TBT: Saturday, Laz visited my vets. Since there are no medical records of him, he got a rabies shot and 2 others (I can never keep all those initials straight) and a microchip. I don't ask too many questions, I just say "yes Maam", and sign the credit card receipt afterwards. And he goes back in 3 weeks for either more or 2nd shots. Fecal sample was clean. He weighs 9 lbs 7 oz.
They said he was adorable, calm, and in apparent purrfect health.
I let him rest from being "handled, probed, and stabbed" in The Mew's Room when we returned. After an hour, I decided it was time to let The Mews meet nose-to-nose. I simply left the door open and kept an ear and eye open for any problems.
Laz didn't want to come out; Marley and Ayla didn't want to go in. The room had to smell pretty strongly of Laz; he had been in there for 6 days! Eventually, Marley sauntered in and sniffed the litterbox, sniffed the carpet, and ate some of Laz's food. Then started to leave, but stopped and turned around. My guess is that with a strong smell of Laz all around, Marley hadn't realized he was right there a few feet away.
They sniffed. Mostly Laz as the newbie, but Marley accepted the sniffing as part of a proper meeting.
Laz: "He is BIG".
Marley: Mousies. And Stinky Goodness from cans.
Laz: "Whats a mouse or cans"?
Marley: What is THIS weerd litter? You LIKE that? It smells like pine needles!
After about 15 minutes, it seems to have occurred to Laz that he could leave the room I had to quick-click before the camera got focussed). My bedroom is directly across the hall, so that's where he went.
Laz has basically stayed there for 2 days. I haven't been able to touch him since I let him out of the Mews Room. I set bowls of his accustomed dry food, another brand of dry food, some canned food (smellier, so maybe attractive and "just in case he likes it"), and a water bowl. I refresh them 2x a day. He eats a small amount of each and drinks sparingly. I can tell by the bowls and his pine pellet litterbox, but it sure isn't as much as seems normal.
I am slightly concerned. I know cats can "hold it" for days under stress, but I don't want that to go on too long. On the other hand, I've realized that Ayla and Marley don't drink much water (obvious from changes in their litter boxes since Iza left - the peepods have gone from many softball-size clumps to a few golf-balls).
I do know Laz has been into the main area of the house a few times. I have woken to a few hisses and some running sounds a couple times each of the past few nights. I actually consider that a good sign. If he is moving around at night it means he is getting used to the rest of the house and meeting Marley and/or Ayla even if they are not getting along yet.
All my recent cats (1992 Skeeter onwards) have gotten along with the other cat(s) after only a few days. This one is taking longer. And it isn't like Skeeter and LC weren't stressed when they arrived to face established cats. If Laz continues to hide, I am going to have to move the bed headboard (door closed) to pick him up and return him to the (aired-out) Mews Room for for socialization toward me and possibly even eating-encouragement. I will squirt chicken broth and electrolytes down his throat if I have to.
I thought I had Laz slightly socialized to me when he was in the Mews Room. He hid the first few days of course, but he later would stay on the platform tree and let me stoke his back and give him scritchies. And he seemed to like that. He kneaded his paws and even was starting to purr.
The sudden stand-offishness is sad. The lack of eating as much as he should is sad.
Any suggestions are welcome.