Friday, June 3, 2011

Leo the Fast Learner

What a difference a day makes! Leo was locked in the cat room just two separate times for attacking Star and tonight, wow, what a change! He behaved himself so well that he got an extra few temptations treats today. (So did Star, but she needs to put on a little weight as she lost some when she was sick. Aside from her being intimidated into staying upstairs and so not eating as much as she is used to.)

Lately she’s only been coming downstairs at snack time in the evening. But tonight she was down for hours. I thought that this was her getting over the issues with Leo, but then realized that Greg had shut the bedroom door to keep the air conditioner coolness in there. I had the front door open downstairs, (both cats very happy about that), because the weather was so nice today, so the air was off down and on up.

So because she was down so much longer tonight, there was more opportunity for bad behavior, but there really wasn’t any! Once Leo got himself into a crouched, pounce ready position, but I just put my hand on his back and he settled down and did not attack. Another time he did launch himself off the back of the couch, but as he landed next to me, I again put my hands on him, holding him in place for a moment, and he rethought his attack on the unsuspecting tiny Star.

Two attempts may sound like a lot, but we’re talking over the period of hours here. And up until today, he would attack the minute she showed up downstairs if he was awake and nothing, not touching his back or attempting to hold him down would stop him. He’s a very powerful boy!

I want to stress that I was not hurting him or holding him hard to stop him either. The first time I just lightly put my hand on his back as if to say, hey, I’m right here you better behave. And the second time I lightly pressed him to my side and pet him to hold him there until he lost the alert attack posture.

For her part, Star did do a lot of grumbling, growling and a touch of hissing, but she was on good behavior as well. She stayed out of his way as much as she could. At one point Leo was laying on my feet on the Royal Footstool and she jumped up onto the arm of the couch. I patted the seat next to me and she started coming over until she saw him. She hissed, and stopped, but didn’t retreat.

Yes, we were a little tense watching them, waiting for problems, but really, it was a nice evening with both of our kitties in the living room with us! Star sat next to Greg for pets and loving like she hasn’t done in such a long time! I know he was glad to have his little girl back next to him. And I was thrilled that Leo didn’t need to be put in the cat room again!

I am not going to fool myself into thinking that this marks the end of the hostilities, but boy, it’s a nice start! And I can hope that we won’t have any more big altercations and that we’ll see more of Star downstairs. Maybe, just maybe, we’ll even see Leo upstairs one day soon! I can hope anyway!

Star is showing off her curly tummy fur! It's so adorable that I just want to rub my face in it..
of course, if I did, I would not have a face left.. sigh
You can look, but no touching!
Ok, that's enough looking....

 The orange feather that Leo stole. And proof of something else he stole.. See the yellow thing on the couch next to him? That's an apron that I left there. I know I know, it should have been put away.. But the point is, it was left there. And the next morning... it was on the floor in the dining room! I would have paid good money to see him dragging that around.. Little goof ball
Everything is my toy...


Random Felines said...

YEAH - they are learning. It is funny that being shut out of the bedroom is forcing Star to interact - not a bad thing. While they are still going to need to be supervised, this sounds like a great start!!

Amy and The House of Cats said...

That is great that Leo is learning to not attack Star! I wish I could convince Barney of that at our house with Lola. If it helps it seems like they do grow out of that because Virgil used to chase Lola all the time like a madman (and he is a good 5 pounds lighter then here and smaller in general), and he has grown out of it now. And it is good that they are learning that spending time together can be calm. It just takes time and hopefully they will get to be better with each other, even if they don't become best friends, they hopefully will like each other a little at least!

The Island Cats said...

We're glad Leo is learning how to act with Star! We hope it continues!!