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Should I get my cat a new friend?

Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by Bigsize9foot, Jun 25, 2020.


  1. Bigsize9foot

    Bigsize9foot PetForums Member

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    We lost our 2 year old male back in January to heart failure. His sibling Luna misses him dearly and I can often hear her crying in the night (we cant let her into our room as she plays up and we get no sleep) When she goes out she will often return several times in close succession and I'm not sure if it's to look for him or to check we are still here.

    I have been considering getting a kitten for Luna. She is generally not keen on other cats but I feel she needs a friend like her sibling for company and to play with- I know cats are supposed to be solitary but they were inseperable. However I don't want to risk upsetting her more. Kittens generally come in pairs I find as its hard to separate them when they are so small. So we are thinking about 2 males. My understanding is a kitten is generally more tolerated than an adult cat and she seems to prefer males to females.

    Ive been reading up on here and am a bit freaked out about all the stories of kittens not getting on with older cats and now I'm unsure if it would be the right thing to do.

    Any advice?
     
  2. Lurcherlad

    Lurcherlad PetForums VIP

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    Mum always took in the waifs and strays, maxing out at 5 at one time. Different sexes and ages (had them all neutered obviously ;)) and they all got on either really well or just ignored each other. I don’t remember any dramas tbh.

    Apart from the last one she took in that had “issues” and didn’t like her remaining resident cat.

    As it turned out he came to live with us and our 2 female cats (after a year of all living in the same much larger house, then going to separate houses) and they got on really well so everyone was happy. We used to keep the single cat to mum’s side of the property and her boy hung out with my 2 on our side so when moving it was decided he’d be happier with us.

    So chances are, it will work out.

    I’d go for a rescue though so you can test the waters with a view to them taking it back if it’s a disaster.
     
    #2 Lurcherlad, Jun 26, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
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  3. Summercat

    Summercat PetForums VIP

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    @Bigsize9foot
    Hi,
    I would try an older kitten or young cat, around one/two years, male.
     
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  4. Bigsize9foot

    Bigsize9foot PetForums Member

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    We have 2 kittens in mind from a local rescue and I have spoken to them about my concerns so hopefully if there are any issues they could be returned although this would be the worst scenario for everyone. I have been reading Jackson Galaxys tips to bringing home a new cat and will take all this advice. They are male as Luna has always preferred male cats. We are going to see them tomorrow and they will be ready for rehoming in 2 weeks. Beforehand we are going to get Luna an ultrasound to ensure she has no heart problems like Archie as I would not want to cause her more stress if she does.

    Luna loves to be outdoors- should she be kept in until the introduction is complete or should I keep her to her normal routine?

    Also- does anyone keep new kitten in a dog crate overnight to keep them safe? This is not something I've done before but I've heard of others doing it.
     
  5. ChaosCat

    ChaosCat PetForums VIP

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    I wouldn’t think of keeping lively kittens in a dog crate for many hours! A safe room where they can move freely and play is much better.

    Better keep Luna‘s normal routine. You don’t want to make her more anxious than necessary during introductions.
    When you find during intros that Luna avoids the confrontation by going outside you can still keep her inside for a while to have progress, but never for long and only when she doesn’t show distress to be out.
     
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  6. Bigsize9foot

    Bigsize9foot PetForums Member

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    Thanks- we are going to give them my son's room to begin with and he will move into my daughters room to sleep. Luna will stay in the living room overnight as usual. We will introduce them slowly from there. I just want to have the best chance of success!I was worried Luna might not return if she thought the new kittens had "taken over"
     
  7. ChaosCat

    ChaosCat PetForums VIP

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    As you‘ll go slowly she hopefully won’t get that impression.
    Scent swapping before a first encounter and first meetings with a mesh door between them will help Luna to accept their presence.
    She won’t feel pushed out of her territory if the kittens stay in their room at first and she can get used to them before they invade her space.

    Why won’t your son sleep in his room with the kittens?
     
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  8. Bigsize9foot

    Bigsize9foot PetForums Member

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    I think they would be quite active at night and prevent him from sleeping?
    I've read up on the scent and room swapping and gradual introductions through the mesh door so feeling quite prepared now. Have sourced insurance and looking at cat beds, toys and trees for the kittens.
    Its a very fine line between wanting the best for Luna- I feel she needs company but would hate for her to feel pushed out.
    Thanks for all the words- feeling more reassured now.

    B
     
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  9. SbanR

    SbanR PetForums VIP

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    @Bigsize9foot what @ChaosCat forgot to mention - you would need to make frequent updates on progress, with Lots. Of. Photos!
    It's a compulsory requirement I'm afraid. No room for negotiation:D
     
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  10. ChaosCat

    ChaosCat PetForums VIP

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    You are right! How could I forget essentials?!
     
  11. SbanR

    SbanR PetForums VIP

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    The heatwave fried a few circuits?:D
     
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  12. Bigsize9foot

    Bigsize9foot PetForums Member

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    This can be arranged :)
     
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  13. Bigsize9foot

    Bigsize9foot PetForums Member

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    Hi everyone,
    Thor and Loki have been with us for 5 days now and we are delighted with Luna’s progress! 2600B62E-4AB0-4320-A7A4-C81CF0767935.jpeg A6B1D805-14E4-4290-BC95-522960546FBA.jpeg 4060B4DF-D318-4AC0-9A50-277EACC6C8CF.jpeg
     
  14. ChaosCat

    ChaosCat PetForums VIP

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    That’s so lovely to see! Thanks for the update.
     
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  15. poppygreen

    poppygreen PetForums Junior

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    Bigsize9foot likes this.
  16. Summercat

    Summercat PetForums VIP

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    @Bigsize9foot
    Thanks for the photos :) they look lovely together.
     
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