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Old 12-23-2011, 01:18 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Cat Acting Scared

Last night I sneezed, and in the next room one of our 2 two cats got startled, broke into a run, and since then has been acting kind of scared and cagey. The other cat seems fine. Both cats are young and have had very relaxed, leisurely indoor lives. I see no reason for either of them to behave this way.

Is it normal for a cat to get so panicky over nothing?
Johnny Relentless

Jeff and Lester, Manx kittens
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Old 12-23-2011, 01:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Gato's never done that before but I have seen Neko act like that.
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Old 12-23-2011, 01:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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In my experience, yup it's completely normal. Moxie used to run and cower when someone sneezed. She's calmed down now, enough that she only startles a little, but she still stares at whoever made the noise with wide eyes Makes me feel real bad for sneezing.

My other cat is 14 years old, and she's always been afraid of the oven. She won't pass in front of it when it's on, and god forbid we open the door when she's in the same room. She takes off and hides somewhere. She's the same way about the BBQ. If it's on she flat out refuses to be outside, even though she usually loves being out in the sun.

And then of course there's the vacuum cleaner - which both cats are terrified of. I've had Sassy almost her entire life, so I can be sure she has never had a bad experience with an oven or a BBQ. Or a vacuum for that matter. I don't know why, but some things just frighten them. I feel bad, and try to keep thing that scare them to a minimum, but I don't think it's something to really worry about. They usually go back to acting normal very quickly.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:12 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Some cats for whatever reason, possibly genetics or upbringing, have a nervous reaction or quick startle response. Sometimes thro habituation they can get over it. I remember our boy Zuba used to run out of the kitchen when the microwave or anything else beeped. He got used to it and pays no attention to it now. He used to do the same thing if I dropped a pot on the floor, whereas his half-sister Alkee just would look at it. Alkee reacts to my sneezing with concern, maybe she thinks I'm sick? and will come meowing to me and sit and purr in my lap and rub up against me. Zuba doesn't react at all, but does when my hubby sneezes which is very loud and high pitched and even hurts my ears, he'll run out of the room. It's hard to figure out what triggers these things if it's possible at all! Don't worry about it.
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Old 12-23-2011, 04:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I've had Shepherd for ...3 months(?) now and he still freaks out and runs when I sneeze. He used to hide for a LONG time but now he's back in a few minutes, cautiously checking out if I'm going to try to attack him again.
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