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They've Gone Snaky!

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
And I think I'm going with them! Ok, so here's the background. We adopted 2 cats (mother and son). When we first got them, they got along wonderfully. About a month ago, we confirmed that Trixie is pregnant. At the same time, Tiger was neutered (we had to wait till he'd gotten his shots). The entire time Tiger was at the vet, Trixie went nutty looking for him, meowing every 5 seconds. Then when he came home, she turned downright evil (or so I thought). She was hissing and growling and swiping at him. Thinking it was that nasty "vet smell" I put drops of vanilla on their chins and the base of their tails....no dice. I then tried seperating them for a couple of days...ya, that worked well...NOT...they went nuts until I let them back together.

So here we are a month later, the hissing growling and swiping continue...with the added pleasure of Trixie lunging across the room to attack Tiger. He, of course, escapes with a growl or 2 of his own, finds a nice quiet place to hide....and then lies in wait. The second Trixie walks by him, it's like flies to ...well you know....he jumps on her back, claws out, teeth beared....

I'm at a loss....we're all becoming terrified of these nutty cats cause when they're going at it, it makes no difference who's in the way....they simply get added to the casulaties list. At first the vet agreed it was likely the smell difference....then when it didn't improve, I called again and she said it could be because Trixie is pregnant.

So now my concerns are as follows:

1. That the cats will injure themselves (or each other).
2. That Tiger will freak on the babies when they come.
3. That Trixie will get freaked by Tiger and hurt the kitties when they come.
post #2 of 22
Cats sense with the smell and depend on it to determine who's who. So since Tiger was at the vet, he smells like that place and of course she will hiss at him. It is very common for cats in multicat homes to hiss at ones who come home from the vets or who were at a strange place.

You may have to introduce them as if they were meeting for the first time. Seperate them and start over!
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
I tried reintroducing them...no dice. The smell thing is no longer an issue (Tiger better not still smell like vet after a month LOL). I'm just at a total loss.
post #4 of 22
I would keep them separated. It sounds like the vet might be right and its due to her pregnancy as she would indeed smell different.
You have to keep him separated from the babies anyway so might as well start now.
post #5 of 22
Either get Trixie spayed or keep them separated until after the kittens come and are weaned. Seriously, those are your choices. In her desire to get to her son- she could injure him, herself or her kittens inside of her. Mother and son will not get along their entire life. It is instinct for her to drive him away. If she is pregnant, she knows he used to take her milk, so she is going to be darn sure he stays away from her new family. Cat instinct is strong. Keep her off to herself in a room with plenty inside to give her comfort and keep her occupied. Be sure to have several nesting boxes set up ahead of time if you decide to let her keep her kittens. Once she has her kittens, keep her inside and away from intact males or she will become pregnant again. Then get her spayed as soon as you can.
post #6 of 22
Thread Starter 
She'll be spayed once the kittens are weaned. She was pregnant when we adopted her (although the woman didn't share that info). Trixie is due any time now. Gosh, I just don't know how successful we're going to be keeping them separated. Darn cat instinct...lol. The last time we tried separating them, we kept one in our room (really the only place to keep them "locked up"). There was food and water, a litter pan and toys and we were sure to spend lots of time playing and cuddling. We were rewarded by having a cat crap on out bed regardless of the fact the litter pan was clean. On top of this, they both meowed non stop and were scratching either side of the door trying to get back together.
post #7 of 22
You can get a cat spayed even while she is pregnant.
This way, there aren't kittens added to the overpopulus of unwanted cats already.
Its a thought.

Also, it might solve some of your problems with the two cats fighting.
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
No I made a choice to keep the kittens. She's gone through 99% of the pregnancy already, why do it now? We've already decided to keep the kittens so they aren't unwanted by any means. Our cats are also indoor cats so no risk of them adding to the "unwanted cat population". Trixie will be spayed once the kittens are weaned and the kittens will be fixed once they're old enough.
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by moxymom
No I made a choice to keep the kittens. She's gone through 99% of the pregnancy already, why do it now? We've already decided to keep the kittens so they aren't unwanted by any means. Our cats are also indoor cats so no risk of them adding to the "unwanted cat population". Trixie will be spayed once the kittens are weaned and the kittens will be fixed once they're old enough.

But what if she has 8 or more kittens?
post #10 of 22
Okay, this is going to come across a little harsh and I don't mean for it to... there just isn't really a nice way to say this, but I hope it makes you think about things just a bit. I am saying it with the best of intentions...

You are here asking questions because you are having a problem managing TWO cats -- and now you are going to add to your family by 3, 4 or more kittens (that will grow into cats) with no idea how they will all get along, if the problem between your two current cats will resolve itself, and with the situation of keeping these two separated near impossible because you only have one room the 2nd cat could be locked up in (which leads me to believe you don't live in a big place). I think it's completely reasonable for anyone here to question this choice.

I'm not suggesting you spay the preggers cat (and abort the kittens) at this point, but you MAY want to consider putting them out for adoption once they are weaned.

And yes, you are contributing to the over-population problem. Even if your intention right now is to keep all the kittens, that doesn't mean they don't contribute to the problem -- and who's to say you will continue to be able to keep them, that it's what is best for them (in your seemingly small place, with two cats who already don't get along) or that they won't get out or need to be given away because THEY can't get along with your current cats (or any other number of problems occur, like you lose your job or suffer from an illness or some other life circumstance that makes it impossible for you to keep them).

Like I said, I know it sounds harsh... and I don't mean for it to. It's not your mistake or intention that Trixie is pregnant, but please consider all your options and choices carefully and based on what is best - not based on being emotional and the fact kittens are cute -- I don't mean that to sound snotty, I just don't know if you've thought it all out. If you have, good -- if not, please do.
post #11 of 22
Thread Starter 
Ok, much like you, I don't mean for this to sound snotty, but here goes. We live in a 3 bedroom townhouse withe a finished basement. It's not lack of space that is making it difficult to separate them but rather lack of available space and lack of cooperation on the cats' part. We have 3 children that are not going to give up their rooms for the cats...THAT would be unreasonable. One of the cats could have the basement but for the fact that with 3 young children (who's toys are down here, the only open space to play) it's nearly impossible to keep this door closed all of the time and when we tried to keep one of the cats down here, he would wait for one of the kids to come down and boom, out he'd go.

I have never had more than one cat at a time until I adopted these two. I took them both as I couldn't leave them in the filth they were in. As I mentioned before, I had no idea she was pregnant. I had them at the vets the week I brought them home with the intention of having them both fixed. Unfortunately, they'd never had any of their shots and that needed to be done before they could be fixed. Trixie still hasn't had her next shot as by the time she could have had it done, it became apparent that she was pregnant (xray showed 3 kittens). Tiger and Trixie got along famously until the vet visit which is why I've been so puzzled by this behaviour (as they were BOTH at the vet's).

Now, let me explain my comment about keeping the kittens. I will NOT take these cats to a shelter. I just absolutely will not do that. The shelters I've seen here are anything but clean and I believe they have a 14 day time period before the animal is put down. Not going to happen. I am also not going to stick some ad in the classifieds and throw them to the first person who calls claiming to love animals. That is why I said I'm keeping them. I am, however, still considering sending them to other homes once they're weaned. I'm just very picky is all. I had a neighbour interested but seeing her cats roaming the neighbourhood, there's just no way. If they leave this home, they'll be going to a good home but until I'm assured of that, they'll be with us.

I had asked advice here a couple of days after Tiger was fixed when I first noticed a problem and someone suggested the vanilla thing. I came back because it didn't work but everyone here seems to be on the abortion wagon and I'm seriously wondering why the hell I bothered. My husband and I talked about this for days trying to decide what the best course of action would be.

The fighting puzzles me...I just don't get it...one minute they're cuddled up on the couch together and the next they're fighting. I just would have thought if it were some sort of personality conflict, it'd be constant.
post #12 of 22
Moxy

I don't blame you for keeping the kittens. We used to raise rabbits and would only release them to good homes. And we also offered to take them back if they grew tired of them. We recieved half of the bunnies back and that put an end to their breeding.

As far as the kitty conflict goes, maybe Mommy cat is just tired and doesn't want to be bother with her son. Who knows, maybe they will go back to being friends after the kittens get here. It could be coincidence that the "snakiness" started after the vet visit.

I don't know about you, but I didn't want ANYONE around me the last month of my pregnancy. I was probably acting pretty snaky myself!

Good luck w/the kitties--you sound like a good person with a good head on your shoulders! I know what it's like to juggle kids and pets!

Melisa
post #13 of 22
As far as confinement--maybe get a large dog crate for the boy---

We have our Blackie confined in one right now for litter box training and while he is being medicated for a possible cystitis problem..

This way Mommy cat can have the run of the house to choose her birthing spot without conflict from her son!
post #14 of 22
I think there was only one or two people that suggested abortion and that was before you mentioned that she is due any day now. Sometimes abortion is necessary if, for example, if the cat is under a year old, or has a disease. It is sometimes a hard decision to make. So anyway don't be mad that people suggested.

A crate is a very good idea for the male. He will not like it at all, but if they are behaving the way they are then you don't have too many more options left.

Good luck with the babies, I hope you find them all good homes.
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by moxymom

I had asked advice here a couple of days after Tiger was fixed when I first noticed a problem and someone suggested the vanilla thing. I came back because it didn't work but everyone here seems to be on the abortion wagon and I'm seriously wondering why the hell I bothered. My husband and I talked about this for days trying to decide what the best course of action would be.
.

You obviously came here because you needed help and know that people here are interested in the best wellbeing of cats. This is why you bothered.

The reason that people here suggest abortion is because they (and I) realize that sometimes people with the best intentions, like yourself, often cannot plan for certain things that may happen in the future as Amy suggested.

Keeping the kittens is a nice thought and a good sentiment but many people started out the same way, and when certain life situations happened...the cats didn't get along, their finances changed, having so many cats got to be overwhelming, a cat gets out before its spayed, a new owner doesn't spay etc, etc, etc...the problem is increased exponentially....

So people often will suggest the lesser of two evils in this case (abortion/spay) as is so evidenced by the shelter overpopulation and the feral cat problem as it stands now..
Often people suggest this as they know full well that this is, in most cases, the most humane thing to do in the long run..

So, please don't take offence..The people here are extremely knowledgable and are only concerned with the welfare of cats overall..

Cheers
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by moxymom

Now, let me explain my comment about keeping the kittens. I will NOT take these cats to a shelter. I just absolutely will not do that. The shelters I've seen here are anything but clean and I believe they have a 14 day time period before the animal is put down.
I've been to the Toronto Humane Society many times to see how my donations are spent. I can assure you, and I am also picky, that it is a clean and safe environment for the cats there. They are also at their capacity in terms of volunteers participating in cat care/socialization, because I wanted to do it! Should you decide to give the kittens up, there is foster care service available through the THS. Cats are adopted out very quickly, and potential owners are screened. Please take a look at their website and annual report for more facts on the shelter.

Me and a friend found a wandering part Pit Bull (very friendly) last fall on a local trail, brought him in, and he was there for a couple of months, but was eventually adopted. They also have dogs who've been there much longer and they are all walked daily and well cared for.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loveysmummy
You obviously came here because you needed help and know that people here are interested in the best wellbeing of cats. This is why you bothered.

The reason that people here suggest abortion is because they (and I) realize that sometimes people with the best intentions, like yourself, often cannot plan for certain things that may happen in the future as Amy suggested.

Keeping the kittens is a nice thought and a good sentiment but many people started out the same way, and when certain life situations happened...the cats didn't get along, their finances changed, having so many cats got to be overwhelming, a cat gets out before its spayed, a new owner doesn't spay etc, etc, etc...the problem is increased exponentially....

So people often will suggest the lesser of two evils in this case (abortion/spay) as is so evidenced by the shelter overpopulation and the feral cat problem as it stands now..
Often people suggest this as they know full well that this is, in most cases, the most humane thing to do in the long run..

So, please don't take offence..The people here are extremely knowledgable and are only concerned with the welfare of cats overall..

Cheers
Not only that, but cats and dogs and other pets aren't human and we shouldn't pretend they are.

As a teenager I saw a stray mamadog deliver a litter of three puppies. One was stillborn, another had some deformities where it looked like something was wrong with the head (specifically where eyes are supposed to be) and the other was not really responsive. I literally watched (off and on) over the next three hours as she ate the afterbirth, ate the stillborn, killed and ate the deformed one, and then spent 10-15 minutes examining the last puppy. I was not close enough to see details, but mamadog decided something was amiss because she killed the last puppy and ate it as well.

What did she do after that? Mamadog licked up anything left on the floor and then went to take a very long nap in the sun. She was spayed the next day.

I just knew she was going to kill the last puppy a couple of minutes before she did it. I could've easily rushed in and grabbed that puppy -- took it to the vet and babied it out of childhood. Maybe put it with an adoptive home where it might have been treated well. But instead I let nature run its course. Because a million dogs are euthanised each year, and why should that sickly dog survive in the place of another?

So people can go ahead and do whatever they want, talking about being anti-abortion and anti-euthanasia and other trite statements. I long ago stopped pretending that most pet owners act with anything resembling the pet's specific best interests at heart. It is about what humans want and need to feel better about themselves and the inadequacies in their own life.
post #18 of 22
Nano,

I found your reply very interesting, and I commend you for posting it. I think it is a good example of no matter how well intentioned we (as animal lovers) can be, we don't always think it out.

I am also a believer that ANY kitten (or puppy) born contributes to the over-population problem. Even if someone intends to keep the kittens you cannot see the future. Even if you intend to adopt them out to the best-of-the-best families, that is 3, 4, 5 or more homes that could have adopted other kittens (or cats) that need homes. Kittens get out accidentally before being s/n'ed or the homes they go to have unforseen changes that lead to the cat being abandoned or placed in shelters. There are so many things that can go wrong, and I'm not talking about people who are just plain mean or don't take pet ownership seriously -- but then there are those people too.

All I can say is that I wish it was just a flat out law that all cats and dogs are spayed or neutered, and that anyone who wishes to breed their animal needed a license and a minimum set of skills and requirements they must meet. I wish more people were educated on all the wonderful pets that are available and awaiting homes in shelters and rescue groups around the world.
post #19 of 22
Just a quick comment about spaying a pregnant cat - This can only be done early on in the pregnancy. Late in pregnancy it can cause complications and in my experience vets refuse to do it.

I was in the same position as you, I adopted a cat not knowing she was pregnant, the vet advised it was too late to abort (there's no way we would have done this anyway). we have had no trouble finding homes for the kittens. We are now going to get mum cat spayed.

Obviously it's not your fault you have a pregnant cat and I completely understand how you want to let her have the kittens. So best of luck ! especially with the nastiness !
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carla
So best of luck ! especially with the nastiness !
Was anyone being particularly nasty in these responses? I don't believe so.
post #21 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Loveysmummy
Was anyone being particularly nasty in these responses? I don't believe so.
Nastiness i.e. between your two cats !
post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carla
Nastiness i.e. between your two cats !
haha...I see now!
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