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A grumpy cat!

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
My fellow cat .. people :P
I have a problem which has been going on for a a few months, since about December last year, I haven't been able to find any worthy information on how to conquer, so yeah, here I am!
I have two cats, both female, mother and daughter, the mother is desexed, daughter isn't (but soon to be). The mother (Midnight) has is about a year and a half old and I've had her for that long, for as long as I've had her, she's never really hissed or scratched at anything that I'm aware of, she has been the perfect cat. She had kittens in November last year, the month after I got her desexed so it didn't happen again, as you do. Out of all the kittens (litter of four) we kept one, Soxie.
Soxie and Midnight have been best buddies since Soxie was born, no fights or quarrels, apart from the usual 'Youre in my way *slap*' kind of thing that cats do, then one night I heard some very bad hissing coming from outside. When I went out to check it out, I coulnd't find either of the cats. A little while later Midnight wandered in, so I went looking for the other, when I found her, I brought her in .. The second Midnight caught a glimpse of Soxie, she completely flipped out, she was hissing, scratching, and biting my shoes (I was holding Soxie), Soxie pretty much did the same, ended up with sliced up hands because of the affair. After this I locked Soxie in the bathroom so she wouldn't get hurt, Midnight was very jittery but she wasn't angry at all.
A couple of hours after this happened I tried putting the cats back together, the same thing happened, so Soxie was locked in the bathroom (with her own nourishment of course) until morning, when I tried it again. This time it wasn't has bad but they were still a little weary of each other.

This is where the annoyance/angry/stupidity starts! That happened a couple of months ago, and since then Midnight (the mother) gets grumpy really easy, she will growl at anyone if they get too close to her sometimes. Whenever Soxie goes near her, Midnight will growl and swat until Soxie goes away. The main thing is that it is getting annoying being around them, as midnight doesn't stop growling at all while they are together. They can be across the other side of a large room from each other and Midnight will still growl and mumble to herself.
I was just wondering if this has happened to anyone else before, and if so, how was the problem rectified? I have talked to my vet about it the day after the original fight happened, and she said that once Soxie was desexed the problems should go away, she was about two to three months old at the time so I've had to wait, now she's seven months old and can get desexed, I asked again about the problem and the same vet said that it probably wouldn't make a difference, and that the fight is probably over a male cat they both want, which is entirely likely, as I saw a male cat outside when I went looking for my cats on the original fight night.
So yeah, any help would be muchly appreciated, I am in desperate need of a 'Doctor Harry' fix (for you Aussies out there), the cats are really getting on our nerves and it's just a really bad neucence having both of them around.
Oh! A quick note, Midnight gets cranky even when Soxie is nowhere to be found, she will grow/scratch when she is picked up a lot of the time now, when before she loved being picked up and pet. It's like she has just got a short fuse and wont put up with anyones balony.

Well, I thank you all in advance for any help you can provide me, I am afraid I may have to get rid of Midnight if this problem persists, home life is rather unbearable when you can't even look at one of the cats without getting growled at :P - Also, forgive me for the long post, it is a rather long story :P

- damian
post #2 of 5
Hi Damian and welcome to TCS!

One of the first things I would do would be to get both Midnight and Soxie to the vets to check that there is nothing medically wrong with them! Sometimes a well cat will lash out at a sick one, because of a scent change and sick cats can often show signs of grumpiness and lack of interaction!

Once given clean bills of health, you can concentrate on tackling the behavioural issues!

I think, from what you have said, that the other cat in the garden has given Midnight a start and this has become an associataion, as Soxie was in the wrong place at the wrong time!

Because Midnight had an overwhelming amount of emotion, she lashed out at the nearest thing, which happened to be Soxie - this is where the association has happened and possibly why Midnight is anxious around her!

There are a number of things that you could try to calm the situation!

Feliway might help in making your home feel safer and help ease any anxiety that Midnight and Soxie might be feeling.

Vanilla Extract, dabbed on both cats (under their chins, base of tale and between shoulder blades) this will give them a similar scent and help them to feel more comfortable around eachother.

Reintroduction! This might be a lst resort after you have tried the Feliway and Vanilla, but could help the situation! (you can find a lot of information on this in the stickies and if you do a search!
post #3 of 5
Get the kitten "desexed" ASAP, and do not let your cats roam outside where they can pick up disease, get injured and killed, or be abused. Treat them both gently with love and your problem should go away.
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks both for the quick responses.
When it comes to sickness/health issues, I would come to the assumption that nothing is wrong with them (nothing is visibly wrong with either of them apart from this little shindig), and the problem started in one abrupt surge, not casually or anything.

Originally Posted by Sar
I think, from what you have said, that the other cat in the garden has given Midnight a start and this has become an associataion, as Soxie was in the wrong place at the wrong time!
This one is a good possiblity, poor Soxie :'( - I feel so sorry for her sometimes, she is just laying there snoring away and midnight walks past, growls, attacks, runs off and Soxie is left wondering what just happened.

With the solutions: I'm not sure about Feliway, I've just had a read up about what it is and what-not, will need to find an Australian distrobuter for it. I actually have a product which I would say is similar to it, but not doing the same job. Instead of the pheromone thing it more just nutrolizes all that kind of stuff, I bought it ages ago for some random reason or another, might give it a shot at spraying it around and seeing what goes.
With the Vanilla Extract, not quite sure what it is, will need to look into that one as well, but if it's more just because Vanilla is a strong scent for the cats, the flea collars we have for our cats give of a very strong scent of Spearmint, wouldn't that do a very similar job? I'll have to check it out! :P
Also, will have to look up what this Reintroduction thing is, I'd assume seperation for a while and putting back together. I might give it a try after Soxie is desexed at the end of the week, as she'll want/need the rest anywho.

Originally Posted by gailuvscats
Get the kitten "desexed" ASAP, and do not let your cats roam outside where they can pick up disease, get injured and killed, or be abused. Treat them both gently with love and your problem should go away.
I've found with cats that if you try and make a strict rule of keeping them inside they try even more desperately to get outside, at which point they'll get hurt even more. I've trained my cats to ask when they want to be let out, and I just leave the door open until they return a short while later. Both of the cats have learnt not to go near the road at all (mainly because of noise and what-not), but yeah they rarely stay outside for too long, unless they're on heat (which Soxie is at the moment) .. in which case she doesn't go outside until she's over it, well, until she's had the operating in this case.
Also, both of our cats are spoilt (not overly, but they get what they want), and they're always being smothered with affection whenever they want it. There's just me and my girlfriend who ever really see them, always love in the house! :P .. That's one of the big reasons why we want this to stop, it's the only real aggrivation in the house, it's upsetting the balance! :P
post #5 of 5
I would still recommend that both cats have a check up!

It really does sound that an association issue has occurred! Feliway is available in Australia (a friend of mine - in Melbourne - recently purchased some!) It is expensive, but it is worthwhile to bring calm to the home!

Vanilla Essence is more appealing to cats (than the spearmint in the flea collars) and it also disguises the natural pheromone scent! I'd really recommend giving it a go! If you can't find any, please give me a shout (PM) and I'll see what I can do!

The reintroduction sounds like a good idea after Soxie's spay! I would recommend that you read through the threads and stickies about 'introduction' as it will give you some great tips about the process!

In regard to gailuvscats's comment, In certain countries and areas, it is recommended that cats are kept indoors! My cats are indoors, but this is mainly because I live in the city centre and it's not plausible for my cats to frequent the outdoor life, although I do walk them daily on a harness and lead and they get a great deal of entertainment during the day, as I work from home!

I know - from my friend - that Melbourne is a good environment for indoor/outdoor cats! The only thing that is recommended is that if your cat is intact, that you keep them indoors as it is possible for a cat to become pregnant even if they aren't in heat!

I hope that you will look into the checks, just to make certain and Soxie's spay goes well!

Please do keep us updated!
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