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Sudden negative change in Sunny's behavior

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone. This is my first time to this forum. I have a cat "problem" that I could really use some insight on. I have 2 cats, named Sunny and Breezy. They're a little over 18 months old, and they're sisters. I've had them since they were kittens, and they've been loving and terrific together and very close. Sunny has always been much more timid. I took them to the vet 2 days ago for routine shots (rabies and distemper), and routine exam. This is probably the first vet visit that they're adult enough to remember. They weren't happy about it, as you can imagine. Anyway, Sunny seemed to be suffering a bit of discomfort, even as fas as more than 24 hours after the vet visit. Today is day 2. She's much better physically. She's up-and-about, and eating, and seeming better. But, now she seems to want nothing to do with Breezy. Whenever Breezy gets near her, she hisses, growls, and will eventually "attack" Breezy. Sunny is fine with me. But she doesn't want Breezy near her at all. This is breaking my heart, as they've always been close since they were born. And I feel just terrible for Breezy, as I can tell this upsets her. And, of course, I feel badly for Sunny, because she's obviously experiencing something not good to make her react this way. I discussed this in an AOL Cats chatroom and roomies there said that this is fairly normal behavior for some cats after vet visits. I thought I'd check in with the good folks here at this Cat Forum, to see if you have anything to add. I'd greatly appreciate any input, as this is really breaking my heart.
Thanks so much!
post #2 of 9
I would say that because cats are scent driven that Breezy still smells like the vet's office. You can either bathe the cats or if you don't want to play water war you can take some vanilla extract and dab a little on each cat chin and base of tail to make them smell alike. If Sunny is still acting "off" on Monday, I would call the vet and tell him/her and ask if you can bring Sunni in for a re-check, Sunni may be sick and that is why she is attacking Breezy right now. I am not sure when you say she is suffering a bit of discomfort what you mean, or what was done to her at the vet's office.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Hissy. I really appreciate your input. Here's some background info. At the vet's office, they both received a rabies shot and a distemper shot. And a "routine exam" (including a rectal reading of body temperature). They were taken to and from the vet in the same (large) cat carrier. They were both scared to death. When I said she had been suffering a bit of discomfort, the day after the vet visit she was looking very lethargic and laying by herself and didn't want to be touched. Both cats slept on separate ends of the downstairs sofa all night long (which is odd as they usually sleep in bed with me, but I figured this was common, as they didn't enjoy their vet journey). Early in the morning of that next day, I went to pick her up (to love her, because I felt badly because she looked so unhappy), she was moaning and wimpering, and she eventually hissed at me, then climbed back in the same spot on the sofa. I went to work, came home about 6 hours later, she was still in the same spot and I could tell she she still hasn't happy. I again picked her up, and the same thing happened. I did call the vet, and was advised that although most cats should be over any discomfort by now, some do take longer to recoup. Since Sunny freaks so much about going out (they both do), I decided not to run her off back to the vet just yet. Instead, I made little "fun games" out of getting her to eat and drink, and played with her (and Breezy) without picking her up, etc. By the next morning (which was yesterday), she was doing 100% better physically, and thank goodness that's still true. But yesterday is when this thing about hissing at her sister started. It's still happening, even this morning. The thing that just happened (which was not as harsh of an episode) is that Breezy was in one of their favorite spots, Sunny came up and put her nose right up Breezy's rear end, was sniffing, and wouldn't stop. Breezy seemed really uncomfortable with this, and it was going on for a few minutes, so I calmly pulled Sunny away and made her move. Then she moaned a little and hissed at both me and Sunny. So your idea about the scent might be right-on-the-money. Also, I forgot to mention this, but on the ride home from the vet (they were still in the carrier), one of them lost control of her bladder (not sure which one). I didn't know this until we got home, and then saw that Breezy was quite soaked. I did my best to clean her up, but I'm sure (the water-war thing) that I didn't do a great job. Do you think this could be part of the situation? Thanks, Hissy. And I'm sorry about the long message-post. I look forward to hearing from you again, if you'd care to provide more input. Thanks!
post #4 of 9
Actually this leans more to health- the hissing and moaning is what has me concerned. Let me move this for you and see if our resident experts can help you puzzle it out. If it were me, and she is still moaning, I would take her back to the vet. But that is just me.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Hissy. I'd welcome any input from any of our cat friends about this. She's really not moaning anymore. That all seemed to stop Thursday night. Now, as of yesterday, the only problem I see (but to me, it's a big one in the household) is her growling and hissing at Breezy. Since I last wrote to you, I started giving that urine-on-Breezy situation some more thought. I gave Breezy a really good wipe-down with a big wet towel. I'm hoping that might have a positive outcome. And I'm going to try your vanilla idea, too. Thanks again - I really appreciate the support!
post #6 of 9
What you guys are experiencing is fairly normal. The two most likely reasons for the hissing and growling are that she's relating the vet experience with her sister. They were both there, and she was put back into the carrier with him. With time, and the baths will help she will settle down and get back to normal.
Usually with the feline distemper in particular they can experience Flu like symptoms for up to 48 hours. Which I am sure wasn't helping the situation with Breezy. If she's not feeling well, the thought of playing with her sister isn't pleasant. I really think within the next week, they will fall back into thier normal routine. Just make sure and give them each plenty of one on one time
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Sandie. You have made me feel alot better. I've always owned a cat, but this is my first time having 2 at once, and I guess I'm not used to these traumas as a result of vet visits. I been a bit better so far this afternoon, although it's a quiet rainy day here and they're basically doing their usual Saturday afternoon sleep-a-thon. But at least they're both enjoying it peacefully, which has got to be a good thing. I'll, of course, continue to keep an eye on things and try things that might help (including washes for Breezy). Thanks again for your input - I REALLY appreciate it. I'll keep you posted!
post #8 of 9
Yea, its fairly normal. Anytime I bring back one of the cats from the vet Mischief hisses at either of them. Any other time Mischief is their best buddy - she plays with them, cleans them, sleeps with them, and shares food and toys - but the moment they come back from the vet they are some foreign creature that she doesn't want anywhere near her. After some time Mischief seems to suddenly realize her behavior is very foolish indeed.
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Just wanted to say thanks to everyone who offered me insight and support during my questions with Sunny and Breezy. I'm happy to report that, as of 3 days ago, with no trip to the vet needed (thank goodness, for her sake) Sunny is back to normal, and she and Breezy are the happy twosome that they once were! Thanks again.
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