Advice on solving a behavior problem I very well may have brought upon myself? - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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Old 02-12-2013, 04:38 PM Thread Starter
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Advice on solving a behavior problem I very well may have brought upon myself?

Hello, everyone.

I'm having a bit of a behavior issue with my boys. It may be my own fault, I'm not sure.

I have two boys of my own (6 and 2) and two extra boys we've been housesitting since October (est. 2 and 3). When the two new boys came to live with us, one of them (the three year old) was not fixed and immediately started spraying all over our brand new furniture. His owner said he would pay for the neuter as soon as he could, but it might be a few months. So from October to January this poor guy had to live in a separate bedroom by himself where he wouldn't spray.

While he was by himself, my two year old and the new two year old really bonded. My six year old has always kind of been a momma's boy and while he doesn't actively have a problem with the younger boys, he for the most part ignores them. The little ones are best friends and sleep together, eat together, and play together..

When we got the other male fixed, we tried letting him out with the other three. He no longer sprays (which is fantastic) but he cannot seem to get along with anyone! I thought it would just take a few days of adjusting, like it usually is when introducing a new kitty.. But almost two months later he still attacks the other boys. His owner said he's always attacked his brother, but now he seems to mainly target my two year old.

When he does go after my little one, my six year old goes into alpha male mode and steps in while the little ones sit right behind him (the three of them make a funny little triangle formation) acting as back up? I'm not sure..

It's gotten so bad (my six year old who already has a lot of health issues, ended up at the vet with two abcesses needing to be shaved and drained) and the two little ones constantly having scratched up faces that he can't be out with the other cats unless someone is home to break up fights.

Did I bring this on myself by having him alone for so long? He's not territorial over that room, the fights start every where. Is there anything I can do to make everyone adjust to each other without ending up injured? I feel awful making this guy live in a room by himself but I don't see another option until they go back home.


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Old 02-12-2013, 08:17 PM
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I don't really have any suggestions, other than reintroducing them and maybe taking a longer time to do so. I think there's a sticky somewhere on the forum about how to do a slow introduction. How long were they together before you had to separate the aggressive one? Was he aggressive from the start, or has he gotten aggressive since he's been back with the others?

Whether or not you brought it on by separating him, it doesn't seem that there was much else you could do, short of letting him ruin all of your furniture. Since he didn't spray at all in the bedroom, if he wasn't aggressive towards your kitties before, it would seem that the aggression has replaced spraying as his means of asserting himself.

How much longer will they be with you?
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Old 02-12-2013, 08:39 PM Thread Starter
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Advice on solving a behavior problem I very well may have brought upon myself?

He's been aggressive since day one. But he was separated after about three days. His owner told me he has always been aggressive towards his brother (the other cat we are house sitting) so it could just be him. They will be with us until April.


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Old 02-12-2013, 08:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bakesaurus View Post
He's been aggressive since day one. But he was separated after about three days. His owner told me he has always been aggressive towards his brother (the other cat we are house sitting) so it could just be him. They will be with us until April.


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Oh goodness. You must be counting the days...

The only other thing I can think of is to get Feliway or other pheromone sprays, diffusers, collars...I spray the carrier with AtEase before I take my screaming banshee of a Margaux to the vet and it works wonders. My vet gave me collars, but I never tried them, because it wasn't necessary. My cats also don't tolerate collars (to be precise, they don't tolerate me trying to put collars on them). I know many other people here swear by Feliway.

There are also drops you can put into their drinking water that are supposed to calm them down. I tried Rescue Remedy but didn't find it helpful. Some others may have had better success.
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Old 02-14-2013, 12:16 AM
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Since you're just house-sitting him, I would keep him separated to keep the peace and to save yourself from more vet bills. He is known to be and has proven he is aggressive to cats and doesn't get along with anyone, so I wouldn't bother with calming collars or Feliway. Do let him out of the bedroom for some social time with you, but put your other cats away while he's out to keep it peaceful. Hopefully it won't be too long before he goes back to his own home.

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