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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Tweet Meet went Good....Then Bad....then?

I am TRAUMATIZED! As you all know, Friday was the Tweety, Tarzan and Catfish meet and greet.

Since falling in love with cats only a few years ago, I marvel at how much easier they are than dogs. But one area where dogs are MUCH easier is introducing a new one to the pack--because, their nature is PACK animal. Cats don't like change, and the biggest change of all is a new cat.

I do not know how people who have a bunch of cats do it. Maybe it's just that I'm new to cats and got lucky with Tarzan and Catfish being best buds. From what I hear, cats can make god-awful noises, have spats and it's all "normal." Here's what happened:

I brought Tweety in the carrier into the cat-fence yard and set her down. Catfish, as always, ignored the whole thing. Tarzan, who has been aware of Tweety for a few weeks (starting and meowing)came over and was pretty good. He walked around the carrier sniffing, sat in front of it, meowed a bit, but not in a disturbed way. Tweety just sat there. Tarzan got closer, right up to the grate and Tweety gave two little hisses. Tarzan walked away for a bit, then came back. I gave both treats. At times, Tarzan even seemed a bit afraid of Tweety (or maybe it was just the carrier, as he hates that!"

So then I brought Tweety into the cat apartment and wanted Catfish and Tarzan to come in, so I could let them get used to her inside. They came in for a second, but when they saw the carrier/Tweety, they ran out. I didn't want to lock them in at that point and figured since it went well in the yard, I'd let Tweety out in the yard.

So that's what I did. Tarzan was far away and she came out. She walked onto the porch and Tarzan came over to follow, pretty fast. I didn't see eactly what happened, as they went around a corner, but all of a sudden I heard screeching and the chase was on. Tweety on top of the banister, then down, then across the yard, then she tried to go over the fence, but couldn't because of the cat fence, back across the yard with Tarzan chasing and under the porch! I was FREAKING OUT.I had a spray bottle, but it was useless as I couldn't run around the entire yard fast enough!

That was what The Boss was afraid of--them tearing each other to shreds under there where we couldn't get to them (it's skirted with latticework with a few openings for the cats to get in and out.)I hears a few nasty-sounding squalling sounds, then quiet. I went over to the side of the porch with an opening and saw Tarazan staring at me. I didn't see Tweety. I called to Tarzan, but he ran further under the porch. Then I saw Tweety laying right there by the opening, near where Tarzan had been.I reached in and pulled her out. She seemed totally fine and calm. I put her back in the carrier and closed it and left in sit on the sidewalk. I came in and watched from the window. I didn't see Tarzan and Catfish go near it. She laid down in the carrier and that was it.

Tarzan acted more skittish and afraid...of ME when I went out! She was fine and normal. By the way, while the chase and fight was on, Catfish simply watched from under a burning bush!).

So then I set Tweety up in the bedroom of the apartment,with litter, food, toys, etc. She was right at home, playing with me and the toys. I shut the door and left her inside. Later I brought the two boys in for the night. They were wondering why they couldn't get in the bedroom, but I had moved their big cat tree to the living room window and gave Tweety the smaller one in the bedroom. I checked on them later and both Catfish and Tarzan were asleep on the platforms. I wonder if they even knew Tweety was in the bedroom!

This morning we let the boys out and let Tweety explore the entire apartment. Then I put her in the carrier, back out in the yard. Tarzan came over and looked in, then simply sat down by it, looking around the yard, not at her much.

My plan: put Tweety out in the yard in the carrier several times today, and while she's inside, close the door and let her explore out of the bedroom to further spread her scent. Then later when the boys come in for the night and I close the door, I'll put her in the carrier in the living room and sit there watching TV and watching for how Tarzan acts. Then before I go to bed, I'll put her back in the bedroom. OR, should I leave her in the carrier in with them all night?

Tomorrow I was going to try another intro out of the carrier, but this time, inside with the door closed.

So what do you all think? I just don't' want Tarzan to ATTACK her viciously, as he's so much bigger. Can I be quick enough with water and blanket inside if that is what happens?

I guess it just surprised me that the chase and squalling went on, since the pre-introduction went well.

I've read information about introducing new cats and talked to Suzanne at Cats are Us and Elaine with the Humane Society and my friend Dena, who has a 12-pack at her house and my sister and they all say it's NORMAL or "it sounds like its going well." WHAT? I'm a nervous wreck I tell you!

Sorry this is so long, but wanted to share the fun I'm having on my days off. I'll keep you all posted! Wish us all luck.

Oh, and by the way, The Boss will not participate in the inside introduction. He says, "I'm not getting involved in that--this is YOUR idea." GRRRRRRRRR.

posted by Sandy at 11/03/2007 10:09:00 AM


Blogger Adrienne said...

Maybe your trying to hard. The last time I introduced two cats I put them together and let them figure it out. I watched and was ready to step in, but let them be. There was a few tence moments, but all in all it went fine. It seemed to work out great and they were best buds. Something to think about.

Saturday, November 03, 2007 12:12:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Well, that's kind of what I did after she was in the carrier a bit, but it was just the way Tarzan went after her, like an all out attack, which surprised me. I expected more they'd check each other out, maybe hiss or swat, but that high-speed chase! It all depends on the cats and I know they usually work things out,but one can also do serious injury to the other. And the problem with outside was that I couldn't step in, they were all over the yard until it ended in a standoff under the porch. Neither had any injury, which I'm thankful for, and like I said, she didn't seem the least bit upset afterward.

So I'm going to do what all the experts recommend as far as the separate rooms and then in a day or so, let them meet each other INSIDE, where they can't chase as far and where I can put a stop to it, as you said.

I'm hoping today was a good sign. Tarzan just sitting by the carrier for a bit and not really staring or showing interest. The second time I put her back out, he didn't even go over at all. Tonight I'll see how it goes when she's in the carrier inside and they are together for a few hours. Another factor is its not just one cat meeting another, it's her coming into their abode, and they are best buddies. She's like the third wheel intruder!

Saturday, November 03, 2007 12:32:00 PM  
Blogger pearcehart said...

When Herbie came to his now forever home, there was a little spat at the beginning. Herbie stood up to Larry, senior cat, but Larry just isn't interested in turf wars. I feed them in separate places and Larry goes in and out as he pleases. Herbie tried to make a break for it at first but after squirts from the water bottle he no longer goes near the doors. Occasionally Larry and Herbie will have a stare-down and Herbie will swat Larry from around a corner but Larry is just too laid back to care. Little Scootie plays with Herbie, chase, hide and seek, hide in the box, etc., but no turf battles at all. Now that Aimee, dog princess, is gone Herbie will actually try to snag dog dinner out from under Max and Charlie's noses. Max gives a growl and Charlie just ignores him. Herbie has also been know to snag food from my dinner plate before I can shoo him away. I usually hiss at him and that seems to make an impact on him. I cut Herbie's nails again, he didn't fight as much this time, so I think he knows he's getting his nails clipped whether he likes it or not. He didn't even bite me this time.

I guess I have been lucky with our getting-to-know-you first meetings. Good luck!

Saturday, November 03, 2007 4:56:00 PM  
Blogger Pam said...

I wish I could say I will have good luck putting my cats and grad kitties together but after the fight between Gracie and Brittany I'm too scared. I mean you could not tell which cat was which from the rolling ball of hair that went down the stairs. It scared the living daylights out of me! Good luck Sandy, I'm praying for you, I know the stress you're going through but it does soound like everyone there may adjust to each other soon.

Saturday, November 03, 2007 6:10:00 PM  
Blogger Daisylouu said...

I think you should wait until your much smarter and MUCH MORE PATIENT little baby sister comes to visit and let me take care of it.

Basically, I agree with some point you just have to let them work it out. I have 3 cats who all hate each other, they still have a few swats and hisses, but for the most part they have established their routine in the house and know their boundaries.

Don't let them alone in the apartment until you have a basic idea of how they will react to each other. Other than that, get them together and let the party begin!

I still can't believe the Boss is letting you bring that cat in. I bet we'll have a great conversation on the way home from the airport!!

Saturday, November 03, 2007 6:55:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

I probably should have waited until after you left to do introductions, because they are all stressed enough! Maybe I'll just do the crate thing in and out until YOU get here so I have back up during the release! LOL.

Sunday, November 04, 2007 7:10:00 AM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Oh, and you're saying you have three cats who hate each other--well I had two cats who love each other and had a nice routine going. I don't want to mess that up and have constant tension and an armed camp. If it doesn't work, I can't have that going on, especially since they live in a separate area. I'll have to find a new home for Tweety. Sniff.

Sunday, November 04, 2007 7:12:00 AM  
Blogger O'Malley said...

I have this problem with my MoJo-JoJo. MJ is SO aggresive/territorial that I really can't bring other cats around her for their safety. The last time i tried to introduce another cat to her she almost killed the other cat(my Bubby)and I had a $200 vet bill. MJ is a wonderful cat-loves to be held, good with dogs and kids, and even has been declawed. But her teeth are lethal it seems to intruder kitties. I have always wondered if there is something I can do to change her behavior but have had no luck. This is why we have 3 separate kitty domains at my home and none of them cross their borders! We have the 2 inside cats, the 2 outside cats and the one that says in the finished basement. haha...guest at our home have lots of instructions on who can & can't go where. tarzan sounds like he is just a little spooked by Tweety tho. I am sure he will settle down and the battle will be minor. Good luck!

Sunday, November 04, 2007 6:09:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

That's like my house Shannon! Dogs live in main house, go out to back yard only. Cats live in apartment, go out to front yard only. No dogs allowed through front door! Now Tweety is in the bedroom of the cat apartment! I don't think Tarzan is as difficult as MJ, because he was with a female when he was a stray and they were big buddies, then he took to Catfish and they are buddies. Maybe she started it and he then chased her, but she didnt' seem upset by the ordeal, he seemed more shaken! And today The Boss had her in the carrier in the yard and he said Tarzan was right up at the door, but she didn't hiss this time or anything and neither did he.Maybe she takes his advances the wrong way? But he's so much bigger than she is!

But that is what I'm afraid of, the BIG attack. Did you do a gradual intro and then put them together or just put the new cat with MJ? They say if you just put them together that can happen and then later it's hard to reintroduce if they had a bad experience.

Sunday, November 04, 2007 11:50:00 PM  
Blogger B said...

I have told you guys how Hines and Lucy had their little battle to be "KING" of the roost. Nobody got hurt, but it scared 10 years off my life. Its the only rock of the boat we've had--a few minor "nudges" but nothing as explosive as that first altercation. Maybe Eliane can give you some "cat talk" that might help?

Monday, November 05, 2007 2:07:00 PM  
Blogger B said...

WHOOOPS--forgot you already did that. WEll, maybe a second talk?LOL

Monday, November 05, 2007 2:17:00 PM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

I think you are reading too much into this also Sandy. I say, let the cats go and work it out on their own. If they already had a under the porch expericence, that may have been the worse. I still say Tarzan is just being a Top Cat and struting his feathers for the new kid on the block. In time they will be buds....

Monday, November 05, 2007 5:14:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Thanks guys. Tarzan might have chased, but I think she started it, probably in defense, not knowing what he was going to do. He's never hissed or swatted, just checked her out and meowed and sometimes give a look. Today when I put her out, he checked her out very closely, went on top of the carrier and looked down, then looked from the back. She didn't like that so she hissed and swatted, but nothing major. When I put her out later on the porch and went in and checked from the window, he didn't even get off the love seat which was near her carrier.

He looks under the door and I've seen two paw plays, but no hissing. I know I have myself worked, up, but I've never dealt with any cats in my life but Tarzan and Catfish who are best buds!

Monday, November 05, 2007 5:35:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Oh, Skeeter, and you may be right about the under the porch maybe being the worst. When I first got Catfish and he hid under the porch for 6 weeks, Tarzan got in (before I KNEW Tarzan) by a tree too close to the fence we later cut down. I woke to hear sqalling under the porch and had to chase him out the next morning. Later they got to know each other through the fence and then when I brought him in, I just opened the gate, he walked in and they were laying together the next day!

Monday, November 05, 2007 5:37:00 PM  
Blogger dragon said...

Sandy, Sandy, Sandy…….you are getting so very melodramatic about this whole cat thing. Many times I have introduced new cats into the household and have never had issues such as you seem to have. Not to mention, I do not sniffle like some little girl. Get over it and just let the damn cat out of the carrier. Nature is nature. They may have a tiff with each other to begin with, that is what cats do. They have to get used to each other. And they may never like each other, or they may be bosom buddies. You just never know with cats. Evil King Feline Demon Devil Cat, Prince Not So Annoying, and the FAT CAT have never all got along all the time. There were periodic smacks on the nose, and bites on the scruff of the neck. But no real harm was ever done. They just have the need to exert their status every once in a while. It’s normal. Dogs do the same thing over bones or food. It doesn’t mean they want to kill each other, they just have to learn how to be around each other.
THEY ARE CATS, QUIT TRYING TO MAKE THEM THINK LIKE HUMANS!!! No matter how you try to rationalize their actions, you are a person and they are cats. You will not figure it out. Deal with it.
Oh, and by the way. I may only have three active brain cells, but believe me—I will take my three active brain cells over a FULL LOAD of women’s brain cells any day!

Monday, November 05, 2007 5:47:00 PM  
Blogger Sandy said...

You are right Dragon and belive me, I won't be saying that often. But you did say: You just never know with cats. Look what happened to Shannon's Bubby? I know that's rare, but I can't help it. Normal spats, ok, big attacks, not ok. I will try to be more like a man and not give a hoot. :)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 9:33:00 AM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

Okay, Dragon boy, you had me up until the women’s brain cells part... is it time to post the picture of Dragon with glasses on the face to stop the fire spitting??? ha ha....

I do think the carrier may have something to do with the hissing also. Tweety is confide into a small space and maybe being a bit protective of what she is probably starting to think will be a new home... Yep, let her out of the kennel and let them go be cats and work it out....

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 9:38:00 AM  
Blogger Stacey said...

OMG!!!!!!!! The meteor must be on the way to destroy the earth even as I type this!!!!!! (Isn't Sandy saying that Dragon is right a sign of the APOCOLYPSE??????)

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 11:28:00 AM  
Blogger Sandy said...

Tweety doesn't hiss much. When Tarzan is just walking around it, or on top if it, or sitting in front of it, she just sits there. Today Tarzan laid down a foot away, on is side and fell asleep. Only if he puts his face right up and meows and meows, then she might hiss a bit. A few times (not today) she also swiped her paw.

Today I had her in the carrier in the apartment and brought him in. I gave him a treat in front of the carrier and he acted like he didn't even see her! He was more interested in checking out the bedroom she stays in. I brought him back in and gave him another treat in front of her, and he ate it, looked at her walked away to the bedroom. Once more I did that and he looked at her and then went out the pet door! I do an inside carrier meet one more time then tomorrow when Daisy's here we'll let her out. I really notice that over the days I've been doing this that Tarzan is much less interested, so I guess they are getting used to each other.

Of course, I do expect swatting and hissing when then actually meet and I can deal with that. It's just an all out attack or major battle I worry about! I will definately drink a few glasses of wine before hand!

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 12:22:00 PM  
Blogger O'Malley said...

I did do the intro of MJ and Bubby gradually just as you have. I really didn't expect anything to happen but since then have really noticed MJ's "dark" side. I have seen her stare down and stalk a strange dog in our yard and the dog tucked his tale and backed out of the yard.This cat does not know she only weighs about 7 pounds and has no front claws. Oh well, I am probably the only one who is lucky enough to have such a kitty. She is one of the reasons I really can't add more cats to our brood. Between her and the hubby I am sol haha

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 1:38:00 PM  
Blogger dragon said...

CRASH!!!!!! BOOM!!!!!! BAM!!!!! (other assorted noises)…… These are the sounds of the Dragon hitting the floor. I knew it was going to get cold tonight, but never did I imagine that it was going to get so cold as to freeze over hell. That is what happens when Sandy actually agrees with me, isn’t it??? I would have figured that hell would actually freeze over before that ever happened. Could this be the sign of the Apocalypse?? Should all the religious fanatics start lining up waiting to be summoned home, to await their rightful place in the great beyond? Is it time for the seas to be boiling? Are the four horseman of the Apocalypse riding even now?? Can it be?? Truly, I don’t know if I can handle this. I could be psychologically scarred for all eternity.

Let it be known far and wide--SANDY HAS AGREED WITH MY HUMBLE SELF, THE LORD DRAGON. It could take drastic measures to bring me around to my normal state. The only thing that could possibly bring me back to my reality is the Daisy Duke shorts. I can only hope that they really are that short. Please, Daisylouu, be my savior. I need you to come to the aid of your Dragon in his time of need. Or, it could be a truly severe case of mental trauma. I may require the assistance of Daisylouu AND Adrienne to bring me around to my senses. Oh, will my wenches come through in my great hour of need??

Sorry Charlie, or should I say Skeeter. The remark about the brain cells was intended for Sandy only. I was not intending to include all females in general. We know that remarks such as this do not apply to the all wise and knowing Skeeter. But, because I operate on 3 brain cells, the things I think don’t always come out the way I intend them in print. However, I STILL CAN HANDLE CATS. It isn’t that damn hard!! Geezzzz!!!!!!!!!

I am officially in countdown mode now, awaiting the fairest of the fairs to arrive in town. Of course, I mean my Daisylouu, Adrienne, and the Saint. Nekkid karaoke awaits!! Woo Hoo, I can’t wait!! It will probably happen, because there was a sale at the liquor store on PGA. It takes a special brand of person to handle that. While wifey poo was gone off on her trip this weekend, I went to the mountains to visit my cousin Jeremiah. Let’s just say that I was able to acquire some homegrown spirits for the occasion. The stuff has to be handled with care, it ate through the copper tubing.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 9:13:00 PM  
Blogger Skeeter said...

Bring on the White Lighten Dragon! The law busted a Still here in GA recently, I am glad to know it was not your kin folk! I thank thee for referring to me as the “all wise and knowing” one! The Saint will have to debate that one with you some time...

Are you sure the sound was not the Dragon falling off his treadmill? I just know you have been working out and getting into shape for that Jets thong! I can hardly wait and I have extra film in the camera for that one…. Pam, did you and Flyboy get that hot-tub installed? White Lightening, Thongs, Hot-tubs and Nakkid Karaoke, I can hardly wait!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007 12:11:00 PM  

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Pet People

Sandy Britt, an animal welfare advocate and volunteer with Clarksville rescue organizations, takes care of three dogs: Zoe, Scooter and Peanut; two cats: Catfish and Tarzan; and one husband, Glen, and according to him she takes care of them in that order.

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