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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-10-2013, 08:40 AM Thread Starter
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Same house, new owners.

Hazel the cat is approximately 12 years old and has been with me for all of her life. Five weeks ago I moved out of my house taking my two dogs and moving in with the new person in my life. He has a dog that cannot be trusted with cats so Hazel stayed home. My nephew, his wife, 18 month old baby and St. Bernard moved into my house with Hazel. Of course I knew Hazel would take some time to come out of the basement and get used to her new situation. The problems is this: Hazel loves all four new members of the house. She will let everyone pet and cuddle her (downstairs) and even rubs up against the St. Bernard (downstairs only). She is not afraid of anyone but refuses to come upstairs and "join the new family". Is it because of the new smells? I don't want to force her . . . I carried her upstairs twice but she immediately runs back down as soon as she is let go. As I said, it has been 5 weeks. She is eating fine, using her litter box and again, socializes fine as long as it is downstairs. Do I just need to be patient? I just feel so bad that she stays downstairs. Thanks for any help.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-10-2013, 04:46 PM
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Well she's 12, a senior cat, and they do get set in their ways. As long as she is happy, I would just let her do her thing, as you can't force to remain upstairs anyway. Hazel's friendly to all the members of the house and the St. Bernard, so that is a ++. She's "eating fine, using her litter box" and that one of the most important things. If she were unhappy or very upset she likely would not be eating as much and may be having litter incidents. She sounds fine to me, and maybe eventually she will want to be upstairs. Maybe a scratching post upstairs rubbed with lots of catnip, and a few catnipped stuffed toys can entice her to stay upstairs. Worth a try, but it will be on her terms whether she wants to stay upstairs or downstairs where she feels more comfortable.

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-10-2013, 06:32 PM
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Yes, it will take time for Hazel to get used to the idea that the house is the same but virtually everything else has changed. Hopefully she will join the family sooner rather than later but she IS 12 and this may take quite awhile.
I adopted an 11 year old cat once and it took that poor thing MONTHS before she trusted me and a year before she would let me rub her belly! Tell the new family to be patient with her, spend time with her as much as they can and encourage her to come up by putting the food a couple steps higher each day (or every other day). I did that with Abby and after a month she was eating downstairs with us. (She hid upstairs for a month, poor thing).

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 02:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for the helpful comments. I feel much better about the situation and will keep patient, try some temptations to get Hazel upstairs and give her time.
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