A year and a half ago we adopted a second hand cat, one who was apparently not very successful in his original home. Pye, (originally Charlie,) was shy and timid when we first brought him home but after a year of giving him space and indulgent but not overtly fussy attention, he has become comfortable and at ease in our home.
Three weeks ago we adopted a kitten. It has been a long time since we’ve had a kitten – over 20 years. I forget how tiny and how playful they are. Tilly, (a name we came to after much contemplation), was kept in our extra room as we slowly introduced Pye to the vision of her company.
At first he would just run and hide from her gazing at us from dark hidey holes with yellow eyes that meowed “traitor!” Of course Tilly was oblivious to it all just seeing our feet and his tail as play objects to follow and pounce upon. But as Pye became more assertive around her, she became more aware and respectful of his presence as another fur person.
Visitors for a weekend to our condo meant our spare room became occupied and we released Tilly to Pye’s turf on a full time basis. Now we are seeing that although he still runs from her occasionally, he will also go looking for her ready to engage in her frenetic play. Luckily Pye is not too terribly territorial about his rest spots or his cat box. And she is will let him lick her bowl clean. (I didn’t realize kittens need to eat twice as much as adult cats!)
So this is what I’ve learned from watching my two different cats:
patience and love go a long way to comfort the uncomfortable
respect is a first step to friendship
if you are given what you need, you are more willing to share whatever you have