Mother & Kitten relationship problems following vet visit - a familiar story? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 10:54 AM Thread Starter
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Mother & Kitten relationship problems following vet visit - a familiar story?

Hi everyone,

I'm new here and this is my first non-intro post, sorry if it's a bit long.

We have 2 cats Daisy (3yrs) and Blossom (6 months), they are mother and daughter. We adopted them about 3 months ago, they have a very strong bond, eat, sleep, play together and groom each other, they've been inseparable.

Blossom was spayed last Thursday. On bringing her home 6 hours later her mother took a cautious sniff of her, hissed and ran off, growls and hisses if she tries to approach, stalks her around the house. She's taken a couple of swipes when Blossom has got too close, but nothing aggressive.

We're now 4 days on and things are not yet settled. There's a little improvement, the stalking has stopped, the growling and hissing is still there. Both are now very wary of each other. Daisy will creep up to Blossom to sniff her up close, but then growls or hisses again.

I've spent the last few days reading this excellent forum it seems this is common and scent related, but normaly only lasts for a few days. We've done repeated scent swaps, vanilla essence, feliway, I'm currently only playing with Daisy when Blossom is around to try and create a positive association. My concern is we seem to be making slow progress compared to whats suggested. We're worried they won't get back to how they were, sleeping huddled together etc. Does spaying change a cats smell hormonally?

Any thoughts or advice from you fellow cat people would be much appreciated.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 11:03 AM
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I'm a fairly new cat owner myself so don't really have answers for you but hope things get back to normal soon for your kitties.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 11:28 AM
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I haven't had this problem before, but I've read that, in some cases, a reintroduction may need to be done.

Hopefully, someone who has had experience with this could help.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 12:18 PM
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This is a common reaction. I recently had the same thing happen to my two after they had been at the vet just to have bloodwork done. Normally, they are cuddle buddies and always play together, half-bro half sister to each other, and my girl did a lot of hissing, growling at her half-bro for 3 days. He didn't hiss back or react to her.

Have you taken a clean washcloth and rubbed it all over Daisy's scent glands around her mouth, and then rubbed it all over Blossom's head? Have you tried playing with them together by using a teaser toy or "Da Bird" going from one to the other? or dragging a cord around you while sitting on the floor. Usually when you can involve them in a play activity like that they soon forget the hissing. My two are back to being cuddle buddies again like they used to be, but it did take a while, as a few days after their bloodwork, they both had their teeth cleaned. After that, there were a few hisses again from my girl, but she got over them faster. After a few more days they are back to their normal relationship. So hope it doesn't take Daisy and Blossom too long to resume their good relationship they had before. Try giving them some new toys with catnip, that often helps speed things up. Don't reprimand the hissing, just ignore it. If it goes longer than a week or so, you may have to separate them and do a reintro.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 04:57 PM
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Catloverami I am surprised to hear that it even happened when BOTH went to the Veterinarian's office at the same time!

I think it's too late for the wash-job but i think your cats will probably settle down, I've had it happen too, but not recently.


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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 05:12 PM
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I was surprised too, mimitabby, I certainly didn't expect it either. My girl is a few months older than her half-bro. I got her first, and she's always been dominant, but my boy after 2 y.o. keeps trying to knock the queen off her throne---both of them are 6 y.o. now. He chases her and tries to push her around and she hisses at him (and sometimes runs to me). My boy won't attack her if she's very near me. But then later in the day or next day she turns the tables and plays Miss Meanie and she's the one doing the chasing and biting, but my boy just lays down, doesn't move and never hisses. So about the vet experience, I think she didn't like being manhandled by the vet and his assistant as she had to have blood taken and an EKG and poked and prodded, and I think it was "redirected aggression" she was ticked off about it all and took it out on him when we got home, like it was all his fault. Both of them were "angels" at the vet, not a peep, hiss or growl during it all. I swear she's a tortie under her white coat, as she has a lot of "tortitude"!
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 12-21-2010, 07:52 PM
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Hi Andy. Abby started hissing at Muffs last August, after Muffs returned from the vet (she had been there a full day, although it didn't involve a spay). It took about 4 or 5 days before the hissing stopped. I kept them separated overnight and when I was at work, and kept an eye on them when they were home, trying to play with both together and give them lots of treats when they were calm beside each other. I also alternated the rooms they were in, to try to mingle their scents. So, I locked Abby in my bedroom when I was at work and let Muffs out in the house, and did the reverse at night. They were fine again by the 5th day, back to cuddling and grooming each other.
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