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I need help. I got a kitten long three years ago and raised her. It was not a good time in life and I had never raised a kitten. I'm not sure if it was considered abuse or not, but I considered how I treated her to be bad enough to call it such. I would smack her in the head, the butt, scream at her, hold her by the scruff, etc. Nothing to cause blood, but definitely mental issues I'm sure. This was within the first year, and we were no longer in that bad area. Someone was sick that was in the home and they passed.

Fast forward, three years later, we have moved and there are signs where I know she is happy. She loves to lay on my lap, ill wake up with her beside me, and she always wants to be around me. However, she seems to also have massive anxiety and randomly swats at my other cat quite a bit to where I'll find scratches on #2s head. Now, I also had this cat before I got her, and #2 is perfectly fine. Throughout the years, small signs showed that she was territorial, so I figured a big place would be better after moving, but unfortunately, has gotten worse.

There are so many factors that come into play, and I don't know what would be best. I want to do my hardest to work with her, I don't want to get rid of her. However, I am also willing to do whatever I need to for her to have a happy life.

I have tried Feliway diffusers, sprays, the collars (on both), and even hemp. Nothing has worked at all for her. Separated food bowls, two water dishes(although they are still fairly close to each other), multiple litter boxes.

I do only have one tree for her at this moment, and am not sure if another perch would help her feel better. If there is also any recommendations on good toys that would keep her busy throughout the day that would be wonderful too.

Thank you in advance.

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    If she comes to your lap and sleeps besides you, she has forgiven your past transgressions, so your relationship is in a good place now. In order to improve the relationship between your two cats, I would first try to provide more perches and scratchers, those are important resources and should be available in abundance. Especially if you live in a small place, I'd suggest to google for ways of 'catification' of your home.
    – bgse
    Sep 14 at 10:18
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First let me address your former behavior. Yes, that is considered abuse. It's very good that you yourself identify it as abuse, as well. That shows a level of self-reflection and understanding that will hopefully prevent you from acting that way again in the future.

I'm glad that you feel better now and make concious efforts to treat your cats well. If you ever notice that you revert to abusive behavior, please consider getting professional help. There is no shame in getting therapy to improve your mental health, just as there is no shame in getting medication to treat a physical ailment.


Now to the cats. I have a similar situation with my cats at home. One is very sensitive, easily spooked by noises and sometimes even the wind, and has a tendency to lash out. The other one is very confident and approachable. The sensitive cat doesn't like the conident one and hisses at her without provocation.

For a while we had their scratching posts, food and water bowls and litter boxes in the same room. But while the confident cat moved freely through the house (and outside), the sensitive one seemed to be always fleeng from the confident one. They didn't openly chase each other, but every time one cat came into a room, the other one left. It got so bad that the sensitive cat didn't seem to find any piece to just lie and nap for a while and she seemed almost depressed to me.

Our solution was to seperate their belongings and move one cat into a different room than the other one. The confident cat still moves around the whole house, but the sensitive cat has her own room and I can simply close the door to give her some rest and piece, or to play and cuddle only with her without interferance.

However, since all cats have an instinct to scratch on soft things, you'll need either another scratching post in the second room, or you improvise one with sisal or hemp rope and a sturdy branch. I found out that a really cheap felt rug or runner works well, too. (You could wrap it around a branch or pole to make a scratching post.) Cats also love perches high above ground, so put a pillow on a sideboard, desk or shelf for her.

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