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Clueless about Libby

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hi, I introduced myself in the welcome area, but I have a couple of questions about my cat Libby.

She's 1 and a Bengal mix. Her previous owners left her at the vet because they said she was aggressive. When we first went to see her she did hiss and scratch at my friend who was showing us to her.

Libby warmed up to my husband so we bought her home on Friday. The vet has her on Prozac because she wouldn't eat there and she was very aggressive towards the staff there. We have to give her a half tablet everyday until we run out.

Okay here's my questions about her. She's very jumpy, and if we move she jerks up really quick and is ready to scratch us if we are too close. I figure this is a trust issue so we're taking out time with her.

But, she doesn't cry at all. So knowing if she is hungry or not is hard to figure out so we feed her two meals a day. Regular meal at breakfast, regular dinner, and a half a serving of food for a third meal. Her only wet meal is at night.

Sometimes she'll come up to me and grab me with her paws and play bite and scratch. What does this mean? I usually take this as a hint that she wants to play. Since I don't want her to bite me I say "Ouch" like it hurts, and she did it again to which I said "Ouch" and then she stopped. Is this her signal that she wants to play?

Also I have no idea what kind of attention she wants. I mean I think I might know play, but if she wants attention, I'm not sure how to give it, is it just talking to her, being around her? She doesn't let us pet her all that much, her tolerance is maybe 30 seconds of a pet before she starts trying to bite.

The funny thing is she follows us around everywhere. She sleeps on our bed right next to my legs. If I move she'll move right back to a body part.

What does she want? I hate that I really don't know what to do at all. We really like her so I want to make sure I'm doing a good job.

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 6
Thank you for taking her in.

It sounds like you are off to a great start - you've made some wonderful observations.
It sounds like she startles easily or was hit perhaps. We'll never know. The fact that she follows you around indicates interest.
It sounds like you are reading her signals pretty well already - to stop petting when she is done. As she gets to know you, she might go for longer sessions. My Zoey is very hot and cold on the petting from day to day.
Talk to her a lot in your nice calm voice, it will draw her in more.

The experts will be along soon.
post #3 of 6
Good for you for being willing to take her on! I agree that you are off to a good start. It sounds like you are willing to be patient with her. That might be just what she needs.

Do you have any toys for her? It may help her settle in if she is able to work off some energy. The bengal in her may make her pretty hyper. A laser light that she can chase after might be good. My Coco (a bengal) loves to play fetch and to chase after a feather teaser.

Good luck!
post #4 of 6
I think you're doing just fine. Your feeding schedule is appropriate. Your response to biting is appropriate. I really don't see any problem here. This cat and you two are bonding just fine. Just keep up the good work.

PS - people weren't made to understand cats. Cats understand us better than we understand them. Enjoy your cat.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks you guys! I'm glad that everyone sees her behavior as normal. I just want to make sure we're on track. The last thing I want to do is do something to hurt her unintentionally.

I think she is a very good cat. She doesn't tear up the house when we go to work, and she's great with her litterbox!

As for toys I have quite a few for her, we have a couple of the fishing rod type toys, I play with her with these so she can have fun, but not bite our fingers. I also have little shiny toys and balls, we kind of went all out, we want to make sure we have plenty of stuff for her to do. The next thing I'm getting are the little mazes so she can play.

I'm starting to fall in love with her already! I call from work to make sure she's ok!
post #6 of 6
First of all I want to say thank you for taking her in. If you wouldn't have who knows what would have happened to her. Many people don't have the patients for "fiesty" cats. So i commend you.

I do agree with the others, you are right on track. The best thing for you to do is just be patient and respect her boundries. Let her come to you like she has been. The thing with sleeping right next to your legs at night is probably and insecurity of hers. She probably wants to know that she is safe by you while she is sleeping, which is a good thing, shows some signs of trust in you.

It sounds like the beginnings of a good "Kittyship". LOL
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