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I really need urgent advice! Help!

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hello all members of this forum,

I have searched the web, reading about cats aggression towards people and so far I haven't found a single reply anywhere that would be similiar to the problem I am experiencing with my cat.

Few facts: it's male, supposly spayed, 4 years old, indoor cat, living with me and my partner in 1 and a half bedroom appartement....

Some 14 months ago (summer) he attacked me for the first time and then I tought it was due to the fact it's a mating season so I didn't think much about it. From the obvious shock. The attack was quite horrible, with biting scratching and the most horrible voice.

Then 8 months ago he attacked me for the second time. This time it was in the bathroom. I believe it was april. Again, I tought the same thing. But to my surprise these attacks continued up until today (yes, even today).

They appear sometimes every 3 days, then 12 days nothing and so on and on...

So far I haven't seen a single pattern to his attacks; it can be while I'm walking next to him, standing on the balcony, sitting behind computer, or even just trying to get out of the room...

It happens absolutely with NO appearant reason; few times while I was petting him, but besides that NO reason whatsoever.

Now I can mostly forsee his attacks, by his behaviour which becomes quite strange; he seems iritated, walking around with tail down, standing next to me and looking at me...

He's not marking his teritory, he urinates normally, he eats normally, he can be most of the time pretty cute...

Unfortunatly this problem has grown so HUGE that I can not live my life normally, I don't sit at the table and eat- but stand, when I'm walking around the flat I'm holding some towel next to me (for distraction), both of us with my partner are really careful in everything we do so that we do not disturb him... but IT DOESN'T WORK!

So, can anyone relate his experiences to this at all?
Could this be happening due to the fact he's indoor with two people in rather small appartement? Would it change if we moved and gave him opportunity to start going outside when he wanted?
Does he percieve us as cats on his teritory?

And just to add: He never attacked as before, it basically started after we had the bathroom redone and this lasted for some 25 days - with all the noise, with all the people walking around, etc. etc. This is the only thing I can think of, that may trigger his behaviour...

I would appreciate any reply, link or suggestion...

Thanks a lot!
post #2 of 17
Have you had him in to see his vet? A change in behavior is always a good reason to consult with the vet.
post #3 of 17
Originally Posted by gayef
Have you had him in to see his vet? A change in behavior is always a good reason to consult with the vet.
I second that suggestion. Unprovoked biting could be a sign that your cat is in pain and needs to see a vet.

post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
Actually, the funny thing is that me and my partner were at the vet some 5 times now speaking with different vets about this, and the funniest thing is that none of them could help us in any way.

I've even asked if there were some kind of medication that I could give him for some period of time until we don't figure out what to do and they said that it wouldn't help at all.

So once we took him to the vet and when they wanted to open his box he basically bit one of the vets and started "the attack" behaviour, so they just let them be and the shrugged their heads..

And we've been to 3 different pet clinics so far...

Well, the last thing was some 5 months ago when I suggested to one of the vets "what if you did the full exam" and she said that they would have to sedate him and that it can be dangerous for his health... so we just let it be.

so, that's about it, but now we've had enough of them and we're going to take him to the vet for exams and I don't care what they say... but I'm very much afraid it's not that sort of health issue...
post #5 of 17
A vet worth his salt can sedate him with gas (Isoflurane or Sevoflurane) in order to examine him without so much risk - while I hear your frustration with the vets you've seen, keep looking for one who will work with you, not against you.
post #6 of 17
You say you live in a flat, how many other units are in the building? Do you know if anyone else has a cat? Particularly a male? He needs to see a vet either way. The vet can do an exam and make sure nothing is wrong with him, as well as offer some advice on the behavior if it turns out he is not ill. You say he is going potty ok? Has the # of time he urinates per day changed? He might have crystals in his urine. What kind of food do you feed him? Please take him to the vet, they will get to the root of the problem.
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 
Just to add to everything above:

I have a feeling, well not so much a feeling, but I think he's seeking for every move I make so that he can attack me. It's strange, I can be in the kitchen and he can be in the living room on the couch "sleeping", and when I try to go from one room to toilette, he would suddenly wake and run after me screaming and attacking me.

The same thing happens almost every day (even those days when he doesn't attack) when I stand up from the bed, chair or anywhere, he just follows me, runs after me (even when he decides not to attack me). But only after me.
post #8 of 17
Get him checked out. He may have a brain tumor. Or,
some other illness that causes him pain.

On very rare occassions its genetic... but usually
this is a behavior thing.

Have they talked to you about behavior mod? And
there are also anti anxiety drugs you can use.

Try enriching his environment, providing more play
stimulation and make him "hunt" for his food...

There are other suggestions that people on this
site can suggest. Best Friends' Animal Sanctuary
has a great FAQ on this topic, and I believe this
site does too.

In anycase, a full work up is essential to rule
out things like urinary crystals, tumors, hormonal
problems, and the like.

If he isn't fixed BTW, get him fixed. That can
help ALOT!
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 

I seem to forgot to add this: before he attacks me in 90% of the cases, he would start twitching his nose up, closing his eyes and start smelling endlesly and then if anybody moved at that point, he'd just be after him.
post #10 of 17
Originally Posted by dalimili

I seem to forgot to add this: before he attacks me in 90% of the cases, he would start twitching his nose up, closing his eyes and start smelling endlesly and then if anybody moved at that point, he'd just be after him.
I second the recommendation to have him thouroughly examed by a vet and if they cannot find should contact a behaviorist.

post #11 of 17
Sounds like his hunting instinct has gone completely haywire. Or he sees you as some kind of threat. So it's only you he goes after and not your partner?
I hope you can find a vet who's prepared to give this more than 5 minutes of thought and can help you.
post #12 of 17
You might try a Feliway plug in as well... the cat pheremones are supposed to help cats feel safe and secure and he might calm down.

Do keep looking for a vet. I know it must be frusterating to have everyone tell you this when you've already done it, but in my experience, finding the right vet is really important. That way even later (and not in this situation) you'll have someone you can trust.

I think finding out if there are any other cats in the building or outside is a good idea. The construction in your bathroom might have made him feel as though his territory is compromised. Also, is he playing enough? I know this sounds strange but I worked with a cat once that was brought back to the shelter for "aggression." Turned out the poor thing just wanted to play.

You might check out a book "Good Cats, Bad Habits" by Alice Rhea. It has a section in there on aggression. It probably won't address your situation specifically but sometimes reading about different causes will spark something off in your head as too why he's acting this way.

Good luck!
post #13 of 17
I would call various vets, and find one who is willing to sedate him, draw blood, and do a complete physical work-up. I don't know what you mean by supposedly spayed-can you track down his medical records? Maybe he has a testicle inside, and is being overwhelmed with hormones.

If it is just behavioral, I would be inclined to limit him to a cage or crate. He is attacking you, and needs to relearn that you are there for good, not to be attacked. If you can use a towel or blanket to "shoo" him into a cage, maybe you can figure out what is setting him off. Maybe he was traumatized by the bathroom redecoration, and a cooling off period will help him feel safer.

Then as he regains his freedom, keep feeding him in the cage. Then that becomes his safe area, where if he feels overstimulated, he can retreat to his cage/crate.

Note, cats cannot be kept in cages for long periods of time. I foster cats, so I have a cage in my home all the time. My cats love the cage when it is available to them. When it is not in use, it is just left open, and they go in and play with the hanging toys, or just climb on the shelves. They like to climb on top, too. The cage is not a punishment, just a safe zone for an out of contol kitty.
post #14 of 17
A few years ago we had a cat much like what you are describing. She took up residence on the second floor and would literally attack anything that came up the stairs, animal or human. Finally after multiple vet visits she was so stressed she actually ate her way out of the upper room through the screen window and escaped across our roof into the woods. I always wondered what happened to her.

Now our windows are blocked by decorative trellis pieces, she did teach us that.

Other than a cat behaviorist coming in to your home, I don't know what to offer you. It could be just neurologically this cat has some problems.
post #15 of 17
I would also suggest a feliway plug diffuser. It helped wonders in my home with my kitties. I'd try it. But also I would suggest taking him to the vet to make sure there is nothing wrong in his brain.

Here's a link to the diffuser called comfort zone. It's great!
post #16 of 17
what exactly do you mean by attacking ? My cat does a similar thing, where he will hide under the couch/behind furniture and then jump at me when I walk past. It's his way of playing. He doesn't necessarily ask for attention at this point (allthough sometimes it is a request to play with him), but I am the only living, moving thing in the house he can chase, so I will have to do (he probably is quite frustrated by my slow movement and easy-catch-size ). Thankfully I have trained him early not to use his claws or teeth when he does those attacks, so they are more funny than dangerous ( he actually walks on his hind legs, front legs in the air, ears pulled back and growls when he does that), but I had to learn, never to fill coffee cups to the rim again.

Does your cat have plenty of toys ? Do you play with him often ? How do you react to his attacks ? And are they actually proper attacks, or is he just chasing you ?

Does he need a second cat ? You said he is is snipped, maybe you have to ask a Vet to check for a hidden testicle, just to make sure he hasn't got hormones playing him up. Otherwise he sounds like he needs somewhere to get rid of some energy and something to chase. If you can't get him another cat, how about getting him a real mouse once in a while ? Ok, it sounds gross to some people, but the pet-shops which sell snakes and lizards tend to sell feeder mice (don't get him a feeder rat, they are too vicious and sometimes not very healthy).
post #17 of 17
Did you figure anything out yet? Have you taken him to a new vet by now??
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