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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 8:53 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Wed Jun 29, 2016 4:03 pm
Posts: 7
Hello
I recently posted here because one of my two 1 year old Bengal sisters had gone missing. happily we found her after 9 days. Her sister was quiet, seemed to be pining, and was more affectionate with us while she was gone. But now she's back, Pickle (always the larger more dominant cat) has been quite rejecting and was at first hostile and hissed at Pebble. It seems as if Pickle has "taken the territory" in her absence. Pebble is mewing for her and clearly missing their cuddles and grooming sessions as they were very affectionate previously. Will this work itself out or does this signal a permanent change? Can I do anything to restore their friendship? They used to play for hours! Pebble has only been back 3 days and is still under the weather so maybe this is having an impact? Thanks for any advice anyone can share.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:24 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:42 pm
Posts: 640
It might well be a good idea to separate them out and give one a safe room again, and introduce them as if they were strangers.

As you say, one has gone off, come back smelling strange and the other has taken the territory in their absence.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:11 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2014 8:11 pm
Posts: 1178
Hi, yes we went through this when Hendrix came home stinking of bins, jagger was terrified when he came home as he didn't recognise him and managed to dismantle the cat flap and take off during the night. He came home but was really not happy at all.

We were lucky, it sorted itself surprisingly quickly, we had feliway plug-ins going anyway to help jagger as he was missing Hendrix, and also bought grooming wipes and gave them both a good clean with those to get their scents the same again.

We kept them separate most of the first day but Hendrix really wanted to be pals again and kept trying to engage jagger in play and he eventually gave in. Within a week they were fine, so don't panic!

You could also get a cloth and wipe pebbles cheeks and then rub that around the house in places she likes hanging out and get her scent around the place again. Our vet gave us this advice when jagger was stressed. It will help pebbles settle back in and also her scent will be around the house for pickles to start accepting her presence again.

They will work it out, it will just take a bit of time.

Good luck!

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Clare
Hendrix and Jagger, Brown Marble Boys (born 18 August 2013)
Hampshire, UK


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 11:18 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8152
Also, remember Pebbles came home with all new smells that are unfamiliar to your other kitty. This is going to take some patience and time. Tabitha has gone through this so she completely understands and knows what works best, so please take her advice. So happy Pebbles is home.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 4:36 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:00 am
Posts: 4147
Location: Portland Oregon, USA
So, some things to keep in mind:

1. Smell is the dominant sense used by cats. So when a cat's smell changes, I don't quite think that it's that other cats don't "recognize" them, but it's upsetting that the other cat smells differently. Perhaps like their "alliegience" has changed or something.

2. Cats "own stuff" including humans. And when they aren't around, their "stuff" becomes up for grabs by the others. So yea, I've frequently seen it where one cat that doesn't seem all that affectionate towards me, becomes much more so when the more affectionate one isn't around (one way or another).

3. When a cat is no longer able to "protect their stuff", they can still lose it to a more able-bodied cat.

So I think you've got three things going on there: a cat who smells different, hasn't been around, AND is sick. Any one of those things would be upsetting to the other cat, but what you have is a triple whammy.

Realistically, cats who go outside on their own are going to have their lives filled with mishaps like this. That's a given. I think the best you can do is to try to do something about the smell. Rub her in towels from the house, and you might even consider a bath *gulp*. Also, going forward, the more that you can make sure one cat isn't monopolizing you, that may help things. If the hostility continues, separating them is a good idea to see if you can calm things down. But their adult relationship is going to be more complicated and difficult than their kitten one in general. so even without all these things going on, they very likely would start quarreling and re-defining their relationship within the next year anyway. So it's going to be something they need to figure out.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 7:17 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2014 8:11 pm
Posts: 1178
There is a new feliway plug-in I still have going even now and it is the 'friends' plug-in. I was always sceptical of these things but I honestly think this works, so may be worth getting one of those to help things along, if things are still bumpy between them.

One other thing, we bought Pod Trackers for each of ours once we found Hendrix. I can now check up on their whereabouts whilst I'm at work, I know where they each like to hang out and you can also set a 'safe zone'. You will then be notified if they go outside that zone. They do need to wear collars so if they don't wear collars already it's worth getting them used to collars first. Hendrix's collar saved his life as he was always losing them, but it was the first time we'd ever been called when someone found it. I wasn't prepared to take the chance of that amount of luck coming our way again!

I hope Pebbles is much better and putting weight back on. Hendrix was missing for 18 days and was incredibly thin on return too. It took a while to get him back up to his normal weight and now he has a food obsession!

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Clare
Hendrix and Jagger, Brown Marble Boys (born 18 August 2013)
Hampshire, UK


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 5:32 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:48 pm
Posts: 217
I'm glad this worked out all right! This kind of situation will happen if one of the cats has to go to the vet as well, so at least you know how to handle it now.


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