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Another Felliway question...

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
We might be moving soon, & since the Felliway diffuser comes to mind, I hope that someone can help with some questions I have..
(I tried a search, but none are related closely enough with my potential problem)
First of all, it's not a long distance move, only across town, but my one male cat, Tucker, hates his carrier, & I think it's because of a long distance move from California to Florida that the poor little boy had to endure about 6 years ago.
Believe me, I've tried all of the tricks to get him into it, also putting it out over a week in advance just to go to the vet, trying to get him used to it, & still praying that i am lucky enough to lure him in enough to close the door! I haven't resorted to physically doing it myself-it would stress both of us out. I know he would fight me & he is a big boy. And a very clever & suspicious boy. If he squirms away from me, that's it. Who knows when I would get another chance. A part of me knows i have to take control, stay calm & just do it, but another part totally dreads it.
My other 2 cats aren't so bad. Mini will walk right in because she is naturally curious & with Sklyler I will pick him up & put him in hind legs first & he doesn't protest too much.
Tucker also gets so upset that he pooped in his carrier once, & peed the last time he was out.
(The carrier for Tucker is one for large cats, I also have one of those smaller standard plastic ones))
My question is should I invest in the Felliway plug in?
The cats don't have problems with spraying, I am looking more for something to help keep Tucker more on the mellow side so he is easier to deal with on both sides of the move. Once I get them moved, I would put them in the spare bedroom & plug it in over there, & keep them all in that room for awhile during the heavy part of the move & the work & go from there, based on how they each react.
Is Felliway worth my while for this situation?
I have an account with drs Fosters& Smith, but can you find Felliway at PetCo? Or the vet?
Any suggestions would be helpful, but please don't suggest getting a tranquilizer pill from the vet. Big fangs come with big cats, I'd love to avoid it if at all possible!
Thanks everyone!
post #2 of 7
I'd suggest getting the off brand called No Mark. It's the same basic ingredients but considerably cheaper. I've had pretty good luck with it here.

One of the books I'm reading suggests (if you have the time) to try to associate the carrier in his mind with positive experiences.. like put treats in there, and just let him walk in and out without "catching" him. Maybe also try to play with him in it, if possible. And I'd actually toss treats in there for the other cats, too, so he can see them go in there, get the treats and successfully come back out without being trapped.

I don't really know what else to suggest. I'm about to start trying these methods myself with my Mau.
post #3 of 7
I would definitely invest in a refill for the diffuser to use at your new home. I buy mine online at PetsMart when they're on sale. They're considerably cheaper than buying them in-store.

Instead of using a carrier, have you tried using two laundry baskets tied together? I did this before I got a carrier and it works very well. It's larger than a normal carrier and it allows them to see more. Just get 2 large laundry baskets (same size) that are rectangular, smaller at the bottom/larger at the top. Put them together so it looks like a trunk, with the open sides together. (Does that make sense??) Tie one side together in 2 places (like hinges), put a blanket or towel in the bottom, plop the cat in and tie once on each short side and twice on the long sides.

If all else fails, you can ask the doctor for some tranquilizers for your kitty.

post #4 of 7
Diffusers for inside the old home at least two weeks prior to moving, then inside the new home ASAP. Get the Feliway SPRAY and spray that inside his carrier thoroughly about 30 minutes BEFORE you put him in it the day you leave.

My feral born, Ferris, yowls and yowls, and has peed inside his carrier, too. He's absolutely terrified of being put in it.

THe Feliway really helps - I just moved into a new apartment on July 29th, and the method I described above made a big difference. He made it through, and he adjusted fine (after being hissy and skittish for a few days.)

I'd like to add that I use gauntlets (long gloves of a tough material) to catch him and stuff him into the carrier. It hurts my feelings to resort to that as much as it bums him out, but it keeps me from bleeding. I carry too many scars from this guy already. Yes, it stresses BOTH of us out, but we do what we have to do. And we get over it and move on. And he will be fine once you're settled in.

Best of luck!

I buy my Feliway on eBay, I price shop, but you can buy it at most pet stores or through pet catalogs.
post #5 of 7
I'd also read in one of the behavioral books that I'm working on... that sometimes if a cat gets really stressed out by moving boxes and so forth around, that you may want to actually kennel him for a few days while you're in the process of moving.. definitely for the moving day itself, and they suggest that you don't move him on the same day.. maybe bring him in a day or two after, with most of the stuff or a lot of the stuff, unpacked, so things are somewhat familiar. It also suggested that you leave any blankets or beds or what have you that they lay on unwashed, and put them back on the same pieces of furniture, etc, so that it's familiar.

I know what you're going through, though. Bagheera is the same way, and she's way too smart to be "caught" in any sort of situation where she's trapped. Bathroom, cornered, kennel... nope. And on top of that she's a bit handshy so it's not like you can reach down and grab her and *then* put her in a carrier. The last time I did that I had a deep cat bite for two weeks, because she latched on and didn't let go for 30 seconds, and completely made it impossible to scruff her or put her in the carrier because she was attached to my hand and I couldn't fit her in. The little wench.

She does, though, occasionally go into the carrier if it's sitting around. So, I think the method of treating inside the carrier might work if I can get her to start going in more often.

I agree with Ginger, though, get some long gloves. You may want to ask the vet where they get the fine mesh gloves they have (at least my vet has them.. they brought them out for Joyeux's visit). They are probably expensive, though.

Good luck and let us know how it goes. Sending "calm" vibes to kitty.
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help, & sorry it took so long for me to reply.
It's not a for sure thing yet, but I think we are going to go ahead & do it. (the move)
The laundry basket thing might be worth a try, but he will know something is going on & will be wary of anything. He is not a big treat kind of guy, he is so finicky he won't eat most treats, but I've had some success with catnip.
I was thinking of capturing him the day before the big move...for example, we could do the big move on the weekend & I could get him & Mini together & take them over the Friday before. They are buddies, so he will have company. I'll put thier old nasty cat tree in there with food & water & some cool air.
I'm going to take tomorrow off of work to do some calls for the move & also maybe call the vet about a tranquilizer but the thought of trying to give it to him makes me shudder! I'll also be looking to get some Felliway. Better safe than sorry.
I will have to bring out the carrier now, believe it or not, & spend the remaining time to get him to go into it, just for that ONE moment! Ugh!!
post #7 of 7
Have you tried treats like actual meat... tuna, roasted chicken, cooked hamburger, steak..ham? Mine are pretty finicky but love chicken and ham, especially (and some of them really like tuna too). They will definitely turn their noses up at most anything that isn't actual meat, though. No "kitty" snacks for them.
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