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9 year old, angry male

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I have 2 cats, both 9 years old. One is very outgoing, the other (Jesse) has always been more of a skittish introvert (I always suspected abuse towards him as a kitten, but have no proof as he was adopted). Jesse has, over the years, on occasion acted agressively when stressed out (specifically, he goes after feet when he's agitated). It hasn't been too much of a problem until recently. I got married 6 months ago and Jesse seems to dislike my husband more and more every day. He's been growling and hissing at him regularly these days (usually from under the bed). My husband (who is a cat lover) is fed up with this behavior and, quite frankly, so am I as it is causing fights between us. The whole house is filled with tension over this (which I'm sure is contributing to Jesse's behavior). I need help with this problem. I hate the thought of giving Jesse away (honestly, I don't think anyone would want him) or, God forbid, putting him to sleep, but I can't continue like this or I'll be divorced soon.

Thanks for any advice you can offer!
post #2 of 8
Has Jesse been to the vet recently? Any time there is a change in behaviour a vet visit is a good idea. They can't tell us where they hurt, so they show us with behavioural changes.

Once Jesse gets the all clear from the vet, work on having Jesse associate hubby with good things. Food is always a good thing, and that's an easy thing to work on. Have hubby do a good hard workout in an old shirt he can do without for a while. Once it's dried, put the shirt under Jesse's food bowl so he smells hubby when eating yummy food. Also, put hubby in charge of feeding the cats, especially Jesse. This works especially well if there is a wet food or treat that Jesse really, really likes. If Jesse likes to play, get hubby involved in this too (although that step may come a little later in the process). Basically anything that Jesse really likes, make it come from hubby.

Hope this helps!
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your advice, Heidi. I don't believe there's anything physically wrong with him. He's up to date on his vet visits/shots. And when my husband's not around, he's perfectly fine (thus, I'm drawing the conclusion the stress factor is him). I read some other forum posts and someone suggested Rescue Remedy for aggression. I surfed the web for info. on RR and figured I'd give it a try first (and combine it with your suggestions re: leaving hubby's shirt under food bowl/having hubby do the "positive" chores for Jesse).

If anyone has any feedback on Rescue Remedy, I'm very much up for it (since this is new to me).

post #4 of 8
Also, go to the nearest per store and by the Feliway comfort zone plug in for cats. This should help reduce the tention. A lot of people seem to have succes with it.
post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
I appreciate the new suggestion. I'm off to PetSmart right now!
post #6 of 8
Rescue Remedy - Like most natural things - either it works or it dosen't, it depends on the feline's body chemistry - one thing is for sure you are not doing any harm!!!
post #7 of 8
Does hubby wear cologne or wash with a different soap than you? I just thought of this, cats are extra sensitive to smells so perhaps you should evaluate any smells particular to him. If he wears cologne or after shave, have him not wear it for a week and see if Jesse's attitude toward him improves.
post #8 of 8
I would suggest first off a vet visit just to be sure there is no underlying health concern. Even if you believe he is fine, take him in anyway and ask the vet to look him over. Sometime anti social behavior is an precursor to health issues.

I would then suggest you find Bach Flower Remedies and buy the remedy called Vine; Buy a small dropper bottle and put two drops of Vine and some bottled spring water in it, shake it up and give the kitty a few drops daily on his tongue. It will calm him down and not give you a drugged kitty.
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