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Shelter cat behavior...

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Mojo is the first cat we've gotten from an actual shelter. Thing is, it seems like she's been in a shelter most or all of her life. She's not good with jumping, though she is getting better. She uses her claws to climb everything instead of jumping - even "easy" jumps like into our laps. She was AMAZED at the TV - she stopped everything to stare at it for a few minutes (HOURS in kitten terms ) when it was first turned on, and will still every once in a while notice it and just stare. Earl said she had the same reaction the first time she saw out the window. It's pretty obvious that she never had her claws clipped before last night. Man, those little things HURT! She obviously LOVES being in a bigger room, and just plays non-stop until she's ready to fall over asleep. (But she does stop for loves every so-often. Just not for very long unless she's about ready to fall over asleep. )

Poor thing. I still can't figure out why she wasn't adopted before...she's so cute and sweet and funny. She was a star at Petsmart - they all asked us how she's doing when we went back in.

We don't know of her history except that the rescue we adopted her from rescued her from another shelter. I know they regularly rescue cats who are slated for euthanasia. On her info sheet, it said "I never want to go back to the shelter, not a good place to be." That could just be an emotional ploy, or it could say something about her experience there, I don't know.

Anyway, I'm wondering who else has a cat(s) who have lived long parts of their lives in a cage, and if this behavior is consistent with that? Also, are there any other behaviors we should be aware of in the future?
post #2 of 8
We adopted Abby from a shelter. We don't know her history, but she definitely has shelter cat eating habits, and still does sometimes after almost 2 years with us. She will grab some food/treats out of her bowl and then move to the side to eat it.

She is just a skittish cat in general, so I think a lot of her behavior can be applied to that.
post #3 of 8
Originally Posted by AbbysMom View Post
We adopted Abby from a shelter. We don't know her history, but she definitely has shelter cat eating habits, and still does sometimes after almost 2 years with us. She will grab some food/treats out of her bowl and then move to the side to eat it.
Tibby and Molly will do that, but I think that comes down to the over run colony that they came from.

Annie is my only cat that I have adopted from a rescue - but she was from a foster situation and wasn't there for too long really! She also climbs with her claws and will flop once she gets there! (could have become a habit while she was pregnant, but I don't know!)

To be honest, it sounds like how Willow was when he first arrived here (at approx 5 months old, if that) - he didn't even climb or jump! I have no idea why, but it took him a long time to essentially learn how to do it - under Tibby's attentive teachings!

Even both at just over a year old, Annie and Willow will still both run and run and play and play until they're ready for sleep! It sounds like Mojo is also going to be full of beans!
post #4 of 8
hmm..idk bout the climbing because thats how stormie gets up alot she can jump but she climbs alot of the time shes weird tho lol....willie was our rescue and he is such a love we are so unsure why no one adopted him every one at the shelter ed him so we are still tryign to figure that out and he was also the most friendliest cats there....also Precious who is now at my grandmas she was so happy but fat and lazy Also for the moving the food....my kitties do that bella though we found on the streets and Stormie I think just learned that from her if any drops on the floor you better bet that Stormie will be there to eat it and the playing sounds like Stormie all the way all the time till she is completely worn out even then she will still play as long as bella is up for it she can be in a deep sleep and I will accidently kick one of her toys and she is up and ready but she is a kitten and the situation were we got her just didnt seem that great but it was a house compared to a cage lol, but Willie came and he was just Willie so laid back a little playful and sooo cute and got more cutter and more cuddley as he got older !!! Precious she just slept alot !
post #5 of 8
hmmm, Most of the cats i have had have been shelter cats. however heyu is the only one that does some of the same things, she very bad at jumping, tends to miss alot.
but she is not into climbing, we got her at 8 months i dont know how long she had been there. She is not very big into the social things, only likes to be held once a day.
and even then only for a few min, She still after a year will sit and watch TV, football, have seen her chase a few golf balls. and of course she loves to watch the birds outside the window.
post #6 of 8
Heidi, do you know anything about the shelter(s) she was in? She sounds as if she was kept in a cage most, if not all, of the time, and therefore had no opportunity to learn to jump. She probably just needs to exercise the proper muscles and do some "target practice", as her development would have been "arrested" if she were caged.
She probably wasn't adopted because she's black, and some people are incredibly superstitious. We recently had a pair of all-black brothers in our shelter who should have been snapped up immediately, but weren't - it took weeks till somebody showed an interest, and that was only after they were featured in the local paper.
The interest in television doesn't surprise me. It's new. Jamie was in a foster home, and there was no television in the area the litter was kept. He was absolutely fascinated at first, and even developed an addiction to the "Teletubbies". It became less interesting over time. People who have adopted kittens from the shelter have also remarked about how televisions and stereos are absolutely fascinating at first.
post #7 of 8
My Koko is also fascinated by the TV at times and I bottle fed her from 10 days old so know she was never in a cage. She absolutely loves the "Kitty Goes Hunting" DVD. Mojo's antics remind me of Koko so I wonder if that's not just part of the personality? She gets that "what's that" look about her on a regular basis - things just fascinate her for a short time before she moves onto her next adventure.

For the jumping piece, my friend's cat Mojo comes to mind. He was in a shelter for only a week, but has difficulty jumping. He'll wind up for a "big leap", only to jump about a foot. He's now 3 years old and still does it.

Sorry, have never had a cat that was kept in a shelter for any length of time, but her behavior could be explained by her personality.
post #8 of 8
We try and keep long termers in home situations, as there is limited space in the rescue, and it can affect their muscles. When I took Molly on last year, she struggled jumping onto things like a chair, cos she had little exercise, but that went within a couple of weeks, once she was more active and had more space. Some of my youngsters have been fascinated by the TV as well, the oldies tend to ignore it!!
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