New Kitten Introduction: Week 2

We have just finished week 2 of our new kitten introduction process. — I need your help!!!

Kitten Introduction

We are continuing to fall in love with our new kitten. We finally decided that her name is Elizabeth. This is the very first name we picked for her but went back and forth with many other names.

90% of the time Elizabeth and Cornelius are getting along great. There is zero hissing or growling. Elizabeth the kitten shows no fear of the much larger Cornelius and is constantly following him and trying to play. They will chase each other, play, and even sleep next to each other. The four of us can sleep together in the same bed with peace.

However, when Elizabeth is her most hyper and crazy, the two will play together and I fear that Cornelius is too rough with her. He will bite her and pin her down. It doesn’t seem aggressive and Elizabeth keeps coming back for more. But I feel he is just too rough and strong for her at times. Maybe I am just being over protective. She is just so small I would hate for her to get hurt. At times it almost seems like he is trying to mount her by the way he arches his back and tries to bite the back of her neck. This only seems to happen at dawn and dusk when Cornelius is most active. It could be that he is just asserting his dominance and teaching her his role in the home. Or it could be there is some biological urges coming up even though he was neutered at 7 months of age. What do you think? Have you ever had a neutered male try to mount a kitten?

For this reason I am keeping them separated when we are not home. They each have half of the house to roam then when we get home they are together. Maybe this is an over-reaction on my part. I’m just not sure. If she was bigger I wouldn’t be as concerned. What gives me peace is Elizabeth is in no way showing fear or discontent. She follows Cornelius everywhere. They can eat directly next to each other and Cornelius passively lets her steal his food without concern.

I would love to hear your experience of introducing kittens to cats. What do you think of their behavior? Should I be separating them when they are home alone? Please leave your experience in the comments. Its my first time caring for such a young kitten and would love to hear from others.

* the day after writing this post I caught the sweetest moments of Cornelius grooming Elizabeth. Check out my Instagram account to see the adorable video.

adult cat and kitten

For reference, Elizabeth is now 13 weeks old and weighs 900 grams.

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  1. June 21, 2015 / 9:03 pm

    Having seen many cats and kittens come and go at the vet hosp I work at, it seems like what you are describing is perfectly normal adult cat to kitten behavior. I would not separate them, it may make them (Elizabeth especially) have pent up energy from being confined. Good job on getting the litter box “mistakes” under control the first few days you had her.

    • June 23, 2015 / 9:41 pm

      You were right! They are doing just fine now. Elizabeth has developed more confidence and the rough play is much softer now. I’m so happy.

  2. June 15, 2015 / 7:07 pm

    Great work you’ve done with your two! As already mentioned, if both are quiet when playing, even with Cornelius being more aggressive, all is going as expected. Elizabeth will be able to assert herself more as she gets larger and stronger. We have 2 cats, one is a 14 year old male, the other a much younger female and play similarly to yours as far as who is the “aggressor”. When we first got our female, she always deferred to the male but now that we’ve had them together for a couple of years she’s become much more confident with him and takes NO sass!

    As for the mounting behavior, it isn’t uncommon. It’s related to dominance not sexuality when the cat has been neutered. There are times when they don’t “get everything” and hormones could still be at play but this is extremely rare.

    • June 17, 2015 / 8:11 am

      Thanks for your input, it makes me feel better. It just made me nervous the way he was biting her neck to hold her down. But I think you’re right, I see her gaining more confidence everyday.

  3. June 15, 2015 / 8:21 am

    We haven’t had kittens arriving here at separate times to adult cats so we can’t help – sorry.
    Luv Hannah and Lucy xx xx

  4. June 14, 2015 / 8:55 pm

    We would say : don’t separate them. It looks like they go well along, as there is no hissing or growling. Cornelius is educating her. Just about “mounting” her : does he, …hem…, do the love dance with his hips (oops, but it would really be unusual), or does he just pin her on the floor ? If so, don’t worry ;) Purrs

    • June 17, 2015 / 8:12 am

      It’s more just pinning to the floor with his mouth. I get him to stop then.