Thursday, April 15, 2010

Thank you!

Thank you all for your reassuring comments on the past couple of entries. It's hard not to take Scarlett's angst personally, but I know she's just telling Melly to buzz off. Really, things went a lot more smoothly than I expected!

I trimmed Scarlett's claws this morning and she put up a much bigger fight than usual, growling and writhing, possibly because she had big plans for those claws that I have now thwarted. Oops :)

I am letting Melly run around this morning while I get ready for work, and Scarlett is in the bedroom taking a nap. The bedroom is where Scarlett goes to hide from anything stressful (the vacuum, potential vet trips, guests she doesn't like, etc.) so I'm trying to keep Melly out of there for the most part so Scarlett has an area where she can go and unwind and be free of the little hooligan. She actually does seem to like to keep an eye on Melly, so I think it's only when she's reached a saturation point that she retreats to the bedroom.

Tonight I am going to let both girls out when I get home and just let them do their thing. Geoff will be back, and a good friend of mine from New York is coming for a brief visit, so there will be plenty of people to surreptitiously keep an eye on the kitties.

As you can imagine, this process is bringing back a lot of memories from when Scarlett came home. Here is a picture of Scarlett from about a month after I got her, right after she'd been spayed (note the shaved belly). My sister sent a sparkly pink collar with a tag that said "diva", which Scarlett is proudly modeling.

18 comments:

Katnip Lounge said...

Look at those ears! What a cutie-pie. paws crossed for tonights interaction. A feather toy or treats can smooth the way.

xx Lounge Kats

sue said...

Scarlett is just beautiful. I have high hopes for these girls being great pals ~ not simply tolerant of each other.

Who could resist either one??

Amy and The House of Cats said...

Don't worry it just takes time. They will be fine together eventually. But it is good to only let them out together under supervision for now.

Tanya Sloan said...

I imagine Scarlett feels like an adult woman who all of a sudden came home to find a loud child in her home. It will take time for her to get used to a new living situation, but cats adapt to pretty much any circumstance with enough time, and I think Melly is so gregarious and infectiously happy it won't take long for the ice to thaw.

Heidi said...

Wow -- I just read the whole saga from beginning to end (after coming from the "pitter pats" site), and I don't really have any advice, just wanted to say that I'm rooting for all concerned!! I can definitely see that this would be stressful for everybody, but hopefully the end is in sight!

Rene said...

That photo of Scarlett is so cute!

I think things are going so well at your place. Even Scarlett's hiss in your recent video was mild. I know how it feels--you want everything to work out *now*--but let the cats take the lead and it will happen in time.

Geoff said...

Rene, you're absolutely right about the mildness of Scarlett's hiss. She can be a VERY intimidating beastie. Shortly after moving into this apartment, she would perch on the window sills, which are at ground level. Other neighbor cats would frequently come by to investigate her and Scarlett pretty well managed to scare them all off, sending them running, despite the fact that she was behind glass. After the first time, I turned to Natalie and asked, "Did Scarlett just win a fight THROUGH A WINDOW?!?!?" Natalie, as impressed as I was by what we'd just seen, nodded incredulously and said, "Yeah, I think she just did."

Obviously, she is RATHER capable of stronger, more overt shows of hostility...it seems she's just trying to assert herself and set boundaries with Melly.

Rene said...

Geoff,
Our Tucker is very much like Scarlett, it seems. He wants to assert his "dominance" with the other two cats (or a window visitor, which happened once here too).

In our case, he doesn't really care for our youngest, but they co-exist with the occasional hiss/growl. I think your two are going to be better friends. Are you using a Feliway diffuser where Scarlett primarily is (maybe near the cat tree)? It can really help calm things down. Some Rescue Remedy in their water bowls can help too.

Geoff said...

Rene, I was unaware of either of those products, but am on the Feliway website now and looking into both. Thanks for the tips!

Cynthia M. Suprenant said...

I'm glad things seem to be turning a corner for Scarlett and Melly. I have a feeling that things are going to be okay. Scarlett's life may be different with Melly about (yikes, think of GWTW without Melly!), but I think it will be enhanced and even more interesting.

Is there going to be an Aunt Pittypat in the future now that Geoff has come over so entirely to the dark side? Don't feel too bad, Geoff -- nobody stood a chance against Melly. :)

Love the videos of Melly's nuttiness and Scarlett's relatively gentle rebukes.

sue said...

Geoff ~ Rescue Remedy is a natural flower essence that is available at health food stores and some higher end groceries. Reduces stress and is safe for critters.

I don't know why I didn't think of it. I use it myself. For myself.

I also have a Feliway diffuser in my kitchen as one of my permanent residents was starting to cop an attitude toward another.

Both are excellent products.

*Note to self ~ recommend to adopters.*

Marlene said...

Scarlett is a beauty! Love her ear tips :) She really is a deserving diva!

Anne Boleyn said...

The four of you are too cute to be believed!

Oldcat said...

Sounds like things are going well. I figure that once you know neither side can or will terrorize the other, you might as well leave the doors open.

Since Scarlett is larger, as long as she isn't scared she will be ok. And if you see she isn't bullying the little one unless he deserves it, the kitten will be alright.

I'm going through this myself now, although with a new smaller girl cat joining 2 boy cats about twice her size. Once I saw her chasing the boys off the top floor when they spit at her I figured I could leave the door open. For a while after that, the house was split between the girl and the two boys. Now, they all move around pretty much without an issue.

We were in a bit of a rut. Its been good for all of us, and the new cat too of course.

Patti said...

Both of my girls were at the emergency vet for four days because of ingesting an Easter lily. [NOTE TO ALL WHO DON'T KNOW: ALL LILIES ARE TOXIC TO CATS.] They were in separate cages but at an angle such that they could see each other. Since I brought them home on Sunday, Noodle (the cat I had for almost 2 years prior to getting Olive) has been hissing and swatting at Olive -- like she doesn't know who she is. I have no clue why. They both were at the same place and have to have the same smell. I've been keeping them separated when I'm not here to supervise -- especially since Olive was weak for a couple of days. Noodle is slowly calming down -- I think because she realizes Olive is feeling better and won't take her crap for much longer. I keep telling Noodle that she needs glasses.

All that said, you have people in your corner rooting for you guys -- and kind of going through the same thing. It will get better.

Joanne said...

Scarlett is adorable! She sounds like she's just asserting herself as Top Cat, with a lot of restraint. Sounds like things are going swimmingly.

Patti, the exact same thing happened to my two cats when I brought them to the vet for a checkup. The older cat kept hissing at the younger cat, even though they were in the same vet room for 20 minutes max. I was heartbroken and thought I'd have to reintroduce them again, but within a couple of days all was well.

I figure it's like this-- suppose we saw a friend who a totally different voice; it'd be like the friend was body-snatched! Same thing for the cats-- Olive may look the same, but her normal scent has been replaced by something different (even if Noodle smells the same as well) and that is pretty scary.

kelley said...

what a sweet photo of Scarlett...she'll get used to Melly soon...then they'll gang up on you for snacks and being brushed...

Tanya Sloan said...

Patti and Joanne, that's not uncommon when either or both cats come back from a another place, especially a vet. They smell totally differently to each other for a lot of reasons, their scent glands, hormones, saliva, even litterbox stuff totally changes so they literally become strangers that look like somebody you know to each other. But it should go away quick, Noodle and Olive may need a little more time because they are still cats-in-training - very glad they are back home, whew!!!

Sue - you crack me up, lady. "I don't know why I didn't think of it [Rescue Remedy]. I use it myself. For myself." Glad you approve of it. I got a little bottle in preparation for our first multi-hour car ride, but kitties did so well I never ended up using it. Maybe I'll take some before going to the dentist (for myself). Eeep.