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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 01:26 AM Thread Starter
 
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Moving in with new cat

We're moving in with some new roommates and they have a male cat that's about two years old. We also have TWO cats, brother and sister, that are about two years old. I need to know what the best way to introduce the three will be and have them living together in harmony.

Things I've considered:
New territory: no one has lived at this house yet, so no cat has claimed the territory yet

Ganging up: Stamos (the other couples' cat) is quite a bit larger in size than our two cats and also plays more roughly with his owners, so I'm fairly certain he can hold his own, but I have no idea really

Two boys and a girl: I don't know how this will pan out at all really-- Will and Tsu (my cats) get along great and play and take care of each other, I don't want them to lose that bond

We're moving the last week of July, what should we to do prepare and once we're living there, what should we do to maintain harmony amongst the cats and our relationships with all three of the cats?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-05-2007, 01:36 AM
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Welcome! You're going to gets lots of good advice here on this subject from owners with this type of experience (not me!), and the best thing is, you're asking ahead of time.

Marie


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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-07-2007, 01:25 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the warm welcome! Does anyone have any resources I can look up on the subject, or previous experiences they would like to share?

Thanks again!
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-07-2007, 02:26 AM
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hello and welcome to the forum!

new introductions should always be done slowly and carefully to get the best results. A lot of people have a tendency to just put the cats together and let them work it out- sometimes things work out fine and sometimes they don't, so its better to do a slow, planned intro to increase your chances of success.

You should start by keeping the unfamiliar cats in seperate areas of the house. Since you'll be living with roommates, I'm guessing that there are at least 2 bedrooms. I would suggest starting by putting your cats and the new cat in 2 different rooms. Don't give either set of cats access to the rest of the place yet. Since this is a completely new place for all cats, neither one will feel that it belongs to them, and this is good.

Then you can you can let your cats and the roommate's cat out to explore the rest of the place at separate times, a little at a time. This will give them a chance to become familiar with their new home. It will also give thenm a chance to leave their scent in some places. The cat's will be able to get used to each other's scents without meeting directly.

From this point on, you can pretty much treat the situation like you would if you were introducing a new cat to a home with established cats. There's a lot to this, so I won't write it out, but instead refer you to some good articles on the subject.

link 1

link 2

link 3

The most important things to remember are to take things at the cats' pace. Move on to the next step when you feel that they are ready, rather than adhering to a specific schedule.
You want to avoid fearful and aggressive meetings. First impressions are important, and a bad experience can affect the relationship between the cats for a long time.
You may also experience redirected agression between your 2 cats. The scent or sight of the new cat may cause your cats who are usually friendly towards each other to act aggressively towards each other instead, so be prepared for that.

I hope that helps some. Good luck and let us know how it goes!
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-08-2007, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
 
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Very helpful, thank you!

Do you think that my two cats are going to start behaving aggressively toward each other? I mean, don't get me wrong, I know that this is really on a case to case basis and you can never really know, but I was wondering how common that is (for cats that already know each other to start being aggressive toward one another). What can I do to avoid that situation/help it? Also, what can I do to make sure they feel comfortable with us...also in moving into a NEW HOME?

In one of the articles, I read that the cats can be giving each other mixed signals. We had learned about blinking at our cats when they were very young by ready some posts on this site and used that method to express our feelings toward them and make them comfortable. They know this signal VERY well and use it quite often. The first time I met my new roommate's cat I blinked at him and he rushed toward me aggressively and I had to move back, he obviously didn't understand the signal. Since then I have done it a few times and he hasn't ever blinked back, but hasn't attacked either. Should I suggest that my roommates start blinking at their cat regularly so that he becomes familiar with this signal and perhaps starts to use it as well?


Sorry for all the questions, I just want to make sure everything runs smoothly.

THANKS AGAIN!
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-09-2007, 07:08 PM Thread Starter
 
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Does anyone have any advice on my second set questions?

Thanks.
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