Cat intros, not as easy as normal

Paula BowmanPaula Bowman IndependenceMember Posts: 13
edited 27 October, 2015 in Behavior & Training
Ok, so I know all about intros and how to, but this one is a little more difficult. Short background. I have 3 cats currently. I had two, a male (6 yrs old Kitty #1) and a female (4years old kitty #2 got her 2 yrs after kitty #1). Then my partner moved in, she brought her older male (kitty #3 came age unknown just a lot older). Did intros with them, went ok, but my Male, does not hurt her male so to speak, but he will chase him on occasion and will kind of walk up to him and "bully" him and make him cower down. But no major full on fights where there is no blood and harm done, just a slap here and there. So I assumed that's the best it will always be they stay pretty much out of each others way, and it has been 3 years now and no better. Which brings me to my actual question. So bring in cat #4. We had a stray, female around 4. The lady upstairs from me took her in and cant keep her. So she has been living with her the last 4-6 weeks. So for the last week and 1/2 I have been doing intros with new kitty #4 with my other three existing. I bring new kitty #4 downstairs with me, put my 2 cats (kitty 1 and 2) in my room, with baby gate and let new kitty roam around the house. (#3 older kitty stays in the other room with his human mom for the most part so he's not really in this). Then I will change the next couple of days and put New kitty # 4 in my room and let my two existing kitties (1 and 2) roam around house as usual. The problem is, normally my male cat (the bully) hides under the bed when new kitty is down there and wont come out until I take her back upstairs. My house is pretty big. Or they just all stay away from each other so they cant see one another when doing intros. (which I know the point is to let them see, smell etc during intros). When they do get close to each other via the gate, they hiss and growl something fierce to each other, which I know is normal. So is there an easier way to get them closer together without them fighting, its only been a week, and I know these can take months....I am just concerned they are just voiding each other and will never get the "hey check her out" down. I don't want to do the put one in carrier and set in room thing because the carrier is traumatizing to all my cats and that will make it worse. Suggestions on how to get them to pay more attention to each other so that they actually get used to each other?
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