Redirected/Territorial Aggression - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-24-2009, 10:08 AM Thread Starter
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Redirected/Territorial Aggression

I am new to posting on the forum, but have been reading the behavior posts for some time now. I am in need of some advice. I have 2 cats - one female, Xanadu, and one male, Gizmo. They are 6 years old and have grown up together. This winter I brought in 2 strays and let them live in my kitchen so I could get them spayed and help them stay warm through the winter. One night, my huband didn't shut the kitchen door tight and the stray came into my living room and attacked my 2 housecats. This happened about 2 months ago. Since then, Gizmo and Xanadu have been at each other's throats. I've moved the 2 strays to a mudroom so they don't disturb Gizmo and Xanadu anymore. I've read all about redirected aggression and am slowly trying to reintroduce Gizmo and Xanadu back together. They can eat side by side and even play in the same room. But they can't just be together. If Gizmo walks by Xanadu, she starts hissing and moaning. This leads to an attack by Gizmo onto Xanadu. One night Xanadu starting hissing so I tried to pick her up and put her in her room and Gizmo attacked me. He jumped on my back and bit me! Xanadu is ok with Gizmo if he is on a leash or in a pen, but he is free she hisses and moans which always leads to him attacking her. In the past, Gizmo used to chase her around and play fight with her. When it got too rough, I'd put him in "time out" until he calmed down. Gizmo is very active and playful while Xanadu is a couch potato and loner. Is it possible that Xanadu is just tired of Gizmo and will never be ok with him again? I've tried Feliway and Rescue Remedy with no results. I am heartbroken. I spend every single evening trying to reintroduce them with no progression. Does anyone have any more advice.

liljenfers is offline  
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-28-2009, 06:58 AM
Join Date: Mar 2009
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Re: Redirected/Territorial Aggression

I am having that same problem, except it was all because my dominant cat saw another cat outside (my cats are indoor cats). Now the dominant cat has been aggressive to my other cat for the past week. She's not eating, I haven't seen her use the litter box. I don't know what to do. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
danerbug is offline  
post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-28-2009, 11:53 AM
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Re: Redirected/Territorial Aggression

Welcome to you both, and I am sorry liljen hasn't received any replies. I am not the best person to answer these questions because I haven't really had to deal with this. I have a multi-cat (usually always more than 4) household that has been up to a dozen at times, and sometimes higher if I was fostering a litter of kittens. I think because I have always had a lot of cats, and I keep new ones seperated for quite a while, the smells begin to all be the same and it isn't as traumatic when I finally allow the newcomer out to interact with my large group.

I wish someone else with more experience in this area would chime in to help. I am not sure I am really qualified to help in this situation, since I haven't experienced it.

Here is what I do to introduce new cats/kittens:
They are always kept in my Master Bath. During the day they are allowed into the Master bedroom while my established group of cats have the rest of the house. They are allowed to sniff/footsie under the door. When interest is shown on both sides, I will open the door a crack to allow sniffing and more footsie-ing. As that progresses nicely, I will hold open the door a littler further to allow for more sniffing and eyes to be able to visually see the other cats. I fist my hand at the edge of the door and prop my knuckles on the door jamb to hold it firm so there can be no 'escaping/intrusion' from either side. If that goes well, and cats are begining to be bored with the process and lose interest, then I will start to allow a few of the friendlier cats into the bedroom to interact (supervised) with the new kitties. After that has gone well, then I will progress to allowing them into the rest of the house.

Best of luck to you,

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 03-30-2009, 09:20 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2009
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Re: Redirected/Territorial Aggression

I never knew that something like this could happen! We've added a screen door to Xanadu's (female cat) bedroom door so she can interact with Gizmo. She hisses and growls at him whenver he walks by or gets near. But, if I go in her room and pet her and give treats to them both, she will let him in the room and be ok. Then, if he leaves the room and comes back, she starts hissing all over again. Its like she forgets who he is! We are not progressing beyond this point. I am so afraid I will have to rehome her and it is devastating.
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