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Old 12-31-2012, 03:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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We have three established cats in our home- all spayed/neutered. They have lived in harmony for nearly all their time here (there never was a real adjustment period for any of them). Christmas brought two new youngsters to our home. They are siblings from a litter at a hoarders house (two of my other cats came from the same hoarder). The oldest cat and longest resident in our kitty household, a male, has seemed the least concerned about the new kitties (not that any seem that concerned). If I bring a youngster to him he will sniff and groom it. If it comes on its own he will sniff and even let it rub on him. If the little one does not move one he may move away instead. The middle girl is very similar in her response but will also seek the littles out and sniff/let them rub. our formerly youngest is not happy. She will watch them and eventually hiss. She likes to bat their tails and ears but if they look at her she hisses. She is rather grouchy in general. For example she has never meowed- she will grumble and growl instead.

For their part, the littles beg to come out of their room every morning at 6 am. They interact a bit with the bigs....play...then scuttle under the sofa for the remainder of the day. They did come out a bit more today to play but have been mostly hiding.

Is there anything in the cats responses that is a message that the dog person I am may be missing? Should I be doing anything else to facilitate the integration? Should I put the littles back to their room rather than let them huddle under the sofa? Any thoughts on how this should be going?
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Old 12-31-2012, 03:11 PM   #2 (permalink)
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oh...and for what it is worth, they seem totally ok with the large dog
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Old 12-31-2012, 03:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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These are kittens? Sound like normal early behavior. How long have they been doing this. If its a couple weeks then this is very normal. They will come out more and more.

There is a great book out called Think Like A Cat. Might help you, as dog person, understand cats.
Amazon.com: Think Like a Cat: How to Raise a Well-Adjusted Cat--Not a Sour Puss (9780143119791): Pam Johnson-Bennett: Books Amazon.com: Think Like a Cat: How to Raise a Well-Adjusted Cat--Not a Sour Puss (9780143119791): Pam Johnson-Bennett: Books
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Old 12-31-2012, 05:19 PM   #4 (permalink)
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How old are the kittens? If they're older than 6 weeks, I would encourage them to come out from under the couch by playing with them. Get some thick string or cord and drag it around, or a feather wand. They need the socialization and without it may remain shy. Pick them up and handle them gently a minimum of several times a day, and encourage them to play while you sit on the floor.
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Old 01-01-2013, 12:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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They came out last night of their own accord. The boy rambled around the living room. The girl went to the dining room and struck the loaf pose on a chair. I have been closing them in a dog crate at night (litter box, bed, blanket,water and food are in there) for their own safety. It s next to my bed. Every morning I wake to loud purring as they groom each other. This morning the girl is hiding somewhere. The boy is playing, popping out from under the sofa to grab anything that walks by, chewing table leg, climbing the curtains...trying to engage the other kitties. Our youngest adult was just here with him and decided she was mad-puffed up and ran away. She is glaring at me from a shelf while aggressively grooming herself.

I wonder why she is so grouchy and the other cats have just rolled with it. The new comers are about 3-4 months according to the vet. The hoarder insists they are younger. I hope the 2 litters there are the last. We have been working with the man to rehome the cats and to spay and neuter. The last 3 females I have not been able to trap are responsible for the 2 litters. This litter of 8 has 5 that are pet ready (including my 2). The other litter is just a few weeks old. I'd like the rescue to take them now.
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