We’re Getting Married June 17th!

We're Getting Married!

Tomorrow is the day!  Please think of Sweetie and me as we tie the knot after 11 wonderful years together!

I am very far behind on emails at this point, as I made the fatal error of using my tofinopsychic@gmail.com address to organize the wedding.  *So many emails*.  It’s a small wedding, who knew there would be so many last-minute details?

It will take me some time after the wedding to catch up on everything, and I’m concerned I may miss some people, so if you have emailed me recently, please do feel free to email me again in a week.

Wish us luck on our big day tomorrow!  Thank you so much to everyone for all your well-wishes and words of support.

 

 

 

Why I no longer smudge

Hi all! I’m thinking of getting into youtube – is that something y’all would be interested in seeing from me? I recorded myself talking about this, and think I’m going to noodle around with lighting and such before I start doing more videos. But! I didn’t want you to wait for this one.

Smudging.

You know what that is, right? You’ve probably seen it on TV, or in youtube videos, and on blogs that are perhaps similar to mine. So, I know I have a few First Nations readers, and if there is anything you’d like to add to this, please feel free to comment, or you can email me if you’d prefer to remain anonymous and I will post it on your behalf.

I’ve talked about how important it is to clear your energetic space – your personal space, and your environment – especially if you’re becoming more sensitive to energy. Old energy that hangs around from past conversations, thoughts and worries, even heavier emotions from big life events – the aroma of that, the impressions it makes in the energetic sand that surrounds us, it affects how we feel. It can affect whether we feel energized and happy ourselves, or if we just feel like shutting down when we come home, as though it were winter, even though it’s high summer.

When I talked about Dear David on the Joyful Telepathy Podcast, I may have mentioned that some of Adam’s followers suggested he burn sage or “smudge” in order to rid his apartment of the ghost of Dear David who was bothering him. (Spoiler alert: I’m pretty sure there’s no haunting there, however it never hurts to do an energetic clearing.)

In that episode I also talked about how my mother and I did a clearing on a house my parents were living in that was actively and aggressively haunted by something fairly nasty. It would wake me up at night, surrounding me with freezing cold air even though we had a large oil heater cranked in the basement room, it killed my cell phone, my electric toothbrush, and my watch, it flung the light fixture outside of the basement guest room down on to the floor, so the carpet was littered with hazardous shattered fluorescent bulbs, and on Christmas Eve, which is our family’s time to celebrate Christmas, the septic tank backed up and all of the sinks, toilets and tubs, upstairs, downstairs and in the kitchen, started belching liquid human waste.

My mother and I did not smudge, this was before I’d heard of that particular ceremony. We used techniques involving salt, blessed water, and smoking matches. That house and land had deep-seated problems, so of course our single clearing didn’t fix it entirely, but it improved things for a while.

Smudging is not necessary to release or banish a destructive entity from a home. Humans have been dealing with sticky low vibrational energy for thousands of years, and every culture has an effective way of dealing with it.

 

(I talk about this in a lot more detail in my course, by the way.)

Smudging is a First Nations ritual which has been kidnapped by spiritualist white folks. I didn’t actually understand this until I started to experiment with the elements of smudging myself.

You may have seen Theresa Caputo smudging a haunted building with either a sage bundle, or what is being *packaged and sold on amazon* as a “smudge kit” – a shell, individual smoking sage leaves, and a feather fan.

Folks, if you can buy it on amazon, all of the spiritual significance has been sucked out of it. You’re not going to have much luck trying to deal with a haunting with a kit you got off the internet.

Dealing with hauntings is so much more about what *YOU* bring to the table, not the tools you use. I have dealt with hauntings using an *apple*. That’s a story for another time.

As I’d had experience with other tools and I’m always interested in the “universal truths” which brings different cultures all over the world to similar spiritual conclusions, I decided to try this specific smudging technique. Out here in BC, “smudging” is really the thing. Sage bundles are everywhere, so are abalone, mussel, and clam shells – and feathers are abundant too.

I am a firm believer in the sacred found object. The sage bundles I have used I either made myself, were given to me friends who travel between the Rockies and the ocean and gently harvest wild sage, or I purchased these wild harvest bundles to support a friend’s art (same friend who gave them to me previously.)

I am lucky enough to live in an area where I can find abalone shells on the beach, and I have quite a rotating collection of bald eagle feathers which I hold very dear.

Why not bring these elements together and play with the energy, see what I can accomplish?

Well, it never felt quite right. It was just a lateral step from the effective techniques I’d used previously, I knew it was potentially powerful, and it did work – but something lingered. I didn’t feel quite right, as I said.

I had been schooled previously on First Nations cultural appropriation a high school drama club friend of mine who is Ojibwa, and completely reamed out our drama teacher for asking us to make a dreamcatcher on stage (it was a performance about dreams). She was right, of course, and we cut the dreamcatcher scene from the play.

That was my first education / exposure to the spiritual harm that’s caused by cultural appropriation. I think that I was tapping into this when I felt uneasy replicating elements of a traditional ceremony that has been kidnapped by spiritual white people. I didn’t completely understand it at the time, and I *wanted* to like this elegant ritual. But it never felt comfortable.

Because it was never mine.

Here is what I have come to understand: When we perpetuate cultural appropriation in new age spiritualism, we are committing spiritual harm. First Nations folks have actually been very clear on this: they have been polite, they have been assertive, they have yelled, they have joked. (Joking about what white folks do in ignorance does bring a bit of sad brevity to the situation.) They’ve said stop using dream catchers. Stop stealing parts of our ceremonies. Stop wearing imitations of our sacred regalia.

If you’re new to the idea of cultural appropriation, what you need to know right now is that I am talking about this in the context of North America. On this continent, we were probably taught in school that our ancestors “built this country”, as though there was no one here when our colonizing ancestors arrived. My own ancestors have been colonizers for CENTURIES! I’m literally descended from the Nordic / Germanic Viking type people who have invaded, conquered, killed, enslaved, then farmed / settled Europe, the UK, and North America. I have inherited this history – I didn’t end up in Canada by accident. None of us did – we are all the products of, and live in the context of, the history of our ancestors.

That is huge. The energy of who we are and where we are right now resonates back for centuries – even if you’re disconnected from your family and heritage – that’s energetically significant too!

So there I was, daughter of survivors and settlers, here on the beautiful Vancouver Island, playing with elements of a sacred ritual on the *unceeded territory* of the Tla-o-qui-aht people. Elements of a ritual that has been BANNED by other white colonizers. It is only in the past couple of years that I have come to recognize my hideous entitlement in that moment.

I felt it subtly, through time. I think that my future self was screaming back at my past self, PUT THE ABALONE SHELL DOWN!

Even though I was using found objects, gifts from nature and in particular, an eagle friend we used to live close to, gifts from my own garden grown with love, the effort of clearing my own space was subtly tainted by the spiritual crime of cultural appropriation.

I look back and realize I had *no business* attempting to play with elements of a ritual which has been so attacked, devalued, stolen, and exploited for profit.

The proper smudging ritual is held sacred by many different First Nations tribes out here, and I am not going to speak as an authority about this ceremony. I have only twice witnessed a *real* and proper ritual performed in the tradition of one of the local people. It’s performed by spiritual leaders and their apprentice(s), with willing participants following the leaders. Right there. Bang.

That’s why I don’t smudge, my friends.

As a daughter of survivors and settlers, as someone who can claim ancestors in ancient Europe, I have rituals of my own which I am spiritually and energetically tied to, and entitled to. I was using brooms to energetically cleanse my space before I fully understood their significance. Brooms are just as powerful as feathers, and I can use brooms with joy and rightful entitlement, knowing it ties me to a culture that connects with nature and survived centuries of persecution. I swear, when I do my ritual spring sweeping, I can feel my ancestors smile. My partner (future wife!) Sweetie has had powerful dreams involving joyful spiritual gatherings of her own Scottish ancestors, who reminded her she has a home in her ancient Clan, even though she may feel alienated at times, in life. Through her spiritual heritage, she is heard, seen, respected, revered, and deeply loved by all those who walked her spiritual path before her.

I mentioned before that I’ve studied wiccan ritual, though I was never indoctrinated in that faith, just like I’ve studied Zen Buddhist meditation (I was introduced to the faith as a teen by my mother who was indoctrinated after decades of practice). Neither my mother nor I proactively renounced Christianity, because it’s not about throwing something away. Christianity is a part of our background too, and also a living piece of history to be reckoned with.

Buddhism is subject to a lot of cultural appropriation too. It’s not cultural appropriation to study under willing Buddhist teachers, to accept invitations to meditations and teachings, to accept a Buddhist name or bring Buddhist elements into your home when you actively participate I the faith.

It is appropriation to decorate your bathroom with a Buddha head. Would you put a Madonna on top of the toilet? No? Let’s not do that to the Buddha then.

It’s about context. As well, Buddhism is actively and openly practiced in South East Asia. It gets complicated to compare oppressions, so I just want to shine a light on how different it is for people to have the freedom to openly practice this faith all over the world, versus the continuing oppression and outright ban of First Nations spiritual rituals here in Canada and in North America at large.

In living memory, people remember having to interrupt their spiritual gatherings and hide the regalia from the RCMP who came demanding they stop, arresting those who refused. These are the same police forces who literally hunted the children with dogs to take them to residential schools, some of which had a death rate of 30 – 50%.

(I was looking for some art to link to in order to invoke some of the emotions around the history between settlers and FN people, and I found this artist, Kent Monkman, a Cree man living in Canada whose art is incredibly compelling, subversive, confrontational and beautiful. It’s powerful. I encourage you to check it out here.)

That’s the history I was tapping when I handled the elements of the smudging ritual. That’s whose shoulders we stand on when we appropriate this beautiful ritual for ourselves. When a First Nations person practices this beautiful and ancient right, she is tapping into her ancestors, her strength and survival. She is the living embodiment of her ancestors’ will to exist despite centuries of genocide. That’s powerful.

Those spirits don’t come for me, descendant of the settlers. That ritual is not mine. They may show up, they may understand that I mean no offense or harm, they may even lend a gentle and tolerant hand if I’m having problems with a nagging or negative entity, but the spiritual power connected to the elements of the smudging ritual is not mine to claim.

A part of what makes ritual powerful is the repetition. Who has done the repetition before you? What is your connection to them?

I know this is a big moment for some people, and many white folks claim First Nations ancestors. Heck, there are rumours of Dakota blood in my family, resulting from conflict between early settlers and defending native people. I grew up in a majority white culture, something I didn’t realize until I moved out here to the coast, where the majority of people here are First Nations. I didn’t realize that I was raised to feel entitled to First Nations things, even as I was being educated by First Nations folks about their culture.

So to honour them, to avoid perpetuating spiritual harm, and to protect myself from the terrible connection that exists white spiritualism actually causing spiritual harm to others, I abstain from any hint of First Nation ritual in my own spiritual practice.

My abalone shells sit on my bookshelf, being beautiful. My eagle feathers sit appreciated in cedar baskets which I wove at a culture-sharing workshop, but do not use in spiritual practice. My sage thrives in my garden, which I use in ritual thanksgiving dinners. I have returned to my broom, my candles and matches, my water and salt.

That’s the right choice for me, and it’s something for you to consider.

​I’m looking for people who are ready to explore their psychic potential.  

I know that some of you are reading this post right now, wondering if this is you, wondering if this is time.  I’ll tell you how *I* knew it was time for me.

In 2012 when I started this blog, I had already been a practicing animal communicator for most of my life.  But I felt called to do more.

That’s the key.

I had always had a desire to develop my skill further.  I imagined myself as an old lady, finally a practicing psychic.  I don’t know why I thought I had to wait for the crone phase of my life before I would give myself permission to take the next step – but for a long time, that’s what I thought.

Someday, I’ll do it.  But today, I need to do this other thing.

And then, after a challenging set of years, I realized something – I was waiting to give myself permission to really dive into this work and to declare myself as a psychic, publicly.

What was I waiting for?  I realized that no one, outside of myself, was going to give me the permission I needed, and that I could just start.  That moment.  And so I did.

That day, I prayed.  I have had these little conversations with god, over the years, when things are deeply important to me, I take it up with god.  That day, I didn’t ask god if it was alright if I could practice my work more broadly, I just said I was ready.  I was ready, and I needed help.

Someone reading this, right now, is ready.  Is that you?  Are you ready to begin?

I would love to help you along the way.  I’ll teach you everything I know, and support you through your journey of psychic development.

 

I have *just* posted my complete course, Telepathic Communication with Animals & Spirit.  It’s a six-class course designed to cover all of the essentials I use in my practice, including some content that is shockingly under-discussed in the new age / spirituality / psychic medium fields.

I designed this course to be self-paced, so that you can take your time to absorb the material, or you can fly through it if that’s what your heart wants!  I wanted to make it easy to communicate all of the vital information that is the bedrock of a solid psychic / medium / animal communication practice, and I am *so proud* of this course!  It’s been YEARS in the making!

Are you intrigued?  I’ll tell you more here.

Book a Session! 4 (4)

 

 

Ep. 67 ~ Stephanie McColl, retired animal communicator shares her journey!

podcast cover mar 2018

Listen Here!

Wonderful friends!  I have launched my course:  Telepathic Communication with Animals and Spirit!

Whether you are a beginner to animal communication or spirit mediumship, Telepathic Communication with Animals & Spirit makes the core of what I have covered with ALL of my past students more accessible to YOU!

Absolute beginner?  – That’s Wonderful!

The program is designed to start at the very beginning, and we build a strong foundation before progressing on to *actual psychic work*.  Beginners often have an easier time and progress faster than people who have prior experience, because we lay the foundation for a SAFE practice right away, so you are prepared for your first paranormal experiences!

Already kind of psychic?  – That’s Fabulous!

I have *so much* to share with you that will help you with really common challenges such as:

  • Sleep disturbances / unwanted visitations / frequently waking up in the night!
  • Stalled progress – done the meditations, why isn’t it working?
  • Over – sensitivity to other’s emotions, moods – fatigue at the end of the day
  • Discomfort in crowded, noisy, or bright places
  • Difficulty coping with the distress of people and animals, and the distress of the world at large
  • Build greater accuracy by establishing a consistent telepathic language!

​After *years* of working on my own teaching textbook, I was given the perfect opportunity to share everything with you in a far better way than I had imagined!

Enroll now and lock in your price!  The course is already expanding and alumni will be entitled to *all new course expansions* such as workbooks, additional lectures, and discounts on one-to-one mentoring sessions with Kate!

Telepathic Communication with Animals and Spirit will never be more affordable than it is *right now*!

You can enroll today, right here!

If you have any questions at all, please feel free to email us:

tofinopsychic@gmail.com

***

On to this episode’s conversation!

Stephanie McColl is an animal communicator who has recently retired after nearly TWENTY YEARS of service!

Stephanie shares her experience working as an animal communicator, as well as a teacher including:

  • her childhood experiences
  • her training to further her abilities
  • memorable animals who deeply affected her
  • communicating with wildlife
  • the techniques she uses to establish a telepathic connection with animals
  • coping with sadness in the animal world
  • what surprised her about working as an animal communicator
  • her joyful retirement!

We know you’ll love this conversation!

You can find Stephanie McColl’s website here:

animalwhisperer.com

And you can friend her on facebook here.

You can find Kate on facebooktwitter, and instagram!

Your energy spiral!

It’s six weeks until our wedding! EEEEE! Now we’re getting excited. It’s also a couple of days until the third anniversary of my mother’s death, which, since she died, has made April a difficult month in a way that is challenging to explain, and this is something we all experience in different ways, for different reasons.

I don’t think I’ve written about the spiral nature of time before, so let’s do that now!

If you think of your life, not as a straight, horizontal line, but as a spiral, circling upwards, this becomes easier to visualize. Here’s an illustration of a logarithmic growth spiral:

The new development is happening at the top of this spiral, where we are making our immediate choices, but the entire spiral continues to grow over time. This is why a lot of the events in our early life continue to loom large for our lifetime. (I’ll leave out the idea of alternate timelines for now.) Things that affect the base of the spiral can affect the whole pattern of development – or at least be felt every time the cycle comes around again.

Every time you come back around to a point in your spiral, say 3 o’clock, and your consciousness aligns with another point on that spiral, further down, in the past, that position on the spiral and the alignment with that event tends to trigger memories, strong emotions, and even physical symptoms associated with that event. It happens with positive and negative events, but we tend to notice the negative affects more because it may cause some disruption in our life.

Sometimes our “life plans” (and remember what I had to say about life plans in Planners, Wingers and Rafters) we plan into the structure of how we prefer to live incarnated lives with a certain period of “rest” at every point in a spiral. So, for example, if you’re on a spiral that takes 5 years to come a full circle, you may notice every five years you have a period of two – three months where nothing is happening. This might happen in a cycle of temporary unemployment, or a flare up in a chronic illness forcing you to take some time off for a few months every five years. If you’re able to identify those cycles for yourself, then you can embrace them to a degree and make a plan for them. Maybe you can make time for a vacation, instead of burning out every few years (speaking from experience there), or maybe you embrace the idea that you like to move to a new part of the country every 10 – 12 years.

It can be helpful to be aware of your personal cycle patterns, especially if our patterns don’t align with the dominant culture in our lives. In North America, and especially the US, working *all the time* is a cultural norm and often a moral imperative. How often have you seen people humble-brag about how many hours they’ve worked? Or heard the saying, “You have the same 24 hours in a day as Beyoncé!”

Hey, guess what, we are not all on the same cycles of creativity. We may live on the same planet, but that doesn’t mean that a year for one person will equal one of our years in terms of energy we feel, or things we produce.

It’s more complex than that.

We ALSO have more than one type of spiral happening as we live. We are on an annual / seasonal cycle as dictated by our lovely planet Earth and the cycle she is on, which is easy to be aware of, but we are also on spiritual cycles of growth, rest, retreat and rebuild.

Sometimes, like a rare astrological event, these independent cycles will all synch up, and you’ll experience a massive and uncomfortable shift in nearly every part of your life.

I have several noticeable cycles happening. Every 10 years, I feel motivated to make major adjustments to the direction of my life. Every 3 years I notice a shift in my health (usually positive). If something very stressful happens, my body remembers it and will remind me of it when the cycle comes back around again. For example, in my 20s, I thought it was a great idea to move in with a roommate so I could save for a house and possibly go to university. My roommate, unfortunately, thought it was a good idea to go off his medication. This fellow was not an unknown quantity, either. One of my best friends had known this guy for years, and would not have recommended him to me as a roommate if there had been any sign of mental illness before this happened. It was horrifying for me, his family, and all our friends.

It was so unsettling to see someone unravel off their meds, that it made a big impression on me. It all happened in the spring, and every spring for several years, I would have nightmares about this guy. My brain and body was marking the time whenever we cycled over that bump in the spiral.

Many of us are also on cycles of creativity and rest, as I talked about in Your Energy Cycle. Have you noticed the cycles at work in your life? Tell me about it in the comments, I’d love to hear about it! Or, if you’re shy, you can always email me. J

I think it’s all about embracing your energy spiral, be curious about how you feel without bringing judgment to yourself. Love yourself like those in heaven love you!

Speaking of those in heaven, did you know I’ve just released my new course:

This is Class 3 & 4 of our 6 Class series! This is an OPEN LEARNING program, meaning that you get to download these audio classes, listen to them on your own schedule, on your own terms, and if you need help, you can book a one-to-one mentoring session with me to help tweak your practice and get you over the little humps and blocks in your progress. If you’re enrolled in the class, you’ll get a nice discount on those mentoring sessions, by the way.

In the past, when people would approach me asking me to help them develop, I’d ask them to please book a session with me, and we would work together one to one, over an hour on the phone, and this has worked well for a few folks… but it’s not practical (too expensive) for a lot of people who are just starting out. And honestly, I don’t like to ask someone to pay for a one-to-one session with me when I’m repeating myself as I go over the basics with each individual.

For years I’ve wanted to put all the important groundwork together in a way people could access at their own pace, so that if they do choose to take me on as a mentor, we can get right to the heart of their personal practice and challenges.

Here’s a few of the things we cover in this 4 hour edition:

This is literally four hours of me talking about telepathic communication, on top of the three plus hours I talked in Class 1 & 2! I could not have done this without Megan, my partner in teaching and learning. She shares her own journey with us, and she asks so many brilliant questions that I would never have thought to address if I did this on my own.

If you’re not already a blog friend, sign up here to get my blog friend rate for these classes! I really love teaching, and it would be my great pleasure if you joined us.

Class 3 & 4 is ready!

Last night, I finished up recording my fabulous series: Telepathic Communication with Animals and Spirit!

Class 3 & 4 has been released and last night, Megan and I had our final session.

Megan has come a LONG way: Over 3 months, in six sessions, Megan went from having the rare spontaneous paranormal experience, to achieving intentional “medium mode” and doing her very first session!

I’m so proud of her! And us! For recording her journey to benefit others.

If you’re the sort of person who is interested in this psychic stuff, you probably do have potential to learn and practice it. Like most people, you probably just need support to develop safely, so you can have fun and build confidence.

Honestly, the biggest hurdle is self-doubt. Telepathic communication with animals and spirit is a subtle thing, and it’s easy to doubt yourself. Most people stall out in their development, and become self-critical.

That’s why it’s so important to have a mentor, someone with whom you can work on your thoughts, hangups and struggles. Someone who has been there and come through it. Someone who can help you find your way.

That’s why I wanted to create my class, and that’s also why it took years complete!

I will guide you alongside Megan through the essentials of protection, grounding, meditation and energetic hygiene – and give you effective exercises to build your psychic strength, as well as key insights to recognize the difference between energetic communication vs. your own thoughts.

The world needs more psychics! There is more than enough work to go around, and I am happy to grateful to support you as make new connections, grow spiritually, and expand the love in your life.

Grow spiritually, grow your connection, grow love.

https://www.tofinopsychic.com/class.html

Class 3 & 4 is ready! And hey, I was on Jen Edds’ Podcast!

Hey friends!

Just a quick note, I *just yesterday* released the second installment of my online audio learning program, Telepathic Communication with Animals and Spirit: Class 3 & 4!

I only have a moment now, I will write up a longer post on it soon… but for those of you who have already enrolled in Class 1 & 2, I want to make sure you all know that Class 3 & 4 is available!!!

I am so happy / thrilled to finally be doing this, and I’m so grateful to my early-adopter students!

Please check out the class here, and sign up soon! (Early-adopter students will be able to send in their questions to be answered as bonus material when I release Class 5 & 6!)

And – in more news, I was a guest on Jen Edds’ podcast: The Brassy Broadcast!

I have been podcasting for FIVE YEARS now – holy crow, it has been a while! I talk with my fabulous audio editor Jen, without whom I would have pod-faded long ago, about how I have made podcasting work for me, and how podcasting can work for you too.

You can listen to that episode on Jen’s podcast, here!

Okay, I’ll be back soon! Have a wonderful day, everyone!

How to avoid a cat pee apocalypse!

I’ve been working on this post for weeks. I hope it will be useful to readers for years to come!

A very common issue that comes up in my Animal Communication practice is scooping to the bottom of litter box issues. Many times, there is a medical issue involved – so I always recommend my friends consult a vet and have their cat’s pee tested for crystals or infection before consulting with me.

More often though, there are cat pee issues in a multi-cat household – a Cat Pee War! This is *so distressing* for the humans, it’s unhygienic, and Cat Pee Wars do not resolve on their own. If you ignore it, it will likely get worse!

So here’s what you need to know about Cat Pee Wars and how to keep the peace in a multi-cat household!

Why have multiple cats?

Many animals need a friend of their own species, to live with, to be happy and live more active, and to generally live a fulfilling pet life. Not all animals want to live with a friend full time, everyone is different, but generally, it’s a good idea when deciding to adopt a cat or kitten to consider if you can afford two cats. I love to watch my pets interact with each other, and I have seen how enriching it is for pet animals to have a friend.

There are many ways to build a multi-cat household, and it is *so important* you do so in a way which considers whether the animals actually *want* to live together, and avoids disrupting routines, distressing the animals, and above all AVOIDS the dreaded CAT PEE WAR!

I’ll begin with the easiest way.

Two Cat House: Adopt Littermates

Adopting littermates is the best way to ensure your cats will have a solid, loving bond. They’ll groom each other, wrestle together, hunt toys together, scratch together, teach each other tricks / mischief, and generally delight in each other’s company for their entire lives together.

The only downside to getting two littermates is that one will likely outlive the other, and it is heartbreaking when a littermate is left on her own. This is why I suggest you introduce a third companion. When you have three cats who like each other, when one passes away, the remaining two will have each other.

Two Cat House: Find your current single cat an Adult Cat or Kitten Friend

Before you bring home a friend for your single cat, be sure your cat is checked out by the vet and is perfectly healthy. A sick cat is a stressed cat, and the newcomer will react with stress to a cat in their new home who is ill. The stress of a new cat in the house can make a mildly ill cat extremely ill quickly – so be sure to get your cat checked out a month or so in advance of adding a new companion.

Next, I strongly suggest you book a pet session with me to talk to your current cat (and possibly the one you’re considering adopting) about what is going to happen, how it will happen, and give them time to express their reservations, worries, or to potentially opt out if they really do not want another cat in the house.

My Leo boy, my first cat and a beautiful brown tabby, began peeing outside of the litter box once to get my attention. He was lonely, he said, and he wanted a white female cat friend. I was so startled by this demand of his, I consulted another animal communicator friend of mine to get confirmation of Leo’s wants before I started searching pet finder for a companion cat – who turned out to be Sunshine, our gorgeous Sunny Girl who lit up our household for many years. Thanks to animal communication, Sunshine’s arrival to our house was anticipated by Leo and our big dog Mocha, and Sunny knew what to expect when she arrived. Sunshine did not end up requiring any period of isolation – her integration was instantaneous! She waltzed out of the kennel like she owned the house, and Leo fell in love with her that very moment. He spent the rest of his life trying to pat and touch her – but Sunshine had a strict NO TOUCH policy! She enforced this immediately by hissing at Leo whenever he attempted to touch her, and Leo, being a laid-back and loving fellow, simply respected her boundaries. They played together, played tricks on the dogs, and enjoyed each other’s company until Leo passed away nearly 8 years later.

When Sunshine was our only cat, and Mocha has passed away by this time as well, we decided to finally adopt two littermates we had been anticipating for several years! (Read their story here!) Integrating the two kittens was a completely different process, as we knew Sunshine had a strict no-touch policy. These two kittens, Mikey and Rupert, had been used to nursing from several different adult female cats, and would have immediately honed in upon Sunshine, and not understood her rules about personal space. We, the humans, had to teach the kittens boundaries before allowing them to have the run of the house and access to our now senior resident cat, Sunshine.

When we brought the kittens home, we placed them on the dining room table for Sunshine to check out. We lifted the towel off of the crate and allowed Sunshine to look into the crate. She hissed at the kittens and then hopped off the table. “You teach them,” she said to me, as she stalked off. She was *not* interested in being a surrogate Mom to our kittens! Which was fine. This is actually why we got two kittens, because we knew they would be spending work days and the first week or two of nights in their designated kitten room, because we could not leave them unsupervised with Sunshine until they had been trained up to her rules. If Sunshine had been feeling lonely or missing Leo, we may have gotten her a single kitten friend, or even an adult friend. However, she didn’t want a new cat friend and was prepared to tolerate kittens for our benefit, but was not interested in becoming their friend.

Whether you get an adult or kitten friend, the approaches to integrating them are similar.

Adult Cat or Kitten Friend?

The biggest factor determining whether you should choose an adult cat companion or a kitten friend for your resident cat – is the resident cat! What sort of cat is she? Is she inquisitive, and energetic? Does she like to be active and solicit attention from you?

Or does she prefer to be admired gently, maybe even from a distance?

If your resident cat *enjoys* playful handling, is alert and looking for interaction, a kitten friend would be ideal! If your resident cat is “the boss” and a bit more dominant in personality, you will want to be sure you don’t choose a timid kitten – personalities of kittens will factor in! Likewise, if your cat is friendly, gentle, and laid back, you don’t want to choose a kitten who is clearly dominating his brothers and sisters. Look for a kitten who is also calm and laid back.

Getting a kitten with an adult cat in the house means you’re giving the adult cat a project. Once the kitten is integrated, he will probably need to defer to your resident cat, and the adult cat will need to teach your kitten the rules of HER house!

When integrating a kitten, you will want to move the following integration process along more quickly than with an adult cat. The kitten is more adaptable, and is less of an inherent instinctual threat to your adult resident. Please replicate the adult introductions experience for your kitten (below), but recognize your kitten needs to accommodate the adult cat, and your kitten is much more capable of changing his own behaviour to accommodate your resident adult than another adult cat would be. This is why (unless you luck out and have a Sunshine experience) introductions of adult cats should take much longer than introducing a kitten.

You want to condition your kitten to get along with your resident cat, so you will not want to isolate him from the adult as long. Don’t force the kitten upon your adult resident, instead do everything you can to encourage your adult resident to come eat near the kitten room, get treats from you while you hold the kitten safely, play with a string or watch the kitten play with a string etc. Until your kitten has lived with you for at least a couple of weeks, I would caution you against leaving the adult and the kitten alone together. You want to have plenty of time to supervise them together, and make sure they have reached an understanding (and hopefully a friendship) before you leave them together unattended.

Your Time: A big determining factor between getting an adult cat companion or a kitten would be your time! A single kitten is a lot more work than a pair of kittens! You cannot leave a single kitten alone in the kitten room for many hours at a time! Nor can you evict your resident cat from your bedroom to keep the kitten in your room with you at night, excluding the resident adult. Incorporating a single kitten into a house with a single adult cat is more work for the human – and you may want to consider taking at least a week vacation so that you don’t have to leave the kitten alone in the kitten room very much in the first week he lives with you. A pair of kittens is often less work for the resident adult cat as well, because the kittens will play with each other, and place less stress upon the adult cat. A pair of kittens have each other for company, so if your adult cat needs more time to acclimatize to the new kittens, it’s okay if your kittens spend more than a couple of weeks in the kitten room. (Our kittens took almost three weeks to fully integrate.)

Sunshine was a senior cat when we brought home Rupert and Mikey as kittens. We wanted a pair of kittens for all the benefits explained in the “adopt littermates” section above, and we also needed to be able to leave them alone in the kitten room during our work days and while we were asleep. We did not want to leave a kitten alone for that long, (12 – 16 hours a day) so we knew that adopting a kitten for us meant adopting two (which was fine, because we wanted littermates anyway!) If adopting littermates might be right for you, please scroll down to the “Three Cat House” section.

At about two weeks of bringing the new kitten home, I suggest you open the bedroom door and place a baby gate across the space. A baby gate either cat or kitten could certainly climb if they wanted to, but it creates an extra barrier than simply leaving the door open. (If you have a dog, a baby gate is essential, you do not want the dog invading the kitten room.) If the kitten is feeling insecure, he will not climb that baby gate. (Our kittens did not climb the baby gate for three days, and our resident cat and dog stayed on the other side of the baby gate as well, but they used this time to get used to seeing each other.)

When the resident adult and the kitten interact, you will have to watch both of them for signs of overwhelm, too. Is the adult being too overbearing? Is the kitten pouncing on or chasing the adult in a way which scares the adult or tries their patience too much?

If you’re not sure how things are going in the early stages, again, I urge you to book a session sooner rather than later. There is SO MUCH we can do in the early stages to prevent things from going sideways! If either kitten or cat gets too unhappy, you could find yourself living in a Cat Pee War Zone!

Adult Companion?

If your resident cat is more reserved, and prefers to join you in quiet moments for gentle affection, you should look for an adult companion who is also going to be laid back and gentle. This is what we did when Leo requested a friend. He didn’t want a kitten friend, he wanted an adult female friend. (Gender can play a big role too, again, when in doubt, please book a session before bringing home a new cat – or soon afterwards!) It is essential you look for an adult companion who is already used to living with one or more other cats! If you bring an adult cat into your house who has never lived with another cat, and worse, was raised from kitten hood in isolation, you’re really rolling the dice in a way you don’t need to.

Finding an adult companion cat: This is what rescues are best at! Adult cats usually have formed opinions about themselves and the world. You want to be sure you’re adopting an adult cat who has a history of getting along with other cats. You would not want to take a cat who has lived in isolation most of her life, and bring her home to your cat who has ALSO lived in isolation his whole life, and you definitely do not want to surprise your cat suddenly! (Call your friendly animal communicator!) It is best to work with a good rescue explaining the personality of your current cat, and what sort of personality you need in a companion. I would avoid introducing an adult cat who is bossy or dominating of the other cats in a rescue. This cat would want to be bossy and dominating in your home too, and your resident cat could become very upset. You know what that means! This is a recipe for stressed cats and a potential Cat Pee War!

Introductions:

It is so much easier (and less expensive) to introduce adult cats together correctly, and enlist my help as an animal communicator to *prevent problems*. Most often, people don’t contact me until there is already a Cat Pee War underway! It is better by far to avoid problems than try to resolve a cat conflict one it has started!

This is a very cautious method I like to suggest. Remember it’s better to take extra time, than go too fast and have a setback.

Introducing your new adult cat to your current cat starts with you preparing your home. You will need to keep the two cats separated by a door for a significant period of time, usually two weeks or a month. The room your new cat resides in must have a window for natural daylight (no dark bathrooms please, or the newcomer will become stressed) and should not be your bedroom *(unless your current cat does not go into your bedroom). Bedrooms are cat throne rooms. The bed where the human sleeps is *highly prized territory*. If you evict your resident cat from the bedroom and move your new cat in there, even with the door closed between them, you’re asking for a Cat Pee War!

Whatever room you will use for your new cat, start closing the door and denying your resident cat access at least a week prior to the arrival of the newcomer.

A bathroom with a window is okay, but a spare room or office is ideal. It is very important that your resident cat does not have reason to feel excluded. It is alright if the newcomer feels a tad isolated at first – this will encourage her to join the group on the resident cat’s terms.

Next, put down towels on areas where the two cats like to lay in their respective territories. Maybe over a bed, a couch, an office chair, or in a cat tree. It is important that each cat spends a lot of time laying on this towel.

When you pick up your new cat, place one of the towels in your carrier, so that the new cat can smell the resident cat from the very beginning. If you have other pets, like a dog, it’s a good idea to give this towel a wipe over the dog, too. This way, the new cat will understand what and who their new home smells like, and the presence of these animals who have already introduced themselves via smell won’t be as much of a shock to the newcomer.

Cover the carrier when you enter the house, so that direct eye contact (and inadvertent challenges) cannot be made. Bring the new cat directly into her room and close the door. The room should have a new litterbox, a cat perch of some type (a bed on a shelf or furniture is fine.) It should also have a heavy scratching post – one the newcomer can really put all her weight against without it tipping over. Scratching will help her calm herself, feel at home, and help her establish this room as HER territory. Between the cat tree, the litter box, and the *fresh clean* towels on the spots where the newcomer will lay, you have all the elements to set up a cat territory diplomacy, rather than a war.

After a couple of days, exchange the towels and a few of the toys, so that each cat can begin to get used to the smell of the other cat (and other animals in the house.) This also helps them understand the other animals’ smell will be on the desirable things like toys, perches etc. If either cat is showing stress when they encounter these smelly objects, try sprinkling some cat nip on the towel / toy too. Be sure to include some cat treats when you introduce the new smells as well! Treats will make their cat brains content and happy, and they will begin to associate that state of mind with the smells of their new companion.

You will begin to notice each cat becoming curious about what is on the other side of the door. They may vocalize to each other, but what you’re waiting for is for them to play “patty cake” under the door. This way they can touch each other safely. The patty cake game should not be aggressive or stressed. You might notice some playful dashing around, patting under the door, dashing away – this is okay, but it is NOT yet time to let them out to “play” together! This play behaviour is a positive way for each cat to safely let out it’s stress about the other cat.

What you’re waiting for is for each cat to be laying calmly near or by the door, displaying more “calm” signs than “excited” signs.

Once you have reached that stage, supervised introductions can begin. You always want to leave the introduction on a high note. You can open the door a crack, and give both cats treats while the door is open. One may choose to look through the open door, or they may retreat from the open door. If either cat retreats from the open door, you have to stay at this cracked-open door with treats stage until both cats associate the opening of the door with treats and some running!

Try the door open treat game for five or ten minutes at a time, three times a day, and gradually increase the open door time.

If your resident cat wants to barge into the new cat’s room, don’t allow this. You, the human, have to ensure the security of the new cat, so you have to reinforce to your resident cat that this room is the NEWCOMER’s territory now. It is up to the newcomer to come outside of the room to join the rest of the family.

It is possible your resident cat may simply ignore or deny the existence of the newcomer. This is a potential warning sign. You will have to be careful as the newcomer starts to explore the territory outside of her room – if your resident cat runs or hides from the newcomer, you have a bold newcomer and timid resident cat – this is Cat Pee War potential! In this case, you will need to extend the amount of time the newcomer spends in their room. You may need to start feeding your resident cat on the opposite side of the closed door, to encourage her to approach the door and acknowledge the existence of the newcomer.

Both cats should be aware of each other and reasonably relaxed before the door is opened between them.

What you are looking for when the two cats meet in person is not too much signs of tension or anxiety. Some raised hackles or hissing is okay, but a swipe means you may have pushed things too quickly. Use feeding time to get the two cats to be near each other peacefully – consider feeding them on the opposite sides of a closed door. They will smell and hear each other eating – and be sure to feed some extremely nice food. Now may be a time to whip out the very sweet Fancy Feast – a type of wet food most cats love! It’s not a food you want to feed every day for years, but in the first weeks or months of this introduction, fancy feast can make the difference between whether the cats will eat near each other or not!

To up the value of the fancy feast, do not free feed either cat – or have only a small amount of dry food available to them to snack. Your twice-daily feeding of fancy feast should be at the same time every day, and it should be something they can both look forward to.

THREE cat house!

Adding two adult cats to a home with a singleton.

Unless your single cat is young (less than 3 years, and the younger the better) rather outgoing and playful, I do *not* recommend adding two adult cats into a singleton cat house, especially if this single cat has never lived with cats before. The two bonded adult cats coming in are a team, and they will take over your resident cat’s territory, and frankly there won’t be much she can do about it! If your resident cat is an adult, consider looking for another single, cat-social adult, or consider a pair of kittens. Adding two adult cats to a single cat house is a big stress on the original cat, and for the sake of your resident cat, I would suggest you consider other options first. Read on!

Adding two kittens to a home with a singleton.

It’s important that your resident cat is outgoing, inquisitive and playful, and is willing to interact with the two kittens – or at least is willing to relinquish some of her territory to the newcomers and have them romping around. The two kittens will definitely form a team, but if they are young (less than 6 months old) and the adult cat is either used to sharing a home with another cat or is just curious and outgoing, two kittens tend to do very well with an older brother or sister.

Adult cats, when two kittens are brought home, may not want to get involved in the kitten rearing at all – and their interaction with the kittens may be to hiss at them and teach the kittens to simply respect her and keep their distance. This is fine, as long as they have each other to play with, and do not start teaming up to bully your resident cat. Keep a close eye on things, always monitor interactions, and keep the kittens separate from the adult cat when you are not home at *least* until they were neutered. Even at three months old, hormones play a big role in behaviour and cat hierarchy. If your resident cat is fixed (as she should be, unless there is a very good reason) then the two intact kittens could have their hormones telling them to dominate this older, sterile cat. In some parts of the world, kittens are neutered very early, at 6 weeks of age, but in most cases kittens aren’t fixed until six months of age. Hormones can be more active in different kittens, so a four month old male might consider himself to be a grown up bossy tom cat, and act like it! Our Rupert was certainly feeling good about himself at four months old, and would have been dominant towards Sunshine if we had given him the opportunity. Mikey, his litter mate, barely registered his testosterone. Mikey was, and still is, a perpetual, cuddly, submissive kitten. So you can see, how your kittens will behave towards your resident cat depends a lot on their individual personality and biochemistry.

A single kitten will want to and will have to interact with your resident cat very early on, but if your resident cat is disinterested, you will likely be doing her a favour by getting two kittens instead of one.

When I brought our two boys home, our resident adult cat Sunshine, spent the first week telling me, re the kittens, “They’re YOUR JOB. I will talk to them when they are smart.” Meaning, when they have matured and learned her limits. Sunshine was not particularly enthusiastic about her two kitten housemates, but Sunshine was a very cat-social girl. We selected her from a rescue, with the help of another animal communicator and the rescue workers themselves, specifically because she was dog and cat friendly. She was living peacefully with multiple cats in the rescue home, and she adapted instantly to Leo and our dog Mocha when she came home. It wasn’t a surprise that she didn’t want to mother two boy kittens (she had already been a mother to kittens and was done with that job, thank you very much!) Sunshine, however, didn’t expect to have the territory all to herself. She had not shared the house with other cats since Leo had passed away a few years earlier, and she had settled into a routine of eating, hanging out under the roof overhang, and she was generally winding down in her senior years.

I didn’t expect her to want to interact with the kittens, and I never let the kittens out in the house without supervision, because I wanted to make sure Sunshine would not be harassed.

I set the kittens up in my office, with a giant cat tree, their litter box, their food. They stayed in the kitten room for almost two weeks. When I was home, I would spend time with them in the kitten room with the door open and a baby gate across the door to keep our little dog Happy out in the hallway.

Sunshine knew exactly who was in the kitten room, and she wasn’t interested in coming to meet them. The dog, however, was very interested, and although he was small, less than 10 lbs, he was scary to the kittens. It was the dog, more than Sunshine, who caused the kittens to choose to remain in the kitten room for two weeks.

After two weeks had passed, the kittens’ curiosity got the better of them. They started to climb the baby gate to explore the hall and the upstairs. I moved the baby gate to the top of the stairs, to keep Happy the dog at a respectful distance (he was intense and reactive, and would need to be leashed when I gave the kittens more space later on.) The kittens spent a few days exploring upstairs before they wanted to expand their world further.

At this point, I kept an eye on Sunshine. She simply avoided the kittens. The key part was that Sunshine did not emanate stress when she choose to relocate from living room to bedroom to office, depending upon where the kittens were. She would occasionally watch them for a few minutes, but she seemed to know that the kittens would want to play with her if she made eye contact with them. Her goal was to slip out before they noticed her. This was perfectly fine.

Eventually, while dispensing treats, I was able to convince Sunshine she should stick around while the kittens were in the room. I never pushed her, and I tried to always end the interactions on a positive note, before Sunny had a chance to become annoyed with them. Sunshine also did not display any stress, and did not use the kittens’ upstairs litter box herself, indicating she was happy for the kittens “territory” to remain upstairs, and for her territory to be the downstairs. As the senior cat, she expected the kittens to avoid her too, so she would sometimes hiss at them to move or make way, if she wanted to go upstairs into the bedroom for a nap.

The kittens’ territory was my office, and the rest of the house was really Sunshine. She didn’t go into their territory, and she was teaching them that they had to consider themselves guests in the rest of the house, and defer to her if she wanted the sunny spot on the living room floor, or the middle of the bed.

This is pretty typical of adding two kittens to a senior cat’s home. I would not have attempted this if Sunny were a senior cat and had always lived by herself, that wouldn’t have been fair. I also wouldn’t have attempted this with a single kitten – knowing that Sunshine would not want to interact with a single kitten, it would have been unfair to the kitten to keep it by itself in the kitten room while we were at work, or asleep. The kittens needed each other *because* there was a senior cat who had dibs on the bed at night. During these first few months, it was a part of our job to teach the kittens where they were, and were not, allowed to access. We had to back up Sunshine’s territory with where we allowed the kittens to access early on, and as the kittens matured, they would internalize this sense of ownership over the kitten room, and deference to Sunshine when anywhere else in the house.

We also didn’t get the kittens for Sunshine’s pleasure, they were for our own pleasure. My Sweetie and I had come through a few very tough years, having both lost parents, and we decided after we moved to our lovely duplex that we would get two kittens and welcome home our reincarnated boys. This was the first time I had every had a kitten, having always rescued adult animals in the past. We were both grieving our losses, too, and we knew that a pair of kittens would bring laughter and joy back into our lives.

So the kittens were for us, they were *not* Sunshine’s job. Sunny understood why we needed them, and she was fine with us bringing kittens home, as long as she didn’t have to do anything, and the kittens didn’t bother her too much. The cat scratch was on the wall, so to speak.

Sadly, our Sunny girl passed away before the kittens were a year old. She was an older girl, but I believe that in part, she knew she could leave because she wouldn’t be leaving us alone without cats.

Three Cat House – Two Resident Adults! Adding a cat or kitten.

I actually believe that three is the perfect number of cats. If they are all friends, three is ideal. I adopted this rationale from an animal communicator colleague of mine who said, “When there is two, and one dies, the remaining one can grieve intensely if they were friends. But when there is three, and one dies, the remaining two have each other, and are more likely to accept a third again.”

When our boys grow up, we will probably incorporate a third cat. Our two boys are extremely bonded to each other, as happens with littermates. It’s one of the great benefits of littermates, actually. If it were practical, I would have adopted two boys and one girl from the same litter – but as we had Sunshine at home, I didn’t want to foist three kittens on her all at once.

Ideally, I would have incorporated a third female already – when the boys were a year or so old. Now that the boys are almost THREE, they will not be likely to accept a similar aged cat as a littermate or playmate, as they might have when they were younger. A third cat, at this stage in the game, will be a friend, but will be more likely to maintain their own personal space, rather than sleep with the boys in a kitten pile.

The main point you need to hit when adding an adult cat or kitten to a home with two resident cats, is the addition needs to complement the current two, and not compete.

Again, this is why it’s best to enlist the help of your humble animal communicator.

In my case, for example, with Rupert being a very dominant and bossy boy, and Mikey being very submissive and sweet, our additional cat could not be a dominant cat that would challenge Rupert or bully Mikey. Neither could the additional cat be too submissive – because if she allowed herself to be bullied by Rupert, that could just become the new game, and the bullied newcomer might bully Mikey in turn, or simply start peeing in protest… everywhere. We don’t want that!

The best match for my current household, would be a self-possessed female, who is young enough to adapt to Rupert’s personality, confident enough to hiss at him if she needs to, and thinks enough of herself to demand respect and prevent him from bullying her. She would also need to not be an actual bully herself.

This is why I would consider getting an opposite sex friend for the boys – because gender dynamics play a role as much as hormones do.

For the first six months, the female kitten would be “intact” and that would make her instinctively superior to the two neutered male cats. All she would need to be is a fairly confident kitten – not timid – and between an outgoing personality and being an intact female for six months, she would probably be able to hold her own with the boys, and they, instinctively, would be gentler and more respectful of a female kitten, than towards a single unneutered male kitten, who would read to them as a potential invader or threat.

A female, to Rupert particularly, would be intriguing. Even though Rupert is neutered, the testosterone definitely made a mark. Rupert is interested in female cats and is less likely to be dominant towards a self-possessed female. A male kitten, whether he would be self-possessed and confident, or submissive like Mikey, would be a target of bullying for Rupert.

If Mikey, lovely, calm, submissive Mikey, were the only cat in the house, I would look for a single, gentle friend for him. A big calm male kitten might be a good match for him (but not a dominant kitten. If Rupert and Mikey were not littermates, they would not have done well together as housemates!) Likewise, a calm, affectionate female might make a good companion to Mikey alone, as long as she were not too bossy with him.

The dynamic in our house right now is that Mikey “belongs” to Rupert, so the new cat would need to be an island unto herself in a way, because she would never be in their “club”. This is another reason I will consider a self-possessed female as ideal for our house, because she would need to not be dependent on the boys’ acceptance for happiness. She would need to be content grooming herself while Rupert grooms Mikey and coughs up hairballs.

A submissive female might even bond with Mikey, and if she were big enough, and tolerant enough, she might put up with a certain amount of domination from Rupert with good humour. What we would want to avoid is a small, timid female, who would likely become a target for both boys and would likely become so stressed she would either pee out of stress, or out of fear of using the “boys” litter box.

Even if I were to keep a kitten in my office, and introduce her like I introduced the boys to Sunshine, I know Rupert would be in the kitten room the second I opened that door – and Rupert would be peeing in that kitten’s litter box the moment he could! This is would be fine as long as the kitten did not see him as a threat – so I would want to keep that kitten door closed for at least a couple of weeks until she was big enough, confident enough, and bonded to the humans to be able to trust that we will keep her safe! I would want to be holding the kitten when Rupert came into the room, I would want the kitten to approach him, and I would be warning Rupert to be gentle with my voice. I would want to avoid any situation where the kitten had to retreat from Rupert in fear. Their early interactions can set the tone for their whole relationship!

As the boys are adults now, I could also consider adding another adult cat to the mix. If that is what I wanted, I would be looking for a female cat who is already living in a rescue with multiple cats, and who has possibly weathered some change with grace. Temperament would be the highest priority. Kittens can grow up and adapt more readily to circumstances than adult cats, so I would be looking for an adult female who be content to have the office as her territory, and who would be able to handle Rupert’s attentions with good humour when she was with us in the shared space.

Pet doors and feeders

Now that we are getting into 3+ cat households, I wanted to mention pet doors and feeders. There are fabulous new products out there which can really help with managing multi-cat households. There are pet doors that can be programmed to open only for a certain cat’s microchip, or magnet on their collar, and the same goes with cat food dishes – which makes it possible to be sure the kittens eat kitten food and the adults stick with their prescription food or hairball food or whatever they need to eat to be healthy.

These new devices will need to be introduced with lots of treats and praise, helping your cats understand how they work, but once the cats understand these feeders and pet doors can take a lot of anxiety out of the situation for the pets and their people. When a cat knows the kittens can’t access her special office, or the bedroom, then she always has a place to go to unwind. When the humans know their hyperglycemic cat will not be eating the iodine-rich food in the other cats’ dishes, the human can relax as well!

FOUR CATS OR MORE!

We are getting into Cat Person Country! My favourite people have four or more cats. It is takes a real dedication and love of cats to be able to manage a multi-cat household of four or more. It requires multiple litter boxes, a substantial commitment to vet care, some serious investment in cat furniture such as trees and hideouts, and it may require some supervision or division of the house into territories depending on how the cat community organizes itself.

Feral cats tent to organize themselves in colonies depending on food resources. They will make friends and allies to gain comfort and company, and they may or may not rank themselves or each other depending on the abundance of resources and the personalities of all cats involved.

The most important thing I want to emphasize – just because you have had four or more cats living together in the past, this doesn’t mean you can just add more cats willy-nilly! If this has worked in the past – you’ve been lucky! *All members of the cat house* have to be considered when upgrading the population from three to four or more, just like you would when adding one or two to a house with a single resident cat.

If you have a multi-cat house and you would like to add one or two more, you have to understand and appreciate the fine balance which may already be at play in your home, and the cats you add need to complement the company.

I have to emphasize that *PERSONALITY* is the biggest factor at play here. In a multi-cat house, it could be just as hazardous to add a kitten or two, as an older cat!

A kitten in a multi-cat household would have to be submissive to the resident adults – and your adults would need to be welcoming of a kitten. If your kitten has a Rupert-like personality, she will likely grow up to be *even more* dominant than she may have done with only a litter mate or herself for company. A dominant personality kitten, whether male or female, will grow to express her full dominant potential when she is raised with or near a colony of cats. It’s just nature kicking in. And woe to the queen of the cat colony if this should happen. Male or female, there is always a “top cat” in multi-cat households, and if you have a dominant kitten addition, that young whippersnapper will try to usurp the current Queen’s job! What is a self-respecting Queen to do? Why pee on everything, of course!

A dominant up-and-comer kitten could even instigate a pee war all on her own! An older, wiser, matriarch may not openly challenge the newcomer, but simply hold her ground with the support of the other adult cats – in which case the kitten must *prove herself*! This situation can rocket a dominant-personality kitten to the height of her mean girl potential. I have heard of up and comer kittens *literally peeing on the queen bee cat while she slept*.

That is really the worst case scenario. With an up and comer kitten and a threatened queen bee cat, both will be peeing and the other cats will be stressed, and could start to pee outside the litter box to voice their own stress and displeasure.

Your worst case scenario is when a newcomer cat tries to take over.

Cat pee war gone worldwide. Cat pee apocalypse. You do not want a cat pee apocalypse. An animal communicator cannot talk your cats out of a cat pee apocalypse. In this case, you may need to take drastic action, like permanent segregation of the offending cat, and possibly rehoming her. This is why it’s *so important* to be careful and to introduce and incorporate additions to your cat household carefully. When a cat pee war goes nuclear, there is not going back.

There are all sorts of reasons cats pee outside of the litterbox. This post only handles the introduction of new cat friends into your house, in as positive a way as possible, so that you can avoid and avert a potential cat pee apocalypse. If your cat has started peeing outside of the litter box and you *have not* introduced a new cat in the past year, please 1) have your cat checked by the vet to rule out physical causes, and then 2) please book a session with me sooner rather than later. The sooner the issue is addressed, the easier it is to fix.

I could write a book on this subject, there is so much to say, but I think I have hit the main points I wanted to hit. I hope you find this helpful!

New podcast host… testing testing!

podcast cover mar 2018

I’m just testing the “embed” feature.  This can be tricky with wordpress, and there’s not way for me to really test it unless I make a new post.  So here it is!

Let’s see if this works!  *deleted it didn’t work*  Darn!  Oh well.  We will continue to link to new episodes like this.

Here’s the latest episode in case you missed it!

Jen Edds is working hard at getting my iTunes account working again, so those of you with iPhones I may need you to search for me and re-subscribe.  I’ll let you know.

Stitcher has been updated, for those of you on Android phones, you won’t have to do anything.

Soon you’ll be able to find me on Spotify as well.

I’m just noodling around with the code right now.  It looks like I might be able to just embed the player here:

*deleted because it was insane*

Let’s see if this works!  And hey!  Check out the new joyfultelepathy.com!  I hope you like the changes.  I’ve given the podcast a bit of a face-lift (may as well, since it’s over 4 years old!)

I hope you enjoy the changes, I’m delighted!

 

*Edit!  Looks like I still cannot embed the player on the blog!  Why does wordpress.com make it difficult to embed audio players?  So weird.  It’s easy to do everywhere else.  Oh well!