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Faith Ernest
June 25th 07, 11:17 PM
My roommate has two cats. She adopted what turned out to be a
pregnant stray who gave birth to 5 kittens about 4 weeks ago.

Up until birth the stray and the home cats seemed to tolerate each
other. Now, the stray stalks and constantly attacks one of the
resident cats. This has extended beyond territory. She has bitten the
other cat's tail and we're hoping no abscess results. Resident cat
taken to vet, now on meds to heal tail.

Anyone know what causes this and what we can do to work around or
prevent the fights? To the point where the resident cat will spend
all day outdoors, hiding when indoors, just to avoid the new adopted
cat who has become a stalking predator. And the fact the resident cat
constantly flees seems to make matters worse.

My roommate now considering giving up new kitty but keeping her
kittens. Anyone have suggestions?

Thanks.

Faith

June 26th 07, 12:17 AM
On Jun 25, 6:17 pm, Faith Ernest > wrote:
> My roommate has two cats. She adopted what turned out to be a
> pregnant stray who gave birth to 5 kittens about 4 weeks ago.
>
> Up until birth the stray and the home cats seemed to tolerate each
> other. Now, the stray stalks and constantly attacks one of the
> resident cats. This has extended beyond territory. She has bitten the
> other cat's tail and we're hoping no abscess results. Resident cat
> taken to vet, now on meds to heal tail.
>
> Anyone know what causes this and what we can do to work around or
> prevent the fights? To the point where the resident cat will spend
> all day outdoors, hiding when indoors, just to avoid the new adopted
> cat who has become a stalking predator. And the fact the resident cat
> constantly flees seems to make matters worse.
>
> My roommate now considering giving up new kitty but keeping her
> kittens. Anyone have suggestions?
>
> Thanks.
>
> Faith

Get a spray bottle and start spraying the new kitty each time she
makes an advance or any negative action toward the other cat. i have
taken in quite a few cats since I am a foster parent for them. Also,
if the cat you have is a male, she may be afraid that he will kill the
other male kittens as they sometimes do. Be patient and see if the
behavior goes away as it may be a bad time of adjustment for her
having moved into a new home, having another cat to deal with and now
babies. All that can make her cranky. Five babies alone can make her
very tired indeed.

cindys
June 26th 07, 01:18 AM
"Faith Ernest" > wrote in message
ups.com...
> My roommate has two cats. She adopted what turned out to be a
> pregnant stray who gave birth to 5 kittens about 4 weeks ago.
>
> Up until birth the stray and the home cats seemed to tolerate each
> other. Now, the stray stalks and constantly attacks one of the
> resident cats. This has extended beyond territory. She has bitten the
> other cat's tail and we're hoping no abscess results. Resident cat
> taken to vet, now on meds to heal tail.
>
> Anyone know what causes this and what we can do to work around or
> prevent the fights? To the point where the resident cat will spend
> all day outdoors, hiding when indoors, just to avoid the new adopted
> cat who has become a stalking predator. And the fact the resident cat
> constantly flees seems to make matters worse.
>
> My roommate now considering giving up new kitty but keeping her
> kittens. Anyone have suggestions?
--------------
I just wanted to comment on this last part because I don't think I can offer
useful advice for the first part (other than to say that the mother cat may
be afraid that the resident cat will attack or kill her kittens).

Your roommate is thinking of keeping five kittens? Is she prepared for the
expense of a lifetime commitment to six cats? (The five kittens plus the
resident cat). Has she calculated the expense of vaccinating and
spaying/neutering five cats all at the same time? Do you have room in your
apartment/home for seven litterboxes (which is the number you will require
for for six cats). Does your roommate anticipate being able to afford the
medical care which will be required by six cats who are all getting old at
the same time? I have five cats, two of them seniors, one of whom has a
major medical problem at the moment, and it's a darned good thing it's only
one, as the medical care is costing me a fortune, averaging out to probably
$100 every month (just for the one cat) between the blood work, checkups,
subcutaneous fluids, potassium supplement, omega-3 supplement, Pepcid,
aspirin, and soon he will require a phosphorous binder, not to mention the
cost of the food and cat litter and puppy training pads (in the past year,
he has refused to urinate in his litter box but is willing to use the puppy
training pads - I go through five or six per day). My six-year-old kitty
needs a dental badly, which she will be having next month. The vet tells me
that her tooth are in bad shape, and I'm anticipating a bill for several
hundred dollars for her. This is not to mention the cost of routine health
care for five cats. If your roommate is anticipating keeping five new cats,
I just hope there is enough room in your house for six grown cats, and your
roommate has enough money to take care of them properly for 15 to 20 years.
If not, it would much more responsible for her to contact a rescue agency
(once the kittens are weaned) and try to have other people adopt them while
they are still young and easily adoptable. It will be much harder to find
adoptive homes for these cats once they are six months or a year or two
years old, if your roommate discovers she bit off a lot more than she could
chew.
I'm not saying this to be mean, just realistic, based on experience.
Best regards,
---Cindy S.

sheelagh
June 26th 07, 01:52 PM
On 26 Jun, 01:18, "cindys" > wrote:
> "Faith Ernest" > wrote in message
>
> ups.com...
>
>
>
> > My roommate has two cats. She adopted what turned out to be a
> > pregnant stray who gave birth to 5 kittens about 4 weeks ago.
>
> > Up until birth the stray and the home cats seemed to tolerate each
> > other. Now, the stray stalks and constantly attacks one of the
> > resident cats. This has extended beyond territory. She has bitten the
> > other cat's tail and we're hoping no abscess results. Resident cat
> > taken to vet, now on meds to heal tail.
>
> > Anyone know what causes this and what we can do to work around or
> > prevent the fights? To the point where the resident cat will spend
> > all day outdoors, hiding when indoors, just to avoid the new adopted
> > cat who has become a stalking predator. And the fact the resident cat
> > constantly flees seems to make matters worse.
>
> > My roommate now considering giving up new kitty but keeping her
> > kittens. Anyone have suggestions?
>
> --------------
> I just wanted to comment on this last part because I don't think I can offer
> useful advice for the first part (other than to say that the mother cat may
> be afraid that the resident cat will attack or kill her kittens).
>
> Your roommate is thinking of keeping five kittens? Is she prepared for the
> expense of a lifetime commitment to six cats? (The five kittens plus the
> resident cat). Has she calculated the expense of vaccinating and
> spaying/neutering five cats all at the same time? Do you have room in your
> apartment/home for seven litterboxes (which is the number you will require
> for for six cats). Does your roommate anticipate being able to afford the
> medical care which will be required by six cats who are all getting old at
> the same time? I have five cats, two of them seniors, one of whom has a
> major medical problem at the moment, and it's a darned good thing it's only
> one, as the medical care is costing me a fortune, averaging out to probably
> $100 every month (just for the one cat) between the blood work, checkups,
> subcutaneous fluids, potassium supplement, omega-3 supplement, Pepcid,
> aspirin, and soon he will require a phosphorous binder, not to mention the
> cost of the food and cat litter and puppy training pads (in the past year,
> he has refused to urinate in his litter box but is willing to use the puppy
> training pads - I go through five or six per day). My six-year-old kitty
> needs a dental badly, which she will be having next month. The vet tells me
> that her tooth are in bad shape, and I'm anticipating a bill for several
> hundred dollars for her. This is not to mention the cost of routine health
> care for five cats. If your roommate is anticipating keeping five new cats,
> I just hope there is enough room in your house for six grown cats, and your
> roommate has enough money to take care of them properly for 15 to 20 years.
> If not, it would much more responsible for her to contact a rescue agency
> (once the kittens are weaned) and try to have other people adopt them while
> they are still young and easily adoptable. It will be much harder to find
> adoptive homes for these cats once they are six months or a year or two
> years old, if your roommate discovers she bit off a lot more than she could
> chew.
> I'm not saying this to be mean, just realistic, based on experience.
> Best regards,
> ---Cindy S.- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -

I agree with you Cindy. The first part is the new Queen's fear that
the resident cat will attack her kittens. Water was a good idea, also
try a jar of marbles too...

One other thing that you might want to try, is a Feliway diffuser. It
is a synthetic calmer that mimics the feeling & emotion that a cat
emits when it is feeling at peace. Sometimes this can do the trick, &
might work in the case of mummy & kittens...

5 kittens is an enormous commitment!
I would advise keeping a couple by all means, but 5...?!!

That is a huge financial commitment, emotional roller coaster, & what
if the resident cat is now so afraid of the kittens that He/she
doesn't bond with them either. Then you really are up to your knees in
quick-sand....

What or where will she take the mother cat too if she chooses not to
keep her by the way?

Ask your room mate to @ least, take her to a no kill shelter, Please?
I hope that your room mate considers these issues quite carefully
before coming to a decision that will be a life changing one, as most
cats live to around 15 years.
If you multiply that by 5, that is a BIG Commitment!!!

Please don't think I am being pessimistic or trying to pour cold water
on a fire, because that is not my intention @ all!! I am asking him/
her to think about everything involved, rather than making one of
those on the spur of the moment decisions for the wrong reasons with
the best of intentions...
Good Luck though
Sheelagh

paws2 via CatKB.com
June 26th 07, 08:47 PM
Faith Ernest wrote:
>My roommate has two cats. She adopted what turned out to be a
>pregnant stray who gave birth to 5 kittens about 4 weeks ago.
>
>Up until birth the stray and the home cats seemed to tolerate each
>other. Now, the stray stalks and constantly attacks one of the
>resident cats. This has extended beyond territory.

Hi,

The stray's behaviour is merely the instinctive and protective behaviour of a
mother cat. Since she is a stray, you don't know what she has had to deal
with outdoors. If the resident cat is male and if unneutered, it escalates
her protectiveness and feeling threatened that much more. Regardless of
gender and status of the resident cat, what she needs now is peace and quiet
to nurse and rear her young, not stress. The resident cat also needs her/his
space and needs to feel that s/he has not lost his or her territory. I would
separate the mom with kittens to one area of your home ensuring that neither
cat gets into each other's "territory". The best would be to dedicate a room
for mom and kittens or separate an area for her and kittens with one or two
baby gates. Both cats need to "know" that they have their own safe
territories without fear of intrusion from the other cat. I would also get
some Feliway diffusers and spray to help create a calmer environment. Please
*do not* use a water spray on the mother cat or shake a can with pebbles or
coins. This results in fear and stress without doing anything positive. She
has no idea what she is doing wrong - she is protecting her young and her
human guardians should be as supportive as she needs you to be. Equally, the
resident kitty needs to be reassured so that s/he feels as comfortable again
in her own home as s/he was before the disruption/intrusion of the new
arrival and birth.

> She has bitten the
>other cat's tail and we're hoping no abscess results. Resident cat
>taken to vet, now on meds to heal tail.

I hope all goes well with this. Keep an eye on it to make sure there is no
infection.

>Anyone know what causes this and what we can do to work around or
>prevent the fights? To the point where the resident cat will spend
>all day outdoors, hiding when indoors, just to avoid the new adopted
>cat who has become a stalking predator. And the fact the resident cat
>constantly flees seems to make matters worse.

See above re protective behaviour. The repeated fleeing of the resident cat
merely reinforces her territorial instincts. Hence, the need to separate them
to bring calmness back into everyone's lives. You will need to do very slow
and careful re-introductions between the two cats as if they had never met,
but not until after the kittens have been weaned. Should you/your roommate
decide not to keep the mom and/or kittens, please do keep her with the
kittens for 10 to 12 weeks. The kittens will be far better socialized if they
have the longer bond with mom and litter mates.

Please do not heed the suggestion to take mom to a no-kill shelter. The last
thing she needs is to get back into a stressful environment and wait for re-
adoption. Wait until the kittens are weaned, well socialized, and independent,
then do slow and careful re-introductions and only then make the best
decisions for all concerned. Right now, the focus should be on the cats and
their various needs. A calm environment will do wonders and is easily
feasible. Since your roommate is considering keeping the kittens, I am
assuming you have the space. But even with a smallish space, separating is
possible - it just takes some creativity.

>My roommate now considering giving up new kitty but keeping her
>kittens. Anyone have suggestions?

See above. Once you have separated both cats and they become confident that
they have their own territories, things will calm down.

Good luck and keep us posted.

>Thanks.
>
>Faith

--
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