Finding the Right Fit - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 03:35 PM Thread Starter
Senior Cat
 
Jakiepoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Canada
Posts: 663
Finding the Right Fit

Alright so, about a month and a half ago, give or take a few days, we got ourselves a cat, Jacob, our first boy cat ever.

We've always been a one cat household, but lately I've been looking at Jake and thinking he could use a playmate, someone to pass the time with while we're at work and school. I mentioned it to my mom, and she was opposed to it at first, but it seems like she might be warming up to the idea, though there is no definite answer yet, it is in the realm of possibility so I'd like to ask a few questions first.

When we adopted him from the shelter they were holding him in the pet store with about 5 other cats in a little cat room because the shelter folk said he didn't like confined spaces, and had to be moved to the pet store so he had a little more room.

Far as we know he didn't have any bad incidents there with any of the other cats, he seemed just fine with them, though it didn't stick out to me that he was close to any other cat in particular, but most were a fair bit older than him, and from what I saw, much calmer.

I was just wondering if one: You guys thought he'd do well with a companion, and two: if yes, what type of companion he'd be better with.

I'm not sure if now that he has his own place he'll be too territorial. There was one incident we had after his first week here where my uncle and cousins brought their dog over, like they usually do, for our family supper. We warned our uncle that we had gotten a new cat who had claws this time (previous cat had been declawed) and we told them to knock when they came to give us a little warning to get the cat and put him in a bed room or something. Thing is, they didn't knock, and they opened the door and let the dog run in, needless to say Jake was not very impressed, and after the dog jumped onto the couch, Jacob leaped at him and nearly clawed his face up, though he didn't actually touch him. We grabbed Jake, tried calming him down, and put him in the bedroom for a bit, then we rotated putting the dog in the bedroom, and letting the cat out in case he needed the litterbox, and to say hello to everyone, he was perfectly fine saying hello to the newcomers, so long as they were not a dog. No animals were harmed, they were just shaken up. Our uncle wasn't too impressed and doesn't like the cat anymore, but honestly, I blame him for not warning us, if he had of knocked, the whole situation could have been avoided, but my dad thinks Jake may be a bit too territorial for a companion. I think after a proper introduction, Jake would warm up and get friendly with a new cat.

Do you guys think he'd benefit from a companion? Or to just leave what's working be, and not try to fix what isn't broken?

If we did get a new cat, I was wondering what would be better, two males, or a male and a female? Jacob is 1 1/2, probably closer to 2 now, so would younger, older, or the same age be better? He is also a pretty high energy cat who loves playing, running around, and snuggling when he gets tired, so would a cat with similar energy levels be better, or a calmer cat to even him out? If we did get another cat, I just don't want anything to go wrong and want whats best for everyone involved, so I have so many questions!

Sorry for that super long post :/ Didn't realize how much I was rambeling!
Jakiepoo is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 04:39 PM
Cat Addict
 
Arianwen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: South Wales, UK
Posts: 2,999
I don't think you can compare the reaction to a suddenly arriving dog (and I always have a mixed pet household) - it isn't an indicator of how he would react to another cat. Maybe the rescue you had him from might be able to advise you.
Arianwen is offline  
post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 04:41 PM
Cool Cat
 
Blakeney Green's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 954
I think Jacob might enjoy a playmate, although it seems like he's doing fine as an only cat too.

The one question I would ask that isn't clear in your post is... do you want another cat? If it turns out that the two kitties only tolerate each other (which is possible) will you still feel this is the right decision?

I don't think the incident with the dog has any bearing on whether Jacob would be okay with another cat, for a couple of reasons. 1.) Jacob was startled and frightened, so that was not his normal behaviour toward a newcomer, and 2.) Cats and dogs are different. A cat may see a dog as a threat/larger predator, but be just fine with another of his own species.

Of course, both cats should be neutered or spayed.

I decided to get a second cat when Zephyr was nine months old. When Zephyr was a younger kitten, we lived in a multi-pet household, but all the other animals belonged to my roommate. When we parted ways, I was going to have Zephyr be an only cat for awhile... it did not work. At all. He was getting bored and destructive while I was at work, he regressed in his training about biting and scratching, and he was extremely needy all the time. I wanted a second cat anyway, so I figured I'd try a companion cat and see if it helped. It seriously fixed all his issues like magic. So yeah, my experience has definitely favoured two cats over one.

Maisie was two years old when I adopted him. He and Zephyr are both males, and are about a year and three months apart in age. They get along really well, and are bonded like littermates. Not to say they don't squabble - siblings always do - but then five minutes later they're curled up together.

Of course, it doesn't always work out that perfectly... but it can.

One option to consider is to see if a local rescue will consider letting you do a foster-to-adopt situation where you look after the cat temporarily and see if Jacob does okay, and then if so you make the other cat a permanent family member. Some rescues will do that; it's worth calling and asking.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

The Boys: Maisie, Zephyr, and Cullen.

Last edited by Blakeney Green; 02-02-2013 at 04:43 PM.
Blakeney Green is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
Senior Cat
 
Jakiepoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Canada
Posts: 663
Yeah, I figured it was the sudden thing, and was in no way his fault, nor my cousins dog. Like I said, my blame lies with my uncle as we told him to knock before he came in, but nobody was hurt, and everything ended well.

And yeah! I'd really love another fur baby, but like I said, we've always been a one cat house hold so I'm a little apprehensive and nervous that things will go wrong, and we'd be stuck with two un-happy cats, as my parents and myself are not fond of re-homing once we've taken responsibility of an animal, it's ours.

I don't have a lot of experience with cat introductions, almost all of my friends who own more than one cat adopted male and female siblings, so they didn't need to do the introduction. My only friend who has adopted cats not from the same litter has indoor/outdoor cats, and they live in a neighbourhood where there are a lot of indoor/outdoor cats, so his cats are used to meeting new cats, and seeing them on their territory, so besides some hissing, he's never had any problem.

I have heard of a lot of positive introductions here, which has made me a little less nervous, but my nerves won't go away until it actually happens. I really like that fostering idea though! I think I'll check to see if that's a possibility, but that would probably be our best option, and my parents would probably also like that option the best.

We probably wouldn't get another cat for a few months as it is anyways, probably not until summer, so I'm in no rush, but I just like looking around for different experiences and pieces of advice in advance so I can have a little list to go by when the time comes with different things to look for.

Zephyr and Maisie are gorgeous by the way, and you didn't have any territorial issue's with them being two boys? But it's nice hearing your introduction went so well, and they bonded nicely!
Jakiepoo is offline  
post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 05:32 PM
Cool Cat
 
Blakeney Green's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 954
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jakiepoo View Post
Zephyr and Maisie are gorgeous by the way, and you didn't have any territorial issue's with them being two boys? But it's nice hearing your introduction went so well, and they bonded nicely!
Thank you!

Honestly, no, I didn't have any territorial issues. (A few hisses from Maisie when they were first getting acquainted, nothing big.) I think a big part of that is just the two particular personalities. I think I lucked out with two cats who aren't territorial types.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

The Boys: Maisie, Zephyr, and Cullen.
Blakeney Green is offline  
post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 06:24 PM
Cat Addict
 
NebraskaCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Lincoln, NE
Posts: 2,749
There's a book called "Cat vs Cat" by Pam Johnson-Bennett about multi-cat households. Much of the advice is common sense and much of the expert advice is information you can get from message boards like this one. That being said, I still think it's worth a quick read, especially if going from a single cat home to a two cat home.

Introductions should always be slow and deliberate. Sometimes just throwing them together will work, but most of the time it just creates frustration and impedes the process. Cats have unique systems of territory and hierarchy that humans don't automatically understand.

Also, a good shelter will be able to tell you which of their adoptable cats might be good for your specific situation, although no one has a magic ball in that regard.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jeff & Nala
Simon and Penny, waiting patiently at the Bridge
NebraskaCat is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome