Tao and Acorn are getting along pretty well so far! dancing

Bless you for adopting these kitties! Please keep us posted!

hug

Jimmy

1273833
 
 
Purred: Wed Oct 31, '12 9:07pm PST 
It is too normal, take it easy. My cat like bite clothes frown
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Tao

Flopsalot- Extrordinaire
 
 
Purred: Tue Nov 6, '12 11:15am PST 
Just an update...bitty this time I promise lol

Things have been great! Acorn every once in awhile gets a bug up his butt and will swat at Tao's behind after creeping up on him but otherwise they seem to have really taken to each other. They eat next to each other, haven't had any litter box issues and I've even caught them napping on the same couch cushion....not touching of course, but as close as they can get without being snuggled up into each other ha!

The hissing and growling has phased out completely happy dance

I think we're definitely on the right track to them becoming good friends! way to go
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Tommy

1279007
 
 
Purred: Mon Dec 17, '12 5:11pm PST 
My Cat likes running everywhere in the house.laugh out loud
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Hunter

Is that a hair- elastic? ^w^
 
 
Purred: Wed Jan 2, '13 8:22pm PST 
I'm so happy for you guys! I love hearing stories where everyone is happy :3 Your Tao kitty came home and now he has a buddy, a super bonus for them both being rescues!
I just got a second cat (I myself am not a cat person either. I like and understand dogs a lot more) and I've been having the same problem so I'm glad I read your post and everyone's advice.

Well wishes from myself, Kye, Carbon, Hunter and Simon!
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