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Cat hissing when picked up in front of other cat?

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by sfulwell, Apr 9, 2020.

  1. sfulwell

    sfulwell PetForums Newbie

    Sep 13, 2019
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    I have two cats I adopted together last year, Smudge and Willow (attaches pics for cute references). Smudge is the shorter-haired, outgoing male and Willow is my timid floof. They rough house a bit and play fight a lot, but sleep on the same bed, groom each other etc. So never really had any concerns about their behaviour.

    Recently though, Smudge has started hissing if I pick him up and Willow comes into the room? For context, he LOVES being picked up and cuddled to the point where he’ll claw at my leg until I pick him up, but he literally flipped like a switch when Willow walked in - started spitting, hissing and continued as he ran away.

    Should I be concerned? Or is this relatively normal with dominance, males etc? Any advice is welcome!

    P.S They’re both indoor-outdoor, eat separately in different rooms and have a litter tray each.

    49CC95D2-2821-4B6F-886D-0B64F37EBE60.jpeg 56EFDF30-EFBA-4C4D-8FAC-4159150C56F1.jpeg
    chillminx, cheekyscrip and Summercat like this.
  2. roseanna scott

    roseanna scott PetForums Junior

    Jun 21, 2018
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    Sweet cats. I don't know for sure but if it helps my cats get along together just but I wouldn't day they were friends. One of mine really hisses and gets upset if I pick her up in front of the others. It feels like she doesnt like it because shes restricted and cant run or stand up for herself if she needs to
    chillminx likes this.
  3. Silverdoof

    Silverdoof PetForums Member

    Jan 23, 2014
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    Its difficult to say without seeing whats going on. Are they both dtill kittens around a year old? If so they are now in their teens. are tbey spayed/neutered?

    Both gorgeous.
  4. Summercat

    Summercat PetForums VIP

    Oct 8, 2017
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    Lovely looking cats.

    I am not sure as never saw that before, maybe @roseanna scott is along the right track.
    As @Silverdoof said, are they sterilized?

    @chillminx is good with cat behavior, maybe she can chime in.
  5. cheekyscrip

    cheekyscrip Pitchfork blaster

    Feb 8, 2010
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    Just to say they are gorgeous!
  6. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

    Nov 22, 2010
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    @sfulwell - your cats are gorgeous! xx

    Roseanna Scott has the answer to Smudge's behaviour :) Some cats simply do not like to be restricted by being held by a human if there is another cat in the room. It makes them feel they are not in control of their fate. And we all know how most cats love to be in control of what happens to them, it is part of their appealing character. :)

    I would try and limit picking Smudge up to times when Willow is asleep in another room. Or if you are holding him and Willow comes in, immediately place Smudge on a surface, such as a cat tree or table, not on the floor.

    So although Smudge is outgoing, he is evidently not as confident as he appears, when it comes to other cats, and this includes his housemate pal Willow. It may be that the roughhousing and playfighting is becoming a bit too intense at times. Once cats are past kittenhood, a bit of playfighting is fine but constant playfighting can sometimes tip over into being too rough and then misunderstandings happen, feelings get hurt and wariness develops.

    As kittens my 2 girls (sisters) used to play-fight a lot with evident mutual enjoyment. But once they became adults the less assertive sister ceased to find it fun and became annoyed with her sister if she tried to play with her. She hisses at her more assertive sister if she gets too close. However as long as the more assertive sister observes proper cat etiquette the girls are fine together.

    It may be an idea if the playfighting is getting quite rough to step in and distract them by offering their favourite treats. :)
    Summercat and cheekyscrip like this.
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