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Totally unprovoked!

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I can understand cats biting or scratching when some silly human insists on petting them when they don't want to be petted. I can understand cats gettign overstimulated and striking by reflex. But what is one to do about unprovoked attacks!?

This morning I was sitting on the bed, getting dressed. He was sitting next to me. I wasn't doing anything to him--and he leaned over and bit me on the arm, totally unprovoked. I swept my arm and shoved him off the bed. A few minutes later he came and rubbed against my ankles then jumped up next to me and rubbed against me, purring.

He's a sweet, loving cat most of the time, but then he turns around and does things like this. Bad enough when its me, but I'm afraid to have people over for fear that he might bite someone else for no reason and I'll get sued and the Judge will declare him a 'dangerous animal' and order him put down.
post #2 of 12
Biting you on the arm isn't an "attack," it's a dominance display. He just wanted you to know that he's the boss!
post #3 of 12
yeah i agree. shinobi will often 'bite' me for no reason, not hard but i reckon it is just him pushing his luck!

and i don't think i've heard of a cat being destroyed for being dangerous, is this something that could happen?
post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tab View Post
and i don't think i've heard of a cat being destroyed for being dangerous, is this something that could happen?
Any domestic animal can be ordered destroyed if the Judge deems it dangerous. It is most common for dogs, of course, but I've heard of rabbits and ferrets destroyed under such orders, and cats can hurt a person worse than either of those.

OK, how can I break him of this habit? He'll also, when I'm getting dressed, pounce on me and bite by legs and feet. Not badly, usually, but he has drawn blood.
post #5 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zane's Pal View Post

OK, how can I break him of this habit? He'll also, when I'm getting dressed, pounce on me and bite by legs and feet. Not badly, usually, but he has drawn blood.
Get a second cat to keep him company, and he'll turn the dominance play from you to the other cat.

It sounds to me like he's just being his normal cat self and wanting to play with you as if YOU are a cat.
post #6 of 12
I have the same problem, this morning he was nudging my hand i was still asleep strached his head and he was wrapped around my arm biting me. He's normally my rag doll/lap cat. In the past he'd bite me as i was trying to get ready in the am, but he's getting more aggressive. There are 3 cats in this house and 4 people he could go to but it's me who's getting the unprovoked biting. I know he gets overstimulated but more and more thats not the case.
post #7 of 12
Sho did that to me years ago. I'll admit I was angry and lost my cool a bit at him (and yes, I knew it was a dominance display at the time, too). I scuffed him, pulled his mouth/head away from my arm, grabbed his mouth/muzzle so that he couldn't look away from me and leaned down and gruffly told him "The next time you bite me like that I'm biting back and you won't like it...". I doubt he understood what I said but the basic message made it through... he never bit me like that again or attempted to show dominance.
He'll still try to chew on elbows and knees to get someone to feed him, but that's different.

Somehow I doubt being that direct would work well with many cats. But you could try scuffing, tell him NO, and put him on the floor - grabbing by the scuff of the neck being one way cats display dominance and reclaiming the high spot (the bed) as your's, another.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lissa327 View Post
There are 3 cats in this house and 4 people he could go to but it's me who's getting the unprovoked biting.
Maybe there's some reason he deems you the low one in rank and easy to bully? Put him down after he does that and don't let him back up there with you for the remainder of the morning that you're in bed. Maybe he'll get the message.

On a somewhat related note. It my two boys start fighting/playing dominance games over who gets to be on the bed or any piece of furniture I'll go over and put them both down and claim it as my own... cools them down instantly.
post #8 of 12
Lily is like that... She'll be beautiful and affectionate and she play bites a lot. Then she'll forget that we're playing and launch at me! She also, for some reason, nearly always has her claws extended. I woke up this morning, in fact, with big scratches all over me from her clawing into my neck during my sleep!!
I'm sure she loves me, she does mean well.
She thinks we're playin'



I'm such a softie.
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GingersMom View Post
Get a second cat to keep him company, and he'll turn the dominance play from you to the other cat.

It sounds to me like he's just being his normal cat self and wanting to play with you as if YOU are a cat.
Problem is he hates other cats. I inherited him from my late father, who used to have him and PurrPuss, and he was absolutely hateful to PurrPuss. Father had to keep them separated as Zane would attack PurrPuss whenever they were in the same room. And, according to father, not play fighting either--Zane went for the throat.
post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zane's Pal View Post
Problem is he hates other cats. I inherited him from my late father, who used to have him and PurrPuss, and he was absolutely hateful to PurrPuss. Father had to keep them separated as Zane would attack PurrPuss whenever they were in the same room. And, according to father, not play fighting either--Zane went for the throat.
Sometimes cats do that when they play rough, but this doesn't mean he hates all cats! If they were truly fighting there would have been blood drawn. So don't get a female, get another young male kitten, or maybe even a young female. Introduce them slowly, etc.
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen View Post
Sometimes cats do that when they play rough, but this doesn't mean he hates all cats! If they were truly fighting there would have been blood drawn. So don't get a female, get another young male kitten, or maybe even a young female. Introduce them slowly, etc.
According to father, there was blood drawn, and he had to keep them separated. Every attempt to get them together ended in bloodshed, and Zane was always the instigator.

With humans, he's normally a very affectionate cat, but sometimes some errant electrical discharge happens in what is laughingly called his 'brain' and he attacks them, too.
post #12 of 12
^jcat's cat, Jamie, is an only cat because he doesn't get along with other cats either. So it's not impossible that you have a cat that has to be an only cat due to that.
So it sounds like keeping him that way is the sanest and safest choice.

When he jumps up beside you on the bed or another piece of furniture and tries that again, try putting him down and not allowing him back up with you for a while. When he does it other times put him away from you and ignore him the best you can. Hopefully that will cool him down a some and prevent him from biting.

Are there any warning signs at all? Swishing his tail or ears going back?
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