Introducing Cats – So Close But So Far

September – 2018

After celebrating a full year of living together the realization that we still had a divided house began to sink in. Our Cat Behaviorist had warned us that introducing our cats would be a very slow process. But neither of us expected things would take quite this long. We both agreed that it wasn’t yet time to take down the cat wall, but it was time to start pushing our cats out of their comfort zones.

Our goal was to try to get the cats eating near each other without the barrier in between them. Our first supervised visit didn’t exactly go according to plan.

Using treats, we lured Puddles into the living room, which is Arya & Django’s territory. Arya and Django were focused on the chicken treats and didn’t pay much attention to Puddles. But Puddles quickly became more interested in Arya and Django than her food. In the picture below you can see her abandoning her pink food dish and slowly stalking towards my Savannah Cats.

I made a loud noise that startled Puddles and stopped her in her tracks. My boyfriend then turned to give Puddles some chicken treats. But to our complete surprise, Arya obliviously marched straight up to Puddles and attempted to swipe her treat. She does this all the time to Django.

Puddles was as shocked as we were. She hissed and lifted a paw to swat. Arya quickly scurried away. BUT… Puddles did not chase her! Before things got more out of hand we led Puddles back to her side of the wall and closed the pet gate.

We chalked this first encounter up as a success. If we had tried this several months ago, there’s no doubt things would have ended much worse. We continued having these supervised encounters in the late afternoon when kitties were calm and hungry.

Things were going so well that we began moving the bowls closer and closer together. We made a point to get Puddles back to her side of the wall the second she finished eating her food. We didn’t want to give her any time to redirect her attention to my Savannah Cats.

How’s that for progress? Puddles and Django are within 2 feet of each other and this supervised visit did not end in bloodshed. We plan to continue these visits and hopefully get Arya more involved.