Ask the Expert: Newcomer Stresses Original Pet

Your Pet Question: My daughter has come to live with me and brought her black male cat with her and

Your Pet Question:

My daughter has come to live with me and brought her black male cat with her and ever since, my 10-year-old Siamese cat has been urinating on cushions and in suitcases. Her cat chases my cat all over the house and makes her uncomfortable. Is this the reason why she is acting this way? If so, what can I do for her?

Myrna Gow, (no location)

   

The Expert Says:

This is definitely a stress-related behaviour. Your cat’s territory has been invaded and she is ‘marking’ to reclaim it. The stress hormone adrenaline acts as a diuretic as well, so your cat will need to urinate more frequently as a result. You could separate the cats and confine them to their own part of the house until they sort things out, but even when and if they do, you must have separate litter boxes for them to reduce friction. There are anxiety-reducing essences for animals you can purchase as well that might help. But it seems that your daughter’s cat is the issue and I would certainly put some restrictions on the ‘new man in’. After all, it was your cat’s home first!

Cheryl Smith is the Director of Training and owner of Urika Animal Behaviour Consultants and Forever Friends Dog Training School in Ottawa, Ontario.

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