I have a four year old brother/sister. Izze & Bella. Ive had since kittens. Lovely, sweet indoor cats, they play, wrestle, small 8 lb cats. Izze was the perfect male cat, he was in love with me, fetched, a just a joy. Bella sits and observes mostly, a cuddly cat but gets crabby at times toward her brother, but both, wonderful cats.

Last July my boyfriend was murdered in his home. He had 2 dogs and 3 cats. Long story, but the dogs were locked in a room till they died and the 3 cats fended for themselves for a month till rescued. Lots of violence was going on during that time, not to the cats, we don't think. Traumatic regardless. All 3 cats were adopted together as kittens and are 12 years old. Lived all their lives in that home with the dogs. All indoor cats. In July 2016, two cats were adopted together by a friend. The 3rd cat, I took home.

Patches is the new cat in the home. She is 12 lbs. She's a bit jumpy, hears every noise and is rather vocal. Mine, not so much. She's a lover but more dog-like, she pushes hard when being pet, even aggressively so with little nips to make you continue and likes to climb on my chest or lay on top of me when on my side. She eats like a dog. My two are slow, she gobbles and stalks their bowls waiting for leftovers. Mine used to take hours for wet food. No rush, no stress.

All 3 are fine together when begging for food. I can pet 2 at a time, if I'm there between them. Sometimes all 3 will sleep on a bed, but not near each other. There are 3 perches in the house.

So now, since Patches, Izze, my male, 8 pounder gets in.a stalking mood and looks at Patches in an evil way. He chases, she runs, turns, hisses, screams and if they start hitting (all front claw declawed), Bella leaps in to defend her brother and she's a brute! Patches and Bella alone are cordial, but growl at each other sometime. They never go after each other.

My cats never peed on carpets or floors before. Now Izze, my perfect cat, is peeing somewhere almost daily. I have 4 litter boxes, 2 up and 2 down.

It's been 6 months. I do not know how to get Izze to stop stalking and harassing Patches. I've used water, loud noises. It stops them in the moment but sometimes I'm not quick enough. The peeing is destroying my home.

I was in tears tonight, will this ever end? I think it's all territorial dominance but not sure what to do now. I live in a 2 bedroom townhouse, 1700 Sq ft. As I said, they are all indoor cats.

Do I let them fight it out? Do I lock Izze away when he starts stalking? Do I keep spraying them?

Any ideas? Patches has been thru so much and so have I. I can't get rid of her, but we are all so stressed.

Thank you.

  • 2
    Keshlam's answer is very good. It does take time--6 months is a while but keep in mind, you have all been traumatized and it will take some time to heal, adjust, and deal with a horrible incident. Be patient with yourself and the kitties. Condolences on your loss and best of luck.
    – M.Mat
    Commented Feb 20, 2017 at 16:31
  • I'm having trouble responding after each comment. Great ideas! I am taking these suggestions to heart. I'm on a tablet and really need a desktop to type so I will respond more this weekend, . In the mean time, I'm going to get a covered litter box as Patches used to have one. I'll get another tree and some pheromones...rearrange some furniture. I've got some youtube to watch and shopping to do! Thanks again, you've all given me hope ;)
    – Thersa
    Commented Feb 23, 2017 at 4:00

3 Answers 3


While 4 litter boxes for three cats should in theory be sufficient, it may be beneficial to temporarily add some extra litter boxes. I suspect that Izze is avoiding the litter boxes because he is afraid of being ambushed; so an uncovered litter box that allows him to see his surroundings may be best.

You might consider feeding Peaches in a separate room so that Izze and Bella can eat in peace.

Look around the house to see if you can rearrange some furniture or add some cat trees to create more "safe passageways", or add more perches as needed. Imagine you're a cat, and the cat you're nervous around is on the floor. How would you get from, say, the sofa to a water dish or litter box without feeling exposed?

The TV series "My Cat from Hell" will give you loads of good advice. You may be able to find episodes on YouTube.

There's a feline hormone sold as "Feliway" that is supposed to help cats mellow out. You can purchase it as a diffuser. It may help.


Separate them, quarantine the new cat in a limited area (one room, eg) and re-introduce gradually. There are good resources on the web for this, including at least one YouTube video series spanning several weeks and explaining what the cats' interactions and body language are saying about their progress in tolerating/trusting each other. Note that it may take a long time for them to stop hissing at each other; you will be doing well if after a few weeks they settle for that and an occasional swipe if the other gets too near.

Be sure to give the established cats lots of attention to reassure them that this is still their territory and you are still their people despite the interloper.

This is going to take a sustained effort on your part. It may be easier to re-home the new cat elsewhere .

  • 6
    One technique I've found to be helpful is to put a sock on my hand and pet the new cat, then go to the other cats and pet them with the same sock, letting them sniff it. Not only do the cats generally like the feel of it, but you get them used to each other's scents with positive associations, and more importantly, you start to mingle all their scents together and get them comfortable with the new "community" scent. (PS animalhumanesociety.org/training/adding-new-cat-your-household has good general info)
    – Jason C
    Commented Feb 19, 2017 at 14:59

The cat series that Mhwombat is talking about is wonderful. Jackson, the owner of Cat from Hell, suggests shelving, trees, bookcases or anything else that a cat can hide in or around and still get from Point A to Point B and allow them to feel safe. In my house we have a cat tree, followed by a Bay window the cats jump into then some open sided bookcases attached to the wall which they jump down into and walk across the length of the room in to the next bay window then an unused hospital bed where they sleep. There are plants on the level above them in the bookcase to give them privacy. My older cat will use this to get around as the younger cat is prone to bouncing on anything that moves. I also had to remove the bell from around the older cat's collar to make her appear less toy-like to the younger cat. That was causing a ton of issues.

Jackson also does re-introductions of cats which is what Keshlam is talking about. He separates the cats in separate rooms then changes up the cats so that each get used to each other's scents. Then introduces doors to smell the other cat while eating, then seeing the other cat while eating, and gradually has the two cats eating side by side without the door. It's quite amazing to watch. I watched an episode with similar issues where he was using a toy to lure the troubled cat away from the two cats he was battling. Jackson stated that cats need to see toys as toys and cats as companions. The trick is to figure out if it's territorial or just plain aggression.

The peeing might be another territorial issue. If the litter boxes are dirty or covered or if the cat feels cornered, they may not use the litter boxes. I know my first night with my two cats together, we had a pooping accident and that was because one cat had cornered another cat and she was unable to get to the litter box feeling very uncomfortable. I also had one cat who would not use a covered box. I introduced an uncovered box and she happily now uses the box. I also had a problem of pee and litter being around the litter box and figured out the sides of the box were just too low for her to keep the pee inside. Simply turning the litter box around so that she was entering and peeing on the higher side fixed that problem.

Don't give up on your cats yet. Try a few things and see if you can't figure out a way to make them work. If they are able to lay next to each other without a problem, then it might just be a few tweaks to allow them to peacefully live together.

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