Integrating kittens into a home with cats- GREAT update post #15!

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Kelly G, Dec 31, 2011.

  1. Kelly G

    Kelly G It's like herding cats! we are doing a very slow introduction with our two new kittens. We have two other cats (ages 5 & 6) that we need to integrate them with.

    Everyone is spayed/nuetered - even the kittens.

    The new kittens are 17 weeks old (full siblings - brother/sisiter). They have been here in the house for a full 11 days.

    We have kept the kittens in their own room this whole time - switching rooms with "the big boys" twice a day, switching toys frequently, feeding them their yummy canned food on opposing sides of the door, and they have had glimpses of eachother during the week, but no extended eye contact.

    Tonight I was feeding them on opposite sides of the door, and when I went to bring the "big boys" food to them inside the door, we had a breach of the barricade - Frosty jumed the baby gate in his excitement to get his canned treat!

    There was nearly no reaction by either Frosty or the two kittens. The kittens continued to eat, and I quickly put Frosty's food down right where he landed to keep his attention on the food insstead of the kittens.

    I let him eat therer for about a minute before putting him back in the room to finish the food with Tugger.

    There was no hissing, evil eyes, and no nothing except an acknowledgement of the presence of eachother.

    Are we close to being ready for introductions? What's next? An open door where they can have visual contact from a distance? That's actually easy for us to arrange in this house.

    Things are going wwell....we don't want to mess this up!
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2012
  2. Sherry

    Sherry Songster

    Apr 8, 2007
    Southern WV
    Do you have a dog type crate? If so, put the two kittens in the crate in "neutral territory" and let them meet that way.

    Otherwise, it sounds like you have a good handle on this already!
  3. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Quote:What Sherry said.
    Good job!
  4. DancingHen

    DancingHen Songster

    Mar 11, 2011
    Central Oregon Coast
    I have had good success with the meeting under a door method, and using a crate as suggested above. Also, when they do get to interact do it in nuetral territory at first....not where they normally eat or sleep. I think after you had that positive encounter during feeding I would try letting them meet for short periods and see how it goes. Younger kittens are much easier to introduce than older cats. You could also try putting the kittens in a crate that you cover with a light sheet...that way the cats can easily smell one another but not see each other....eye contact is a threat to cats. Good luck.
  5. Skyesrocket

    Skyesrocket Songster

    Mar 20, 2008
    Are the kittens comfortable out loose in the house? If so then they are ready to meet the other cats. I would do it in an area of the house where they can run and hide if they need to or even be able to run into another room.
    I would take up any food. No need to complicate things with food involved. Then spray some body mist or perfume on your hands and rub it on all of the cats so everyone smells the same. Then let them out on opposit sides of the room and sit back and let them meet each other. There might be some hissing or spitting or chasing at first. Try not to get involved in it. Let them settle in as a group unless someone is getting hurt.
    Good Luck!
  6. Kelly G

    Kelly G It's like herding cats!

    Yeah, all four have been playing under the door & eating together with the door between them. They are very aware of each other.

    When i say "playing," it is play that I am instigating with a toy. Both can see, smell and touch eachothers' paws/legs.

    After all the moronic fireworks outside, everyone seems a little edge, so maybe tomorrow night...there is no hurry. :)

    The kittens have had full access to the house for about 5 days now...and they seem very comfortable - napping on couches, windows, etc.

    Tomorrow may be the big day!
  7. Skyesrocket

    Skyesrocket Songster

    Mar 20, 2008
    Good idea to let them settle down from the fireworks. Good Luck! [​IMG]
  8. punk-a-doodle

    punk-a-doodle Songster

    Apr 15, 2011
    The only cats I've ever seen real trouble with introducing are new kittens or an adult females entering a house with a solitary female who is used to living alone and bonded strongly to the owners. I've heard of the occasional issue with a tom and a kitten, but the solitary females I've actually seen time and time again be the most troublesome for introductions, and the most aggressive. The combination you have here, is actually pretty likely to succeed and do well. The method you are using with separate rooms and rotations is my prefered method, and it was successful even with our stubborn and territorial female with a new male.

    I'd do visual introductions next, and then move on to calm situations where they have access to each other under your supervision. Step back as needed, but it sounds like everything is going to go smoothly for you. [​IMG]
  9. erinszoo

    erinszoo Songster

    Jun 28, 2011
    North Central Oklahoma
    I would introduce them fully at this point. Remain in the room with them for 30 mins to an hour and pet each one in turn, that way you'll be spreading their scents around on each other. You can always fully separate them if problems occur. Keep them separated at night until they are used to being with each other all day. And be ready, there will be scrabbles and arguments and some pouting along the way. It's perfectly normal.
  10. SarahBeth9394

    SarahBeth9394 Songster

    Aug 23, 2008
    We finally found a home for the kitten my daughter "rescued". I love animals but I have my fair share of them. I just hope that she will never try this again. Our big boy just about lost his mind. Even after a week and a half of bringing the kitten out of my daughters room a couple of times a day for playtime the big boy still lost it. I couldn't pet him with her smell on me he would hiss spit. I understand wanting to rescue and foster but I grew up with that and I can't tell you of a single foster that ever got adopted out. We always had at least 5 to 7 dogs and at least 4 or 5 cats. Sure us kids were responsible for bringing home an animal but that stopped before jr high age and the folks took over and went bonkers with it.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by