Need help socializing a 3 yr old male cat - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-30-2008, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
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Need help socializing a 3 yr old male cat

Hi everyone, I am new to the forum and would really appreciate some advice.
My mother has recently been placed in a nursing home due to alzheimers disease. She was the owner of a 3 yr old male cat, who has recently come into my care. The cat knows me, so we get along fine. The only problem is that she has kept him indoors for his entire life and he has rarely seen other animals or people.
I currently live alone, so If I wanted to go on holiday he would need to be placed in a cattery or left in the care of my friends. This is a huge problem as he is so scared of other people, and is even terrified if he is taken outside.
Is it possible to make him less frightened with new expereiences? I don't know how to ease him into it as he is fully grown. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thank you.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-30-2008, 11:28 AM
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First, keep him indoors. If he got loose outside he could run/hide out of fear and not know how to find his way back. He may never be comfortable going outside. If you want to get him used to it, I'd only offer him an open door to explore outside for a few minutes at a time before you bring him back in. Always leave the door open for him to dodge back in if he gets frightened. As he gets more comfortable, then he can stay out for longer periods of time. Myself, I prefer to keep my cats indoors as we have too many dangers to lose them to, here.

For socializing, keep making a fuss over him and getting him comfortable with you handling him. Then you can ask people (quiet type people) to come over for a bit and try to get him used to having other people around and eventually handling him.

Give him time. All his life he has been very sheltered with only one person. It will take him time to assess all these new experiences he is encountering; new home, new person, other person he's used to is 'gone', new visitors, new sights-sounds-smells... Keep in mind, some cats remain quite shy and may never be fully comfortable. Also, it is okay if he hides when other people come over. If you go out of town, he can hide when a caregive comes to care for him. As long as the food/water and litterbox look like they are being used normally, that's okay.

...gotta run, I think the horse shoer is here!
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 04-30-2008, 02:19 PM
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Heidi has some good advice, Sally. I'd just like to add that if you have a storm door or screen door for him to look out of, let him get used to that first instead of going outside straightaway.
Take it slow, and remember, lots of love and cuddles will build his confidence.

Welcome to the forum, and post some pics when you can.
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