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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-26-2016, 07:32 PM Thread Starter
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Dental Cleanup for stressed cat

My cat Penny is 8 years old and is due to have a dental cleanup tomorrow. She had one two years ago but this time I am feeling very disturbed because she has been very stressed out of late. We found a stray this past week and brought him home in the hopes of finding his owners. However after visiting all the vet clinics in my area I have not had any luck with finding his owners and it looks like we are keeping him.

He is a very sweet and loving boy but Penny is by nature very shy and nervous and has not taken well to this new guy. We have kept them separated and introduced them slowly over the course of this past week. Though she has come a long way, as she now tolerates him as long as he keeps is distance, she still hisses (he never hisses or displays any aggression) every time he tries to get close to her. We did previously have another cat who she did get along with, but sadly, he died in 2010 and this is first time since we have even thought of getting a second cat.

She despises going to the vet and I worry that it's all going to be too much for her and she will be traumatized. I have half the mind to postpone her appointment but the vet, who has been taking care of Penny, is retiring by the end of the month and even though I know that this means I will have to depend on a new vet eventually, I want to be able to leave Penny with someone who I trust for as long as I can.

Should I proceed with her appointment tomorrow? I'm really confused.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 02:58 AM
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Aw, poor Penny! My 15.5 year old kitty is super skittish, and when I let the stray in when the weather is really bad, she gets super stressed: doesn't sleep, doesn't eat, doesn't poop (and then gets constipated) while he's inside.

Personally, I would probably go ahead with the dental. Given Penny's nature, she may remain stressed for quite some time with a new kitty around, and she'll need that dental at some point.

However, if you're that worried about Penny's stress level, it might be better to postpone it. Penny will pick up on your stress, and that may make her even more anxious.

Do you have a pheromone spray or diffuser? Those really worked for my kitties.

If you go ahead with the dental, please let us know how it went! Head scratches to Penny.
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 03:27 AM Thread Starter
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So we went ahead with the cleanup and the poor darling had to have two of her molars removed but thankfully once she was back, she was awake, alert, fed and used the litter box even though she seems to want to just sleep all the time. Hopefully, she will back to her fidgety self in a few days. I'm keeping the new fella, whom we named Eros (Ros to us) after the God of love, away from her for the moment. I hate putting her under undue stress but here in Kuwait, where I live, abandoned or lost animals have a bleak future and he's just such a sweet boy who just wants to curl up and sleep next to you.

Is an 8 year old cat considered an older cat? for the first time since we have had Penny she was referred to as one and it made me pause for second because I had never thought of her like that up until then. I hope she lives long long life and will be with us for as long as she can.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 04:14 AM
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Oh, I'm sure she's so glad that the dental is over and that she's back home now. Just give her lots of extra attention to reassure her that Eros isn't replacing her.

As for age, I've heard people refer to an 8-year-old kitty as older. Personally, I think they're just mature at that point. If I remember, my vet said that they consider kitties to be seniors once they get to be around 11 or 12.

With the good care and love she's getting from you, I'm sure Penny isn't planning to go anywhere soon.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 04:35 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for responding to my post and for your kind words. It's really tricky to give extra attention to Penny as much as I want to because when Ros is around she's usually skulking about and refuses to respond to my calls. Ros on the other hand is not shy about climbing up on the couch and settling down next to one of us. Even when Penny creeps up to investigate him and hisses at him when he opens his eyes, he just closes them and goes right back to sleep. The only place she lets down her guard is in our bedroom because I have deemed it off limits for Ros for the time being. I'm thinking of starting another thread for Ros with some minor concerns I have about him. Would love to know your thoughts on it.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 03:29 PM
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This reminds me of the dynamic between my skittish cat and the one who passed away in late 2014. Whenever I tried to give extra attention to the skittish one or play with her alone, the confident one always had to butt in. The skittish one was always submissive and would Margaux take over the play session or would just go away somewhere, even though she wanted to be with me. It really frustrated me. But what can you do? Kitties have their own personalities, and the dynamic gets established pretty quickly.

I think it's a great idea to let Penny have your bedroom as her "safe" place, at least until she's more comfortable with Ros.

And please do start a separate thread about Ros, so that more members can see the specific issues you're concerned about. Did you post pics of them in the Meet My Kitty section? I'm going to go check.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 05:46 PM
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I believe 10 years old is when a cat is considered a "senior" or elderly cat. At 8 years old, your gentleman is the equivalent of 40 years old in human years - still a lot of life left, but slowing down and taking things easier a bit, maybe!

It's still possible that Penny will warm up to him given time. I know some people on this forum have great advice for introducing two cats to each other. You can rub them both with a scented oil such as vanilla, and then they will smell similar to each other and that may help them calm down. I believe you can also rub one with a towel, and then rub the towel onto the other so that they "share" each other's scent.


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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 03-28-2016, 06:05 PM
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I'm glad she made out ok with her dental. Give her kisses from me and Amelia!


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