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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When Izzy and Boo-Bear play together, there's never any pinning or biting & holding down. It ends up with both laying on the floor facing each other 6 inches apart, swatting at air, but making contact with nothing. We've taken to calling it the "lazy playtime". I've yet to see any show of dominance, and Izzy is a few weeks away from being 9 months old.

Would it be completely unheard of for there to be no dominant cat? Or is it because Boo-Bear has been around so much longer (11 years longer) that he doesn't need to show dominance because it will never be questioned that he is?

Not worried, just wondering. :wiggle
 

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My two alternate by situation which is more dominant. By dominant I mean which one of them is the more confident or mischievous. If we have company Apple follows Pedro's lead and he will coo to her and walk across the room and back to her to comfort her and show her it is safe. If it's playtime she is usually the initiator (aka agitator!) of shenanigans which end up in them chasing one another back and forth around here. They take turns of who is on top doing the "attacking". Quite a lot of silliness really. Apple definitely plays much harder than Pedro, but Pedro is the protective big brother to her.

So I guess the answer really depends on what you're meaning by dominance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm meaning the leader in general. Izzy always initiates "lazy playtime", but Boo-Bear willingly complies. That & I don't expect him to start playtime at his age. But if there's company, they walk into the room together, side by side like they're stuck together. And that's how they greet each guest too, although Izzy requires a hand-sniff of everyone before letting them touch her.

It seems more like a symbiotic pair showing no dominance in any situation, which doesn't seem very typical cat behavior to me. When we had a roommate, both of my cats made sure that the roommate's cat knew he was "bottom rung" in the pecking order, but they've never done that to each other despite the huge age difference.
 

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Cats do not mature socially until they are 2-3 years old. In a situation with a significantly older cat and a kitten...the older one is dominant, even if it's not obvious, until the younger one reaches age 2-3 and decides if (s)he wants to challenge the situation. The younger one may not be inclined to be dominant and leave things status quo, then again maybe not. But given Izzy's age, you won't really know for a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
So it's normal for them to sorta glom together? Or is that because she's a kitten? And it makes it curious that she'd always put our roommates 3 year old cat into submissive before he moved out. Lol
 

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Normal can only be assessed for the 2 cats in question...every cat is different and combining two (or more) is different for every combination out there. A cat may readily accept Cat A and hate Cat B for no obvious reason. Just like people, they react to the circumstances...
 

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That's quite a gloomy picture.

It's frustrating in the sense that many of us are attempting to maintain several/many cats in proximity to one another for what we think is their mutual benefit. The scientist in me expects some common behavior that can be used if only understood.

No luck there, eh!

I suppose if there were any general behaviors for all cats someone would have stumbled across them over the past several thousand years.

Cats is cats. Ya pays yer money, ya takes yer chance.

I keep hoping though. I sign on this forum routinely expecting the breakthrough.
 

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Fascinating, absolutely. I spend a fair amount of time just observing the interaction among "my" cats. Mostly to see if there are any discernible patterns that I might use to make my (and the cats hopefully) life a little easier. And by that I suppose I really mean MY life. Fewer fights, trips to the vet, cats disappearing into the night, etc.
I've even set up a camera in the garage where they hang out to observe them at night. I'm no Jane Goodall and my motives are good intentioned, but mostly selfish. It prob says too much about my own personality, but I was kind of hoping that cats were something like little furry robots: Push button A, this happens. Push button B, that happens. Find the right button(s) and everyone gets along.
Surprisingly and disappointedly, that doesn't appear to be the case as the posts in this, and other threads have demonstrated. I need to work on my "cat" skills.
 

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BTW, I have both books by Pam J-B and they're very informative. I have quite a few other books on cats as well (big NOOK reader). It seems to me that most, or a lot, of information even from good sources is of the "my-cat-does-this" or "someone's-cat-I-know-does-that" variety. Entertaining, but hardly scientific observations.

My vote goes to this forum as a premiere source of advice. A lot of experience here and the really incorrect and malicious comments don't get far (good moderators). But like this thread, the posts only go to show that there isn't a lot of "if-this-then-that" logic with cats.

My 4 ferals share a large garage during the winter months here in Mich. and I go from laughter to profanity watching them sort through their dominance issues. I would agree with the earlier posters that cat-cat interaction is very fluid. One of my ferals will rub on my ankles when she's on the floor, but hiss and spit at me when she is above my head level. WTH?

My first and favorite feral Squiggy, ran off as a result of the stress associated with cohabitating with other cats and I wonder if there was something that I could have done that would have prevented that. It seems that all one can do is give them food, shelter and "space" and the rest is up to them. OK then, but I don't like it.
 
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