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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am becoming increasingly concerned with behavior one of my adult male cats is showing towards my foster kittens.

Background in case you didn't see my post introducing myself. I have two adult male cat:


Lord Byron (10 years old)


Poe (a little over 1).

They are both rescue cats and have had to come through a host of odd behavior but they are thriving now. I recently began fostering kittens for the local humane society. I currently have two living with me:


Topher


Cubby

AKA the Gruesome Twosome (about 8-9 weeks). Introductions went well, and now everyone is able to get along.

Then about three days ago, I look up from a book to see Poe carrying Topher by his scruff. He carried Topher into the bathroom, then dropped him into the tub, then went to find Cubby. By the time he got back with Cubby, Topher had escaped from the tub and he started after Topher again. I distracted him and stopped the behavior. I was baffled because there was no obvious signs of aggression, nothing in the body language that indicated Poe was angry or annoyed. I thought, since the bathroom was the kittens' "room" when they first moved in, maybe Poe was trying to "put them to bed."

Then two nights ago, I saw a similar, but to me "escalated" version of the behavior. In my apartment, there are three stairs leading from my living room to my kitchen. I was in my kitchen. I looked over and Poe was at the top of those stairs, holding Cubby. Then he tossed down the kitten down the stairs. I have no clue what he was thinking or what his "intention" was.

I decided to go back to confining the kittens when I am not at home to keep an eye on things, but I am curious if anyone has any ideas about what's going on with Poe.

On another note, the kittens are sweet as can be, but have absolutely no manners. They bite, scratch, climb legs, and have no sense of boundaries with the older cats. (more so than any of the other kittens I have fostered combined!) I'm a big believer that the best job a human can do with socializing and 'training' pales in comparison to what another cat can do to help them learn. So if something is going on and Poe feels the need to put them in their place, I'm all for it as long as I feel like they are safe. The dropping down the stairs seemed unsafe to me.

I would be interested in any and all suggestions :) Thanks!
 

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This is really quite amusing......but not so good for the kitties. Definitely keep the kittens confined if you're not there to supervise. Rambunctious kitties who are learning to control their bite, claws etc. can be a real pain in the butt of older cats who may or may not in Poe's case don't have the patience or interest for them. So I think Poe's telling you by his actions that the kitties should stay in the bathroom, as that's where you put them initially. As for dropping the one down the stairs....it's almost as if he's saying "Here, do something with this brat". Since they are fosters in your care, I would let them interact with the Poe and Lord Byron as long as they aren't being vicious (kitties squealing in pain and then running to hide, or showing avoidance of the boys). If kitties are doing that, then the big boys are being too rough and you should separate them, but otherwise they will teach them when they've got too far and its good for developing their cat social manners. It's a delicate balancing act, but keep kitties separated if you're not present to supervise.
 

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When i was fostering kittens, I kept them locked up away from the resident cats. New kittens are stressful to resident cats and it isn't really fair to them to have to put up with a never ending supply of kittens. Foster kittens need their own space and so do your pets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Poe will also sleep with them, groom them, and play with them. He will happily lets them crawl all over him. Then this morning, I finished cleaning the litter boxes and refilling food bowls, and Poe carried Topher over to the newly cleaned litter box and dropped him into it.
 

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oh wait! it sounds like you have a "nanny" cat!! Poe is taking care of these babies!! wow that is really unusual for a male cat.
 

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Poe will also sleep with them, groom them, and play with them. He will happily lets them crawl all over him. Then this morning, I finished cleaning the litter boxes and refilling food bowls, and Poe carried Topher over to the newly cleaned litter box and dropped him into it.
Poe was showing Topher where the bathroom is located. How sweet!
 
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