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I have two cats that hate each other, or so I have come to believe. Both are males, and both were feral cats before I took them in.

I think that this hatred began early on. At the time I lived in an apartment complex, with my wife and her two cats. One day some neighbors moved out, and they left behind their black and white boy cat, who began living in the woods behind our apartment building.

He was a very shy cat and would run away every time I came near him. However, eventually the neighbor next door to us somehow managed to coax him out and started feeding him. Then she moved.

One morning I was awakened to this cat whining and screaming on our former neighbor’s patio. Eventually, against my wife’s advice, I feed him, and kept feeding him for some time.

One day, while I was bringing out Outdoor kitty’s (his name at this time) food dish, I saw another cat lingering in the bushes. It was a yellow cat, which I had never seen before. Ignoring it I put Outdoor Kitty’s food dish down and he started eating. But as soon as the yellow cat heard the crunch of food he raced over to the food dish and butted his head into it pushing Outdoor Kitty aside. I tried to chase the yellow cat away, but only managed to frighten away Outdoor Kitty. Then as I went back inside, the yellow cat finished off the meal that I had intended for Outdoor Kitty.

I soon fond that in order to feed Outdoor Kitty, I had to feed this new yellow stray as well, and for some time I feed them both. Then one night there was a big hissing and fighting match between Outdoor Kitty and the yellow cat, and it would be some time before I saw Outdoor Kitty again.

So I continued feeding this yellow stray, who I had taken to calling Yelliekins. Eventually I started feeding him inside, when I realized that feeding him outside was attracting many raccoons.

One night there was another loud cat fight, and Outdoor Kitty was back. I continued feeding him, but soon found that I could not feed the two cats together anymore. Upon sight of each other, a growing and hissing match would erupt.

Eventually, I let both cats live in our apartment, and took them to the vet to have the vaccinated and checked out. While they got along fine with my wife’s two cats, they still could not stand each other. Fortunately, my wife’s big black male cat would break up any fight that went on in the apartment; however, they still had a few scrapes while they were outside. And Yelliekins started peeing on anything that Jenkies (formerly Outdoor Kitty) liked, his scratching post, his bed, the area where I feed him, etc.

Now we have since moved to a house, and Yelliekins and Jenkies’ hatred for each other has mellowed, but it still is there. The cats have been in the new house for over a week now and all but Yelliekins have adjusted to it. Yelliekins stays under the bed mostly, however, he does come out at night. There have been several latenight hissing matches between Yelliekins and Jenkies. Almost anytime Yelliekins comes out from under the bed, Jenkies eventually chases him back under it. Yelliekins has also taken to peeing around the kitchen at night, which is where Jenkies spends most of his time.

Is there anyway to get cats like this to get along? Or should I just make the hard choice and get rid of one of them?
 

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It sounds to me that yellikins is a dominant male. Personally, I do not attempt to keep any cat that will not get along with my menagerie, as they otherwise all get along with each other without fighting. I return them to the shelter. And since yellikins is a stray or a feral cat, he may not want to be cooped up in a home. :wink:

I have several outdoor stray and feral cats that I feed, and one of them is a little all black female -which I think could be part of my "extended family". But I will have to go outside and attempt to befriend her, especially when the weather warms up. I have already gotten one long furred black female (Mopsy) to stay inside from being a stray, last year. However she didn't get along with the others very well when I brought her inside , but I held on to her because the others ignored her. I have found that if my remainder menagerie ignores a new cat, that they can become a member of the clan. Now, she is more accepted without hissing and clawing at the others -at least, most of them. :)
 

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how long have they been living in the house together?

often problems arise with 2 males in one house as one will be dominant

you might find it will settle down with time, and although they may never get on they may learn to tolerate each other

are they both neutered?

We adopted a new cat last November and had hissing for a while but it has settled down now

with the moving house this may have made the problem transiently worse as they are trying to establish new territories
how long have you lived in the new house?

this may settle down when you start letting them go out again and they can establish larger territories and avoid each other a bit
J
 

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I don't think either cat is feral. They let you bring them indoors and from what I understand, accept human gestures like touch? True ferals wouldn't let you within 50 yards of them. Yellikens was, most likely, dumped just like the black and white. That's probably why they're challenging a bit for turf, since they had such a hard time previously.
Post neutering, incidents of spraying go down approximately 90% in males. What you could be seeing, though is the results of fights, with one cat literally getting the pee scared out of him as he gets ambushed.

It's definitely a tough call, but before you make that call, find a behavior consultant in your area to work with you. There's a lot of specific questions that need answering, but I've seen it work in much tougher situations. The good news is that it's calmed down a bit, they're beginning to acknowledge boundaries and not fighting as much, plus you've moved into a bigger territory. However, no cat wants to go through life hiding under a bed all the time, which you know, or else you wouldn't be faced with making a choice.

You can also go to http://www.littlebigcat.com/index.php?action=consultingregarding behavior consultations.

Best,
Jackson
 

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:D Hi there....I have two black dsh...I got Bijoux first when he was a kitten and a year after I grabed Louis from an abusive home. Bijoux never liked Louis...even after 12 years he still can't. But they have gotten very used to eachother. When one is going to go eat he calls the other to come and eat, then they go there separate ways. They will sleep on the bed together just far apart from eachother. SO my guese is hang in there they most likely will get used to eachother and learn to live in peace.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for all your responses. Fortunately, things have started to calm down a bit. Yellikens and Jenkies still don't seem to like each other, but the confrontations have died down greatly.

I have started using Feliway and Cat Faeries, Territorial Rescue. I do not know if these are helping, or if the cats are just getting use to their new environment, but I do not plan to stop using them anytime soon in case they are working. I have also changed the litter to something more natural. So far there has been no spraying that I have noticed this week, and only two fights. Also, Yelliekens has started to come out from the bed. While he still spends most of his time there, he has strated to venture around.

Both Yellikens and Jenkies were neutered when I found them. While I know a little about Jenkies former life, I know nothing about Yellikins'. Hopefully, time will eventualy make them tolerate each other.
 
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