Cats are territorial creatures. This is something all cat parents know really well. Another thing about cats is that they are creatures of habit. Therefore, they follow some simple rules and respect the hierarchy in the community. Knowing these facts it is safe to assume that cats are not big fans of new family members, especially if the new member is another feline. Since it is entering a hostile environment, the newcomer is likely to experience extensive bullying. We are offering some useful tips if you are wondering how to stop my cat from bullying my other cat.
Why Is My Cat Bullying My Other Cat?
There are several reasons to why is my cat bullying my other cat, and here are the most common causes.
Territory and personal possessions
As mentioned, cats are highly territorial. They know what is theirs and do not like sharing. This concept involves more than just the territory. It also involves litter boxes, cat beds, and food bowls. So, the reason why is your cat bullying your other cat can be to establish itself higher in the hierarchy and claim possession over everything.
Human attention and affection
A cat can turn to bully techniques to get your attention. Another reason why is your cat bullying your other cat can be if there are not enough forms of mental and physical stimulations in the environment. It should be noted that highly energetic cats are often mistakenly labeled as bullies when in fact, they are just lacking motivation.
This is particularly common in intact cats of the same gender, like between two males or between two females. Cases of sexual frustration followed by bullying can easily escalate into hard-to-control aggression.
How can I tell if my cat is bullying my other cat?
Bouncing, chasing and even the occasional hissing and swatting are considered normal. But, is My Cat Bullying My Other Cat? Knowing the difference between normal cat behavior and bullying is of paramount importance. You cannot intervene and solve the problem if you are not aware of its existence in the first place. Learning how to read your cat’s body language can be quite helpful. Here are some signs that will help you determine does your cat bully your other cat.
Your superior-feeling cat is likely to attack the other cat without provocations and for no obvious reasons. For example, the inferior cat can be calmly sleeping in the corner of the bed and suddenly receive a strong slap on the head. This is pure bullying.
If your previously housetrained cat starts peeing or pooping in unusual and inappropriate places, chances are it is being bullied by your other cat. The bullied cat may be afraid of using the litter box or simply be unable to control its needs due to fear and trauma.
Preferring being lonely
If you and one of your cats are playing or cuddling while the other is observing from a safe distance, chances are it is too afraid to engage in interaction. This fear is almost always based on previous negative experiences when trying to interact with the other cat.
How to stop my cat from bullying my other cat? – vol. 1
Knowing how to stop your cat from bullying your other cat makes the difference between a quiet night at home and a stressful trip to the vet’s emergency room. So, here we have listed some simple yet efficient ways of stopping your cat’s bullying behavior.
This is often described as the most efficient bullying prevention method, especially in cats of the same gender. Plus, you are contributing to the population control plan and decreasing the risk of spreading sexually transmitted diseases among cats.
Follow the, plus one, rule
This rule states that you should always have more cat items than cats. For example, if you have two cats, you need three litter boxes, three cat beds, and three food and water bowls. If you have three cats, you need four litter boxes, beds, and bowls.
Add more territory
Lack of personal space is a common bullying trigger. A cat that is satisfied with its territory is less likely to engage in bullying activities. The best way of adding more territory to your house is by investing in cat trees, hammocks, and vertical cat toys.
Back to basics
If nothing works, it is best to get back to basics. Just assume your two cats are complete strangers and start by re-introducing them. This means sequestering the bullying cat and giving freedom of location choice to the bullied cat before making the official introduction.
How to stop my cat from bullying my other cat? – vol. 2
Knowing what not to do when dealing with a bullying cat is as important as knowing what to do. Here are some important tips:
- Never try separating your cats with your bare hands. This can be dangerous for you and both of your cats.
- Do not use calming medications without consulting with your trusted vet. Many sites recommend using natural meds or even CBD oil when dealing with a bulling cat. Such approaches can be life-threatening especially if the cat has a co-existing health condition or is receiving other drugs.
- Avoid rewarding bad behavior. Giving the bully food and attention as a distraction method is efficient but in the long-run, it promotes more bullying since the cat will link the aggressive behavior with positive outcomes.
Do not be fooled by the cute whiskers and soft paws – cats can be dangerous little bullies. Their piercing teeth and sharp claws only add to the bully-promoting features and capacities. Although at first watching your two cats misbehave and argue can be funny, bullying is a serious behavioral issue and can have long-term consequences on both parties. Therefore, it is highly advisable to deal with the problem accordingly as soon as you become aware of its presence. If this is too much for you, do not hesitate to ask a feline behaviorist for help and advice.
Are you in a multiple cat household? What are your experiences? Are your cats getting along? Ever dealt with a feline bully? Share your experiences in the comments section below.