Saturday, February 09, 2008

A Slight Fly in the Ointment

Baby Jake is home but my boys James(l) and Nick(r) aren't thrilled.
Funny thing, when I brought Baby James into the household seven years ago, he was greeted by my older cat Bart, who welcomed him with great affection and gentility.
One day, my aged, ailing Bart ran off, presumably to die in dignity.
James was only 3-years-old and he pined for Bart so much I decided to get him a new companion. Enter Baby Nick, who was the furriest little daredevil maniac kitten ever.
They were fast friends.
Fastidious James, a gentle 16-pounder, would pin messy baby Nicky down and lick him all over until he was clean and damp. Baby Nick learned to repay the favor.
Now that Nick is 3-years-old, he's also at the 16 pound mark. He and James play together lovingly.
Having already reared three polite, kindly male kitties, I figured the addition of Baby Jake would be a breeze.
I figured wrong.
It seems Nick does not like suddenly being the middle child. He was puffed up and pouting all day yesterday. He hissed so much when he saw me holding Baby Jake, I had to put Jake back in the bathroom and rush to Nick's side to comfort him. Ha! Nick hasn't been this angry and hurt since I gave him that haircut last summer. He was inconsolable, and could barely wolf down the canned Iams chicken I gave him.
I figured James, being a mature 7-year-old, would react more kindly to Baby Jake.
I figured wrong.
I can count on one hand the times James has puffed up and hissed at anything. Three of those fingers occurred yesterday--once when he saw me holding Baby Jake, twice when he discovered me playing with Baby Jake in bed and thrice when I'd put Jakie back in the bathroom and sought out James to console him.
Meanwhile, little Jake is still so babyish, he didn't bat an eyelash at the big boys' reaction.
But he did puff up when he saw himself this morning in a full length mirror.
Oh, well. What I plan to do is stay cool and wait for nature to take its course, knowing that my cats are curious enough to eventually want to smell the baby and maybe take a lick or two of his little kitten fuzz.


deb said...

If you have a cat or dog kennel, Baby Jake can be in the same room with the big boys. They'll have time to smell him and get used to him. After they're used to him, you can bring him out again for a trial visit. (That's how beekeepers do it. If they need a new queen for a hive, they let the other bees smell her while she's in a little protective cage. Then, when they're used to her, she's added to the hive.)

Karen Zipdrive said...

Good advice.
I thought about that option, but I wanted to wait a day or two so Jake could get used to me and the house a little better first.
He's really getting tired of the bathroom though. He tried to escape this morning, and he's very fast.

karenzipdrive said...

I put little Jake in his cat carrier and set it down on the kitchen floor.
Nick hissed and puffed up while James hid.
Baby Jake used his tiny paws to jimmy open the trap door and escape! I caught him right away and had to put him in the spare bedroom because he was so pissed off about being locked in the bathroom.
Now he's happy exploring the bedroom and the Big Boys are calm again, after I bribed them with Iams canned chicken feast.
It's like trying to negotiate peace between the Sunnis and Shites around here.

Julien Sharp said...

Wow - keep us posted!
(who would LOVE to add a second dog or a cat to the family, but is worried about what existing prince of dogdom would do...)

karenzipdrive said...

I tried to take a little nap on the couch in the spare bedroom to keep the baby company, but Jake has the energy of a Capuchin monkey and claws like tiny sewing machine needles.
He has no boundaries!
I have teeny scratches all over my arms, legs, feet and head.
When I'd nod off he'd jump from the floor to my head, then peel out again.
I don't think he sleeps. EVER.

Lulu Maude said...

Gee... and you waited two extra weeks to bring him home!

Guess kittens will be kittens.

karenzipdrive said...

Sunday: Making progress...
Baby Jake is still sequestered in the spare bedroom, but Nick has taken up a position in the hall outside the bedroom. He lays there listening to Jake mewing, and he's not puffed up.
He did growl when he saw me watching him, but I think that was more for effect than anything.
James did not sleep in the crook of my arm last night, as is his custom, and he kept his attempts to groom my hair at a minimum.
Fucking cats are like a bunch of lesbians! All this drama.

dguzman said...

OMG, I'm loving the updates! I haven't had a kitten in soooo long. We adopted our girls as adults.

I'm sure the divas will get over this affront to their dominance--it'll just take a year or two.

"He was inconsolable, and could barely wolf down the canned Iams chicken I gave him"--no wonder he's tipping the scales at 16lbs! hee hee hee! (but I spoil my fat kitty the same way)

Karen Zipdrive said...

My boys aren't fat per se, they just have large frames and the kind of fat that comes from living indoors and having their meals catered on a daily basis.
Okay, okay, they are a little on the fat side, but they also have a lot of muscle.