How Do I Tame an Inherited a Cat. - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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How Do I Tame an Inherited a Cat.

We moved in to a house almost three years ago and inherited a cat that must have been left by the previous owners. At first, the cat would scramble out of site when she would see us but slowly became "friendlier" when we started feeding her. We have been feeding her since.

She has now become part of our house-hold and usually stays and sleeps in the room where-ever there are people and has somewhat become a bit comfortable with us.

She allows us to pet her but simple wont allow us to pick her up. She would also brush herself against our legs and would apear very affectionate but would run away when we try to pick her up.

She has given birth to three kittens which she hid out of site and we respected her privacy and now that the kittens are a couple of months old have joined her during feeding time.

The kittens would run out of site when-ever I try to pet them and would even try to scratch me and make hissing sounds.

Is there a way I could make the cats "friendlier" or would they foreven be "stray"?
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-30-2009, 09:50 PM
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Re: How Do I Tame an Inherited a Cat.

You can tame the kittens with some effort, but if you had been handling them since they were very small, you wouldn't have to tame them. This method should work for you:

Remember, the key is patience. Don't rush things.


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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 05-09-2009, 12:55 PM
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Re: How Do I Tame an Inherited a Cat.

It is very sweet you have integrated these cats into your life and home.

The kittens will need to be worked with right away if your going to socialize them to humans. They are at the cut off point of easily doing it. Usually my TNR group takes kittens around 4-6 weeks depending on the situation they are in.

It sounds like your momma kitty wants to trust but she will need consistant working with her to break thru her fears. I would get her spayed right now plus the kittens as soon as they reach 3 lbs. Then they wont wander, spray, go into heat and pregnant. Its very hard on cats to be pregnant so often. Even if she is nursing these babies she will be in heat and get pregnant yet again very soon.

good luck on your efforts. With persistance you can have a nice kitty family.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-25-2009, 07:29 PM Thread Starter
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Re: How Do I Tame an Inherited a Cat.

Thank you all for your advise and words of encouragement.

I am very happy to report that two of the three kittens (one male-Bethoven and female-Bonbon) have become very friendly and are now purring with contentment when I pick them up and cuddle them and now actually refuse to be put down. They always enjoy sitting on my lap when I am in front of the computer and one of them sleeps near the foot side of my bed while the other one loves sleeping on my bedroom slippers.

The third kitten (another male- creampuff) simply doesn't like being touched and runs off at any sign of trying to touch him. He also seldom stays in the vicinity where the other male cat stays so he is spends his time in a totally different segment of our house. Bethoven also doesn't go to where creampuff usually stays except when he needs to take a trip to the litter box. The three kittens together with their mother are fed together and never fight when eating but as soon as feeding time is over, the two male kittens retreat to their side of the house. I am beginning to wonder if this is a territory thing between the two male cats and if they could ever get along.

Would it better if I try to find one of the male cats a new home?

The mother cat on the other hand has remained the same as before refusing any attempt to be carried and in fact usually fights her kittens especially when she see's them being cuddled and even hisses and scratches them when I put them down and this attitude has worsened to the point where the two kittens are afraid to cross her path.

Any suggestions of what I should do with the mother cat?

Again, many thanks for all your advice.


I also noticed that the third kitten-creampuff who refuses to be petted is unusually larger (he started out as being the smallest) than the other two. Does this have anything to do with the kittens being held or whatever?
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 07-25-2009, 09:00 PM
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Re: How Do I Tame an Inherited a Cat.

I think it is wonderful that you have taken in this family of cats to help better their lives, however it appears if you don't take steps now, you may wind up with cats who have life-long problems.
Number one on the agenda, is to spay/neuter everybody.

First, I think the Mamma-cat is perhaps a little confused about why her kittens enjoy spending time with the humans AND her kittens are approaching the age where she would be weaning them and sending them out on their own so she could protect *her* resources (food, shelter, territory) and begin raising her next litter. It is instinct telling her to do this.
Next, as for the kittens, I think if they were mine and all came from the same litter I would confine all three of them together in a small room with only one hiding place and work on handling and socializing all of them. Making certain Creampuff was handled daily and regularly so he would progress at least near the same rate as his siblings.
Finally, the mamma-cat can be handled and socialized in the same manner, however there are certain steps that need to be taken with her in progressing her through a handling and socialization program that both help the adult cat and keep the handler safe and unharmed.

The only thing I can guarantee, is if you do not work on socializing these animals they will probably remain as they are and not make forward progress on their own.
Best of luck to you and these lucky kitties,
Heidi =^..^=

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