Two New Friends For Sadie

by Kim
(Madison, WI)




I'll be staying with a friend soon for a few months. She owns two female cats. My cat, Sadie, is also female. This we are not concerned with.

My question is his cats have been known to "go to the bathroom" wherever they please in the house. Sadie is a VERY well-behaved 2 1/2 year old who has NEVER left me a present, be that hairballs, poo or vomit.

She has only interacted with other animals once before. She hid from them as they hissed and scratched at her. Do you think she'll pick up on their bad behavior and resent me for putting her through this???


Hi, Kim,

In all honesty, this will not be Sadie's favorite part of her life:

(1)Cats do not like to go anywhere. They like to stay home in very familiar surroundings.

(2)Cats also do not, as a rule, like other cats. Over time, with supervision, cats can adjust to each other and sometimes become very good friends.

So that's two strikes.

(3)The third strike is that yes, even the most well-behaved of cats, will sometimes copy the behavior of other cats, or will be attracted to the scent of urine outside the box and start going there also, or Stress alone, caused by the first two items at the beginning of my answer, will often cause cats to begin urinating or defecating in inappropriate locations.

That being said, many of us have to, at times, move with our cats, introduce them to new cats, and subject them to other changes they are not so happy about. If you take the proper steps, it can usually work.

One suggestion is to introduce the other cats to Sadie gradually. Keep them in separate rooms when they are not being directly supervised.

Make sure your have familiar objects, familiar smells in the room where Sadie will first spend her time BEFORE she gets there.

Give her extra attention for the first few days, including petting, grooming, treats, toys, catnip, etc.

Try to clean any previously soiled areas thoroughly and repeatedly including the usage of a specific cat urine odor eliminator.

As far as resentment, I don't think cats experience resentment. I don't think they "get even" with us. I'm sure your kitty will continue to love you and will make it through this time with minimal distress as long as you comfort her and give lots of affection and take some of the above precautions.

Thank you and best of luck,
Dr. Neely