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I need help now!

post #1 of 78
Thread Starter 
We brought home a cat from a farm that was going to have a bad life, and we brought him into our home last night. The minute he got here, he ran under the bed, and hasnt come out, untill we NOW just tried to get him out of there with some tuna. He freaked out, and jumped all over the walls, and was bring pictures down, and absolutly going crazy, and almsot hurt himself very badly. He is now in our closet on the very top shelf. So we put his tuna up there, hoping he'd eat.
So 2 questions: how do we get him down, because he probably wont get himself down....He would claw our face if we did it manually.
And how long should we let this go on? he's freaking out, and I'm actually scared of him. But he's so cute.
post #2 of 78
Awww he must not have ever been in contact with humans, poor little thing is scared to death! Try to keep him in one room( with a door) keep the room quiet as possible and as dark as possible. Try not to make extra noise around the house like vaacuming, anything really loud and spooky. I say let him stay up there in the closet as long as he feels, as long as he has food and water up there. Whenever you talk to him, which you should try to do as much as possible, talk real quiet and soft. If you have time sit with him as long as you can even if you dont talk to him just so he knows you are there and gets used to your scent. Good luck I hope some of my advice helps you a little. He will climb down out of the closet when he is ready
post #3 of 78
Thread Starter 
Thanks so much, but Im still scared of him. I mean, I have never seen anything like that in my life. He was like an acrobat. And I think it was all because he wanted to get up on that top shelve to feel more secure. But he's so scared,
how long do you think he will stay up there?
and it's a pretty far jump, and I know they dont like going down. I just dont want him to think he's stuck up there.
He IS scared to death. So very very scared. And it's scaring me. I just dont want him to freak out and get me.
post #4 of 78
I have some experince with this. Having had feral cats around our place for years, I hope I can help. I think that I would scratch anyone who touched me if I were in the same position. I would give him some time. If it is safe for him to be in the top of your closet, let him be. Is there a way he can be closed off in a certain area? I would suggest leaving him in the basement or upstairs, close off one area. Let him get used to the idea of being in the house, let him learn about his new surroundings. I don't think you can rush this. Remove everything breakable & anything he could harm himself on. There isn't really a way I know of to figure out how long to let this go on. If he was a feral cat, he may never readily accept people. If he had interaction with people, he may just be really really scared. Make sure he knows where the food, water, & litter are, and give him a chance to explore. They say when you bring a new cat into a home, give it a few weeks to adjust. Good luck!

Edited to add: Is there any way you can make a stair step down for him? If you can stack something more stable, he might get out of the closet easier. If you really have to get him out, find a pair of thick gloves(we used leather) and something to cover your face somewhat, and..well..grab him. We had a cat that felt really safe in a Pet Taxi. If you have one you could leave it for him to hide in. He might feel really safe in it.
post #5 of 78
Thread Starter 
He did have interaction with people, But not to the point where he KNEW people. The lady that gave him to us only fed him from time to time, and when she did, she would pet him and she said he would purr. So that IS a good sign, but he's not acting like he's ever even seen a person before.
He's never actually been IN a house, but I just fell in love with him, and I want him to happy he's in a nice warm house that has good expensive food for him.
So you say it takes weeks?? weeks before he even interacts with me?
He is in our bedroom, and he was under the bed last night, and tonight it looks like he will be staying on the top shelve in the closet.
Just let him do everything by himself?
post #6 of 78
OK I've been in your shoes.

Keep him isolated to one room. Have food and water at one side of the room and a litter box at the other.

Do NOT attempt to pry him out or force him out to interact with you. You need to gain his trust as he truly is frightened and has no idea you are the good guys.

Spend time in the room sitting on the floor/bed and just quietly talking to him or reading to him. (We sat on our bed in our bedroom and watched TV and would occasionally talk to the kitty for 4 full weeks before he came out.)

Do not stare him directly in the eye as this is an indication of a challenge to a cat. When you look at him slowly close your eyes and talk gently to him. We call those kitty kisses.

You need to be very patient and let him come to you when he trusts you enough.

In our particular case, Simba would run back behind our headboard as soon as we came into the room and would not come out while we were there. After a couple weeks he would come to eat but if you so much as put your hand or foot over the side of the bed he would run back into hiding. My husband wanted to catch him and return him but I managed to convince him to be a bit more patient. At the end of 4 full weeks, Simba finally let me touch him, by the end of 2 more weeks, we had the most amazing lap cat you would ever want to meet. My daughter and I neither one could sit without him wanting to be on us.

Just be calm and patient and let him come to you. Forcing him out will be the worst thing you can do as he will mistrust you.

I just want to add that if you are all freaked out and stressed he will pick up on your feelings and make him more tense. Try to relax and not be frightened of him. If you don't force him or try to grab him against his wishes, he is not likely to attack or bite or scratch you.
post #7 of 78
I am no expert on this, but from what I have read maybe I can give you some tips until someone more experienced can help you on this matter.

First I would try and get the cat into a room where it can be left alone and to get used to the surroundings, living indoors etc. Maybe where you can go in and spend some time, read aloud that way it can get used to your voice. Or just clean or do something that way it can get used to you. Of course don't vaccume or anything that would scare it. Just try to stay in the room and that way it can get used to human presence and realize that there is nothing to be scared of. Also put it's food, and water and maybe litter box for a while in the room.

This will take time, remember that. It's a gradual process but eventually it should work.

Best of luck and best wishes.
post #8 of 78
Thread Starter 
thank you thank you so much. This has all been very helpful. It just breaks my heart to know he's so scared.

I was pretty sure to just let him be, but I didnt want him to stay under the bed forever. But I am glad he's in the closet now, because he can see me better.

He's just so scared, and I instictivly want to help him. He was raised with a bunch of other cats, and we have a cat here, but I kind of get the gist that they should NOT be introduced to each other for a while.

But you guys dont think he will lash out at me if I'm just in there like picking up or watching TV? Because I am afraid to sleep in there now.

Once again thank you for all of this help, and I am so glad I came upon this forum before any other ones.

Oh hey, one more question...How long should I wait before getting him fixed? Let him get used to the house and us first? Or do it now while things already suck for him?
post #9 of 78
You have a lot of excellent advice!! Just wanted to say good luck and be patient with this kitty. Even kitties who have human contact take awhile to adjust in a new environment.

Winnie (who is Stormy's sis) came to us 9 months after Stormy because my sister couldn't keep her anymore, it took her a week to come out from under the bed) and another week or so to come out of the room.

And Francine came to us last year when my brother and SIL couldn't keep her anymore and it took her over a month to come out of the room.
post #10 of 78
Originally Posted by lilleah878
He's just so scared, and I instictivly want to help him. He was raised with a bunch of other cats, and we have a cat here, but I kind of get the gist that they should NOT be introduced to each other for a while.

I wouldn't try to introduce them until your new baby is feeling more secure.

But you guys dont think he will lash out at me if I'm just in there like picking up or watching TV? Because I am afraid to sleep in there now.

Believe me this little guy is going to stay far away from you for a while and he won't be close enough to lash out at you. Don't be afraid as he will pick up on it. He is probably far more afraid of you than you are of him. I wouldn't be surprised if while you are sleeping he cautiously gets on the bed to smell you and check you out.

Once again thank you for all of this help, and I am so glad I came upon this forum before any other ones.

Oh hey, one more question...How long should I wait before getting him fixed? Let him get used to the house and us first? Or do it now while things already suck for him?
How old did you say he was? If he is under 4 months I don't think you need to rush to get him fixed. I'd give him a couple weeks at least to settle in and get a little less stressed.
post #11 of 78
Bless you for taking him in to give him a better life first off. All the advice you've been giving is great. My family and I found a feral cat once years ago and it took 2 weeks for her to come out and interact with us. I'm sure you'll find that your patience will pay off and you will have a friend for life.
post #12 of 78
Do not fix him yet until he gets used to you guys!!! He will associate you with the pain. Also, since he already stressed out he might pick up a URI or something while he is at the vet. I would not worry about him attacking you while you are in the room. As long as you dont try to pick him up or anything. If you can't stack something up by the closet for him to jump down on, hang a towel or something over the edge and he wil shimmy down that ( make sure it is secure) Do not nail it though the hammer will scare him. tape it or push a tack or push pin through the wood on the shelf. do not stare at him!!! It will freak him out! talk to him so he gets used to your voice. Take your most recent shirt you had on and took off, put it up in the closet by him so he can get used to your scent. DO NOT INTRODUCE HIM TO THE OTHER CAT YET!!! He will be even more freaked out. Honestly all and all it will probably be about 2 months until he is "normal" don't try to rush it! Good Luck.

P.S. How old is he?
post #13 of 78
This is information I gathered from posts by Hissy and other experts.

Bringing Home a Scared New Cat

Preparing your home for the new cat

Select a small room where you can isolate the cat for a few days. A quiet bedroom works best in these situations.

Place the following in this small room:

• If possible, the kitty should have two litter-boxes, one to urinate in, and the other to defecate in and you should plan to scoop the boxes daily.

• Provide the cat with new glass or metal food bowls (plastic harbors bacteria). Never place food or water bowls near the litter boxes.

• You might invest in a ComfortZone diffuser. This emits a calming “friendly cat†pheromone that will make your cat feel more welcome in her new home.

• Make sure the new cat has a good place to scratch. The large cardboard scratching pads you can buy at PetsMart are cheap and excellent. (Adult cats need the wide scratching pads. The thin pads are best for small kittens.) Remember that scratching is a genetically based behavior. All cats (even those who are declawed) need to scratch, so make sure your cat has an appropriate place to scratch (scratching pad or post) so she does not use your furniture or rug when engaging in this normal cat behavior.

• Check your linen closet for an old blanket you don't care much about and give this to the new cat to lay on. Make a nest out of the blanket and place it under the bed or in a secluded corner of the room for the cat.

• Put in a few toys so the newcomer has something to amuse herself with.

Once you return home with your new cat

Seclude the newcomer in the small room, then just shut the door and leave him be for the first several hours.

After these first hours, while the newcomer is isolated, try and go in as much as possible and just sit on the floor and be with the new cat. Try reading out loud to your new cat. This gets him used to your voice. Read very softly to him for a minimum of 10 minutes twice a day (the more time you spend on the floor reading to the cat, the more quickly he will feel safe in his new home).

If kitty hides, just accept it, he will come out to you eventually -- don't ever chase him or force him out of hiding.

Once he becomes used to the sounds, sights, and smells of his new home, he will no longer be frightened and will soon be your best friend.
This process sometimes takes only a couple of hours, but it sometimes takes several weeks. Just be patient and it WILL work. Just remember to never force the cat to come out from hiding.
post #14 of 78
You might also click here to read about Lucky, a stray cat who sounds very much like the cat you brought home. In this thread you will see the techniques used to help Lucky feel more safe and calm.

Good luck!
post #15 of 78
Thread Starter 
Ok, sorry it took me a while, I right away took your advice, and went in there and picked up the aftermath of the craziness that had happened before.
The entire time, I was moving cautiously and was talking to him. I think he liked it.
He was much more interested in me, and I caught myself looking at him a few times and quickly looked away.
As for how old he is...I am not quite sure. He is smaller than our 1 year old cat, but bigger than about 6 months. So somewhere between 6 months and a year.
post #16 of 78
This poor baby's world just got turned upside down. It sounds like he's never been inside before, doesn't know you, has new sites, sounds and smells to deal with. Your best bet is to just leave him alone for a while. Bring him food at the same time each day - get a solid routine built up with him. Get a book, sit down on the floor and read out loud to him. Play classical music for him (low), preferably harp music (don't ask, it just works). When you sense that he is getting a little more comfortable (could take a long time), get a wand type toy and waggle it around to lure him to you. Always wait for him to come to you - he will do so in his own time. Most of all, simply be patient with him.

Some things to avoid at all costs:
- Standing tall where you are towering over him
- Direct eye contact - if you happen to make eye contact, slowly blink your eyes at him - this is a sign of greeting with cats
- Forcing yourself on him by trying to catch or hold him
- Spraying him with a water bottle
- Loud noises
- Fast movements

Thanks for taking this boy in - he is very lucky to have come into your life!

And btw.....he got up into the closet, he will find a way to get down.
post #17 of 78
Yeah try spend as much time with him as possible so he does'nt get lonely on top of beeing scared already! Good Luck! It sounds like you are making progress already
post #18 of 78
Thread Starter 
I really think me talking to him while picking up really helped a bit. Because he was watching me very intentively the whole time.
And I got to rearrange under the bed so he cant go all the way in the back like last night.
He is just so darn cute, I just want to hug him, but I now know I have got to wait a bit to do that.
He hasnt touched his food though, and hasnt peed or pooped, or drank water scince yesturday at about 1 pm. So it's been well over 24 hours where he hasnt done any of that.
Any help on that?
post #19 of 78
Thread Starter 
thanks so much. At the time i wrote this, I was so panicked that I wrote another one in a different forum part on here (im a forum newbie), and they also had helped me so good. I am soo amazed by the help I have gotten on this website. This is just wonderful. the other forum where I was in for a while, is in health and nutrition and i belive it said "help me now!" lol.
I didnt know what else to say. Because that's what I was feeling, and My husband said no one will reply to that because you sound like a noob. But people did.
And I am so greatful for that. All of this help has been great.
post #20 of 78
As long as it it right there on the shelf for him I think he will be ok. Put some wet food out or a little tuna to stink it up and draw his attention to it. He might start to eat it then.
post #21 of 78
hugs? all in good time - I bet you will end up getting lots and lots of cuddles from your new little one

its hard having a new scared kitty, but you came to the right place - you have had such wonderful advise so far. This kitty will do just fine once he realises that he is safe - poor things life has been turned upside down.

dont worry about the eating and such at this stage. Again he is traumatised so he will eat when he calms down a bit. Just leave the food there while your not in the room.
post #22 of 78

I have seen your other post
post #23 of 78
Originally Posted by lilleah878
My husband said no one will reply to that because you sound like a noob.
Noob? That's one I haven't heard before!
I agree, the people here are wonderful. Welcome aboard!
post #24 of 78
And watch the door. He may try to escape, so the best place is in a bedroom or somewhere where he would have to sneak out two doors to get outside, so he is in a good place now. If someone sleeps in that bedroom, chances are, one night they will wake up with the kitty cuddled beside them in the bed. Don't be scared of him, because if you are not threatening the kitty, he will not attack or scratch you. (I know you didn't mean to scare him, but trying to get him out from under the bed did scare him!)

I had a foster cat who primarily lived in a closet for several weeks. Just be sure a litterbox is nearby, and maybe put some dirt on top in case he never used a litterbox before. If he does make a mistake and poopy somewhere, just put the poo into the litterbox and he will understand.

Give him lots of time. And although tuna is ok as a treat, be sure to make a balanced cat food available to him, too.

Congrats on your new kitty!
post #25 of 78
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Beckiboo
And watch the door. He may try to escape, so the best place is in a bedroom or somewhere where he would have to sneak out two doors to get outside, so he is in a good place now.
He is in our bedroom where we sleep. I sure am hoping he gets the nerve to come cuddle with me, or at least smell me. I am just afraid because of what i seen earlier, he might flip out and do that again. But I am doing everything to make sure that doesnt happen again.
post #26 of 78
Thread Starter 
you guys are so wonderful. I also had another post going because I needed someone to answer and quick. It was in Behavior i think. And this is so awesome.

It was like calling kitty-911.

I love the help I have recieved, and I have been able to calm down and stop being scared of him now that i know whats really going on in his poor little head. Now that I know there is place I can come for cat help, I am refering this site to everyone I know. I am just seriously so happy for all the help I have gotten.

I am so happy I now know that he's just terrified, and needs me to chill out before he can even start to chill out.

Thank you so much...I just hope everything turns out good, and he's not scared of everything for the rest of his life. I am still a little worried about him being on the top shelf, but people say if he got up there, he'll get down somehow.

When he jumped up there, it was crazy, He jumped like 5 feet in the air, grabbed our clothes and ran up the half-wall to the top shelve. It was like nothing I have ever seen before. He climbed one wall, and brought down 2 pictures with him.

Now, there were no shelves on this wall, he actually climbed it. Something I will never understand.
post #27 of 78
I merged your two threads together so that it would be less confusing.

I'm glad things are going so much better.
post #28 of 78
Thread Starter 
I was so confused about the threads being merged together. Kind of hurt my brain. lol
But i get it now. Thanks so much. I will pop in sometime tomarrow hopefully with good news.
post #29 of 78
Originally Posted by lilleah878

When he jumped up there, it was crazy, He jumped like 5 feet in the air, grabbed our clothes and ran up the half-wall to the top shelve. It was like nothing I have ever seen before. He climbed one wall, and brought down 2 pictures with him.

Now, there were no shelves on this wall, he actually climbed it. Something I will never understand.
Years ago I saw a cat crawl up the outside of a house, which had a one foot roof overhang. The cat went straight up the house, up and over the roof overhang, meaning it was actually upside down at one point! I am still amazed and surprised it made it up onto that roof-it was like a little spiderman!

You truly do not need to be afraid of your cat, unless you "attack" it. I had a sort of wild (feral) cat. I was bitten and scratched several times-when trying to shove her into a cat carrier, when worming her (aka squirting poison in her mouth), and again when trying to grab her and catch her. Each time I was acting like an aggressor to her in her eyes, like you were to your kitty when scaring him out of his chosen spot. Jill NEVER attacked me or anyone else. I'm sure your cat won't either.

Scared kitties are less threatened by someone laying down. At our house, our sign for when a new cat is feeling safe, is when they jump in bed with someone-usually my 9 y/o daughter. Yes, Jill eventually got in bed with my dd. No, I never kept her away from my kids, because she was a sweet gentle soul. But if she felt I was threatening her by totally grabbing her, she would defend herself. As soon as I let her go, she quit. Most importantly, each time I made a major mistake with her taming process, she quickly forgave me.
post #30 of 78
Simba was the same. We made the mistake of letting him loose in the whole house the day we brought him home. He hid in the basement and would only come up to the kitchen level for food and water and would run like mad back to the basement if we came near him.

My husband found this cat site and we came here for help and got all the wonderful advice you youself have been given. They told us to isolate him in one room, etc. Well, first we had to catch him. We cornered him in the kitchen and my husband grabbed hold of him and he bit my husband very very hard and my husband let go. Then our daughter grabbed him as he tried to pass her and he also bit her very deeply and she let him go, then I grabbed him as he tried to run past me and he also bit me very hard but I hung on and raced up to our bedroom with him and closed the door. I tried to hold him and calm him and he was terrified. I loosened my hold on him and he jumped from my arms and in the process his hind feet scratched my chest and down across my nipple (ouch!). Then he hid behind the bed for the 4 weeks. After he came around he was the most loving of cats and as I said he had to be on my lap even when I went to the bathroom. He never scratched or hurt any of us again. Unfortunately our daughter got blood poisoning from the bite he inflicted on her and had to have antibiotics, but he loved her dearly after his socialization. He sat either on her lap or mine. He would always prefer mine but he was a sweetheart. He also liked to be carried around upside down in our arms just like a human baby. He was awesome. Unfortunately he lost him after only 5 years to liver failure and I still wonder if I had more knowledge and noticed earlier if we could have saved him, but only God knows that and I know he is no longer suffering as he was in his last days with us.

I can just sense that this little guy you have is going to be a love as soon as he gets over his fear. Hang in there and definitely keep us up-to-date on how he is doing. We really, really want to know how you all are doing.
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