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Why Do My Cats Hate Each Other?!

Pet Peeves: My Cats Are Out to Kill Each Other!

Uh-oh! Here's a question submitted by PetSugar reader devee in the Pet Peeves group:

Hello: I have two female, spayed, indoor-only cats that have gotten along fine for the past 2.5 years. One is a 6- or 7-year-old rescue and the other is a 2.5-year-old that I've had from five weeks old. They have never gotten in a more serious fight than a quick swat over a toy, snack or napping spot.

For the last two weeks, the younger cat has been unusually aggressive and will attack (with very violent intent) the other one any time they are both loose in the house. I've been keeping them separated as much as possible but the younger cat is not cooling down — at all. I don't know what is causing this and I am going crazy trying to keep them from hurting each other. The only major change in our lives was a move about four months ago, but they were fine and seemed to have handled the transition well.

Has anyone experienced this before? Or can anyone offer any suggestions for how to make my girls besties again?

Remember we're here for you, too! Share your tips in comments, then submit your own burning pet questions in the forum or vent about problems in the Pet Peeves group, too.

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Lynn3582712 Lynn3582712 4 years
Hi i have just got a 8 year old female 3 weeks ago and she is very violent to my 9 mth old female cat that ive had since she was 6 wks,she attacks her most of the time sometimes like a ragdoll,also she dosent let the kitten eat her food even though i feed them at the same time the older cat eats alot i feed them in seperate rooms but the older cat goes to the others and attacks the kitten also myself if i try to get her away,she dosent even let her in my room to sleep,my kitten is terrified even the dog,what do i do please help
cutelittlenemo1 cutelittlenemo1 5 years
Also, I am a member of the Animal Lovers Forum, you should try going there aswell they are very helpful.
cutelittlenemo1 cutelittlenemo1 5 years
They are so precious!! omg I think if you separate them and turn the lights off that will help. My family owned pet stores when I was younger so I have a lot of experience in this.
kamm kamm 6 years
My son brought home a fixed female cat in December. She is extremely affectionate towards humans, but she constantly attacks my older female cat who is also fixed. I've tried spraying, seperating, and using crates to keek them seperated. However, the younger cat has escaped the crate, and got into the bathroom, just to get to the older cat. The new cat is not playing she has drawn blood, and attacks her while she using the litter. She sits outside doors like a guard while the older cat in safely locked up just to antagonize her. I have to get up in the middle of the night just to swap cats from the crate. How do I handle houdini?
devee devee 6 years
Thank you all so much for the feedback! I'm relieved that others have had this issue and have been able to work through it. I'm going to start letting them out together while I'm home so they can start to re-acclimate. I have noticed during the last several days that keeping them apart seems to ratchet up the tension (the aggressive one will sit outside the door to the room where the other is kept and intimidate her by making noise). I have been using the Feliway diffusers for a few months now and they were working really well to cut down on normal squabbling, but it doesn't seem to be strong enough for this situation. I'll keep my fingers crossed that no one gets injured. Again, thank you all for taking the time to share your advice and experiences!
juicebox07 juicebox07 6 years
"2) Younger cat coming of age - Some cats when they hit around the 3 yr old mark, give or take a year or two, they tend to want to become more dominant. Therefore, they start becoming more territorial and more aggressive to kinda show the older cat - HEY IM BOSS NOW." I have a 10 year old female cat, and a 10 month old male cat. He attacks my older cat a lot. Sometimes it's just to play, but sometimes it's very aggressively. I think your explanation is probably the reason why. Even though he's only approaching the 1 year mark, ever since I got him, he's tried to act dominant. (Probably because he's male). Sometimes he even jumps on the older cat just to make her get up from where she's resting so that he can take that spot.
isahrangme isahrangme 6 years
i have two female, spayed, indoor-only cats. i haven't had such a problem like this before. they're only about 15 months old (not the same litter though), so i guess i have a lot of time to see if this will eventually happen... :[ but i've read somewhere that you do NOT want to separate them. that will only make them MORE tense and so when you get them together again, they'll still fight basically, what i read was that you should let them fight? until a point where one gets injured... i think... bah sorry i am no help, but you should definitely search around online, or ask your vet! that'll help i'm sure! also, maybe the younger cat is starting to feel like "i want to be the more dominant cat" and so wants to fight to establish a new hierarchy? if it isn't already the dominant cat good luck! (sorry this was pretty useless)
fuzzles fuzzles 6 years
OK, I'm only writing this because I have a new year's death wish that the Dog Whisperer will kick my ass in to January. Then again, my cats have trained me well, so he can sit and spin. *filing claws* You've got to catch them in the act. Calmly stay as far away as possible. Then, conjure up your best Pacino voice when you say...KNOCK. THAT. SHIT. OFF. NOW!!!!!! Trust me. They will listen. And if you are lucky, they will protect one another when at the evil vet's office. ;)
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