Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.
I have three cats. The first being the biggest and the third still a kitten. The kitten is not the problem here, he gets along with everyone. The oldest cat lives in EXTREME fear of the middle cat, and pees everywhere because of it and cries all the time. The middle cat is aggressive with him and always looking to attack him when possible. I'm not sure what to do about this. My oldest cat barely comes out of the closet because he feel safe in there. How do I get the middle cat to stop attacking? How can I train him that it is wrong?
Any suggestions would help.
My sister has a similar problem and has been trying a product called Feliway. It's a behavior modification system, available at pet stores (but is cheaper thru the Drs Foster & Smith website or catalog). You can plug the system into the wall, or spray a particular spot if that's the case, and it supposedly emits the positive pheromones that cats naturally emit. The idea is that it creates a space that cats would not want to soil, because it has a positive "scent" (you can't smell it, but somehow it relaxes the cat). My two cats do the "attack" thing, but usually the calico is "attacking" the black cat when she enters the room.
I have 4 cats, 2 exhibiting the same behavior as yours. We got them all at the same time, the oldest, a boy, who is also the largest is not the agressor. Our girl cat, 3 years younger and also large, will go up and smack him across the face every time she shes him, which is all day, everyday. He just sits there and cries. If I see her do it, I gently pop her on the nose and make her go into another room.
A few ideas that I've used with my 5 indoor cats; hope something helps!
Make sure you have plenty of litter boxes in different areas. Same with food and water. It helps if cats can avoid each other for these necessities.
When you catch one cat being aggressive, try to startle it with loud noises, coins in a coffee can, etc. A quick squirt with water in a spray bottle on the aggressor can help too.
Make several "perches" available. My oldest likes to curl up in shoeboxes, so I have several in high and low spots. I have a few 3 story kitty condos in desirable window spaces. Each has their favorite spot, but when one is displaced by another, they can find another place to hang out.
Give each kitty attention when there is no conflict. Don't reward bad behavior with your attention.
Throughly clean up accidents - I use enzyme digesters, and they really work. I had to wrap couch cushions in plastic for awhile until the smell was completely gone, but so far, so good - no more peeing.
Finally, you may just have to separate your cats. I have a feral cat I took in after she was mauled by a dog. She is extremely timid, and the other cats trapped and tormented her. So she has her own room. Kitty 5 was a young kitten abandoned by her mother, now she lives happily with the feral kitty in a spare bedroom. My friends think I am nuts, but what the heck - I use the room for storage anyway, with everything in plastic stacking bins with lids.
Please don't thump kitty in the nose, especially when she is already worked up, you may end up getting bit when she learns that hands aren't always nice. Squirt bottles only work when you are right there, they don't teach the cat not to be aggressive, just not to do it when you are there.
You don't say if all of the cats are spayed/neutered and how long they have lived together or if the problem has always existed between these two cats. The first thing to do is a trip to the vet to make sure that the oldest cat is healthy. What you see as fear of the other cat may be discomfort from any number of conditions. Cats are very good at hiding pain, and the other cat may sense that your oldest is unwell. If the cat is healthy and everyone is spayed/neutered, then you have to think if the problem has always existed. If these two cats have never gotten along, then it may be simply a personality conflict; just like people, animals don't always like everyone that they meet. If the conflict is something new, when did it start? Did the older cat go to the vet and therefore smell different when he came home? Did it start when the new kitten came home, changing the dynamic? Sometimes one event can cause a friendship to crumble. If there was a frienship, it can be rebuilt. If they have lived together a long time and never gotten along, you may need to separate them or possibly find one a new home. If they have only been together a short time, you can help them build a positive relationship.
1. Baths work well. Each cat will smell like the other and will be more worried about getting dry than the other cat. They may even move to mutual grooming.
2. A dab of canned food on top of each cat's head may distract enough to encourage mutual grooming.
3. In extreme cases, you may need to start with each cat in a different room. After a few days, switch rooms. Then a few days later, one cat roams the house while the other stays in the room. A few more days and switch again. Once the anxiety has been reduced a little in this fashion, each cats gets placed in a plastic carrier on opposite sides of the room, facing each other. Place a blanket and some of their favorite canned food in there with them and leave them for 15 to 30 minutes, then put them back in their rooms (note: this works best if you have trained your cat to enjoy the carrier and they are both hungry). Next day, move the carriers closer. Don't try to rush any of these steps, if the older cat gets anxious, move back to where he felt safe (even back to both cats in separate rooms). When the carriers can be placed face to face and touching without any fear or aggression, start again on opposite sides of the room, feeding the cats their special treats outside of the carrier. Each day, move a little closer, then put them back in their own rooms. Eventually they may eat from the same plate. This training may take months, be patient if you are committed to keeping them both and keeping them happy.
4. Plenty of play and interaction for both cats, alone and when the other is in the room. Try not to show any favoritism, but let them know they are loved.
5. Plenty of litter boxes (three cats should have at least four litter boxes) and one litter box on each level of the house. Plenty of hiding places and window perches.
Good luck. Feel free to contact me if this isn't totally clear.
Time to get out the old squirt bottle or squirt gun & squirt the agressor.Also say NO!!! very loudly when you do this . This is pretty natural behavior in the wild & is rather like the old Western Movies where the younger gunfighter shows up to challenge the old Fastest gun .
Whenever he or she attacks the other cat make sure you are always moving the cat who is being aggresive, never move the other cat if they didn't do anything wrong. And when he attacks try putting in a place he doesn't like , like a carrier and leave him in there no food or water for about an hour to 45 minutes everytime he does that, that shoudl teach him. Oh and when you let himout don't prasie him at all. IT WORKS!!
I just moved in with my in-laws they have a cat they have raised since it was first born they bottle fed it .Its a black cat. I have a Himalayan that I rescued a yr ago she is between5-7 yrs.old .I have had her to the vet she is fixed.However the black cat is not.My inlaws cat is extremely aggressive towards her the ripp each others fur out its terrible. its been three weeks and they still dont get along. what should I do?(
I live on a farm. Have had this cat with me for about 1 year then one day this strange cat came to my farm and she has stayed ever since but the strange cat is now a barn cat and the other cat is a house cat well the house cat is spayed the barn cat is not. The house cat will go up to the barn and attack the barn cat. So I will take the house cat back up to the house and she will find a way out and go up to the barn again
Can any one help?
For Barn v. House = My mother had a house cat that did that....he was old and fixed. He "ruled" the house, regardless of who lived outside. Male cats are extremely territorial, regardless of being fixed. I would do my best to keep them separated and look into Leukemia testing...they tend to catch it from other cats.
A few days ago, we got a new cat to the house hold. He's male and fixed and about 18 months old. We already have a female cat that we've had for just over a year, and have been living in this home for 8 months. So she has taken this whole house as her territory. She has stayed with my parents who also have cats for a few weeks and how she acted when she stayed there was totally different then with the new cat in the house. When she was in unfamiliar territory with strange cats, she hid alot in my Mom's bed. Though that's where the other cats would sleep. The other two cats were never hostile with her, but she always ran hissing and growling, though never attacking. She does the same when my parents bring their poodle over here when they come visit. The poodle doesn't want to attack, but is rather curious about her (because she plays with 2 cats at home all the time), and my kitty will cry and run away if she's around and hide under my bed. Now with the new cat, the moment he stepped foot in the house, she would go up to him, sniff, howl and hiss. He doesn't much care unless she gets too close with her hissing and he'll start growling and eventually chase her upstairs, under my bed. The female tends to have her safe spot in my bedroom while the male cat has seem to have taken over the living room. The living area is where the cat food and water is and there is one litter box in the basement. When the female cat comes into the room, he will follow her and try to get close to her until she gets too angry and runs away (or we seperate them). I will look into getting the Feliway that many people have mentioned, but seperating them isn't easy. The bathrooms are small and all the other spare rooms are bedrooms (people sleep in them) so it's hard to find a sanitary spot for another litter box. I can easily bring another dish of food and water into my bedroom for the female cat though. Is there any more tips that people can share? I just find it so much easier to train them when they are kittens, but these two are both the same age.
I have two cats: a female about 7, & a 3 year male. Taffy is very aggressive but she finally accepted Coco after a few weeks.. He was about 7 weeks when we got him. Now, Taffy is starting to attack Coco for no reason at all!! Just started to chase him around the house, & spit & snarl.. I thought she was going to kill him!! We separated them but my husband is fed up with the situation & says he's gonna throw Taffy out in the cold if she can't behave... what do I do? Poor Coco is afraid to move. He's in my computer room right now, & Taffy is under our bed, but she comes up to the door & lets out sounds like she is possessed... I don't know what set her off. I don't want to lose either one of my babies, especially to injury or death...
I have two cats. A male 1 1/2 and a female 3 1/2. they don't physically fight - they seem like they just play, but they never groom each other, they never lie near each other. Whenever I play with the male, the female will come from whatever room she's in - and he always runs away. I spend as a result more time with her. He was my first cat. He was about 8 months when I got her and she was about 2. Is there anyway to make them get along better? They are spade and neutered and both healthy. They are rarely by themselves as I work from home. I would like to be able to play with the two of them together without feeling that I am neglecting the one. Can you please help?
Sabrina from Vancouver, BC
Sabrina, that could have been almost my own story, so similar was my experience. I think you have to accept that for some cats 'tolerating' is the best they can do. I had for one year, a very fiesty grey female cat.. then came along a lovely ginger male (a stray) now they've both have been here with me for six years. She has never bonded with him. She doesn't hiss or attack him, but they never groom each other, sleep together, or so on. they just travel their own paths. Although I would like to see them cuddled up together, it's not going to happen and it's their choice.
I have six cats. My solution to any problem with cats is the same, because it always works: Grooming, grooming, and more grooming. Have combs and brushes in every room, that you can reach for. This is such immense pleasure for the cats that it overcomes any other desires. It is SO healthy and bonding for them. My solution is grooming as much as you can and more. Let others who are in your household do the same. The cats will be much happier and healthier.
Another thought: Since we are a 6-cat household, and they span different ages/sexes, we have had to put in another litter box. Cats don't have the same preferences for litter, and a crabby constipated cat won't get along as easily with others as a "regular" cat.
I have two neutered male cats who have been living together in my house for over 3 years. Before the second one moved in, it belonged to my neighbor, so they cats have 'known' each other for several years, but have only been house-mates for 3 years. They have never gotten along...my big male has always picked on the younger one, even when the younger one lived at my neighbor's house. It has been a slow process, but they are now able to be in the same room without the big one whipping the young one's a**. The thing that seemed to work best with mine was to feed them in the same room..that way, they identify meal time with being around each other. They have tangled several times in the last 3 years, but it's gotten so much better. I have also tried to admonish the big cat when he starts his 'death stalk' toward the little one. Good luck. Sometimes they just do not get along with each other....like people, I guess.
Joanie, a 6 month old kitten, has been ours since she was 4 weeks old. She's constantly attacking and bullying our old sickly cat Sammy. We have to either supervise them if they are in a room together or separate them. Joanie has lots of toys & gets lots of attention. We have 3 fountains and several food stations. She won't leave him alone. Any suggestions?
I have 3 cats; the oldest is 5 yrs old. I took in 2 kittens now about 2 yrs old. The last two are brothers, my 5 year old only likes one of them. He tries to hit the other and hisses at him. I feel bad because he really wants to play with the other two, but the older cat scares him by hissing and hitting him. I don't know what to do or try to get them all to get along.
I am fostering two little 12 week old kittens (both female). They are fixed and vetted. They both hiss and growl at my adult female only, but not the 3 males I have. What can I do to help them out?
So I will have had Lyra for two years on June 2015 and since the house is empty because I work a lot and so does my husband and the kids are usually busy I thought it would be a good idea to get another kitty. We did get one in November and now it's almost January and the two don't get along at all.
It's so bad that Giselle (the new one) must be isolated in my room because every time she sees Lyra she full on attacks her or chases her into somewhere she can't get.
Lyra is a loner and doesn't like affection, but will be held for long periods of time and sleeps with me. She also gets along great with dogs quite instantly. Giselle loves affection, she follows anyone anywhere and rubs you until you pet her. They are complete opposites and they are both around the same age. Giselle is only a few months older but drastically bigger maybe even double Lyra's size.
Lyra never starts the fights, but will hold her ground and I just don't know what to do. I don't want to get rid of Giselle, but Lyra is scared out of her mind. I've done all that I've read, the litter box is in my room as well as the food which is always full. I've tried getting them accustom to each other's scent. The only problem is that Lyra has been sleeping in my room since she was 7 weeks old, but I have no other place to put her because when we first got her all she did was hiss so the kids don't want to house her in their room. Please help.
I've tried putting a bell on her so Lyra can hear it and I've tried putting a harness of Giselle so that if she goes after Lyra we can hold her back, but when we put it on she won't move anywhere or she will army crawl a very short distance and after a while jump very high in the air twisting and turning like a fish out of water. Whenever they fight Lyra pees a lot and it makes a huge mess. If this keeps up my only choice will be to give up Giselle.
By Ashley T
I moved to my brothers, where he had 2 female cats. One was fixed and the other not. The cat that was not fixed had 3 kittens. He kept them all. So one of them I kept as my own. The 3 kittens and the mama cat and the other were all together. We all ended up having to move. My kitten is now 7 months old. His name is Sable. Sable of course came with me to live. We have been in our home for about a week. I ended up going back to get the cat who was not fixed. Her name is Peaches. Keep in mind Peaches and Sable have lived together before. But when I brought Peaches home, Sable seems to act like he is mad. Why is that?
By CN from GA
I have three cats, a seven year old tabby mix, she is very very timid and not too friendly, even to some humans. And the other two are at least one year old; one is a black mix and the other a long hair butterscotch. Anyway, we got the two kittens to get along, but Tiger, the timid one is fighting, hissing, and growling. Our black cat attacked her at first and the other one was passive aggression towards her. They started trying to be friends with Tiger, but Tiger stopped trying to be friendly.
Now I'm thinking of either getting rid of the black cat and the other light tabby. Please respond! We have to keep the two in a room, and it's hard.
By Melody T. from Fiji
I have a 15 week old kitten (male) it took him awhile to like us as he was a stray, but I have had him for 5 days. In that time something had come up where I ended up fostering a 8 year old female cat named Cleo. She also has no eyes on both sides. It has been a few hours, but I'm not sure if they will ever get along. They are both hissing at each other and had one or two little scraps. Help.
I have two cats in my house, an 8 month old kitten (not neutered yet, going next week) and a 2 year old cat (spayed). Recently I saved a pregnant cat, 4 years old, from a really bad situation. I brought her home and it seemed like they all got along and then out of nowhere the pregnant cat started humming at the others and they didn't like that too much and now I can't get them to get along.
The 2 year old cat decided she will only intervene if things start getting too heated between the other two, but the second the pregnant cat sees the kitten she instantly starts humming and then the kitten tests his luck by inching closer to her and starting to cry out.
Right now I have them separated by room, but I hate that I can't let my 2 cats roam around my bedroom like they are used to. I have tried the putting the new one in the crate and letting them sniff and see each other but to no avail. I don't want to give the pregnant cat to the humane society because she has a few weeks left before giving birth and they will spay her. Please help me out! I love all my furry little ones and couldn't bear to part with any of them. I am currently trying out the Feliway Diffuser and it only seems to be working on my 2 year old cat. Please please help!
Introducing a new cat into your home can be more complicated than you might think. Proper steps in the process generally result in a positive outcome. This is a guide about solutions for when your resident cat is aggressive toward a new cat.
After a trip to the vet for surgery your cats may have to be reintroduced to each other. They have returned home carrying different smells and may also be off because of the procedure itself. This is a guide about cats not getting along after being spayed.
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
Any advice on helping two cats get along would be appreciated. We got married and both came with cats. I moved into his house. His cat is part Siamese female; my cat is a curly-tailed cream tabby with La Perm on her tummy. His cat is sleek and puma like, and laid back, she's 16. My cat is frisky, 7-years-old, high spirited. His cat is pretty much terrorizing my cat, and keeping her outside quite a lot. His cat is basically ruling the roost.
Cubangirl from Seattle, WA
When I bring a new cat home when there is already one (or 2) here, I keep the new one in the pet taxi during the day so they can check each other out safely. The new cats litter box and food, etc. are in the bathroom for awhile and the cat is safe locked in there at night so it can run around some. It doesn't usually take long. (I now have 3... 2 males and a young female and they are great together.) (06/30/2007)
We got a second cat and our first is not too keen on her yet, but it is coming along quite a bit. First, never leave them alone. If the first cat gets aggressive, we scruff his neck like his mother would do (not to hurt him, just to have him recall his mother's displeasure) and tell him "NO!". A big plus that we have found is to pet them at the same time and make sure that they have plenty of good things happening when both of them are together so that they associate good things with the new cat. Your first cat (and ours) is basically having his territory invaded and once he realizes that he is not really being threatened, he should calm down. Also, if they are both spayed, this can cut down on aggressiveness, I believe.
Best wishes! (06/30/2007)
They might get along eventually, but it's harder to get two females to get along than two males. This is where we get the expression "she's being catty" from. (07/02/2007)
Hello! I agree with the spaying comment; if they aren't spayed already, it can definitely cut down on aggression.
I don't read aggression in the 7 year old from your description though... just high spirits and desire to play.
You might (I know, of all things!) get another, younger cat or kitten to distract the younger one. I would recommend a young neutered male. A male would transition the most smoothly with both females. Then the younger cat would have someone who is equally interested in high jinks.
Another thing that I noticed when I moved with my large feline brood was that in the new house, the territory was new, and no one cat felt it was his/ hers. You could also try moving into a new house together.
I just reread your post and realized it is the older one ruling over the younger one. My second suggestion would still apply though!
My daughter taught me this when one of two cats got left out all night. Lots of hissing and growling happened when he came back inside. Take a small hand towel and rub over the more aggressive one's fur and then wipe it on the less dominate one. It works for us! Try it more then once if its not working at first. Can use their hairbrush also. They need that scent to relax. (07/02/2007)
By Momma 2
It sometimes takes a while but they will learn to co-exist. They may never really like each other and one will be the top cat but they will find their distances from each other and learn to coexist. When one is terrorizing the other, put her in a room by herself so the other one can feel at ease for a while. Keep telling them to be nice and hiss at the terrorizer, letting her know that you are the boss. It works with my cats. I agree with petting them at the same time and comingling their scents and taking them by the scruff of the neck so they know that you are the Mom.
Just a thought - how about introducing a cat carpet play tower - it would be brand new and neither cat would own it. (07/02/2007)
Cats are very territorial creatures, when the new cat comes in the house put her in a cat carrier so the 2 can sniff each other and get use to each other do this for about a week and then let the new cat out and hopefully they will get along.. also introduce something new for the cats that neither one had before. Siamese cats are really hard to live with and they are a one person and one home cat.. I hope you will have luck with the 2... Try feeding them together at the same time different bowls..
Good Luck... (07/02/2007)
All I can say is Good Luck. Our female Tabby cat was 4 years old, when we got a all white male kitten only a few weeks old. We kept the kitten in the carrier for several months, unless we were with it, as the female cat would not accept him at all. They are now 9 years old and 5 years old and the female cat will still hiss at him. He can hold his own with her and they do not fight, but do not like each other. We tried all the suggestions that were written in the other messages and none would work. They even have different litter boxes and food dishes.
Pat in GA (07/02/2007)
Cats are like people they have personalities. Some folk they like and some they would just as easily wish to shoot, LOL. I have three Siamese inside and I can tell you they are loud and sometimes difficult with new cats who come through since we do cat rescue. I believe keeping one (new kitty) crated in a large crate for a week or so works best. That way they can touch noses- size up the competition and adjust - if they are ever going to. 99 times out of a 100 they will make up. Best wishes. (07/03/2007)
By James S. Bow
To integrate new cats into our home we used baby powder. Yes, baby powder to be sure all the cats smelled the same. It really did help. When they become fiesty we sprinkle them with the baby powder again. Your cats will become friends, eventually. Give the baby powder a go - it could work for you! (07/09/2007)
MY WORD!! I never thought of it in million years! A baby powder?! Using same brush from one cat to another? Huh! That's definitely make sense! I'll try mine. I just got a new nine weeks old female kitten home from the shelter and I already have two six months old female kittens. One of six months old kitten was trying to attack nine weeks old kitten but I caught her in time and she bit me and scratched me but stills I didn't let her go because that nine weeks old kitten is tiny compare to six months old kitten's size! Good grief! (i)(/i) (07/28/2007)
By Three kittens
We had kitty intervention and it went well. The Siamese was relaxed but the new cat, the Cream Tabby, was tense and growling. It helped though. Now Cream Tabby actually eats in front of Siamese - a breakthrough. After three days of having them in the same room (albeit for only a few minutes each time), without them fussing, we ignored them for a minute this morning and there was a cat fight. My husband broke it up, admonished Siamese, and put her outside. Cream Tabby wants to get out but I won't let her, I think she should go to sleep in here... she was outside all night... We want her to get used to it here. I won't let Siamese in for the rest of the morning.
These cats are driving me nuts... (07/29/2007)
I wouldn't advise using baby powder because the cats will have to lick it off eventually. You might get upset at the problematic cat, but you don't want to feed it a potentially toxic substance. (08/01/2007)