Cat Aggression: House Cat Versus House Cat

By Valdette Muller| July 2, 2018 | Blog

No one can truly know how a situation will play out once you introduce your cat to another cat.

Some cats are more territorial than others. These cats may never adjust to sharing their house, and may do best in a one-cat family.

However, many aggressive problems between cats can be successfully resolved. To do this, you may need help, both from your veterinarian and from an animal behaviour specialist who is knowledgeable in cat behaviour.

Cats with aggression problems may never be best friends, but can often learn to mutually tolerate each other with a minimum of conflict.

Working with aggression problems between family cats will take time and commitment from you.

Don’t give up without consulting with an expert.

Reasons for Cat on Cat aggression in the house hold.

There are several reasons that cats might not get along.

Under socialisation:

The most common reason is that of under socialisation. This stems from a lack of experiences with other cats early in life. If your cat grew up as the only cat, with little or no contact with other felines, they may react strongly when finally introduced to another cat. This may result from a fear of the unknown, or due to a lack of feline social skills.

Cats tend to prefer consistency over change:

Your cat may dislike the disruption to their routine and environment. This is especially true if the change involves a newcomer to your cat’s well-established territory.

Cats are an incredibly territorial species:

While a great deal of cats have overlapping territories, most of these cats prefer to keep a good distance away from their neighbours. Two unrelated males or two unrelated females may have a particularly hard time sharing their space within a close proximity.

Feline personality clash and changes in maturity:

In some cases, cats get along just fine until something scary or unpleasant happens, such as a firework going of or the other cat coming home with the odour of the veterinary clinic. The other cat can go into defensive mode and can associate in the other cat in the house with something bad or scary. In other cases, relationships change as certain cats mature with age. If one cat reaches the age of one to three years old and then trouble brews, social maturation may become a much bigger factor then many realise.

How to manage your cat’s aggression.

Never let the cats “fight it out!” Cats don’t resolve their issues through fighting and hurting each other. Fighting usually just gets worse over time and can cause injury to one or both cats. This can lead to expensive vet bills.

Interrupt aggression with a loud clap of your hands or spray from a water spray bottle. Refrain from getting your hands caught between the fighting cats, otherwise you may get bitten or scratched up badly.

Neuter your cats. Males are particularly prone to aggressive behaviour if not neutered.

Separate their resources. If you know your cats do not like each other, make sure they each have their own things. This way it helps reduce competition between the two cats. Provide multiple, and identical food bowls, beds and litter boxes in different areas of your house.

Provide additional perches. More hiding spots and perches will allow your cats to have their own space for themselves away from the other cats.

Don’t try to calm or soothe your aggressive cat. Just leave your cat alone and give your worked up cat their space. If you come close, your cat could turn and redirect their aggression toward you.

Always reward desired behaviour. Praise or toss treats to reward your cats when you see them interacting in a friendly manner.

Pheromones. You can purchase a product that mimics a natural cat odour. This odour is something that humans cannot smell, but it does help reduce tension. Use a diffuser for the duration of the treatment.

 

Sources: https://www.paws.org/library/cats/behavior/aggression/

https://www.petfinder.com/cats/cat-problems/cat-aggression-part-1/

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