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Mixed Signals from Pru

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Pru will sit on my lap or chest and start vigorously kneading away, a real work out, and will roll on her side to have her belly rubbed, and then stretches her back legs out. I love this and I'm hoping she is.
I am getting her out from behind the futon to get her on my lap and after our sessions, usually a couple of hours at a time, with napping on both our parts, I put her back in the room and she RUNS to get behind the futon again.
She seems to open up, although any noise or sudden movements, she curls right up and puts her nose under my arm to hide. She has not meowed at all, although she purrs, and her tail is always tucked between her legs. Talk about mixed signals.
Am I doing the right thing with her? I didn't wait for her to come to me, and she still won't, I initiate our contact. Is the kneading, stretching out routine a sign of trust on her part or just submission? It seems good to me, but the running behind the futon as soon as she gets in the spare room makes me think otherwise.
Any thoughts on this?
post #2 of 5
My cat Elessar is about 2 and he does the same thing occasionally. He was a feral kitten when I got him at 6 weeks old or so, and it took a while to tame him. Even now, he'll run away if I'm walking too fast but he loves me to death and seeks me out all the time. He won't go near many other people that come over. Timmy's even worse, he barely even lets me touch him, but he's improving. Some cats that are feral at first will always be skittish, like it's in their blood or something. They'll make friends with you and maybe the others in your household, but it doesn't take much to scare them, even thought they love you. That's what made me keep Timmy. I had every intention of adopting him out, but he only seemed to come around for me, I felt bad and I felt like he might not come around after that and it would be traumatizing for him to go through going to a new owner again. (Or, maybe deep down I fell in love with him and wanted to keep him, and that was my way of justifying it...)
Timmy never meows either, but he purrs too....
post #3 of 5
A kitten that arrived here at 7 months old was running from me every time I made an appearance. I never chased him, pulled him out of his chosen hiding places and I just fed him and saw to his needs. He has been here now four months. Last night while I was reading, he jumped up beside me and headbumped me! I sat quite still and soon he was nudging me. I slowly reached over to pet his head and he flinched and jumped down. I didn't look at him just picked up my book and started reading. Curious, he jumped back up near me and headbumped.

This time, remembering his flinching, I gently rubbed his back and did some elevator butt manuevers. He Loved it! We had a great rubfest, but in my happiness at breaking to this moment, I went to long and he bit me to let me know I was overstimulating him.

I don't chase them, I don't pull them out of hiding. No matter how much I want to, I don't. I have learned over time that patience is key. They have their own timeline and I just don't mess with it. It is a longer process yes, but the bond is infinitely stronger because they are relaxed, the pressure is off. I don't want anything from them- well, okay I want one thing, I want them all healthy.
post #4 of 5
Sounds to me like she is enjoying the time together. Maybe you could try it Hissy's way, by laying on the floor in front of the futon? Have you been talking to her when you pet her? Then you could say the same things when you lay on the floor.

When I was hand feeding the feral babies, I would keep saying "Here, kitty kitty" as they ate, so they would know that is a positive thing. They do come running when I say that now, although Red stops before she gets to me, unless it is mealtime. Blue is all over me, hoping for treats.

This is a good time to use treats to encourage, too. It is one thing to have a kitty sit still and allow you to capture it, but so sweet when they approach you. I work a lot on them moving towards me, for food, treats, playtime.

When they allowed me to sit by the food bowl, we started working on me standing up, or walking past. Slow going with Red, but she is coming along. She has been walked up to and petted by dd, dh, and even dd's best friend. And each who petted her was amazed and excited about it afterwards!
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Pru showed her face at the screen door on the spare room, the first sighting. I have been bringing her out on the sofa with me every day. Yes, I'm still getting her, but I find she isn't hiding, she just sits there waiting. The other cats are seeing her more and she is showing an interest in Sam, stretching her neck to look at him etc.
I decided to go with my instinct on this one. Slow and loving.
If i had any doubts, I just got confirmation on my actions. I had JoeCool give me a tarot card reading just now and this is what he came up with:

At the moment you are trying to help a friend. You are too busy to actually go anywhere at this time. In order to help the friend, you need to control her a little and gain her trust.
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