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Stuck between a Rock and a Hard Place...

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I need some guidance..

Preface: I am a first time pet owner.

Dilemma:My cat is currently sick and she's too aggressive to be medicated. I'm not sure what to do. The vet has told me to give her back to the shelter because she is to aggressive to live in a family home. I'm so confused. the SPCA told me that they might have to put her down..I'm not sure what to do?

This is my first post and i'm not sure if this is the correct place to put it...but please help..
post #2 of 11
How old is your cat? If she's elderly, you might have to think in more final terms, and it could even be merciful in some respects. If she's young, I would find a vet who'll board your cat to keep her medicated long enough for her to recover. It's not always practical to medicate cats on your own, but a vet whose response is to give her away would not be my first choice! What kind of relationship did you have with the cat prior to her becoming sick - or did you adopt her that way, and what is her problem - something chronic or ??? If she's thought to go on being ill indefinitely (medicated or otherwise) then after a second opinion, to be sure, you might have to think about other choices.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
well the vet response was based on the fact that he has seen her twice and she was even more aggressive than before. He couldn't put the pill down her throat so he decided to give her a shot of antibiotics...I'm not sure what to do..i have grown somewhat attached to the cat but it seems like since I brought her back from the vet her playfulness has grown to biting and scratching me constantly..*sigh* I wish the spca would have seen this before..and she's about a year and month old.
post #4 of 11
I would NOT give her up. Adoption should be a forever contract and when you think about her probable fate if you return her, it should not be an option. If you care about her -- and I hope and pray you do -- stick by her!!! Have you tried spraying Feliway or using the plug-in Feliway room diffusers? This has worked miracles for us when I had to airlift cats to sanctuary internationally, and it works well domestically to keep my feline family feeling calm and serene. has Feliway at a good price; your "pet" supply store should carry it as well. Make sure your cat has a soft bed with sides where she can feel secure, and place it in a quiet, out-of-the-way area of your home, so she has a retreat when she needs it. I don't know what her medical issue is or why she needs medication, so couldn't comment more except to say that if it is not a critical issue, perhaps she does not need the medication? Maybe all she needs is some time to herself, without stressors. Even the attention she formerly loved may be too much for her right now. HANG IN THERE and please, PLEASE do not give up on or give up your cat!
post #5 of 11
If the cat is getting antibiotics, it sounds like something you can treat and she'll be all right. So we aren't dealing with a terminal situation.

Can you afford to board the cat until the situation clears up? There are long lasting antibiotics which can help in keeping the medication times to a minimum. Can you take the cat in for a few evenings for a shot that will last days?

Call around to find another vet. They and their techs are supposed to be trained to handle such situations. Or have the vet tranquilize the cat to make her easier to handle during the treatment. He gave her a shot before, there's no reason this can't continue. Under the circumstances, tranquilizing can be a kindness.

Another option is to get the antibiotic and/or tranquilizers in a liquid form which can be put in her food. Don't let her have any other food, and maybe she will eat it. Antibiotics are pretty nasty tasting, so I don't know if she would refuse food in this situation. Stinky cheese can be a help here, if she likes cheese. Cats go more by smell than taste, anyway.

It sounds like she was doing well enough for you to form a bond before she got sick. So she can be rehabilitated, given enough time and effort.

If that's what you want to do, do it. She's quite a young cat, and deserves a chance. It must be fate, because I just posted an article that explains how you can turn her into a loving cat. It's here:

She's not feeling her best right now, and the only way she knows how to express it is to lash out. You can teach her other ways to express herself, once she's feeling better. I would also try to find a vet who is willing to make the effort.
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
There is a Animal behavior specialist at the SPCA and she told me to bring the cat in...I'm not sure if that's for treatment or what but i'll be sure to ask...I'm looking in the local pet gazette for another vet though..i'm not sure if they will be able to handle her..btw she has a severe Upper respiratory infection..
post #7 of 11
How long have you had the cat? I know you said she's young... did you just get her? She may still be adjusting. I was told from the get-go that Seamus was a shy timid little thing who didn't like to be pet or didn't like to be approached by the person I got him from, so I took it easy for a while and just let him be. It took him a good year to learn what socializing with me was. Anytime I tried to get near him, he would bolt, anytime we played, it was at a distance with a dangling toy. If I pushed and tried to pet or get too close, he would scratch. I persisted by letting him be and do at his pace and now, my life wouldn't be the same without him. I've had him about two years now, he's 2 and 3 mos about, and he is a cuddlebug who loves to play!

When Seamus was sick this summer, my vet was not thrilled with him either. The first visit was ok, he was just a darter and once she got him in a towel he was calmer. The second visit was for his last shot of Droncit and instead she decided to give him the pill and pill him. It was a no-go! He was much fiestier. She could not pill him and she got frustrated and asked me to bring him back for the final bloodwork, to which I told her to do it now because I wasn't going through getting him in the carrier to the vet again, it seemed she just didn't want to deal with him. Soon after that, he was neutered and he was even worse at the vet, ears down and all, but the woman who did the surgery was far more patient. Some cats will get nasty at the vet and they are supposed to be trained and equipped to deal with that.

Give her a chance and give her time, and be patient, if she was a sweet cat before she was sick, she will be sweet and playful again.
post #8 of 11
If you're trying to give her a pill, just crush it between two spoons and mix in some really smelly wet food. She'll eat it with the food, get medicated and will get well. (I have to do this with my older cat.) Also, invest in the Comfort Zone with Feliway plug-ins and see if that helps mellow her out. She might be aggressive if she's in a newer setting and not feeling "at home" yet.

In addition, don't get too stressed out. Kitties can pick up on your stress and then that causes them to be stressed, which can be shown in aggression.
post #9 of 11
My vet is pretty good at using newer drugs and treatment options - last time Radar had to have antibiotics the vet gave him a long-lasting antibiotic injection - it is equivalent to giving pills for 5 days, but it's just the one injection.

I'm not sure whether that is suitable for treating what your kitty has, but when I get home from work I will check Radar's records and find out what it was called so you can ask your vet whether it is an option for your cat's treatment.

tbh cats can get aggressive at the vet, or when they are ill. The vet does not always see the best side of a cat's character! I think if you have access to the behaviourist then that could be a good idea, but wait until the cat is well again.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 
The lady at the SPCA has been very helpful and she told me to bring Cleo in to get looked at by the local vet..she gave me that option after i was telling her about how everyone here said I needed a second opinion...I'll keep you guys updated!
post #11 of 11
Adoption should be a forever contract
Should be... but it doesn't always work that way. Sometimes you do run into animals that are more than you can handle.

However I don't think this is one case. Especially considering the fact there's no screaming about getting the cat in a carrier. Now my truly agressive cat requires multiple towels, helpers, and still draws a considerable amount of blood to put her into and get her out of a carrier. She also draws blood if I pet her wrong even after she asks me to pet her and if I pick her up without warning or sometimes at all. My vet has tons of experience with feral and barn cats and he still wears claw tracks after dealing with her. Some cats also just hate the vet so never use that to judge the cat. Consider only how she is at home. Yours is young and it sounds like rather new. She probably just needs more time to settle in and with patience she'll likely outgrow at least some of the biting. Any problem with claws can be solved by claw covers (soft paws).

For temporary medicine there's plenty of tricks. Liquid mixes into canned food even better if you can get that. There are also pill pockets. Preshaped treats where you shove the pill in the hole, squish the slightly gooey treat around it, and give it to your cat. I do still occasionally have to cut the pill and break apart the treat to smaller pieces and I've dipped them in things before to add more flavor but with a little modification for the individual it hasn't failed me yet. Sometimes mixing small kibble into the softer food actually helps because then the cat doesn't notice the pill lump as easily.
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