Well, that's not entirely fair. It's mostly Bit and Romeo that are responsible for getting on my nerves this weekend. That is nothing new, unfortunately...
We got Romeo over Memorial Day weekend, and he and Bit have STILL not managed to work out a truce between themselves. Charlotte and Annie, while not best friends with him, can at least be relied upon to not actively try to upset him. I've been told by many people that these things sometimes take a little more time, particularly if you have strong-willed cats, and that it may be a year or a little more before they start to get along. Dear God. I think that I will have completely lost my sanity before a year is up...
Truth be told, they're doing marginally better with one another MOST of the time. But then violence will erupt from seemingly nowhere. This morning, Jeff and I went racing upstairs when we heard loud noises to find them fighting in the litter box, and Romeo's bowl of food had been knocked out of the window and kibble had been scattered everywhere. What the heck, cats?
We separated them so that they would cool down... which basically meant carting Bit out of our bedroom and shutting Romeo in there by himself. (And no, that wasn't punishing Romeo; he enjoys hanging out in our bedroom and gazing out the window, and really gets affectionate with us when the door is shut and none of the other cats are around.)
So the schedule that we've been keeping lately is that Romeo is either shut into our bedroom or the guest room alone if we have to leave the house. When we're home, I try to open the door, because he simply must learn to socialize with other cats if he is going to be completely happy here. I'm not someone who believes in getting RID of a cat because there isn't harmony in the house, but I do hope that someday we'll be able to let them all out together without worrying about whether someone is going to eat someone else's face off. It will also be nice to no longer have a litter box in our bedroom - it's something that I always swore that we wouldn't do, but it does seem to be the best way right now. Sigh. So I'll endure. I just don't want to be one of those "cat ladies" that goes out in public smelling like stinky cat litter!
I'm reminded of the days when we, perhaps momentarily insane from signing the paperwork to buy our first house, got three cats in the first week that we moved in. Annie and Bit got along amazingly well: Bit was still a kitten and therefore adaptable, and Annie was only a year old, so little more than a kit herself. She was always very gentle with Bit, and they're fast friends to this day. Charlotte, on the other hand, hated having to share a house with other cats. She never wasted an opportunity to be nasty to the others, especially Annie, to whom she had taken a particular dislike. I remember despairing at the time, worried that they wouldn't get along EVER, and that to restore peace to the house we would be forced to find a new home for one of them. Well, they still aren't the best of friends, but tolerate each other very well, and can even be on the same bed with one another without hissing and fighting.
And then it took over three months for Bit to even want to be in the same room as Argos, she was so terrified of him. I can remember despairing then too, thinking that it was horrible that she was so frightened most of the time, and OMG DID I MAKE A MISTAKE IN GETTING A DOG? Just the other day I glanced over and saw her sitting next to sleeping Argo's head, looking down at him with curiousity. And she definitely is in the same room with him every day, and has lost her fear of him (though maintained an appropriate wariness.)
So there's hope for Bit and Romeo. I know this, but sometimes when you're in the middle of Kitty WWIII, it's hard to remember that.
Oh, and a footnote to all of that, because it has nothing to do with Bit versus Romeo, but is just about Bit herself... she woke me up a little after 3:00 this morning, yowling out in the hall and scratching at the door. I was in the bedroom alone, because Jeff had slept on the couch that night... because he'd had to report to work at 3:30 AM and didn't want to disturb me when it was time for him to go. I realized that he'd probably already left for work, maybe just minutes before. I shambled out into the hallway sleepily, only to have Bit, crying constantly, escort me downstairs to show me the empty couch. Yep, Jeff had left for work. Poor thing, she had no idea of why her Daddy got up in the middle of the night and left without telling anyone. I guess that she just wanted me to know about it! She calmed down after I snuggled her for awhile, and allowed me to go back upstairs and catch a couple more hours of sleep...
Tell me why having animals is not like having kids? Because I'm seeing a lot of similarities.