I'm new here...Need help with a behavior porblem with my cat - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-29-2005, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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I'm new here...Need help with a behavior porblem with my cat

Ok. I'm new so I hope I am doing this right. I have a 4 yr old fixed male cat named Sammy. I got him from a shelter when he was about 8 weeks old. He is normally a very lovable cat. He is cuddly and likes to play with anything including WATER! He is an indoor only cat but not declawed. I just clip then every now and then. The past couple of months we (my husband and I) have been issues with him. He wil just attact for no apparent reason and he isn't playing! The first time he did it I was terrified as I was in a room in the back of our house and he wouldn't let me out. I started screeming and Justin came back and shooed Sam away. He went on for a few minutes just yowling at us and clawing if we came near him. He didn't do it again for a while then the last couple of weeks he has been doing it more. Now he knows I won't run from him so it doesn't last as long but I just don't get it. It's like he just turns into another cat for a few minutes and then just as quick he snaps out of it and he is fine. Anyone have any ideas what could be causing this?
Well, I have horse stalls to clean so gotta go. I'll check for responses later.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-29-2005, 03:39 PM
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First, a vet checkup is always a good idea when you see sudden personality changes. Cats hide pain and illness really well, and often it comes out as what we interpret as aggression or attacking behavior.

Look for patterns (I think I may change my handle to "Looks For Patterns" ). Is it a room, a person, a time (feeding and litterbox times are always suspects), is it after he's been looking out a window or outside? Is it when he's being patted or touched in a certain place or way? Is it something you're wearing (Wellies are one of Assumpta's triggers to turn into death-kitty of doom). Is it helped or made worse by playing?

Take special note of his body language and the way he holds his tail, ears, whiskers, and trunk, because those can give you clues to his motivation. Staring at an aggressive cat is uaually a good way to escalate aggression, so if you can, turn to the side, make no eye contact, and yawn openly to indicate that you're no threat (just a personal safety note there, because most of us humans will quite naturally stare at a hissing, yowling cat, which gets interpreted as a threat by the poor cat, who just gets more upset).

But I'd ring up the vet first, to make sure that he's not in any physical pain, then start looking for patterns and common threads in these episodes so you can avoid the triggers.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-29-2005, 03:47 PM
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and you might want to read this thread; someone else who has a similar problem:

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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-29-2005, 03:58 PM
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This sounds similar to a problem one of my teachers in high school was having with her cat. She was a perfectly sweet cuddly cat most of the time, but would have these "attacks" where she would basically go psycho and attack my teacher. It seemed like it was very sudden, always in different situations, and never seemed to have a trigger. My teacher started to be afraid of her own cat (which is never a comfortable thing when you live at home). One night she was attacked in bed, and the only warning was a mean sounding *mrrrraooow* from the other side of the room before the cat lunged at her. I could only imagine how scary it was. Then I was cat sitting for her for a week while she was in Europe, and everything was fine. I went in, played with them (there were 2 cats), fed them, kept them company, for a whole week without incident. (The cat had been taken to MANY vets, had MANY tests run, without a cause being found). The LAST day that I went, I was talking to them as I got the food out for them, like I had all week, nothing changed, and as I was crouched over putting the food in the bowls, I noticed her eyes suddenly get really big and they were transfixed on me. I jumped up, and she lunged at me with a loud angry meow. If i hadn't jumped up from the crouching position i had been in, she would have gotten my face. But she got my leg, bit my knee, and scratched through my pants. I had to grab the spray bottle from the table behind me and practically soak her to get her to let go. It was the scariest thing i've ever experienced with an animal. So I understand how you must be worried about Sammy's behaviour.
Best thing I can advise is take him to a vet. Hopefully they'll be able to get to the bottom of this behaviour!


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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-29-2005, 04:01 PM
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Definitely should see a vet (much to his disgust probably ) ASAP..
When clear you can observe other things like Gudewife said..please tell us how it turns out..
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