A while ago I tried using my Kittywalk cat cage to put Rhea in and bring Anna down. This was foiled because Rhea went kinda zany pulling at the sides and Anna would just run upstairs even without Rhea doing anything.
I’ve been pulling Anna out of her room a little bit more before bedtime and letting her explore while trying to run interference with Rhea most days this week. Anna has tended to go sprawl out on the tile floor of my bathroom. When Rhea gets insistent I carry her towards Anna and we have some encounters involving quite a bit of hissing, sometimes on both sides.
The other day I flashed on the idea of putting Anna in the cage to keep her from hiding out while the netting keeps Rhea at a distance.
Since this was at the time of day where the kittens are out on the porch, when I brought Anna down I carried her outside and let her sniff a bit. She kinda seemed to like it, although she hissed when she saw Davout.
I tucked the cage into the gap between a chair and the wall to make Anna feel a little bit safer, although having Rhea above didn’t thrill her. I put a light cover blanket over the roof to give some separation, and even covered most of the front wall so Anna could feel more protected.
Rhea did get one little charge in, which led to them sitting about 6 inches apart hunkered down, but neither could hit the other. There was a bit of growling and hissing, and baleful stares. But with the blanked covering most of the front, Anna could almost relax and just growled a lot.
Rhea did a bunch of circling around and staring balefully, but at one point even got bored and went off to lie down. I tried getting Davout to come closer, but he was repelled by the negative vibes and kept a wide berth.
After a little bit, maybe half an hour, Anna seemed to want out so I took her back upstairs. She recovered from her stress pretty quickly.
Rhea and Davout were pretty amusing afterward. When I took Anna up to her room Rhea charged up behind and ran into Anna’s room and jumped onto her sofa back. Then she ran all the way downstairs at full speed as I shut Anna back in after dinner. She did this two more times.
She also had to explore everywhere Anna had been, like usual. Soon after, Davout came up too, moving with the exaggerated caution of someone defusing a live bomb. He got to the cage, when Rhea came up behind to see what he was up to.
He was so startled he whipped around at her, and hissed at her repeatedly. I don’t think I’d ever heard him do that to her before. A few minutes later he tried again and had to hiss at her again when she poked her head next to him while he was checking out the cage.
Was it a success? Hard to say. I think that this setup might make it easier to get the cats used to each other without requiring too much handling on my part to keep a fracas from breaking out. With this, even if things get out of hand the two won’t be able to make much contact, if any.