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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I've met the girl of my dreams. I'm spending pretty much every night over at her place so we are talking about bringing my cats over to her home.
Anyway, she has a two-year old small black cat named Dexter. He is declawed and attention-needy. He has occasional problems with peeing and just had several trips to the vet to get better.
I have two cats. The first is Sabrina, a very mellow eight year-old. She is content lying around and being petted and she occasionally wants to play. She has her claws.
Mohave is a one year old who likes to play rough. He chases Sabrina around and bats at her at my apartment. He always needs to be played with. He has his claws. My cats have never had a problem not hitting the litter box.
At my girlfriend's home we are going to have about 2,000 square feet to work with in terms of space. Her biggest fear is Mohave will beat up on Dexter or Dexter will start peeing on things again. My fear is I am not able to see my cats as much as I like and want them where I am.
She is concerned about my cats' claws and I am not willing to declaw them.

Anybody have any advice on moving all of the cats in together?
 

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I would start with a slow intro, like you would bringing in a new cat to your home. a separate room with some stacked baby gates or screen door helps this. To help with her worry on claws, bring over all their favorite scratching posts or trees, also think about claw tip covers for awhile especially when the cats meet face to face. if you decide to move them, you may want to start scent trading. her (worn) cloths and a towel used on Dexter brought over to your home several times a week.. and something with their scent for Dexter to sniff at. It may help lessen his stress and help with the peeing. When you bring them over maybe try some Feliway or other type of stress relief to also help keep Dexter and your furballs calm.
 

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What is the cause of Dexter's peeing issues? Has this been an ongoing issue or just this recent episode? I certainly wouldn't start an introduction process until you are sure he's cured...at least a couple months from the last time he went outside the box. Stress of a new intro can cause both medical or behavioral issues to get worse.

As for your cat's claws, I wouldn't be too concerned as long as you keep them clipped. You could also put nail caps on (until you're comfortable that they get along) if it makes her feel better.

Follow a formal introduction process (google "cat introductions" you'll find tons of info). Note that with adult cats it may take months before all is calm. You don't want to do this unless you're absolutely 100% sure of this relationship...your comment that you've "met the girl of my dreams" makes me think this is a new relationship, so I'm a bit concerned that you may be rushing into this and putting the cats through stress only to move them again if it doesn't work out.

In the meantime, why not spend a few nights a week at your place?
 

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I agree with doddlebug on this, move slowly!

Maybe another option would be a move to a new place altogether in the future - not an easy task at all! - but possibly a way of putting all three kitties on an equal footing, especially if there is plenty of space to allocate to the most needy kitty(ies).

Cats are so complex :( Territory and safety is everything to them! I would be concerned for the little guy who's been declawed and also the older girl. Both are very vulnerable to the potential upheaval of intros. Having a third rambunctious young one in the mix could be the last straw. You and your new girl are going to have to move super slow on this...

Fran
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am the girl and Dexter is my kitty. A little bit more history on Dexter. He was only survivor kitten from outside litter where all siblings were killed. He was very tiny and remains a very small cat (for a boy kitty). The issues of his peeing has been almost since his birth. It happened his first year of life (from December -April). He he had a horrible urinary infection that took about 4 months to get under control with antibiotics and medicated food. It has now happened this past December and is still on going, but better. I am not entirely sure the peeing issues are due to solely to medical issues (he recently passed some stones) and is back on medicated foods or behavioral as well. He also is on elavil (to relax is urethra) and prozac, for his behaviors. I had another cat with him who passed away six months ago from old age (20) and he terrorized her to the point I had to keep her upstairs. It is hard to say if it would be different with younger cats. I had felt that he may be a one person/household cat. At this point, I wanted to wait several months to get Dexter's health back in order, but I am prepared for this to not go well.
 

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Oh, just saw the original poster's question about declawing the other two cats.

Yikes! This would surely mess things up even worse - too many changes, too much potential for pain the paws, psychological stresses related to surgery, etc. No, no, no!

Fran
 

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Based on the additional info, I really don't think Dexter is ready for this right now. And I have to suspect the fact that he is declawed is playing into his issues. I understand the emotions associated with new love...but you guys need to be responsible cat parents for the time being. Split your time between homes....even if it isn't as convenient or comfortable.
 

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She is concerned about my cats' claws and I am not willing to declaw them.
..That's a fundamental difference of opinion. It's a pretty known fact nowadays that it's not a necessary procedure (in almost all cases) and the emotional and physical effects can be catastrophic (as well as barbaric) I don't ever see myself with someone who thought it was ok.

Based on the additional info, I really don't think Dexter is ready for this right now.
Agreed


And I have to suspect the fact that he is declawed is playing into his issues.
VERY this. His first line of defense was chopped off and it could have absolutely made him more aggressive with other cats than he might have been otherwise. It could also definitely raise his stress level and increase chances of UTIs. Good on you for standing up for your cats and saying no to declawing(if that is what she would prefer you to do).


Byou guys need to be responsible cat parents for the time being. Split your time between homes....even if it isn't as convenient or comfortable.
and... this too.
 

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The one I might be concerned with is Mojave. It seems he has just a touch of feline aggression. Sabrina should be totally cool with this-BUT-her personality might change when another cat comes on the scene. I think things WILL work out. How do your cats like the new human?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
This has been a resounding success.

I brought Mohave and Sabrina over on April 11. We decided to put my cats in the office so they could acclimate to the house and smell Dexter under the door, etc. I brought Mohave first in the Wrangler and he hated the trip, and when I let him into the office he ran under a bookcase and did not come out. I then went and got Sabrina and she also hated the trip. When I put her in the office she also ran under the same bookcase. The cats grumbled for a moment, then got quiet, and the stared out from under their shelter. I envisioned them saying to each other, "I don't like you and you don't like me but we're in this together.."
They eventually came out and Dexter posted up on the other side of the door. He and Mohave would paw at each other, and we occasionally would open the door so the cats could see each other.
After a week we let the cats out into the rest of the house. There have been no scuffles and Mohave and Dexter are like best buds. Mohave has asserted himself as the dominant cat, he grooms Dexter a lot as he is very small. Sabrina is passive and generally does her own thing.
Dexter has hit nothing but litter box in regards to his urinary problems. I have pics of the three and I will try to post them sometime.
 

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Glad to hear it worked out. My boyfriend has a 6 yr old 18-lb Maine **** and my kitten is just under 4 months and just barely 3.5 lbs. I've had him for 1 month. My vet told me that unless we were moving in together to not put his cat through the stress. The kitten would likely be fine with it. The big boy is pretty set in his ways.

Maybe your cats are having a good influence on Dexter's litter box habits.
 
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