My cat is incredibly territorial and sassy. If she smells another cat or dog on me, she will pee or even poop on my bed in protest. I’ve been considering adopting a second cat, but am afraid of what my current cat might do. Is getting a second cat completely out of the question? What would you recommend?
Ayounger kitten may be less threatening to your existing cat, as the younger kitty may still be exploring its environment and hence less likely to quickly establish its territory. You can try introducing the new and old cats in a foreign environment, away from your home. If this is not possible, introduce them in an area that is seldom used by the existing cat. Try using feline pheromones such as Feliway diffusers to ease the process. Place them at the new interaction spot for a couple of days before the cats meet for the first time. In addition, you may drip a few drops of lavender essential oil on a small piece of cotton or cloth and place it in the room.
Introduce the cats to each other before they even meet by transferring their scents. Rub pieces of cloth over their heads, cheeks and chins—these areas secrete oils with their individual scents. Subsequently, interchange the cloths and rub the fabric with the other feline’s odour on each cat and their respective living environments such as their beds and regular hangout spots. Do this for a few days prior to introducing the cats.
You can try to remove or reduce the aroma of the present cat from her environment by washing your bedlinen and cleaning the house. Add sodium bicarbonate to the cleaning solution and mop water.
On the day of introduction, place each feline in a pet carrier. Have the carriers face each other to allow them to see and smell each other. Gradually open the carrier and leave the door slightly ajar. Let them emerge from the carriers at their own pace and observe their reactions to each other. You may need to repeat this a few times a day or on consecutive days. Try feeding them simultaneously while they are in the same room. Try playing some soothing music to reduce their anxiety.
If your cat is very aggressive or objects strongly, bring your cat to the vet to discuss this issue. Anti-anxiety or calming medications may help your current cat become less anxious and more amenable to accepting the newcomer.