A state of armed feline neutrality

Our new Blogorado kitten, nicknamed Ashbutt (the pictures demonstrate why!), spent his first 48 hours at his new home largely in seclusion in the guest bedroom, to give our existing cat, Kili, time to sniff his scent under the door, object angrily (and vocally) to the presence of another cat, and generally make her indignation known.

Miss D. took him to the vet yesterday morning, to get a checkup and his initial shots.  The vet reckons he’s only about eight weeks old, a bit younger than we thought, but still more than old enough to come home with us, particularly since his mother is unknown and he was hand-raised by the FarmFamily.  (According to Miss D., he does not like rectal thermometers and needles.  I can’t say I blame him!)

Miss D. slept in the spare bedroom with him on his first night here, and I did so last night, to make sure he didn’t feel abandoned and lonely.  (Up until now he’s had the company of thirty-odd barn cats and a few other kittens every night and day, so to be left entirely alone might have been a bit traumatic for him.)  Kili, of course, was not pleased by this development.  She’s used to joining both of us on our bed, sleeping between us, and to have one half of her sleeping buttresses removed was definitely not to her taste.  Nevertheless, although her displeasure at the interloper remains very strong, she yowled and hissed a lot less over the past day or so.

This morning we decided to let the kitten wander the house more freely, albeit with one or both of us in attendance to make sure no cat-fights ensued.  Kili observed the intruder from on top of her cat tree, growling whenever it got too close, but not jumping down to boss it around.  She even tolerated it climbing up on Miss D.’s chest when she sat down in our recliner, and having a nap there.  I suspect her armed neutrality will continue for some days, perhaps a week or two, but I think they’ll negotiate a moderately amicable settlement in due course.  I hope they’ll be good company for each other.



  1. Awwww. My 9-year-old kitty has been through babysitting a couple of kittens for friends and a new puppy– she pretty immune to change now. Hopefully yours will be adaptable too.

  2. He's adorable 🙂 Sounds like he will fit in nicely. I am so much looking forward to the day I can have a kitten again.

  3. Ashbutt is definitely older than 8 weeks. He was a bottle baby that we found and was pretty starved down till we got some goodies in him. He is definitley smaller than he "should" be at this point but will probably catch up at some point. I'm just glad he has a wonderful loving home. I kinda get attached to my bottle babies and want a better life for them than barn cat. Glad you are enjoying him and I will get to see him and keep up with him.

  4. Hopefully they will get along well soon, but don't be surprised if all you get is a somewhat peaceful truce from Kili for some time. We have a cat that found us about 5 yrs ago and now we also have a younger cat (Simon) that we got about 2 yrs ago.

    The older cat (Chelsea) didn't care for him much at all, with a lot of hissing and the occasional benign bat here and there. But slowly she has warmed up to him, being more tolerant of his presence little by little, allowing him to be closer and closer. And not too long ago they actually engaged in some good play time, chasing each other around the house in what was clearly play and not aggression.

    And last night they actually both slept in the same room all night, which is something that Chelsea could never abide before. She just couldn't relax that much with him nearby. I'm expecting that they'll eventually be laying side by side, and maybe even sooner than I had hoped for.

    So don't give up, unless they are seriously aggressive, of course.

  5. Yup! Ashbutt fits! Cute cat, hope the kitty merger works out. We just took in a stray who is a bit of a terror.

  6. Introducing new cats to older cats involves a couple of things. Depending on the sex of the two cats. If the both cats are female, the older cat will seek to establish dominance over the younger female; cat society is matriarchal if you didn't know, and your wife will generally be be recognized as the leader of the pride.
    If the both are males, same thing.
    It gets a little more complicated if they are different sexes. If the older cat is male, he wants to establish his position as being more important to the alpha male(that's you, Peter), and so will seek to dominate slightly. Other way around and the older female just doesn't like her routine being upset by a new male being added to the pride. A older male will generally warm up to a new addition sooner that an older female just because. And of course the kitten just wants to play with hs new pride members, heh, heh, heh.

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