View Full Version : Problem introducing new cat to existing cat

John Knez
January 29th 06, 01:22 PM
Our household has two current cats. Both female. One is an eleven year
old spayed female. The other is a year and a half old unspayed female.
The older cat has lived in our house since it was a young kitten, just
after being weaned. The younger cat was introduced to the house about a
year ago. While it was a little rough at first, the older cat eventually
learned to tolerate the younger cat. The young cat frequently annoys
the older cat by trying to physically engage it, but the older cat isn't
interested in playing.

I'm now trying to introduce a spayed female of undetermined age (not a
kitten, but not real old either) to the two existing cats. The new cat
is quite playful, and I think it will hit it off nicely with the younger
cat, once they get used to each other.

The new cat has lived a separate room for several weeks. It's been seen
by a vet and given a clean bill of health. Every once in a while, while
the two other cats are elsewhere in the house, I've let the new cat go
into other rooms. After several weeks of this I tried introducing the
cats physically to one another. This did not go well. And no meeting
since has gone well. Basically, the new cat and the older female want
to kill each other. It's not like one or the other is the aggressor,
they both are. Plus, if the older cat thinks the new cat has been in a
room, it will not use it's litter box, choosing instead to use someplace
in the room where the new cat has been.

Any suggestions on how to get the new cat and the older cat to be more
accepting of one another?


January 29th 06, 11:55 PM
First and foremost, give your previous cats lots and lots of love, they
might become a little insecure.

Here are some strategies I have used - I have many cats..

1. Sometimes canned food (which is a treat at my house) and not an
everyday thing, is a "peace-maker" Sometimes (not always) but
sometimes cats who dislike eachother will tolerate eachother and eat
treats together... they suddenly become focused on the food and not
eachother and begin to tolerate eachother's presense.

To be safe I would put the canned food in separate dishes but perhaps
in the same room so cats can start learning how to be around eachother.
This is a good trick because cats will not be focused on each-other
but will be focused on the treat!

2. Get a water-squirt bottle to humanely break up any fights that

3. Get a few more litter boxes and understand that if you DO not do
this you will risk having cats go all over the house. Give all cats
LOTS of choices.

4. Another way of getting cats near eachother is to get them playing -
again - the focus is on the toy and not eachother..

I would suggest getting a feather toy, lots of cat nip, and maybe
several new toys.....when cats are in the same room - get all the cat
intrigued by playing with them with the new toy. Cat nip around the
house would not hurt.

5. Feliway is a spray that is suggested to put out "good" kitty
smells. Expensive but apparently is good.

6. Consult your vet first, but you might consider the alternative
medicine "Rescue remedy" to help your older kitty adjust.

I think it is great that you are offering your home to another cat and
that you are contemplating how to make the transition a good one. Be
patient this will take some time, especially for your older kitty. By
all means, do not leave the kitties unattended (continue to separate
them) when you are not home.

7. Consider getting some lavender oil aromatherapy to soften the mood
in your home - no doubt kitties are producing lots of "scents" and the
new cat has a new smell which may be intimidating - flood the home with
a new smell such as lavender.
and perhaps treats such as canned food.

Last but not Least - if it doesn't work - closed doors are a good thing
- and all cats live safely and peacefully.
Good luck - hopefully other readers will give you ideas as well.

January 30th 06, 05:26 PM
JJ wrote:
> 7. Consider getting some lavender oil aromatherapy to soften the mood
> in your home - no doubt kitties are producing lots of "scents" and the
> new cat has a new smell which may be intimidating - flood the home with
> a new smell such as lavender.
> and perhaps treats such as canned food.

Some really good advice, JJ, but I did want to comment on this
particularly. Caution really needs to be used if considering
aromatherapy for cats.
Here's a site that goes into quite a bit of detail:


"Generally, essential oils consist of hydrocarbons or monofunctional
compounds from mono-and sesqui-terpenes, together phenylpropanoids and
other volatile aliphatic and aromatic substances."

"Many terpenoids are rapidly absorbed orally and dermally by the cat's
system and are metabolized in the liver. Due to their volatile nature,
inhalation of essential oil components is also possible, and these
enter the bloodstream via the lungs, also to be metabolized in the
liver. The terpenoids and their metabolites are often conjugated with
glucuronic acid (glucuronidation) and glycine depending on the type of
terpenoid and animal species involved. The conjugated metabolites are
usually more water-soluble and are easily excreted through the kidney
and feces."

"Cats are known to be deficient in their ability to eliminate compounds
through hepatic glucuronidation (they lack enzyme glucuronyl
tranferases). Glucuronidation is an important detoxification mechanism
present in most animals except cats. Lack of this important
detoxification mechanism in cats may result in slower elimination and
thus build up of the toxic metabolites in the body causing toxicity

We have an herbal calmative that we got through our vet that works well
for stress in cats (better than Rescue Remedy in my experience). When
I get home from work later, I can look at the bottle to see the name of