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Cali is acting out.

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I seem to be having a problem with Cali. It's a long story but let's see if I can't condense it somewhat and still get the problem across..
She's been acting like she wants to become the dominate cat in the house is the only way I can see it. She's bullying the other cats(except Twig) relentlessly. When I pick her up she cries like she is hurt and upset. We took her to the vet the other day and that didn't go very well ( vet issues), so my question is:
should I be looking for a new home for her or wait a month more and see where this angry little cat goes from here? She has all her claws( I've been trying to skirt the issue since all the others are declawed, bad idea I know,I didn't know better at the time) but if she's terrorizing the "elder" cats, (ie, swiping at them claws bared, growling, posturing, all the signs of wanting to scrap,) what do I do? She is a kitten ( 15 months old) but she is getting mean. I mean really mean. I guess I can take her back to the vets again to see if there's anything wrong with her, but since she's been there and had a clean bill of health ( or so they say.) Oh, I feel like I'm talking in circles. Poor Neffie is 4 pawed declawed (came to us that way) and Cali has decided to take most of her bullying out on her. At least some times Isis will fight back and chase her under the bed, but that only fuels the fire and then Cali starts in on either Rocket or Neffie. Oh....What can I do? I don't want to give her up and i don't want to declaw her, but I'm at a loss and am not willing to risk stressing the 5 cats I have to benefit one. But in the same respect, I took on Cali and now I feel like I'm letting her down again. Can someone help me please?
post #2 of 10
The one doing the bullying is the 15 month old? Is she spayed? If not that is the first thing to do. If she is, then I do agree that is just sounds like she is trying to be alpha. There will always be an alpha cat in a house with multiple cats. If no blood is being drawn then just let it be, they can take care of themselves and will bicker and determine amongst themselves who is alpha. She is still young, she may need to just grow up a little bit and she will calm down.
post #3 of 10
You can always try Soft Paws to even things out on the claw level.

Tried Feliway yet?
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen View Post
The one doing the bullying is the 15 month old? Is she spayed? If not that is the first thing to do. If she is, then I do agree that is just sounds like she is trying to be alpha. There will always be an alpha cat in a house with multiple cats. If no blood is being drawn then just let it be, they can take care of themselves and will bicker and determine amongst themselves who is alpha. She is still young, she may need to just grow up a little bit and she will calm down.
Yes she is the one doing the bullying. Yes she is spayed. That's what I was thinking about doing since she is so young and the others are older. But why wouldn't she be bullying Twig? Is it because he is 23 pounds? The others are ranging from 10 to 13 pounds and she is 8 pounds and gaining.

Quote:
Originally Posted by white cat lover View Post
You can always try Soft Paws to even things out on the claw level.

Tried Feliway yet?
Getting Cali to let me clip her claws is a feat in itself. Soft claws sounds wonderful, but I don't see her letting me put them on.
I have Feliway all over the house. Have had it since we've moved here.

Thanks for all your answers. Right now, she and Rocket are going rounds in the livingroom. Growling and running around. I'm not sure if they are playing or fighting.
post #5 of 10
Hi Barb-

I can't recommend this book highly enough for people with multicat homes-Cat Wrangling Made Easy by Dusty Rainbolt. In it, she addresses all the problems you will encounter having more than three cats and I do mean ALL the problems, how to correct the situation as well as how to avoid a similar situation from cropping up. I had some input into the content of this book as did other multicat cat people. Dusty fosters, so she knows what she writes.

I would hope your newest will keep her claws, but cats know when other cats cannot defend themselves and if she is an alpha female, she will take full advantage of this for her own positioning in the group. Plus if she isn't being stimulated by other things in the house- exercise, the availabity to use her prey drive, she will turn on the others just out of frustration. Some cats can feel overwhelmed when there are to many cats in one home, and not enough spots where they can get up off the floor and find peace and solitude. If she is just out-of-control- use this product to restore balance

http://harpist1.tripod.com/id32.html
post #6 of 10
Hi Barb! What a sweetie you are for taking in this girl-in-need.

I read this post yesterday and decided to sleep on it. As you know, I'm a very strong believer that cats are for life. This situation is different though - with a clawed kitty in a declawed kitty home. For me, that's a real stumper.

I don't know how long she's been with you - but if you try the advice of others and the info MA provided and things don't calm down, maybe it would be best to look at this as a fostering situation, and begin looking for a new home for her?

It's not what I would normally advise, and I'm sure it's not what you want to hear - but I just worry about the dynamics of the claws vs. all the declaws. I did understand correctly that all your other kitties are declawed?

I haven't read Dusty Rainbolt's book recommended by MA, but the only other thing I can really think to recommend to help make the situation work is to give Cali lots of extra play time.



Laurie
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hissy View Post
Hi Barb-

I can't recommend this book highly enough for people with multicat homes-Cat Wrangling Made Easy by Dusty Rainbolt. In it, she addresses all the problems you will encounter having more than three cats and I do mean ALL the problems, how to correct the situation as well as how to avoid a similar situation from cropping up. I had some input into the content of this book as did other multicat cat people. Dusty fosters, so she knows what she writes.

I would hope your newest will keep her claws, but cats know when other cats cannot defend themselves and if she is an alpha female, she will take full advantage of this for her own positioning in the group. Plus if she isn't being stimulated by other things in the house- exercise, the availabity to use her prey drive, she will turn on the others just out of frustration. Some cats can feel overwhelmed when there are to many cats in one home, and not enough spots where they can get up off the floor and find peace and solitude. If she is just out-of-control- use this product to restore balance

http://harpist1.tripod.com/id32.html


I am doing everything I can to let Cali keep her claws, I've even ordered her soft paws, Hubby is the one that wants me to declaw her. (he's the one who wants to get her done to be fair to the others he says) Cali isn't the alpha female yet, Isis is, but she is working her way up there, She's above Neffie and Rocket, but below Luna, Isis and Twig. So I'm not sure where she's going to be right now. We make sure there are cat towers all over the house, places for them to sit and look outside, toys to play with, we play with them all the time when we get home, it's just hard watching Cali do this. I guess since the others kind of chose their places without conflicts, it's strange watching the pecking order conflicts arise. Right now our house pecking order is like this: Twig is the alpha male, Isis and Luna are the co existing alpha females, Cali is right under them, and Rocket and Neffie are equals under her. It's weird to watch them. It's like a little pack of lions. But Cali is trying to swipe at us too, which makes us nervous because she doesn't realize WE are the alphas in the house.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LDG View Post
Hi Barb! What a sweetie you are for taking in this girl-in-need.

I read this post yesterday and decided to sleep on it. As you know, I'm a very strong believer that cats are for life. This situation is different though - with a clawed kitty in a declawed kitty home. For me, that's a real stumper.

I don't know how long she's been with you - but if you try the advice of others and the info MA provided and things don't calm down, maybe it would be best to look at this as a fostering situation, and begin looking for a new home for her?

It's not what I would normally advise, and I'm sure it's not what you want to hear - but I just worry about the dynamics of the claws vs. all the declaws. I did understand correctly that all your other kitties are declawed?

I haven't read Dusty Rainbolt's book recommended by MA, but the only other thing I can really think to recommend to help make the situation work is to give Cali lots of extra play time.



Laurie
I agree. When you take on an animal, it's for life. Cali has had a hard 12 months before coming to us and we've only had her since November. She was living under the dumpster at LJS and they were feeding her fish and things there.
So she didn't get a good start in life, but she was spayed by someone because the vets told us she had the spay scar, so someone had her before she came to live under our dumpster.
She's scared of men, (well most people) and she's scared of being alone. I've heard her cry at night so I check on her only to find her sitting meowing at nothing, then she follows me to the bedroom happy as a lark.
She gets tempermental sometimes when you pick her up. She growls, swipes at you, meows like she is being hurt, but she's never done this before and like I've said, she's been to the vets and they've found nothing wrong with her.
I think we are going to wait it out, since she is a kitten, and is contending with 5 older cats, she has her claws, they don't, all new factors to us. I'm going to put the soft paws on her see how those go, see if she calms down as she gets older, and get the book MA suggested. Hopefully that'll give me some insights on what's up with the little monster. I love her to death and don't want to give her up and I really am against getting her declawed, so right now I'm working with her everyday, trying to see if I can find out what's going on in her little brain and how to change her ways of thinking. Today she tried to play with Neffie, but since she's terrorized her so much, Neffie just ran away. I feel sorry for Cali because I know she's trying to fit in, but she's not doing a very good job of it. So I'll order that book and see, she's been a good girl today so, I can't give up on her just yet...
post #8 of 10
my only suggestion for this situation would be to give Cali "time-outs" whenever you see a fight developing, remove the instigator (Cali) to a separate room where there is food and water and a litterbox. I used my bathroom for this, I had to do time-outs when Hades and Poseidon were fighting all the time, Po was the instigator and spent a lot of time in the bathroom He usually would be in there as long as it took me to have to go to the bathroom again It took a couple months for this to have an affect, but one day the fighting just stopped. Just my suggestion
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
We do time outs also. It just doesn't work since Cali tries to get out all the time and is tearing out the carpeting in the corner of the spare room, and since we can't afford to replace it right now, we need to find another place for time outs.
She's a crafty one I tell you. I think she's just becoming a spoiled teenager. I'll let you know!
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
The book came today. Cali has been acting like a little lady today though. It's strange. I wish I could find out what she is thinking. She is confusing.
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