A new tail
Helo had three other brothers and sisters, all of them grey tabbies, and it was a toss-up between him and one of his sisters. Both were cuddly and affectionate, but we figured having another boy would be nice. A kitten is the best way to acclimatize our current cat – Iris the tuxedo – to her own species. Iris was a barn-rescue, left behind by accident when her mother and siblings moved. She’s under-sized, and a little anti-social, but since I’ve known her, she’s warmed up to humans considerably. And she’s quite relaxed around dogs.
We worked consistently in the first week to get Iris acclimatized to Helo and vice versa. I tried using towels to let them smell each other without being in the same room, but letting them stare at each other through a mostly closed door worked better. We borrowed a baby gate and started feeding them wet food on either side, and that made some great in-roads. The wet food was a bonus for both of them: Helo was still pretty tiny and could use the extra protein, and Iris had been hiding and not eating or drinking as much.
They had their first acceptable meeting purely by accident; I wasn’t fast enough to keep Iris from hopping the baby gate. We supervised their first several interactions, and once we were confident there wasn’t going to be fur flying, we let them have the run of the house. Iris was more than happy, she didn’t like having to be restrained to one part of the house or another. Helo enjoyed not having to be locked in the room while we were out. They started playing with each other – or rather Helo started playing with Iris who would bat him away – and establishing boundaries. Helo will submit, belly up, if he knows he’s pushed Iris too far.
We’ve only had one recorded instance of both cats sleeping on the bed with us, but Helo is starting to nap more on the bed when Iris is also there. Helo is moving closer inch by inch each time, and Iris seems to be quite comfortable. When we sleep, Iris tends to stay in the living room or on her cat-tree, while Helo sleeps on our pillows and apparently has to be touching my head as we all sleep.
He is now around 14-15 weeks old, and he’s grown quite a bit. It will be interesting to see how big he gets, and how Iris deals with that.
–Kiyoshi “The Prototype”
Your #1 Canadian eh?