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Cats - fighting or playing?

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by Tasha.hillr, Sep 15, 2019.


  1. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    So I've got a 1 and half year old cat female and I recently got a new kitten 4 days age male, my female cat cleo was hissing at him and growling and all sorts that's all stopped now and they play together but sometimes it looks real rough sometimes the kitten squeals and makes a hurt noise so I use a spray bottle to stop them but I'm not sure if that's just them playing or is cleo being to rough
     
  2. lymorelynn

    lymorelynn UN Peacekeeper in training
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    Please do not use a spray a bottle. It will not help the situation and may make things worse.
    Unless the attacks are preceded by angry hissing or growling, they are playing. Sometimes play will go a bit too far and your kitten is just saying so. If things are getting a bit rough distract them both with toys to chase or wrestle with.
     
  3. Chris Slinn

    Chris Slinn PetForums Newbie

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    I can understand the concern. I have just adopted 2 kittens, 11 weeks old Maine Coon / Bengal cross and they fight ALL the time. So far no hissing or growling and it all looks pretty playful, even though sometimes the claws and teeth come out and I worry one of them will end up losing an eye. I've been assured that if one of them gets too rough the other will let them know and they'll back off. So long as there's no hissing beforehand then its just playful.

    On that point, is it usual for kittens to play fight so much? They have plenty of toys, things to climb etc and when I can I join in, but when left alone all they do is chase each other and play fight.
     
  4. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    I have been using it as my older cat cleo has started hissing and growling again it stopped after day 2 but now she's started it back again not sure why
     
  5. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    They both have toys to play with and I also play with them alot same with my partner it's just sometimes it gets to rough and the kitten sounds like hea hurt my older cat has started hissing again
     
  6. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    What do u think I can do to stop them when there hurting each other also the hissing and growling has started again
     
  7. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Separate them to different rooms for a few hours so they can both calm down.

    You can't let them fight if either of them is being hurt. Apart from the pain and injury caused to either or both cats, you could end up with big vet bills for their treatment. Also you don't want the young one growing up to be aggressive - or timid - either of which he may become if he has to keep defending himself from your adult cat.
     
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  8. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    2 kittens from the same litter, or 2 kittens who have been brought up together, playing a bit roughly is a very different thing from 2 cats who are strangers to each other.

    The kittens who have grown up together will not be defensively aggressive to each other, just boisterous in their play (though accidental nasty scratches e.g. to eyes, can still occur ). And yes, kittens do play together constantly! :)
     
    #8 chillminx, Sep 16, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2019
  9. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    He only squeals now and then most the time he doesn't there just very playful but seems like there constantly play fighting
     
  10. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    You asked what you should do when they are hurting each other.... and I answered.

    If they are not hurting each other and both are happy play fighting then there's not a problem.
     
  11. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    It's been 5 days now we have had the kitten there usually fine playing but sometimes he starts squealing which I guess means he's hurt when will this stop as I can't leave them alone at the moment
     
  12. Tetley&Kenco

    Tetley&Kenco PetForums Member

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    My two are brothers and they always squeal at each other when play fighting, it was alarming at first but now I know they’re just communicating with each other. They can get very vocal though as the video below will show! They can go from doing this, to sleeping laying on top of each other in seconds, so I know there’s no hostility there, and neither ever gets injured.

     
  13. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    I can't tell you when the squealing will stop. Every introductory situation between new adult cats and kittens is different. Keep supervising them until you feel the kitten is safe from being hurt, and separate them to different rooms when you can't supervise them e.g. if you will be out of the house, or asleep at night.

    It took me a period of 3 months to introduce my last 2 kittens safely to my 3 adult cats, and a further 3 months before I felt OK leaving them together unsupervised. But before that I had introduced kittens to adult cats much more quickly, maybe 2 or 3 weeks in total. It so much depends on the individual cat(s) and kitten(s). Every cat is different.

    You may be lucky and find you can leave your 2 alone together safely after a few more weeks.
     
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  14. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    Oh yes I see haha that's exactly what it's like well only thr kitten makes a squeal but it's when my older cat has pinned him down and stuff but he does sound hurt do u think its just them communicating
     
  15. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    Okay thank u very much just get worried when I hear the kitten squeal but not sure if he's in pain or just communicating thanks
     
  16. Tetley&Kenco

    Tetley&Kenco PetForums Member

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    It was their behaviour before and after the play fighting that gave it away to me that no one was really getting hurt, just playing, communicating and teaching each other boundaries. If I interrupt their play fighting they stop biting and either interact with me, or get cheeky and play attack my hand, but it’s obviously playful. If cats were aggressively fighting and you tried to separate I don’t think it’d be as easy and they’d be more likely to turn true aggression on to you. Might be worth keeping watching them until you feel comfortable that all the signs point to play fighting
     
  17. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Yes, when the kitten squeals he is communicating to the adult cat he is in pain and wants the adult cat to stop. That is how kittens signal to their siblings if they are being too rough. Your kitten expects your adult cat to take notice of his signals.

    Kitty is basically saying to your adult cat "that's enough now". The adult cat should respond to that and either let go of the kitten or loosen his grip so he is not hurting him. If he does not do that, then he is not respecting the kitten's signals, and the lack of respect means the adult cat is being aggressive. Aggression I would not allow, it is not fair on the kitten and could amount to bullying as the size difference between the 2 cats must be considerable.

    It is not 'play fighting' if there is bullying going on.
     
  18. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    That's true I will try that thank u I get confused sometimes as the older cat has started hissing again at the kitten so not sure how to take it
     
  19. Tasha.hillr

    Tasha.hillr PetForums Newbie

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    Okay thank u very much I will keep an eye out think they are just playing then :) but sometimes I think the kitten gets hurt
     
  20. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Cats hiss as a warning. So the older cat is hissing at the kitten as a warning, telling him to back off. I imagine the kitten tries to play with the older cat and older cat sometimes doesn't want to play and gets annoyed with kitten. It would be best to distract kitten with a game when this happens so he/she leaves older cat in peace.

    Has older cat got plenty of high up places to rest away from kitten? e.g. tall cat trees, or tops of cupboards with safe routes up and down.
     
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