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NancyH, Cat Health, Behavior, Care Expert
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 31958
Experience:  30+ years cat owner, rescue, breeding, study of behavior & health care
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cats: layla groomed because of matted fur.

Customer Question

I have two cats Manson and Layla. These cats got along pretty well for well over three years. I had Layla groomed because of matted fur. He has been groomed before with some problems with Manson not liking it, but she soon got over it. I painted my bathroom,did some spring cleaning an tookup some old carpet an waxed the hardwood floor, after that Manson became more an more agressive toword Layla. I now have them separated, Layla in the master bed   room. How can I make them be friends again?

thanks, Jim
Submitted: 11 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  JoAnne replied 11 years ago.
I found this information for you hope this helps!

I also think that your cat may be being territorial because of the recent changes maybe Manson is aggrivated by the hard wood floor being polished it can be quite slippery.

This type of aggression is directed toward another animal that didn’t initially provoke the behavior. For example, a household cat sitting in the window may see an outdoor cat walk across the front yard. Because he can’t attack the outdoor cat, he may instead turn and attack the other family cat that’s sitting next to him in the window. Redirected aggression can be either offensive or defensive in nature.

What You Can Do
If your cat’s behavior changes suddenly, your first step should always be to contact your veterinarian for a thorough health examination. Cats often hide symptoms of illness until they’re seriously ill. Any change in behavior may be an early indication of a medical problem.
Spay or neuter any intact pets in your home. The behavior of one intact animal can affect all of your pets.
Start the slow introduction process over from the beginning (see our handout: "Introducing Your New Cat to Your Other Pets"). You may need professional help from an animal behavior specialist to successfully implement these techniques.
In extreme cases, consult with your veterinarian about medicating your cats while you’re working with them on a behavior modification program. Your veterinarian is the only person who is licensed and qualified to prescribe any medication for your cats. Don’t attempt to give your cat any over-the-counter or prescription medication without consulting with your veterinarian. Animals don’t respond to drugs the same way people do, and a medication that may be safe for a human could be fatal to an animal. Keep in mind that medication, by itself, isn’t a permanent solution, and should only be used in conjunction with behavior modification.
What Not To Do
If your cats are fighting, don’t allow the fights to continue. Because cats are so territorial, and because they don’t establish firm dominance hierarchies, they won’t be able to "work things out" as dogs sometimes do. The more often cats fight, the worse the problem is likely to become. To stop a fight in progress, make a loud noise, such as blowing a whistle, squirting the cats with water, or throwing something soft at them. Don’t try to pull them apart.
Prevent future fights. This may mean keeping the cats totally separated from each other while you’re working on the problem, or at least preventing contact between them in situations likely to trigger a fight.
Don’t try to punish the cats involved. Punishment is likely to elicit further aggression and fearful responses, which will only make the problem worse. If you attempt punishment, you may become a target for redirected and defensive aggression.
Because their social organization is somewhat flexible, some cats are relatively tolerant of sharing their house and territory with multiple cats. It’s not uncommon for a cat to tolerate some cats, but not get along with others in the house. However, the more cats sharing the same territory, the more likely it is that some of your cats will begin fighting with each other.

When you introduce cats to each other, one of them may send "play" signals which can be misinterpreted by the other cat. If those signals are interpreted as aggression by one of the cats, then you should handle the situation as "aggressive."

The factors that determine how well cats will get along together are not fully understood. Cats that are well-socialized (they had pleasant experiences with other cats during kittenhood) will likely be more sociable than those that haven’t been around many other cats. On the other hand, "street cats" that are in the habit of fighting with other cats in order to defend their territory and food resources, may not do well in a multi-cat household. Genetic factors also influence a cat’s temperament, so friendly parents are probably more likely to produce friendly offspring.
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Joann Canafax's Post: Hello
You didn`t tell me anything more than I already know. Its not a fight as much as it is a run off. Manson chases Layla into a corner or behind a door then hisses at him an just stays there. Manson is much more athletic than Layla. I have taken Manson for rides in the car. I have put the same grooming spray on both of them to give them the same scent, but the problem still remains. Manson has gotten a bit more loveing toword my wife. One thing that does work is to keep them apart. I also read that there is no guarentees for this problem. I firmly beleive this is true. Will this problem ever just go away on its own?
thanks, Jim
Expert:  NancyH replied 11 years ago.
It sometimes helps to use Feliway cat appeasing pheromone spray in the house to diminish aggression between cats.
It is supposed to induce a friendly or calm
feeling in cats. It seems to work in many cases where the cats that have lived together become aggressive.
You can get it in pet supply stores or online.
It may help to switch the areas that they are being kept in, so that each cat gets used to the other one's presence again gradually.
You may also find an anti anxiety medication from your vet will help calm everything down for the aggressive cat and bring it back to the way it was.

Hope this helps you!

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