I am posting this question for my mom...I think she is going to join the site, but I told her I was going to post...she has a 6 year old fixed female cat Chloe..she has always been a very timid cat. she hides when people come over and usually won't come out...the problem is, my mom just added a shih tzu puppy to her mix. Chloe is in complete hiding and hasn't ate or drank anything since Saturday when they brought Maggy home...My mom is really worried that Chloe is going to starve herself and not come out. She is hiding in the basement, with her food and water, but still won't eat. My mom has tried to bring her up, but as soon as she sees or hears Maggy she runs downstairs....Does anyone have any suggestions on how to help the transition? She doesn't want to take Maggy back and doesn't want to get rid of Chloe...She is really torn and upset...thanks guys... P.S. I told my mom what a great site this is....thanks...
maxpup, reactions can vary from cat to cat, obviously a cat who has spent many years in a dogless family is going to generally find it harder to accept a new puppy. When we bought our first puppy home, the oldest cat, fluffy was very put out, he was the natural leader of the four cats and he definitely felt that the puppy was trying to usurp his position. It may help if you rub the puppy with a towel and leave in an area frequented by the cat and can get used to the smell of the dog. It would help probably crating the dog for short periods or alternatively tell your mum to try a baby safety gate so the puppy is limited to where he can go and leaving an area where the cat feels safe in. I made a big fuss of fluffy when we first got Max and made a point not to let the dog up on the furniture where the cat would go so that he could still feel "special". The same happened with the second puppy, although the cats where by then used to having a dog around, the puppys natural enthusiasm was a bit overpowering for all of the cats to start with, whilst the puppy just wanted to play the cats didn't quite see it that way. I made sure their time together to start with was limited and never let them together unless I was present to be on the safe side. Its a matter of being patient and letting the animals deal with each other in their own way and in their own time. Best of luck.
Maxpup, tell your Mom her cat will not starve herself. It will take at least 3 -4 weeks for her to realize the puppy isn't going to kill her. I would make her some places up high where she can glare down at the puppy, and keep the basement as a refuge for now. I've rescued some cats that had never seen a Boston, and I thought one of them had escaped. I found him in a closet, but he had been coming out at night when the dogs were sleeping.It took him a very long time to become accustomed to the dogs, and even the other cats.Good luck to your Mom. The cat will be fine.
Hi all, and thanks for the replies. This is maxpup's mom and Chloe is coming out of her hiding - but only in the basement when we go down and coax her out. She rubs on us and wants the attention but the whole time her eyes are watching up the stairs - afraid the pup is coming down to her safe haven. She ate a few bites of food and a few treats, but has herself in such an emotional mess that she later threw up. But she is acting a bit better. She does have several high places (her own very high condo) in the upstairs level of our ranch home but will not come out of the basement. She has always run to the basement any time any one comes in the house and doesn't come back up for hours after they leave. The puppy is crated at night so maybe soon she will wander up at night - once she realizes the puppy is not going anywhere. Until then, we will go downstairs several times a day to give Chloe her needed attention. I'll update later and any suggestions are very much appreciated. Thanks. Maggieshouse
Hi mom...welcome to the forum...You will get great advice and comfort. I am glad Chloe is acting better. I know how worried you were this morning when I talked to you...Keep going down and encouraging her with positive things...
Well good morning all, Chloe has now eaten half her food and we go downstairs several times a day. This morning when I went down she came out of hiding as soon as she heard me coming down. She's used her litter box and seems to be a bit calmer. Still no venture upstairs but I guess that will come. Thanks to all and we'll update later. Maggieshouse
Best of Luck Maggieshouse! Glad it's getting better. Cats are funny that way. Any type of change and they will let you know they do not appreciate it. But they just need time to adjust and usually they get over it. When I brought my dog home the cats I had at the time were 7 and 8 years old and he was 2 years old. The cats hid for DAYS! But eventually they figured out that he was there to stay and they reached a point of mutual "respect" and he learned to leave them alone and they learned to live their lives with him in the way. LOL Just keep Chloe's claws trimmed in case she takes a whack at that puppy to show her who is the boss.
Well hello all....time for an update. Maggie has been here for one week now and Chloe remains in the basement. However, she is now eating her normal amount, greets us at the basement stairs when we go down, loves the attention and wants us to scratch her. They both had vet appts. yesterday, but we made separate times - took the puppy in the morning and back later with Chloe. She was due for her yearly shots and we started her with the Sentinel 6 month heartworm shots. She never had those before since she has never been outside, but now Maggie is out so we needed to protect both. The vet says Chloe is fine, very healthy and since she has always been a "basement hiding" cat, that is her safety zone. We don't allow Maggie to go down but hopefully they will meet each other "personally" in due time. Thanks everyone for your encouragment - I'll be happy when Chloe returns to the upstairs. She has a great high condo in front of the big picture window and she always enjoyed laying up there and looking out at the birds, etc. Once she comes up she will realize the puppy won't be able to reach her. Maggieshouse
Maggieshouse: I am have the same situation here, except I have 5 cats and 1 elderly dog and 1 new puppy. I received Rodney the Chiweenie for my birthday. We have had him about 1 month now and he is so active that the cats and old dog are stunned. Old lady Ginger is just now starting to play a bit, but more often growls at him. The cats just run and hide. It has taken them all this time to just come down from upstairs to eat and drink while the puppy is awake. I know what you are going thru, but hang in there, it will get better. After all, the puppy will grow up sooner or later!
As you know, Maggieshouse is my mom...Chloe is actually doing very well. She loves having the basement to herself. She comes upstairs in the kitchen and will lay on the rug when Maggie is sleeping. My mom is so happy that they are tolerant of each other. Chloe and Maggie were both at the vet and were doing wonderful. I hope your situation gets better...your right, just hang in there and things will improve with love and time..