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Gweeky problems

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Our youngest cat, Striker (aka Gweeky) has a few major issues. He is about 5 years old and was adopted from our vet when he was about 4 months old. He is the child of a feral cat but was born at the vet's office. When we 1st adopted him he was relatively friendly, but overly timid with strangers. When he was about a year old things began to change. He has progressively become more shy/paranoid. He lets no one touch him now - I am the only on who can, but I can't approach him, he has to approach me. He startles very easily. He comes across as feral, but has never been feral.

I think the issue stems from a check up we brought him to when he was about 1. I don't know if he thought we were going to leave him at the vets or what. He was fine when he was in previously for his neuter. The last time he was at the vet's he was 2 and I still have the scar 3 years later to show how petrified he was of getting caged. His fur is so matted now that it must hurt him, but he won't let anyone near enough to cut them out.

I just don't know what to do about him. He is not picked on by the other cats and does deal well with them. I am concerned I can't get him to the vets for a check up and I am concerned about his mats.

What can I do?
post #2 of 5
My experience with timid personalities is that the more you allow them to withdraw the worse they will get.

At this point he may not want to be touched for multiple reasons and the mats in his fur being number one. It may just plain hurt. You need to get his fur taken care of.

Taking baby steps to recondition him will help. If at first you have to have him come to you its okay. Do this as much as possible. Find where he is most comfortable and sit near him. Talk to him soothingly and try to reach out and pet him. Do this multiple times a day until he is comfortable again. After a week or so at each lever progress to more contact from you. Once he trusts you again you can't allow him to withdraw again. You will need to set aside time each day multiple times a day to socialize with him. Once he is comfortable with you again have another member of your house go thru the same process. Once he is comfortable with all members of your family you can divide his socializing time between all of you.

Sometimes we get so busy in our lives its easy to not spend time with our companion animals. We need to make special time for them.
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
I have been trying to spend time with him - I go to his fav resting plaace. Problem is that as soon as I enter the room, he runs out of it. I don't want to close the door, then he will feel trapped. Sometimes he approaches me on his own and then I get to give him some love and attention. How do I get him to stay in the room with me to give him the attention?
post #4 of 5
Does he have a favorite interactive toy?
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Yes - there is a string on a rope he likes, but he has to stay in the room to see me with it. He is very fast. I have tried playing with the toy with the other cats and he will look in the room, but not play while the other cats are. I have tried treats, he stays long enough to eat them (never from my hand) and then leaves. I have heard that theere is St John's Wort, liquid form, for animals that I can put in the cats' water. Does any have experience with that? Only problem with that is that the other cats would get it also.
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