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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-10-2011, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
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strange behaviour - unexplained aggression

so i have a problem with a new cat in my home that i can't really explain...hoping someone has some ideas. i've been around cats since the day i was born and i've never seen one line this...

little background:
i started with 1 orange tabby cat named Leo (male, neutered, around 2 years old) and unfortunately for him i work long hours, commute, shift work (days and nights, alternates) so he is sometimes in the home on his own for long lengths of time. he was getting very needy, yowling a lot, etc. i recognized that he was getting lonely.

he's been around other cats and really gets along well, hes a very gentile and friendly cat. once he gets used to the other cat he just plays with them all the time. so the perfect solution is to get a second cat right?

a couple weeks ago, i picked up another cat at the local shelter. she's been spayed, vaccinations, etc. her name is Ellie, around 1 yr old. even from the day i brought her in the door, she seemed very passive/gentile which was what i was looking for. got along with other cats at the shelter, a little smaller than Leo as well. my idea there was to not offend his ego, he would feel like the dominant cat on his own and i didn't want to upset that. so far things seemed good. the hissing stopped after 2 days and they were playing, and it was never anything more than that.

now fast forward about a little over a week. sometimes when i'm home i let Leo outside. didn't want to let Ellie out so soon after her coming here, so i let just Leo out. at this point they're getting along wonderfully.

then later i bring Leo inside...and Ellie goes absolutely insane! starts attacking Leo and it was getting quite violent. Leo was very upset and didn't know what to do, he's not much of a fighter. the funny thing was that Ellie was going out of her way to attack him, she'd follow him and perpetuate the whole thing!

it got so bad that i ended up keeping Leo in my room that night with food/water/litter. next day i had work, so i had to put Ellie inside my room and let Leo out in the house - and yes SHE WAS STILL ATTACKING THE NEXT DAY!

that night when i got home (this is 13-14 hours later) i decided to try letting Ellie out to see what happens. surprisingly she was ok....Leo was very cautious of course. took 2 days for him to be ok with her again.

and now they're fine....back to playing.

only thing is i'm kind of afraid to let Leo out again. the only thing i can think of is maybe she has never been outside and couldn't recognize the smells on Leo from outdoors? i think she was rescued from a cat hoarder.

normally i'm pretty good at figuring out my cats, but this one i can't make any sense of. any ideas/help would be appreciated. thanks!
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-10-2011, 02:49 PM
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I think you've already figured out the problem and the solution. The likelihood is that Ellie reacted as she did due to Leo's scent. She probably no longer recognized him as the same cat. Alternatively, she might have been reacting to other scents he carried on him (another animal, etc.). Regardless, the solution would be to either keep Leo indoors or create some sort of outdoor enclosure, where both cats could be outside for a while, but you would know that they would both be together at all times.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 09-12-2011, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
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thanks for the reply, i figured thats the problem just wanted some input before i do much. i think i'll take Ellie outside on a leash to get her accustomed to the smells and then maybe try it again. if it doesn't work, then i'll have to think of alternatives like enclosures, etc.
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