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Desperately need help and advice!

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone! I just found this forum tonight when I was doing a search on Google for cat behavior.

Here's my story. I live in New York City (right in Manhattan). About 4 weeks ago, I woke up one morning and heard a cat meowing and crying very loudly outside. Stray cats are not unusual here in the city, but most are partly feral and don't make much noise. Later that night when I came home from work, the cat was still there, crying just as loudly. I figured she had been dumped by someone and tried to bring her inside but she wouldn't let me pick her up. I finally gave up and went to bed. The next day, I borrowed a pet carrier and managed to put her in it and bring her inside.

My original plan was to take her to a shelter the next day, but that didn't exactly happen. I took her to the Humane Society vet the next week for a check up, and he told me that if I gave her to a shelter, she wouldn't almost definitely get euthanized. AND, to make the situation worse, the vet thinks she is PREGNANT!!!!

The vet said she was not too far along and that I should have her spayed immediately and "get rid" of the kittens (i.e. abortion). They said that the chances of me being able to find homes for all the kittens here in NYC was a near impossibility and that they would eventually get put down anyways.

I called all the no kill animal organizations here and no one has room to take her. The problem is that I am not allowed to have pets in my apartment AND my roommate has issued me an ultimatum that if I don't get rid of the cat by Friday, she is no longer going to pay her full rent. (She hates cats.)

So, on to the biggest problem...One of the main reasons I can't keep her is her behavior. She is constantly meowing, almost to the point of loud howling. She is a VERY vocal cat. Since I have had her, her behavior has gotten progressively worse. The past two nights, she meowed non stop from 2am till 11am this morning!!!!!!! I fed her and did everything possible, but she just won't stop. It's keeping both me and my roommate awake, which is the main reason she wants the cat gone.

So what should I do? Is there any way to get this cat to stop the incessant meowing? Could it possibly be related to her being pregnant? A hormonal issue? If I could get the meowing to stop, I could possibly convince my roommate to let me keep her, but there's no way if the cat continues to be so noisy.

Well, sorry for the novel!! I'm at my wit's end right now. I don't want to take her to a shelter where she will surely be killed, but at the same time, the cat has totally disrupted my life and I am getting no sleep at night. I just can't go on like this!
post #2 of 25
Welcome to TCS!!! We are glad that you found us.

Now for some real user power. (just joking). Ok, the vet seems to think she is pregnant. Did he/she tell you why they thought that? If you kitty is crying and crying, I would be wondering if she was in heat, you know, looking for a gentleman kitty. Can you pet her? Does she put her but up in the air when you do pet her?

You mentioned that you fed her, bless you. So she's not hungry, she's not hurt?
post #3 of 25
Thread Starter 
When the vet tech went to weigh her, she came back and said she thought she was pregnant. The vet gave her an abdominal exam and said that he couldn't be 100% sure, b/c if she's pregnant, she's still early on.

I thought about her possibly being in heat too, if she isn't pregnant. She does put her butt in my face and is starved for attention. I try to give her as much attention as possible. She follows me everywhere around the house. I can't even go to the bathroom without her going with me!
post #4 of 25
Ok, that along with the yowling makes me really think that she is in heat. Do you have some duct tape??? ( I'm just kidding). The only way she will shut up is if you breed her, which is NOT recommended, or you get her spayed.

If you can explain to your roommate that getting her spayed is 95% going to fix the problem of the yowling, will she let you keep her?
post #5 of 25
Thread Starter 
So you think she is not pregnant but in heat? How long do cats stay in heat?
post #6 of 25
If she is in heat, she will look for attention and yowl probably for close to a week or so, and then taper off. In another couple of weeks she could start all over again.

If she is showing the symptoms that we talked about, the butt in the air, the demand for lovings and huggins, then perhaps you could consider spaying her as soon as possible. I understand the problem of worrying about aborting kittens. I went through the same setup with Tammy-Timmy because I thought she was pregnant, the vet thought that she was pregnant, but not too far along, and Tammy-Timmy had what they call a "false pregnancy"....all the symptoms but no kits.

You don't seem to have that situation. I really think your baby is in heat. Tammy didn't show any heat symptoms because of the false pregnancy.
post #7 of 25
Thread Starter 
Hmmm, you're right, it DOES sound like she is in heat. I thought for sure she is pregnant though. I'm trying to get her spayed on Friday, so I should know something by then, if I'm able to get the appointment.

If by some chance she is NOT in heat, and IS in fact pregnant, could the meowing and yowling be caused from that? Any other possibilities?
post #8 of 25
I honestly don't believe so. Cats yowl on occasion, they stick their butts up in the air occasionally, but heat is a persistent, unending crying or yowliing.

If you pet them to try and comfort them, the butt goes up in the air and you may see them hunker down, with their front paws on the floor, in a mating position.

None of these behaviors are evident in a pregnant female. Yes, they could yowl, yes put up the butt, however not in the insistent, persistent manner that drives both them and their owners crazy.

If you REALLY feel that she is or could be pregnant, then go with your heart feeling and wait the two and a half months or 63 to 65 days it would take to have her give birth. In the meantime, you will see changes in her during her pregnancy, or if she is not, she will continue to be insistent vocally.
post #9 of 25
If she is pregnant, she is in heat, they can be in heat for a month even after pregnant..........
post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 
Well, waiting on her to have the kittens isn't an option. I feel like a terrible person for taking her to get spayed when she could possibly be pregnant, but I just don't see any other choice. I am having a hard time being able to keep her or find someone to take her, much less being able to find a home for 6 or more kittens. Not to mention the problem of my roommate if I allowed the cat to have kittens in our apartment.
post #11 of 25
Cheylink: I'm sorry, I think I confused you. Sometimes pregnant cats yowl or stick their butt in the air when you pet them. They are still pregnant, they are NOT in heat.

Clopin333: I understand exactly how you feel. My situation was different from yours because Tammy had had contact enough with a male to drown her system in hormones, making her system think that she was pregnant. I didn't have to put up with the yowliing and crying. If she had been doing that I would have had her done two months earlier istead of waiting to see if we had kits.

Please do not feel badly. My honest opinion with the symptoms that you have described, is that she is in heat. I also understand that you have a deadline, I think you said Friday, which I personally feel is really not enough time to think this over and make up your own mind. But I honestly feel that she is showing symptoms of heat. You can wait through tonight and tomorrow and see how she is.....maybe she is at the end of her heat cycle and will give you more time to think. You did say she had been cyring outside? For how long?
post #12 of 25
Thread Starter 
Well, I dropped the kitty off at the vet this morning for the spaying and will pick her up tomorrow. I haven't slept in 4 nights b/c of her meowing/howling, and am utterly exhausted! I'm looking forward to uninterrupted sleep tonight!!

What should I expect when I pick her up tomorrow? If she was in heat and that is why she was meowing, will it instantly stop? How does a cat's behavior change after being spayed?
post #13 of 25
How is this little girl doing? Do you think you'll be able to keep her?
post #14 of 25
Thread Starter 
I picked up Lola from the vet this afternoon and she's doing great. She was NOT pregnant, so it appears that all the howling was from being in heat! I slept like a baby last night though without her.

I don't know if I'm going to be able to keep her. My roommate is causing big problems and complaining. She took $100 off her rent this month b/c of the cat, all without asking me.
post #15 of 25
Thread Starter 
Oh, and as for the meowing, so far so good. She been practically mute since I brought her home this afternoon. Well, that is, in comparison to what she was! Tonight will be interesting to see if she does any meowing at all.
post #16 of 25
She shouldn't.
post #17 of 25
Thread Starter 
Last night was a success!!! NO meowing at ALL!!! She was a perfect angel all night and slept right up next to me.
post #18 of 25
keep the cat. dump the roomate.
post #19 of 25
I agree with ckatz, dump the roomate. Doesn't like cats, is really rude about the cat after you only had her a few days, took $100 off the rent... How rude.
post #20 of 25
If you have a signed contract (or are on the lease) with your roomie regarding 'terms', she had no right to do what she did so arbitrarily. What's going to be next - taking off more money if she doesn't like the way you do dishes?
post #21 of 25
You already have the perfect roommate! Dump the 2 legged one!
post #22 of 25
Originally Posted by FishTreatsMom View Post
You already have the perfect roommate! Dump the 2 legged one!
I also live in the nyc area-roomates of the two-legged type are an evil necessary, at least till cats start paying rent.
post #23 of 25
I think you've done a really wonderful thing by taking in this cat. She'll probably be ready to come home the next day...a vet usually likes to keep a cat over night and make sure everything's OK. Your cat's meowing and so forth should be over now for good...if it was 'heat' related. She should also be a more quiet home-body now. I (personally) would tell your 'roomie' that you ARE keeping the cat...and if that doesn't meet with her approval then perhaps SHE should seek other accommodations (not that you're asking her to leave, but more playing a firm hand and showing that you're SERIOUS about the importance of this cat in your life. Once you deside that this cat IS going to be part of your life---then NOTHING is going to stand in your way of keeping and caring for her...and shouldn't, after all, she's a part of you and makes up part of YOUR family. I've found that once YOU make up your mind about keeping someone in your life...the rest comes rather naturally. You've are already invested in this little 'person'/cat...so since you've said 'yes' to her---I hope that you'll keep your promise and care for her from now on. She'll be grateful forever...I know...and you'll have a special reason to come home from now on: that little furry ball of emotions...waiting just for YOU!

God bless!

fr gregg
post #24 of 25
Originally Posted by ckatz View Post
keep the cat. dump the roomate.
I was thinking the same thing. besides cats will love you for life, but roommate will end up freaking out over somethign in the end.
post #25 of 25
KittenKiya is very smart. I lived in Manhattan for most of my adult life, and I can assure you NYC doesn't need any more kittens. You did the right thing in having her neutered. It is the humane thing to do.

MY wild Arabian cat, who adopted me when I was working in Riyadh, is very much the same story. I had to have her spayed when she was pregnant. No problem with that: she was just a girl herself.

A cat that follows you around is a wonderful thing: a smart, affectionate pet who you can train.

But yeah. The yowling may go on. After months and months of sweetness, my cat was awful a couple of weeks ago. I was exhausted and about to be evicted. But that is was cats do if they are young and frisky. She stopped when I put her in the bathroom as soon as she started. Water spraying also works, but it is tough.

Hang in there.
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