We’re still working on giving Rufus the freedom of the house. He’s making progress, but it’s slow.
Part of it is on Rufus; he seems to have the idea that we don’t want him to leave his room. When we leave the door open, he waits until we’re not around, and then he sneaks out. As soon as he sees one of us–or even hears us approaching–he retreats to his turf.
We can’t even lure him out of the room to accept cuddles in the hall. He’ll come right up to the door, flop down a careful half-inch inside the room, and roll onto his back for a tummy rub. I’ve started carrying him one Rufus-length outside the door for pettings. He’s accepting it, but it’s too soon to know whether there will be any long-term benefit.
And Rufus is going further on his exploratory expeditions than he did early on. We’ve found him (briefly) in the front hall, two floors away from his safe space. So there’s hope.
The biggest part of Rufus’ failure to integrate, however, is named “Watanuki”. Or, as we’re calling him more and more often, “Mr. Asshole”.
‘Nuki misses no opportunity to steal Rufus’ catnip toys, hunt for scraps of food in his bowls, use his litter box, and generally take every chance he can to invade Rufus’ personal space.
Note the “Will you get this schmuck out of here?” look on Rufus’ face and ‘Nuki’s “I’m not touching you. I’m not touching you.” expression.
We haven’t seen much in the way of violence, barring the occasional nose-bop, but the political slogan shouting has gotten heated at times.
I suspect the eventual outcome will involve somebody taking a claw to the ear or nose, before they both back down and negotiate a settlement.
Until Zackie died, I don’t think Oberon ever had a meal without getting popped in the nose first. When she died, the others didn’t know when to cry for their meals. It was like he didn’t know how to eat without getting popped in the nose first. This is why we want to adopt two kittens together this time.
I can just about see that: [snooze] [bop!] “What? Oh, OK. Feed me!”