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Too attached?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
My little man Miles is 8 months old. I found him when he was 4ish weeks old outside abandoned (unless the mother was killed, I stayed outside all day looking for her) 3 houses down in a shack where I had noticed people were slowing their cars down to look inside a hole where he was popping his head out (can't believe they just kept driving). He was a bit emaciated and was infested with fleas and ear mites. I took him in and bottle fed him, cared for him and took him to the vet to fix him up, and to my suprise he matured into a healthy young cat.

I knew he'd be attached to me because I bottle fed him, and I thought it was the cutest thing in the world that he was so bonded with me. Since hes been old enough to explore the house hes started following me from room to room. If he sat in my lap and my shirt had buttons on them he'd try to nurse them (even now and hes 8 months old). His bond is adorable but sometimes he worries me. If I happen to go to the restroom and shut the door he will sit outside of the door and scream (seriously its scarey) and throw himself against the door until I come out, of course I could always carry him around with me everywhere but I'm not sure thats the best thing to do. For the last few months when I walk around the house or go in the backyard he lays across my back on my shoulders like he was meant to sit there. It gets a little tough on my back haha. He also will not eat his food unless I am in the direct vicinity. Sometimes I have to sit next to him, other times I have to be within a few feet of him. I'm 20 and live with my parents while I go to school and my mom says if I leave he walks around the house making a blood curdeling noise until he gets too exhausted and passes out or until I come back home when he jumps in my lap and proceeds to lick the heck out of my face like a dog.

Another thing, he will not let anyone else touch him but me. Hes not aggressive but he will literally hide behind me if someone tries to pet him. Hes not skiddish he just avoids everyone else.

I love Miles, I've never been more attached or had a bond so strong with an animal before. But I really worry about him.. in case I go away and he can't come with me, or when I start working as a vet tech and I'm gone long hours. I don't know if I should do anything about it or if he will just "grow out of it".

post #2 of 11
I don't know what to suggest. If he were a dog I'd say to make your leaving & arriving home each day very low key. Ignore him when he's too persistant & pet him when he's calm.
My 6 m/o kitten Blossom was dumped & I've had her since 3 1/2 weeks old. I too bottle fed her, taught her to use litter box, scratching tree etc. She is more outgoing, will play with our 2 dogs, pants like a dog. She licks us all over which can be annoying. She goes to the bathroom when we do. She's also a wild thing which I believe is a kitty thing. Slowly starting to calm down.
Maybe get mum to feed him so he can be more reliant on her.
post #3 of 11
If this doesn't sound familiar.......Maia is exactly the same way! I brought her home at 6 weeks, runt of the litter, eyes still blue, milk supplement, for first week. I came across a listing for kittens, took a train to see her, and when I picked her up, that was it, she was the one, my baby girl. She could barely walk, first week I had to carry her in a sling around my neck because if I didn't she would scream and cry! She is a year and a month now, still won't let others touch her, if I go to the store when she is sleeping, minutes later come back and she is wide awake running to my side. Forget using the bathroom without her silly self in there! Otherwise it sounds like a battering ram outside the door! Sleeps on my chest, face, or any where that is comfortable for her..............All these things, and more, are what I absolutely love about her! She is my best friend, and I wouldn't have it any other way!
post #4 of 11
Hi, I think you need to learn to wean him a bit, just like a mother would, but I would first speak to Joan Levergood, Psychologist (animal behavior expert) at:- (773) 267-7209 to find out how to go about it properly. Good luck and get back and tell us what happens.
post #5 of 11
I have 3 orphaned bottle feds that live with me and I have to admit that I chuckled at your post. 2 of the 3 behave pretty much as you described, with the exception that they are very outgoing with anyone. The third is a little wild child with very little self control.

When you get them that young, what they are missing is the early training that mom cat's would normally give them, what I'll call basic cat manners. And we, as humans, don't fundamentally understand what that training entails. I've had mine get to that "annoying" point and I did the same thing that you are doing - try to figure out what I could do to redirect them.

For food - 2 of mine wouldn't wean for me - they were pushing 10 weeks old and wouldn't eat anything but the bottle. We gave feeding over to a vet tech for a week to force the issue.

Muddy used to DEMAND attention, and I mean to the point that he screamed at me, tripped me up, and leapt in the air to get in my arms. As hard as it was, I didn't give in to it and would ignore him until he would approach me in a calmer manner. It took a year to change that behavior and once in a while he falls back on that (he is now 4).

Scarlett was the girl that wouldn't eat unless you were petting her. Since she is so small, we were overly concerned about her weight and gave into it. To wean her off of the attention, we just started backing away - at first we'd stay in the room with her, and eventually we just walked away. As my husband put it: she'll learn to eat when she is hungry.

Take each behavior that you are concerned about and find an alternative way to interact with Miles. It can literally take a year to change it, but if you give into it, it will not change.

I care for 13 cats, but my 3 bottle feds hold special places in my heart and they do get special treatment. You can't help but bond with them in a way you wouldn't with other cats. But somehow you need to find it in yourself to apply discipline with them that they would have gotten from their cat momma. It's just hard to find out what that discipline would be.

Specifically for Miles, I suggest that someone else feed him for a while and if he is shy around others, that you get others to do a lot of interactive play with them.

He sounds like a sweetie pie!!
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the advice! I'm going to try to get some other people interacting with him and see if that helps. If it doesn't, I'll give that number a call.
I'll keep everyone updated on my lil miles!
post #7 of 11
He's still young. He may grow out of it yet.

My youngest, Abby, who is 8 years old is a real "Mommy's girl". She has to be on me, or near me or have me in her sight and if I get up to go to the bathroom or to the bedroom and she's not in a spot that she can see me, she's right behind me. I live alone and I haven't had a moment's pivacy since I adopted her.

Both of my cats hate closed doors, so there are no closed doors in my apartment. Sliding closet doors are opened on each end and the doors positioned in the middle. Bathroom doors are never shut because there is always a kitty wanting inside. I had to draw the line at my front door though, LOL

Chynna who is 15 years old loves to be cuddled and carried around. She's too fat to sit on my shoulders but I'm sure that would be her prime spot if she wasn't. Chynna also loves to groom me when I hold her or brush her.

I'd give it more time and not worry so much about Miles. Chances are he will grow out of his neediness as he gets older.
post #8 of 11
Sounds familiar! Cheshire Cat has abandonment issues.... he won't let anyone touch him except me... barely anyone else even sees him, which is impressive for a 27-pound-cat. His name is definitely fitting with all the disappearances! When I first got him, he cried and cried if I closed doors, and wouldn't eat if I was gone for a few hours. Sometimes, he'd even get so upset he'd throw up!! Once, I had to leave for two days, and he somehow pulled/licked off all the hair on his leg. Once the self-mutilation started, I knew something had to be done.

The vet couldn't recommend anything, so I finally just got him a cat. Yes, I got a cat for my cat. But it worked! I got a kitten, so he had someone to take care of and love all day, and he's much better now! I can leave for two days and he's JUST FINE.

So maybe you should get a cat for your cat?
post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Betty Ann View Post
Sounds familiar! Cheshire Cat has abandonment issues.... he won't let anyone touch him except me... barely anyone else even sees him, which is impressive for a 27-pound-cat. His name is definitely fitting with all the disappearances! When I first got him, he cried and cried if I closed doors, and wouldn't eat if I was gone for a few hours. Sometimes, he'd even get so upset he'd throw up!! Once, I had to leave for two days, and he somehow pulled/licked off all the hair on his leg. Once the self-mutilation started, I knew something had to be done.

The vet couldn't recommend anything, so I finally just got him a cat. Yes, I got a cat for my cat. But it worked! I got a kitten, so he had someone to take care of and love all day, and he's much better now! I can leave for two days and he's JUST FINE.

So maybe you should get a cat for your cat?
I REALLY want to get a purebred cat. Both of mine are offspring of feral cats, and I love them dearly.. but I have that desire to try something new. I am worried that Merlin will not accept a new cat because hes had a lot of trouble accepting Miles. I know Miles would love a friend.. ugh.. decisions.
post #10 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by artharitis View Post
I REALLY want to get a purebred cat. Both of mine are offspring of feral cats, and I love them dearly.. but I have that desire to try something new. I am worried that Merlin will not accept a new cat because hes had a lot of trouble accepting Miles. I know Miles would love a friend.. ugh.. decisions.

Cheshire Cat never got along well with other cats, either. When I adopted him, he was already over a year old, and the people at the humane society actually tried to encourage me NOT to adopt him! He was really skiddish, HATED other cats, didn't want to be held, was difficult, etc. When I brought him home, he'd hiss and growl at the feral cats outside my apartment. I didn't think he'd like having a new kitten too much, and he didn't at first. But she was just too adorable to resist, I guess. Pretty soon, this was happening:



It's all a matter of introducing them the right way
post #11 of 11
I don't have much to add but I love your miles but I love black cats he is adorable and sounds like a blessing.
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