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Meow-less cat

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Last week, I adopted Shelby, a 2yr old dilute tortie, from the local humane
society (her original name was Ariel, BTW.)

While I was signing the adoption papers, I found out that she had been there
since she was FIVE WEEKS old, not a year old as I was originally told.

Oh well..... too late now, I guess.

Anyway, she spent the first two days hiding in her kitty condo in the spare
bathroom (nice and dark in there) and I have only in the past few days been
able to coax her out.

Shelby loves to be petted and head scratches and has warmed up to me quite
a bit. She still scared of Touche, my other cat, but then again Touche seems
quite afraid of Shelby as well, so at the moment we have a detente because
both of the combatants are too afraid of the other to start anything right now.

Here's the weird thing though: Shelby will let me pet her and purrs away, but
she doesn't make any other sounds. She cried when she first got put
into the cage at the humane society, and one or two other times after
she got home, but that's it. No meows, no nothing.

She doesn't even try to 'talk', she'll look at me when I'm playing with her, but'
other than purring, she's as quiet as a clam. (This is quite the opposite of
Touche who never shuts up!!!!)

Now, I've had other cats that didn't meow (Roxy would try, but the best she
could do was a squeek) but Shelby doesn't attempt any vocalization at all.

Anyone have any insight? Does she need to 'learn' to meow?
post #2 of 14
Some cats just plain don't meow or vocalize. Twitch yells in a deaf cat manner - but that's it. Heard her purr 1x in 5 years.
post #3 of 14
I have 9 cats and ranging from age 1 1/2 to 10 years old, I have had them all since they were kittens or less then 1 year old. To this day I have only heard about 4 of them meow. The others I never have.
post #4 of 14
Mitzi did not make a meeow sound till she was 10 yrs. We thought she was mute. She caught on after all those years. Meowww and more. We were suprized. "That cat has a voice!"
post #5 of 14
Rocko doesn't meow either. I have heard him only a few times. Mainly when its dark in the house and we are quiet, he gets anxious as to where we are. Other than that he never meows....just stares. It's a little disconcerting when you are used to jabberboxes!

I feel so badly for poor Shelby! But you get the joy of showing her the good life and what a home and family means!
post #6 of 14
Thank you for adopting Shelby! Poor baby has been through a lot. It is true that some cats are just not "talkers". My late tabby boy never talked much at all and my vet said that is normal for some cats. My new rescue boy talks all the time! So I would not worry about it.
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
I finally got a 'meow' out of Shelby last night!

I was scratching between her ears and must have hit the 'sweet spot'
'cause she looked at me, opened her mouth and meow-ed!

Actually, it was more of a chirp, but at least we're making progress!!!

And it only took two weeks!

Next step - to get her to come out of her 'bunker' in the bathroom and
start exploring the rest of the house and interacting with Touche.
post #8 of 14
i have a couple of cats that don't talk much - the other 3 make up for them! Java & Firefox are very silent - even Java's purr is so soft i can't hear it! some cats are just not big on vocalizing.
post #9 of 14
I've got cats on both ends of that spectrum.

Tinker never meows. I heard her ONE time since I"ve had her. She got over excited in the spare room playing and squeaked one time. Was pretty dang cute. But she doesn't meow at all either. purring is it.

Wilbur on the other hand, meows CONSTANTLY. if I speak in his direction he thinks i'm talking directly to him and answers..... loudly.

here's an example:
post #10 of 14
i've got 3 very loud meowers but little coco, despite her many attempts, still can only produce a tiny squeak! however, she does have the loudest purr out of all of them.
post #11 of 14
Originally Posted by tab View Post
i've got 3 very loud meowers but little coco, despite her many attempts, still can only produce a tiny squeak! however, she does have the loudest purr out of all of them.
Stan is like this too...his meow is just a hoarse squeak, but he purrs like a motorboat

Bella tends to chirp when she's happy and meow/cry when she's not. I've noticed that she's gotten more vocal the longer she's been with us.
post #12 of 14
Bijou doesn't talk often but when he does, you don't need to see him to know he is Siamese! Mika has a voice defect and cannot meow but she is totally capable of making a fairly loud "huffing" sound when she wants attention.

I thought cats only talked to humans anyway, never to each other.
post #13 of 14
Lilly has never meowed. Occasionally I will hear a little "squeak" out of her, but nothing else. Forrest, however, talks enough for a dozen cats.
post #14 of 14
I have heard one loud meow out of Ella, when I put her carrier in the pickup to bring her home. Other than that, she's been pretty much silent. She DOES purr, with her funny little "snork" in her purr, and she's starting to vocalize a little to the other cats when she wants to play.

Researchers say meowing is largely a response to our talking. Who knows for sure?
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