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August 10th 07, 12:12 AM
hi, i'm new here, with a question i have already searched all over the
web about with no luck!

we brought lucy (female, dsh, 8 yrs old) home 1 1/2 yrs ago, and we
love her to bits, but we worry she gets lonely! and anyway, we want
to save another cat from the shelter. so, we're thinking about number
2!

the problem: how to introduce the cats to each other in a 1br condo.
all the advice i've seen says to give the new cat its own room for a
while, maybe even weeks or months, while the cats get used to each
other's scent and get to know each in supervised encounters. but i
don't know how to do that here. our front room (living/kitchen area)
is pretty good size, but it's all one big room, no way to partition
it. the bedroom is tiny, and the only other room with a door is the
bathroom. lucy is used to having the run of the place. she spends
most of her time in the front room, but she always sleeps in the
bedroom with us (it's like the highlight of her day), and under the
bed is her "safe place." i'm pretty sure she would hate being
confined in the bedroom all the time, but she wouldn't like being
kicked out of it, either, especially when we were in there. whenever
one of us goes in one room and shut her out, she sits outside and
yowls, even the bathroom sometimes! i think she has abandonment
issues or something, but i guess that's not a surprise after being
dumped at a shelter when she was six years old!

so anyway, if we give the new cat either the front room or the
bedroom, i feel bad for doing that to lucy! she'll know the other cat
has taken over her territory (and her people!), and she'll be
miserable and probably take it out on the other cat when she gets the
chance. (she seems like she's pretty friendly to other cats in
general, but a real meanie if they happen to offend her!) also, i
worry her hollering from the other side of the door all the time would
make the new cat extra-nervous! it might be better if we sleep in the
living room with lucy while the new cat takes over the bedroom, but
probably not so good for my back... also, i think lucy would be okay
if we put the new cat in the bathroom, but that would be pretty bad
for the new cat. barely any space, and what cat ever wants to be
trapped right next to a running shower?!

my question is, from these options, what should we do? pick one room
and find a way to deal with lucy being upset? is there some way to
introduce the cats without separate rooms? or is the new cat just a
bad idea? unfortunately, getting a bigger house is impossible! the
guy i asked at the shelter said he didn't really know, and that it was
better to adopt two cats who already know each other, but it's too
late for that, and anyway, i have no regrets about adopting lucy even
if she didn't come as a package deal!

thx,
jody

Rene S.
August 10th 07, 02:18 PM
> the problem: how to introduce the cats to each other in a 1br condo.
> all the advice i've seen says to give the new cat its own room for a
> while, maybe even weeks or months, while the cats get used to each
> other's scent and get to know each in supervised encounters. but i
> don't know how to do that here. our front room (living/kitchen area)
> is pretty good size, but it's all one big room, no way to partition
> it. the bedroom is tiny, and the only other room with a door is the
> bathroom. lucy is used to having the run of the place. she spends
> most of her time in the front room, but she always sleeps in the
> bedroom with us (it's like the highlight of her day), and under the
> bed is her "safe place." i'm pretty sure she would hate being
> confined in the bedroom all the time, but she wouldn't like being
> kicked out of it, either, especially when we were in there. whenever
> one of us goes in one room and shut her out, she sits outside and
> yowls, even the bathroom sometimes! i think she has abandonment
> issues or something, but i guess that's not a surprise after being
> dumped at a shelter when she was six years old!

Yes, you can add a second cat, even with a smaller condo. First, when
going to the shelter, make sure to describe Lucy's personality so they
can make a good match. For example, if she's territorial, they can
match you with an easy-going cat. Is she playful? A playful cat would
be good for her then.

When introducing cats, it's always good to rotate them so the cats can
smell (but not see) each other. In your case, the newcomer could stay
in your bedroom during the day and Lucy could be in the bedroom at
night, leaving the newcomer to quietly explore the rest of the place.

Make sure you add 1-2 litter boxes and have a nice cat tree, so there
aren't any tiffs about space/elimination. Play with the cats under the
door so they can paw each other. The important thing is to go slowly
and don't rush to get them together.

Good luck!! You'll love having two cats!

Cheryl
August 11th 07, 01:50 AM
On Thu 09 Aug 2007 07:12:58p, wrote in rec.pets.cats.health+behav
ups.com>:

> my question is, from these options, what should we do? pick one
> room and find a way to deal with lucy being upset? is there
> some way to introduce the cats without separate rooms?

I've introduced cats both ways - separating and just letting them
work it out. Had good results both ways. I think the key is giving
them plenty of space, and that doesn't always mean horizontal
space. Vertical space is just as important for cats. You said you
have a cat tree - how high is it, and is it possible to add another
one that doesn't have Lucy's scent already on it? Can you add some
empty shelves on the wall for climbing? I know that sounds stupid,
but cats love to climb along the walls. Do you have windows with a
comfy spot for looking out? If so, is there room for two so that
they don't have to compete over the best spot? Two spots at the
same lookout is ideal.

Good luck and I hope you can make it work. Adopting adults is so
cool, for them and for you.

--
Cheryl