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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So two days ago, after over a month of high pressure searching for a new lap cat, I finally brought home a very affectionate eight year boy. He's perfect personality-wise, but I can't stop feeling anxious and thinking he's got the wrong “look”. I really wanted an orange tabby, or a brown or grey tabby like my 16 year old boy cat that died back in April. This cat is white/buff-colored tabby, but I felt I better grab him since the personality was right.

He's a very sweet cat, but he doesn't feel like mine and I've been feeling really anxious about it since I brought him home. I had a terrible experience with a cat I got immediately after my old cat died, he was very high energy, not at all the lap cat I was looking for, and made my other 16 year old girl cat miserable. So after six weeks I made the difficult decision to return him even though I had gotten attached. The stress was just too much.

This cat is nothing like the other cat, but I still feel stressed about the change and panicked about the commitment, and of course my girl cat is nervous about a new cat in the house. I haven’t introduced them yet, but don't expect a clash since the new cat is very gentle and likes other cats, so I'm sure my girl cat will accept him after a few weeks.

Am I nuts for feeling this way? It feels like I'm making excuses not to bond with him. Maybe I just haven’t grieved long enough for my old cat yet that died and just wanted to fill the void of a lap cat. (My girl cat is aloof and doesn’t like being petted during the day, but recently started sleeping with me at night.) Sometimes I think it would have been easier emotionally to start over with a pair of cute little kittens. I just keep second guessing myself. I guess I thought the new cat would help me heal emotionally but instead I'm all anxious like I made a mistake. It does feel nice to have him sit on my lap though.
 

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I don't think you're ready for another cat. There is no guarantee any cat you adopt will act how you expect them to, or even act like they did in their previous home. And I think the last thing your girl needs to deal with is a couple of kittens, with endless energy.

Personally, I think your 16-year old girl should be able to enjoy the peace and quiet she has now until she passes. And it does sound like she's becoming a bit more affectionate.

Just my two cents, but I am speaking from my own experiences.
 
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I agree with marie that bringing in kittens to live with your 16 year old cat would not be a good idea. but if you have only had this nice affectionate lap cat for a few days you might want to give it just a bit more time. Maybe you aren't ready for a new cat, but sometimes we aren't ready until we do it.

What the cat looks like is, as you know, a lot less important than how he behaves. If you allow him, he will work his sweet magic on you and help you to heal, if you can just have patience with yourself and let it happen. I have experienced this, and I have also found that sometimes the look of an animal is not what I want or like until that animal has been with me a while and once I love that animal I cannot imagine why I ever wanted him or her to look any different, and I love the look they have.

Like marie, this is only my 2 cents. You alone can make the decision.
 

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As someone who is very sentimental when it comes to animals, I would say give this boy a chance. True, maybe you did not give yourself enough time to grieve the loss of your old beloved cat, but you admitted yourself this boy has a great personality and makes you feel good sitting in your lap. He cannot help the fact he is not the same as your old cat, but he is coming into your life, having never met you before, already willing to give love. Also, he is eight years old, and I don't know how many prospects he had for adoption, but at half way through his life you are doing a wonderful thing giving him a safe and happy environment to be himself. Instead of second guessing yourself, believe in yourself that you got this cat because you have so much love to share for pets, and he is the lucky one that got to be with you. Keeping him will not erase the love you had for your old cat, but it may honor their memory by promising to continue to love the pets your bring into your home. I truly hope it works out, both of you deserve to be happy.
 

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I wish you and the cat all the best of luck and hope you will check back in with us and let us know how it is going.
 

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If you are comfortable, can you tell us your cat's name, maybe share a picture. Tell us some nice things about him. He sounds sweet.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If you are comfortable, can you tell us your cat's name, maybe share a picture. Tell us some nice things about him. He sounds sweet.
His name is Oscar. He loves everybody. He'll let complete strangers pick him up and pet him and sit on their laps. He's always jumping on my lap at every opportunity. It's comforting to sit with him on the couch late at night. He's very gentle and I think wants to even be friends with my 16 year old girl cat Cici, but she keeps hissing at him and hiding under the bed. That stresses me out. I’m trying to give her treats when she sees him so it becomes a positive association. He's got these wide eyes that say “Hold me! Love me!” so I feel compelled to pick him up.
I feel guilty that I'm not instantly in love. I still have this hole in me over my cat that died. I kind of feel like cute kittens would have been a better choice since it would be harder to compare kittens to a grown cat, plus kittens are adorable. But that would have driven Cici crazy.

Here's his picture, he's a big handsome boy.
Cat Window Felidae Carnivore Small to medium-sized cats

This is Cici, tiny little girl:
Cat Felidae Carnivore Small to medium-sized cats Comfort
 

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I'm sorry Cici is hissing and hiding. I understand that can be bothersome and upsetting if your senior cat retreats rather than opens up. I can understand how that can make you second guess the situation if that cat you already have and love is reacting negatively. Cats are often territorial and take time to adjust. As you said a kitten might have driven her nuts, at least Oscar is chill and respectful. I might suggest finding a way to prevent Cici from hiding, maybe build some sort of barrier so the bed and other furniture are no longer accessible, or block them off with boxes. But leave at least one place for her to go and feel comfortable but still be visible, like a cat tree. I adopted a very skittish cat who hid for months but loved our senior cat when we weren't around to see. We blocked off couches and hutches but left a single chair for her to sit under where she felt safe but could observe. Eventually she opened up and started sitting in the open, and then became more affectionate. I don't know if that will help Cici, but you should definitely respect her space but also let her know she is not ignored or replaced. If she is a lap cat, sit her in your lap while Oscar walks around, she might see he is a chill dude and get over it. That's the best I can advise. I feel bad this has been so emotionally stressful for you. I truly hope it works out. You deserve a cat like Oscar to love you, and he sounds pretty awesome if you give him a chance. But ... And I don't mean to pressure you ... He deserves a home where he is welcomed and loved in return. I'm personally rooting you give him a chance, he is not a replacement of your beloved cat who passed, he is a symbol you can continue to love while honoring your old cat's memory. But you do need to come to a conclusion for Oscar's sake. I personally believe you can make this work.
 

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Also, there are resources when you are grieving for a pet. You can call a counselor, or maybe speak with someone in person. Call your vet and ask for advice. Receiving clarity from someone whose job it is to walk you through pain is a very healthy approach.

 
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