07-27-2013, 05:10 PM
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Some of you may remember my thread on Rosie, a cat who wandered into our yard.

That didn't end well (or it did, depending on your point of view).

Anyway, after buying our house, one of the first things we did was adopt a dog from the humane society here. We got ourselves a lovely Lab/golden mix. Tille is an old girl (10 years), but she's wonderful. Calm, affectionate, obedient, and a lot of fun.

Of course, while we were waiting around to meet Tille, we wandered into the cat rooms. This was a bad idea, given that my wife and I are softies. The upshot of it all is that over a period of a few weeks we adopted two cats, to join the one cat we already had. So now we have three cats and a dog.

One funny fact: they're all female! Add that to my wife and two daughters, and you have a very isolated male in the house (me). Biggrin

I wish I could say that the cat adoptions went as seamlessly as the dog. We adopted one older cat and and one young one (under 2 years old). The young one is a little crazy, but otherwise fine. She does get outside the house often, and sometimes wanders over to the neighbour's. Nothing serious.

The older cat seemed to adjust well, and she is really affectionate (somewhat of a lap cat), but she doesn't like any of the other cats. They all have their 'areas' in the house, but this led to her getting very stressed and that led to pooping/peeing around the house. We had to stop this, and we considered returning her to the humane society. We got her vet records and found that this was a problem with her over about a decade. She should never have been adopted into a house with other animals and a small kid.

However, I like her, so I decided to give it one more go. I started with placing her in the basement. She immediately seemed to love it. She calmed down, was less stressed and welcomed my wife and I every time we entered the basement. Of course, she wouldn't ever leave it.....for any reason.

Then I started working on acclimatizing her to the other animals. It took a while, but she's now up the point of voluntarily coming out of the basement for short periods of time during the quiet hours of the day. If she feels threatened, she'll retreat to the basement, but she's certainly opening up a bit.

She tolerates our older cat, but really doesn't like the young one. She hisses and growls at her the moment she sees her.

Anyway, it's been interesting, and I wish we had a 'normal' cat, but they're all nice to have around.

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 07-27-2013, 05:13 PM
#2
  • freddy
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  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Yohann, I love your cat stories. Please keep us posted on the cats and the dog. (Names? Photos? Biggrin )

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 07-27-2013, 05:58 PM
#3
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Freddy:

The dog is Tille. She's 10 years old, and is in good shape for her age. She's great with kids (is very popular with the kids at the farmer's market here). She ignores the cats.

Here's a pic:

[Image: temporary-64.jpg]

The cats are:

A) Catrina (called Cat) - a mostly white domestic shorthair. She's about 5. We've had her since she was a kitten.

[Image: IMG_5328.jpg]

B) Snowy - a white domestic longhair. She is about 12, has anxiety issues, has a twisted lip, but is otherwise adorable. She loves adult humans.

Here's a pic of her from her bad period. She was so stressed that she burrowed into the underside of one of my wing-backed chairs. The white stuff is her fur.

[Image: temporary-65.jpg]

C) Anjelica Huston. She's a grey striped short hair. She's under two, and is full of energy, and loves exploring. She was named 'Angel' at the humane society, but we didn't like that name. My young daughter calls her 'Jelica' and I just call her 'Jelly'.

No pics of her yet, but I'll post some soon.

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 07-27-2013, 06:33 PM
#4
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Yohann, great to hear that you and your extended are doing well. Great pics!Biggrin

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 07-27-2013, 07:52 PM
#5
  • freddy
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  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Tillie and Cat are beautiful. Smile I'm looking forward to a better photo of Snowy and one of Angelica Huston. Thumbsup

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 08-04-2013, 03:25 AM
#6
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Here's an update on the cats (for Freddy, mainly). Biggrin

Here's Snowy:

[Image: temporary-71.jpg]

[Image: temporary-70.jpg]

Her story is an interesting one, especially for cat-lovers. I mentioned some details in the first post, but I'll go into a bit more detail here.

She's a 12 year-old domestic longhair. She was brought into the shelter by her original owners. They had her since she was a kitten. Apparently (according to the vet records), for the first two years of her life she was an only pet, and was happy. Then they got a dog. This set her off on her anxiety cycles - the vet records are full of all the random peeing and pooing around the house. She had to be given her own room, and she developed a mouth sore (probably anxiety-related) that had to be operated on. She now has a twisted lip (not very noticeable). Anyway, after 10 years of this, the original owners moved (or so they said) and had to give her to the shelter.

That's where we came in. As I said, she should never have been adopted out to a family with pets and kids. So, when she got here she seemed to settle down but she really didn't get along with Jelly (who's pushy, has no boundaries, and is pretty irritating). So her pooping/peeing around the house started out here too.

Unfortunately, we have no extra rooms to stick her in, so after a few missteps, I decided to put her in the basement. The basement is unfinished (gravel floor, actually - more of a cellar), and so we felt pretty bad about doing that, but I thought that it was better than returning her to the humane society. There's a lot of room down there, and we tried to make her some nice, cozy spots to sleep in. Best of all, there were no cats or kids down there.

She immediately seemed to love it. She wasn't anxious anymore, and was able to make the basement her own domain. However, she's a social cat and does love her humans, so I made it a point to spend time in the basement playing with her and talking to her. My wife went down every now and then too.

After a couple of weeks like this, I started leaving the basement door open. She immediately started coming to the top of the stairs when she heard me, and if she felt threatened, she just retreated into the basement. Best of all, while the other cats could now go in, they seemed to accept the basement as her territory and only occasionally ventured down there. A few days later, I started picking her up and walking around the living room with her. Shen she got overwhelmed, I just let her retreat to the basement.

Fast-forward to this past week. She started coming out into the living room of her own volition. She absolutely loves being around people, and is constantly scenting us and loves sitting on my lap and being stroked. She is very playful, and loves chasing the laser pointer and playing with the usual cat toys. She's turned out to be the most sociable of our cats (with people) and I'm so glad we didn't return her to the humane society. HeartHeart

She's fine with the dog. She'll keep and eye on Tilly, but won't react otherwise. She is still very reluctant to get near Cat, but she'll semi-tolerate her. However, Jelly and Snowy really don't get along ---- we have immediate hissing and growling when they're in the room together, which leads to Snowy running into the basement.

Still, it's progress.

She loves being around me, but that's not surprising, as I really did spend a lot of time with her. She likes my wife, and interestingly, she is mostly fine with our three year-old. I have to watch to make sure my daughter is being gentle, of course.

Hopefully, things will continue to improve and she settles in completely with time. I hope the cats at least learn to tolerate each other. They don't have to be buddies, I just hope the hissing stops.

--------

My observations of Jelly lead me to believe that she'd be a better barn cat than an indoor cat. She pretty much spends the day outside and returns every second day or so. The vet and I both think she still has some of her ovary left from the spaying, and she seems to go into a false heat every few weeks. Maybe that makes her a wanderer. We'll see how that plays out.

Here's Jelly (on the top of the kitchen cabinets):

[Image: temporary-72.jpg]

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 08-04-2013, 04:44 AM
#7
  • slantman
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  • Leesburg, Florida
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I am particularly fond of cats owning 4 in the last 40 years. Rescue animals make the best pets. Wonderful story and thanks for sharing.

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 08-04-2013, 08:56 AM
#8
  • freddy
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  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Yohann, thank you so much for the updates. Honestly, I live vicariously through your stories as I travel so much and am allergic to cats so if I am around them for very long I have to put myself on a steroid spray. Of course, you would know that cats are my favorites of all the common pets we humans take up with (or they with us). Rolleyes

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 08-04-2013, 03:57 PM
#9
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Well Freddy,

I'm glad I'm able to provide you with some interesting stories about the animals in my house. They're all fun, of course.

If you're really longing to get a cat, perhaps you can invest in one of the hypoallergenic ones. BiggrinBiggrin

[Image: hypoallergenic-cats.jpg]

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 08-04-2013, 04:31 PM
#10
  • freddy
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  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Not my type, Yohann. I dream of your basic domestic short hair with personality plus. Wink

(08-04-2013, 03:57 PM)yohannrjm Wrote: Well Freddy,

I'm glad I'm able to provide you with some interesting stories about the animals in my house. They're all fun, of course.

If you're really longing to get a cat, perhaps you can invest in one of the hypoallergenic ones. BiggrinBiggrin

[Image: hypoallergenic-cats.jpg]

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 08-04-2013, 07:28 PM
#11
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Looks like I'm not the only one who ordered a "Crazy Cat Lady Starter Pack" Wink
Life is good when you have warm and furry friends. Smile

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 10-08-2013, 05:06 PM
#12
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This is mainly for Freddy, but I thought an update on the animals is in order, now that we've had them for a few months.

-------------------

Tille (the dog) -


This old girl has really settled in. She's a little wary of me in the house, but she loves the walks we take every morning. She really loves hitting the trails, and even though she's not very quick, she does gallop around happily.

She is most attached to my wife, and follows her around all the time. I think my deep bass voice is disconcerting to her in the house, but it doesn't seem to faze her outdoors.

She's great with the cats and the kids, and we all love her.

Snowy (the old cat) ----


She's really improved. Last I mentioned her, we had to move her to the basement, since she was so stressed by the other cats. It sounds like a horrible thing to do to an animal, but she really loved that change. She's claimed the basement and the LR/DR as her territory, and the other cats don't challenge her.

She's really turned into the lap cat that I wanted. She'll happily sit for hours on my lap if I let her. She hasn't peed on the furniture for about two months, and I hope that stage is now behind us all. Biggrin

She seems to prefer me to everyone else. That's probably because of the time I spent with her during her tough period.


Jelly - the grey tabby

This young girl is a real favourite around the house. She's fearless, and will greet anyone who wanders in. She splits her time between the outdoors and indoors. She has developed a rivalry with a couple of the other neighbourhood cats, and they have the occasional yowling matches (no fur has flown so far).

She's demanding of attention, and is not afraid to vocalize for attention. She'll also climb up on stools and pat your arm or leg when she wants to be picked up and held.

She still hisses at Snowy, but that doesn't seem to affect the old girl anymore.


Cat (our original cat)


She's adjusted to the other cats by resolutely ignoring them. She spends more time outdoors than indoors. Otherwise she's unchanged, and loves to sit on dark clothing (she has white hair).

----------

Funnily, on many mornings, when I take Tille out for a walk, Cat and Jelly will accompany me. Jelly with walk around with us for a mile or two - Cat only makes it about a half mile. It's actually pretty funny to walk the dog with a pair of cats following a few steps behind. Biggrin

It's a lot of fun having them all in our lives. I think they're all enjoying themselves too.

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 10-08-2013, 06:02 PM
#13
  • freddy
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  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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Yohann, what great stories. Smile I still wonder, for all we "have pets", who really is the pet of whom. I like the way you look at things in that your family and you simply accept the joy they bring into your lives. Thank you so much for sharing.

In about a week I'm going to visit Pam (MsBlackwolf) and she has a dog and three cats she lives with (not to mention the donkey, chickens, ducks, geese, rabbits, and bees she has on her land) so the steroid spray will be started the day before my flights to Wisconsin to see them all. Her cats really make me smile because each has such an individual personality, just as you describe yours.

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 10-09-2013, 08:25 AM
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The goats are put out you forgot them, Freddy. LOL We are all looking forward to your visit!

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 10-09-2013, 10:40 AM
#15
  • freddy
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  • San Diego, California, U.S.A.
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(10-09-2013, 08:25 AM)MsBlackwolf Wrote: The goats are put out you forgot them, Freddy. LOL We are all looking forward to your visit!

Tell Suzie and her kids that I most humbly apologize. Sad

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