Originally Posted by D's_mom
So far my experience with Mischa attacking Mr D is just one very bad episode and several less severe ones. The bad episode occured when Mischa came into my bedroom as I was playing with Mr. D. Mr D hissed at her and slinked under the bed (he sleeps with me at night so he's very comfortable there) and Mischa sniffed around my desk and hamper a few minutes and then went under the bed, tail puffed out, and, before I got a good grip on her, immediately attacked Mr D. Mr D was scared of her but wasn't growling that I could hear or agressively postured.
Sounds like you have a good handle on the situation. You might want to keep an eye on the under-bed area, see if that is a bit of territory that inspires fighting. My boys, who have been behaving for the past week, had a fight last night over the space inside the chest of drawers (I'd taken out the drawer for 2 minutes, I swear!)
The circuituous, sniffing, oh-not-interested approach is also something to watch - it is the feline equivalent of a cautious advance. It is harder to tell if you cannot see the second cat, but it is an early warning sign especially if the second cat is tense, swivelling to keep the first cat in view, and not moving from the spot.
Have taken note of the timing of the attacks? A trigger can be the sound of the cat crunching kibble, or scratching in the litterbox, but may not result in an attack till 5 minutes later when the two cats meet.
The other possibility for a trigger is you - or attention. Cats can get possessive over people, especially if you notice the outbursts happening near you or your hubby. This one can be hard to work around, depending on how much time you have to spare and the kind of relationship you have with your cats:
One option is to give the aggressor a timeout and the cold shoulder even after she has 'vanquished' the competition. Resist the urge to go comfort Mr. D as it will provoke the competition for attention even more. Only pay attention to her when Mr. D is in the room.
The other is to spend lots and lots of time playing and grooming Mischa until she is 'funned' out and itching for some alone time before introducing her to Mr. D - that way she is more relaxed about not getting all of the attention, and may see him as a relief from all of the fussing.
The third option is to develop an iron fisted, absolutely rigid, ritualized schedule for greeting/attention giving to each cat, enforced with timeouts, hissing, scruffing and treats as necessary. This is dependent on whether your cats see you as the dominant animal in the group, and whether you can get them to defer to your order of greeting them.
Hopefully you'll be able to work it out. Yoshi, the little stinker, has learned to tattle on Mac by mah-OW!ing and running to me or my husband when he's had enough.