Hank and Howie – a Ragdoll Cat and a Bengal Cat Living in Harmony
This post is written by Holly Hott, the owner of Hank and Howie
Hank came home August 2010. My birthday was right around the corner, September 2. The person I was dating at the time kept telling me Hankie needed a playmate and that it’d be the perfect birthday present. He was an avid animal lover, and told me I needed a Bengal. I had heard of them before, but never seen one in person. So, a week later we are on our way with Hank to the Bengal breeder’s home….
The breeder was nice enough to let us bring Hank and even allow him in the large cages the Bengal kitties were in. Howie, the only brown Bengal, was the only one curious about lil’ Hankie! I knew he was the one. Not only did I want a brown Bengal (vs. silver), he instantly was attached to Hank. The first few days they were a little scared of each other, but soon enough they became best buddies!
Howie, in his Bengal nature, is usually the one that starts playing with Hank. But, just because Hank is a sweet lil’ Ragdoll doesn’t mean he won’t start fights! I love it when Hank gets riled up…it’s so cute. Howie though, usually dominates. When fighting, Hank likes to lay in boxes on his back and let Howie come to him! Howie loves to be the center of attention, whereas Hank usually is a little more shy and comes around when he wants to come around.
Whenever Hank is getting any attention from me, Howie never surprises me and will always come and try to steal the spot light. Howie is very affectionate and loving all the time…Hank, on the other hand, loves you when he wants to. Sometimes I call him a princess because he is just so picky when he wants to be pet, when he wants to lay by you, etc.
The two of them are the perfect pair! Their different personalities and looks give you the best of both worlds.
I just ooooohed and awwwwwwed as I went from one picture to the next. These are both such amazing looking kitties……and loving each other, so sweet. I think, because they are so different from each other, makes them even more special.
Great photography too!
Oh these two are adorable, I do so love the various contortions they’ve managed to get into in the pictures of them all snuggled up – what a pair of characters! 🙂
What a beautiful pair of kitties! It must be so much fun to watch them with their contrasting looks and personalities. Loved seeing the pics of them together!
Very close in age! Hank was born on April 29, 2010 and Howie was born on May 12, 2010.
Just beautiful. What a lovely story, and Hank is SO gorgeous! He looks a lot like my Saxon (so of course he is gorgeous :).
What a great pair – like living with sunshine and shadows. Are they close in age? I love the way they have such close physical contact. I do hope to hear and see more of these two!
My lil kitties! Love them to pieces. Thanks for the sweet comments, Rebekah!
I have a Ragdoll named Harry (he’s nearly 8) and in February we got a 6 month of Bengal (Aurora). They keep fighting and it seems to really stress Harry out. She’ll attack him playfully but he panics and thinks she’s actually fighting with him. Obviously now she’s getting bigger she’s much strong than he is and sometimes they seem to get on but then she starts on him and it descends into chaos! I’ve tried everything – feliway, separating them etc, I’m at my wits end! As don’t want to lose either of them but I worry when I’m not in whether she’s terrorising him! Any advice? Thanks, Nat x
Hi Natalie, I posted this on our Facebook page here – https://www.facebook.com/floppycats/posts/10154731355938038
That’s a very big age gap to expect cats to settle down easily. Kittens are extremely high energy and an 8 year old ragdoll is likely to be slowing down a little, and be intimidated by a baby that wants to play, play, play all the time.
There are many things to consider in this situation. 1. is it just that she is high energy and it will resolve as she ages out of the kitten stage? 2. is Harry so stressed that it’s affecting his health ? (ie withdrawn, losing fur, hiding, getting bald patches from overgrooming?) 3. how is it affecting Harry’s relationship with you? 4. Is the kitten an alpha? The breeder should’ve been able to tell you the character of the kitten and asked about existing pets to confirm that she was a good choice. Alpha kittens can be hell for a singleton cat to adapt to, and many existing cats try to defend their territory until a pecking order is fully established.
Are you spending enough time wearing the kitten out? Have you gone through a segregation period with gradual introduction or did you just put them together? Do you have enough vertical surfaces for both kitten and cat to seek safe perches? Are both getting quality time with you?
I would be inclined to separate them when you can’t be with them, because making Harry ill as a result of stress would be cruel. Give them separate areas with their own bowls and litterboxes and toys, and try to work with them together when you are able to supervise and intervene as necessary.
Cats are lovely creatures, but sometimes mixing them just doesn’t work out as we hope. Good luck.
Oh my gosh, these two are precious! I was smitten when i saw pictures of the two of them in the post about Ragdolls in Boxes, and am so glad that Holly wrote a piece about them. They are such a cute pair! SQUEEE!